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Rush Limbaugh Gives His Blessing To Romney’s Attack On Police, Firefighters and Teachers

The leader of the Republican party, Rush Limbaugh, has given his blessing to Mitt Romney for his recent comments reaffirming his disdain for public workers — the great people who protect us and educate our children. Here is a reminder of exactly what Romney said.

“[Obama] wants to hire more government workers. He says we need more fireman, more policeman, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? The American people did. It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.”

Rush Limbaugh, in his infinite wisdom, helps to explain the Republican position for us all. This is the Republican party in 2012.

“Nobody’s opposed to cops or firefighters or teachers — but they aren’t private sector jobs,” Limbaugh said. “They do not contribute to economic growth. Their purpose is otherwise. They have an entirely different purpose: public safety, public education, this kind of thing. But there’s no growth in the economy. “If you add those jobs — and if there aren’t other types of private sector jobs added while at the same time we’re adding to the fire rolls and the cop rolls and teachers — we are reducing the size of the private sector. This is Marxism 101. It’s also Ignorance and Sophistry 101.”

In Rush’s warped mind, I’m sure it makes perfect sense and it’s an easy sell to his mindless listeners. This zero sum argument plays well with people who lack critical thinking skills because it reduces it to a concept they’ve already accepted, the idea that if some benefit, others suffer. The problem is, it makes no sense at all. If the public sector creates more police, firefighter and teacher jobs, it has no effect on whether private sector jobs are created. Why would it? The private sector creates jobs when there is a demand for their products, as Nick Hanauer’s Ted Talk so eloquently lays out.

Limbaugh also injects another often unsaid conservative concept, that public employees don’t contribute to the economy at all. Steve Benen addresses this issue with his usual style.

But if Romney and Limbaugh actually, sincerely believe what they’re saying, I’d just ask them to consider one question: do they believe teachers, police officers, and firefighters spend money?

I mean, really. Limbaugh argued with a straight face today that cops, firefighters, and teachers may work and contribute to society, “but there’s no growth in the economy” as a result of their jobs. In other words, there are hundreds of thousands of teachers and first responders, but they never buy things and they never invest, so when they get laid off en masse, there are no economic consequences whatsoever.

I’m glad that Mitt Romney and Rush Limbaugh have taken this tact, because the vast majority of the American people disagree with them on the importance of police, firefighters and teachers.

Personally, I make a point to thank police, firefighters and teachers for the tough jobs they do. I also think they are vastly underpaid.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

June 12, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Election, Republican Party | , | Comments Off

Why We Win – President Obama Speaking In Minnesota

June 8, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Economy, Election, Jobs, Politics, President Barack Obama | 8 Comments

One Awesome President

President Barack Obama acknowledges applause following his remarks on student loan interest rates, at the University of Colorado Coors Event Center in Boulder, Colo., April 24, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Audience members embrace President Barack Obama after he spoke at the Port of Tampa in Tampa, Fla., April 13, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama greets members of the Rolling Thunder in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House, May 25, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama participates in a G8 Summit working session focused on global and economic issues, in the dining room of Laurel Cabin at Camp David, Md., May 19, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

June 6, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Election, Photography, Politics, President Barack Obama | Comments Off

Reflections On Wisconsin The Day After

It sucks that we didn’t pull it off in Wisconsin yesterday, but we all knew that it was going to be a tough thing to do and it only got tougher when the Koch money started pouring in.

I caught a little news this morning, but didn’t really want to listen to Chuck Todd, and the like, tell me what message this sent, via carrier pigeon I assume.

This was not some “dress rehearsal” for November like so many in the media are trying to push. Just like 2010 and every other special election hasn’t sent any messages either.

I wrote about the 2010 elections and how it wasn’t a referendum on President Obama, because apparently a whole lot of people thought he was on the ballot in 2010, for some reason. Why could that be?

We need to stay focused on Nov. 6, 2012, amidst all the distractions from both the right and the “left”. If Republicans gain the WH and/or the Senate, the transfer of our country to the top 1% will be finalized.

FORWARD!

June 6, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Election, Politics | Comments Off

“What If” the Republicans Hadn’t Obstructed The American Jobs Act?

Business has created over 4.2 million private sector jobs since President Obama took office and we’ve seen 27 straight months of job growth. As a comparison, in 2008, the last year of President Bush’s second term, we LOST 2.6 million jobs. In December 2008 alone, 632,000 jobs were lost. So yes, it sucks that the May 2012 jobs report only showed an INCREASE of 69,000 jobs, but if you are watching any cable TV today, you would think it was December of 2008 again.

One of the first things that came to my mind when I heard the jobs report was — I wonder how many jobs would have been created had the Republicans worked with President Obama to pass the jobs bill that he proposed back in the fall of 2011. I decided to pull out a speech he gave when he was traveling around the country selling his jobs package as a reminder of what may have been if the Republicans hadn’t blocked yet another attempt by President Obama to help American workers.

Any good American should be appalled at the recent news that Republicans conspired ON INAUGURATION DAY of 2009 to block every thing President Obama attempts to do. The blatant disregard for the American people for political reasons should send everyone to the polls on November 6, 2012 to send a message to Republicans that we are the United States of America and that politics shouldn’t take precedent over the overall good of the nation.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles (at The Raw Story)

June 1, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Economy, Jobs, Republican Party | , | Leave a comment

Romney Is Shaking The Etch A Sketch On Immigration

It’s going to be a long, meandering campaign from the looks of it. Mitt Romney is going back to the drawing board and retooling his rhetoric for the general election.

Besides the problem of adding to his horrendous image as a serial flip-flopper, I think he will also suffer backlash from the right-wing of his own party. The primaries have shown that his support is tenuous at best as his competitors each took a turn as the “not Romney” candidate. He will have to walk a fine line to keep his support from anyone short of his immediate family.

I doubt that Hispanics will soon forget Mitt Romney’s previous actions with regards to immigration.

It’s also worth appreciating the fact that it’s far too late for the presumptive Republican nominee to “decide his position on immigration” — that decision was already made quite a while ago. Romney has already said he’s an opponent of the DREAM Act; he’s palling around with Pete Wilson and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach; he endorses a “self-deportation” agenda; he’s critical of bilingualism; and his casual dismissals of “amnesty” and “illegals” are a staple of his campaign rhetoric.

He’s not “still deciding”; he’s already decided to be the most anti-immigrant major-party nominee in at least a generation.

I’m wondering when Willard will pull out the “that was my evil twin” line to explain his previous actions.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles (a part of The Raw Story)

May 8, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Mitt Romney, Republican Party | 4 Comments

The Left Has A Choice – Win or Lose!

OK, here’s the deal. There are a whole lot of us liberals/progressives/Democrats who support President Obama and NO, it isn’t some hero-worship or cult-like bullshit that frequently gets thrown in our face. We are supporting a President that is working his ass off to try to repair the damage left behind by the previous 4 presidents.

We support a president that is interested in making progress and moving the ball down the field, whether it’s huge gains like reforming health care or small gains like signing the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.

And we don’t think President Obama can do no wrong, that is something that gets projected upon us constantly. It is the knee-jerk reaction of many of the “pundits of perpetual disappointment” who spend all their time splitting hairs and searching for something to whine about. And of course, they never give credit for any advancements, nothing is ever good enough for them.

So you folks on the left who continue to snipe, attack, antagonize and otherwise act like petulant, whiny little children…..GIVE IT UP! You aren’t going to convince us that it’s in our own best interests to help the Republicans take EVEN MORE control over our country. It ain’t going to fucking happen, sorry. No matter what President Obama might do that I disagree with, I’m not so naive to think that ANY Republican would even come close to representing me better than President Obama does.

If you are one of those people who thinks “both parties are the same”, I’m sorry, you are suffering from delusions.  To me, that is one of the stupidest fucking things you can say in politics. What comes to my mind when I hear people trot out the “both sides” meme is that the person saying it has some other motivation. If they are willing to ignore things such as who gets to pick Supreme Court nominees, an impact that will be felt for decades to come, then they are clearly motivated by something other than principles. Or, how can someone who passionately supports people less fortunate than themselves ignore the Paul Ryan/Republican budget plan, which in effect says “you’re on your own buddy, but here’s a lovely parting gift…your voucher.”

To my fellow pragmatic liberals and progressives, we need to focus on fighting back against the powerful, well-funded right that is determined to completely turn our country over to big money interests. Too much of our time is wasted fighting the malcontents on the left.

Don’t let the hate driven left set the agenda, learn to ignore them. When you engage them, you are only encouraging them. Their goals aren’t to win elections or change things, because as I’ve said, if they are willing to ignore so many important differences between Democrats and Republicans and choose to spend their time blogging, tweeting, Facebooking and talking about what isn’t good about Democrats, then clearly they have different goals and the greater good of their fellow women and men isn’t one of them.

Those who claim to simply be holding politicians feet to the fire with their criticism, need to step back and see exactly which politicians are most deserving of burnt feet. By only criticizing President Obama, while letting Republicans get away with the most extreme agenda in our history, I have to question the sincerity of the principles they wrap themselves in like a Snuggie. By ignoring the much more egregious actions of Republicans, they are clearly making a choice.

May 8, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Election, Politics, President Barack Obama, Republican Party | 1 Comment

Dear Republicans: REALLY???

Guest Blogger:  RLGardner

Republican World just gets weirder and weirder every day.  Don’t believe me?  Take a trip down the “Here’s The Truth of the Matter” Lane with me.

Republicans are currently slamming Obama for mentioning Osama bin Laden and how he is dead, OMG!

How dare he!…whine the Republicans.

However, I didn’t hear any of them whining when Dubya landed on the aircraft carrier, watermelon stuffed into his flight suit, and declaring (with a big banner and everything), “Mission Accomplished.”

So I’m wondering: who was really “spiking the football” here?  President Obama, who actually truly madly deeply DID give the order to take out bin Laden or Dubya with his watermelon, flight suit, and pack full o’ lies?  Another question: Do you think Willard could have done the same thing?

Right.  That’s what I thought.

And then there’s the “War on Women.”  According to John Boehner, aka St. Orange of Julius, in his latest pearl-clutching episode on the House floor, it is the Democrats who started and are perpetuating, said war.

Really?

Which party, both on the federal level and the state level, has introduced eleventy-billion bills designed to quash the rights of women, particularly when it comes to reproductive and other health issues?

Which party, and their minions (Rush, I’m talking to you!) has engaged in slut-shaming?

Which party does the Governor who suggested that women just “close their eyes” if they didn’t want to see the on-screen results of their medically unnecessary transvaginal ultrasounds belong to?  The Democratic party?

BZZZZZ!!!  I’m sorry, pasty white “R” man- it was your party, not the Democratic party that did that.

Wanna keep going?  Okay. Here we go:

Here’s another one for you: Republican men (and their Stepford Wife surrogates) are going around saying that there is no wage disparity, but hey, if there really IS wage disparity between men and women, well, there is a perfectly logical reason for that. A couple of perfectly logical reasons actually:

Perfectly Logical Reason Number One:  Men work more hours per week than women do on average.  Okay, let’s say that’s true.  However, where reason number one falls apart is that the true argument is not that men make more than women because some men work more hours than women, it’s the fact that when you look at per-hour wages, men make more per hour than women do for doing the same damned job!  Got that, Republicans?  Do you need me to go over that for you again?

Perfectly Logical Reason Number Two is: Well, women often take time off when they have children.

Now, I will grant you that that is indeed a truism.  However, I am quite puzzled as to why you think it’s okay that women make less than men for the simple fact that we can bear children, and thus we deserve to get paid less for doing the same damned job that men do, yet when Hilary Rosen said that Ann Romney has never held a job, you once again get your tighty whities twisted into a knot and scream out, “How DARE you Democrats slam the mothers of this country?!!??! ELEVENS!!!

Really?

You say that mothers are valuable, and guess what, I agree with you.  I really do.  Where we part ways, however, is that mothers (and women in general) are only valuable to you when they serve your purposes, not because they are in and of themselves actually valuable.

If a woman is white, and married to a rich white man, and she stays home to raise her kids (accompanied with a cadre of housekeepers, nannies, yard workers, cooks, etc.), that’s all cool beans.

BUT, if a woman is not rich, and worse, if she is a minority woman, well then according to you, she’d best get off her lazy Welfare Queen backside and get out there, get a job (or 3 or 4) and pull herself up by her bootstraps.  She’d better not DARE ask for any public assistance, because if she does, well it just confirms to the Republicans that she is, in fact, a Welfare Queen and she is having babies on purpose for the sole reason that she wants to dip into the pockets of people like the Romney’s, those poor rich souls.

And the biggest insult is that you sit on your velvet thrones, and you expect us to just bow at your feet and accept what you say as the gospel truth.

So I say again, REALLY?

We are not as dumb as you wish we were.

Just wait until November.

May 7, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Politics, Republican Party | | Comments Off

A New Kind Of Terrorism

Image created by Extreme Liberal

This made me laugh, until it made me cry. CabinGirl from Booman’s Tribune had an interesting exchange while voting in Pennsylvania on Tuesday

So, I just voted in the PA primary today…

For the first time ever, I was asked for a photo ID to vote. When I responded that asking for that was just wrong, the suburban white lady looking up my name in the voter rolls actually defended it: “It will keep the terrorists from voting, and we’ll give you a free one.”

Oh my god, run for the hills…the terrorists are going to vote us into submission.

I don’t have to think very hard to figure out where that poll worker might have gotten that idea. I can just picture Gretchen Carlson saying it on Fox and Fiends (not a typo).

What isn’t funny about that incident is that the right has succeeded in brainwashing way too many people into believing such nonsense.

Think about how many people don’t bother to vote because its an inconvenience or they might actually have to think about things other than the Kardashians for two minutes. I’m having a hard time understanding exactly what these “terrorist voters” are going to achieve with all this voting. Democracy?

April 26, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Republican Party, Tea Party | 2 Comments

President Obama And Why He Gets It!

Rolling Stone Magazine has an interview with President Obama that hits the stands on Friday, but thanks to the internet, we get to see it before the glossy version comes out. As I was reading it, several things occurred to me. The first is that President Obama is much smarter about politics than our brain dead media. The beltway media has been getting it wrong for years as they float around in the bubble of Washington and practice group think, following the lead of Fox News. This answer from the President shows his understanding of politics in our country.

Q. (Jann Wenner) – Let’s talk about the campaign. Given all we’ve heard about and learned during the GOP primaries, what’s your take on the state of the Republican Party, and what do you think they stand for?

A. (President Obama) – First of all, I think it’s important to distinguish between Republican politicians and people around the country who consider themselves Republicans. I don’t think there’s been a huge change in the country. If you talk to a lot of Republicans, they’d like to see us balance the budget, but in a balanced way. A lot of them are concerned about jobs and economic growth and favor market-based solutions, but they don’t think we should be getting rid of every regulation on the books. There are a lot of Republican voters out there who are frustrated with Wall Street and think that they acted irresponsibly and should be held to account, so they don’t want to roll back regulations on Wall Street.

But what’s happened, I think, in the Republican caucus in Congress, and what clearly happened with respect to Republican candidates, was a shift to an agenda that is far out of the mainstream – and, in fact, is contrary to a lot of Republican precepts.

This is a direct result of the take over of the Republican party by the Tea Party. I know countless Republicans who are not happy with the direction that their party has taken in just the last 3 years. Several of them are already hitching their wagons behind President Obama, I can only imagine that as we get closer to the election, even more will come on board with reality.

As the Republicans wear out the phrase “class warfare”, President Obama lays it out in terms that voters can understand in his answer to this question.

Q. (JW) – How does that shape the tone and tenor of the debate that’s going to take place during the campaign?

A. (PBO) – I actually think it will be a useful debate, and one that I look forward to. I think that the American people are going to be listening very intently to who’s got a vision for how we move this country forward.Their vision is that if there’s a sliver of folks doing well at the top who are unencumbered by any regulatory restraints whatsoever, that the nation will grow and prosperity will trickle down. The challenge that they’re going to have is: We tried it. From 2000 to 2008, that was the agenda. It wasn’t like we have to engage in some theoretical debate – we’ve got evidence of how it worked out. It did not work out well, and I think the American people understand that. [...]

Considering the fact that Mitt Romney doesn’t even try to hide his pandering to the wealthy in this country, this argument is going to be an easy one to make and will help defuse the Republican mantra of the “politics of envy”, that is really just an insult to most Americans. People who can’t afford to pay their bills or feed their children aren’t being envious, it’s more like “what the hell, I just want to get by, give me a break!”

On foreign policy, President Obama shows the maturity that all Americans want in their leader. You can see it clearly in his answer to this question.

Q. (JW) – Let me ask you about the Middle East in general. Outside of Iraq, there seems to be more turmoil than ever – in Syria, Israel, Iran. What’s your take on the region and the strategic challenges it poses?

A. (PBO) – [...] But what is also true is that these are countries that don’t have deep democratic traditions. Because of repression, in part, the only organizing principle in these societies is religious, and there are sectarian divisions that date back hundreds, in some cases thousands, of years. As these transitions take place, democracy can easily turn to demagoguery, to civil strife. So it is going to be a bumpy road, and a challenging time. I think the American approach has to be to uphold core principles of universal rights, freedom and democracy. We’re also going to have to show some humility, in the sense that we’re not going to be able to completely impose our own vision on these countries.

 And finally, this exchange about what the president reads and watches says a lot to me about the type of person he is because it shows he isn’t floating around in the Washington bubble with Chuck Todd and Mike Allen. He isn’t playing their game and it has to drive them nuts.

Q. (JW) – What do you read regularly to keep you informed or provide you with perspectives beyond the inner circle of your advisers?

A. (PBO) – [Laughs] Other than Rolling Stone?

Q. (JW) – That goes without saying.

A. (PBO) – I don’t watch a lot of TV news. I don’t watch cable at all. I like The Daily Show, so sometimes if I’m home late at night, I’ll catch snippets of that. I think Jon Stewart’s brilliant. It’s amazing to me the degree to which he’s able to cut through a bunch of the nonsense – for young people in particular, where I think he ends up having more credibility than a lot of more conventional news programs do.

I spend a lot of time just reading reports, studies, briefing books, intelligence assessments.

Go read the entire interview, it’s always great to hear his thoughts without a media filter distorting it. I’m very happy with the job President Obama has done and I’m confident he will do an even better job with a Democratic House and Senate next January.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

April 25, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Politics, President Barack Obama | | 1 Comment

The Republican Party Has Become The Party Of Paranoia…(The POP)

Some of the rhetoric coming from the Republican candidates for president makes me wonder if a group of paranoid schizophrenics weren’t prematurely released from a mental institution…without their meds.

I’ve pasted one example from each candidate of that paranoia.  Search in Google to find many more or just watch a cable news network for a half hour.

Newt Gingrich: “All of you should be very deeply concerned about national security. Barack Obama is the most dangerous president in modern American history,” Gingrich said.

Rick Santorum: “President Obama once said he wants everybody in America to go to college. What a snob,” said the former senator from Pennsylvania. “There are good, decent men and women who go out and work hard every day and put their skills to test that aren’t taught by some liberal college professor to try to indoctrinate them. Oh, I understand why he wants you to go to college. He wants to remake you in his image.

Mitt Romney: “We stand near the threshold of profound economic misery. Four more years of the same political path would be disastrous,” Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said in a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars today.

Ron Paul: “illegal immigrants enter the country for the express purpose of giving birth. But illegal immigrants also use emergency rooms, public roads, and public schools. In many cases they are able to obtain Medicaid, food stamps, public housing, and even unemployment benefits. … We must end the perverse incentives that encourage immigrants to come here illegally, including the anchor baby incentive.” – Ron Paul, (on his congressional website, not the infamous newsletters)

I can’t imagine that rhetoric appeals to more than just the “phobic” crowd. If I were a Republican, I’d be a little paranoid about my party going over the cliff while following those nutballs. Sometimes it takes a journalist from outside of America to see the big picture, from The Globe and Mail…

Those who remain in the race for the Republican nomination, and those who have departed it, made up a group characterized by insularity, intellectual shallowness and meanness of spirit, coupled with an unshakable eagerness to pander to every holy roller, Tea Partier, gun worshipper, global warming denier, government hater, nativist and billionaire financier – or, as Yeats would say, “the worst are full of passionate intensity.”

That this crop of candidates was the best that a once-great party could muster says much about the state of presidential politics, Republican-style. It says even more about the state of conservative opinion in America.

That opinion, with all its shadings, is best characterized by a consuming anger – which explains why the campaign hasn’t been about differences or vision but about resentment and fear and perfervid rhetoric that candidates have directed at each other and at real and imagined threats ranging from Barack Obama to Muslims, China, European “socialists,” excessive government and mad Iranian mullahs. (emphasis mine)

What scares me about this sort of rhetoric is the effect it might have on unstable people who may be prone to violence. In many ways, it confirms the worst instincts of those people, giving them tacit approval to act on their paranoid fears. If there are any adults left in the Republican Party, please bring some sanity back to your party for the sake of civil society.

March 14, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Republican Party | , | 18 Comments

President Obama Nails Republicans On Auto Bailout – Hard!

I just love when our President calls out the Republicans on their stupidity. Since the media just plays along with them, it falls on the President to do it himself. And he does it sooooo well, doesn’t he?

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

February 28, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Accomplishments, Economy, Politics, President Barack Obama | , , | 8 Comments

Democrats In Michigan – Don’t Play Games And Give Legitimacy To Santorum

This idea of Democrats going to the voting booth and casting a vote for Rick Santorum in the Michigan primary is wrong for many reasons.

The first is that it is a “punk” thing to do. I can’t believe grown adults would think to do such a thing, it isn’t cool when Republicans do it to Democrats and it isn’t cool this time around either.

The next reason is that it demeans our entire process of how we elect our leaders and trivializes the process. It’s not a media generated horse race or game, these are our elected leaders and it should be taken seriously.

And finally, it will only serve to give legitimacy to Rick Santorum, one of the most offensive and hard right nut jobs to ever run for President. Is that what you as a Democrat want, to give more legitimacy to a nut job who already is attracting too many wackos. Chris at Eclectablog delves into this a little further…

It’s a batshit insane idea. It subverts the intent of our primary system, it’s a complete waste of money in Michigan where Santorum already leads and, perhaps most importantly, it gives the Republicans something to point to and coalesce around. That’s the last thing we need at this point. Frankly, the idea of giving any support to such a homophobic, anti-woman candidate is just repulsive. I don’t understand how any Democrat could pull the lever/punch the chad for such an odious candidate. The karmic backlash/whiplash would be an ass-kicker.

If the Republicans want to demean our process and play games, let them. But we as Democrats shouldn’t stoop to their level, but should stick to the ideals and principles that have guided us for decades.

The fact that Daily Kos is pushing this idea is just one more reason why I quit going to that blog years ago. Markos, a former Republican, doesn’t seem to respect our election process or understand the consequences of elections. It’s serious business folks and affects people lives. Resist the urge to add fuel to the scorched earth tactics of those who don’t respect our system. Act like a grownup, please.

February 28, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Election | , , | 11 Comments

Keystone XL Pipeline — The “Drill, Baby, Drill” of 2012!

Our “liberal media” at work!

The Republican Party is picking up where they left off in the last election and helping to define themselves as the party “of and for” corporations – especially big oil.

In 2008, they had “Drill, Baby, Drill” and all the money that came along with that. This election year, they’ve chosen the Keystone XL pipeline to show how they plant their lips on the ass of big oil.

Once again, they have the media on their side in this endeavor. Media Matters for America did a study of media coverage from August 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011 on the Keystone XL pipeline.  The results aren’t a surprise to anyone who pays attention to reality. This chart tells the story pretty clearly.

The GOP has been tremendously successful at getting the media to play along with them since August of 2011 on this issue and the above chart shows us the results. The red bars show how “job creation potential” was mentioned in the coverage from major media outlets with the green bar representing the “environmental concerns.” If you’ve been following the topic recently, it is obvious that Republicans are trying to make this into their jobs program, or at least an attempt to show how the Obama administration is preventing job creation. Go read the whole article at Media Matters, it was very thorough.

When you drill down into the numbers (I couldn’t resist), it turns out that reality is much different than the propaganda that has been sold to the American people. In a different post, Media Matters has some interesting information that gets to the real job numbers associated with the pipeline. Here are some snippets that show a progression that begins with Fox News…

Fox Anchor Martha MacCallum: 20,000 Jobs Is “The Low-End Estimate.” [snip]

TransCanada Said In 2010 That Keystone XL Pipeline “Is Expected To Create Over … 13,000 New Jobs For American Workers.” [snip]

Wash. Post: Based On TransCanada’s Numbers, “The Number Of People Employed” Would Actually Be 6,500. A November 5 article in The Washington Post reported that TransCanada CEO Russ Girling “said Friday that the 13,000 figure was actually not a true job number, but actually accounted for ‘one person, one year.’” The Post added that “if the construction jobs lasted two years, the number of people employed in each of the two years would be 6,500.” [snip]

Cornell University Global Labor Institute: Based On TransCanada’s Numbers, “The Project Will Create No More Than 2,500-4,600 Temporary Direct Construction Jobs.” [snip]

Cornell University Global Labor Institute: “Based On The Figures Provided By TransCanada For The Canadian Section Of The Pipeline, The New Permanent US Pipeline Jobs In The US Number As Few As 50.” (emphasis mine)

The estimate by the independent group at Cornell University puts the number of temporary jobs at 2,500 – 4,600 and the number of permanent jobs at 50. Those jobs would certainly matter to the people lucky enough to get them, but it ain’t no 20,000 jobs for sure. And considering all the risks to the states that this pipeline would travel through, not worth it at all.

Republicans are either stupid or crazy, take your pick!

In November of 2011, the Republicans decided to embrace the issue in their negotiations for extending the payroll tax cut that President Obama was fighting for. The pipeline became their bargaining chip in those negotiations, even after being warned by the State Department that trying to force the issue would result in it being killed for sure. That didn’t seem to bother the GOP, from a State Department briefing on December 12, 2011…

The State Department has led a rigorous, thorough, and transparent process that must run its course to obtain the necessary information to make an informed decision on behalf of the national interest. Should Congress impose an arbitrary deadline for the permit decision, its actions would not only compromise the process, it would prohibit the Department from acting consistently with National Environmental Policy Act requirements by not allowing sufficient time for the development of this information. In the absence of properly completing the process, the Department would be unable to make a determination to issue a permit for this project. (emphasis mine)

But like the flat footed, clumsy party that they are, the GOP kept right on pushing it. So during the holidays, we were treated to the White House fighting for tax cuts for every American while the Republicans were blocking those tax cuts and supporting big oil. Coming off the BP oil spill in 2010, I’m not sure that is the group you want to wrap your arms around.

Just over a week ago on January 18, 2012, President Obama officially rejected the Keystone XL pipeline bid.

But the president said today in a statement that the congressionally imposed deadline did not provide adequate time for the State Department to finish a customary review of the pipeline’s route through six states.

“The rushed and arbitrary deadline insisted on by Congressional Republicans prevented a full assessment of the pipeline’s impact, especially the health and safety of the American people, as well as our environment,” Obama said.

“As a result, the secretary of state has recommended that the application be denied. And after reviewing the State Department’s report, I agree.”

What is so astounding to me is that they don’t seem to really want the pipeline to go through, they just want it as a campaign issue. Steve Benen summed it up very well…

I’d argue that this is the outcome Republicans wanted all along. The GOP didn’t really want the pipeline; they wanted the ability to whine about the absence of the pipeline. This wasn’t, in other words, about energy production; this was about creating an issue for the 2012 campaign.

There were signs that the Republicans might abandon that tactic, but the other day, Boehner hinted that he may double down on that strategy.

 Besides the stupidity of pitting tax cuts for all Americans against the interests of big oil, Republicans also touted those outrageous claims of how many jobs it would create. Going into an election year that everyone says will be all about jobs, you would think they might pick an issue that would actually create some jobs. But instead, they’ve inflated and exaggerated numbers that even the company building the pipeline doesn’t agree with.

I’m seeing a new slogan, “Lay Pipe, Baby, Lay Pipe.” Now get your minds out of the gutter.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

H/T to The Washington Monthly and Media Matters for America

January 27, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, BP Oil Spill, Economy, Jobs, Media, MSM, Politics, President Barack Obama, Republican Party, Tax Cuts | | 11 Comments

Why 2012 Will Be a “Close” Election

Guest Post: By Joan Ruaiz

I so wish I could tell you that the upcoming general election will be close, and that it will be due to the life-and-death seriousness of the issues as they relate to our economy, the environment and our foreign policy — but I cannot honestly say this.  I do believe that the 2012 election will be close, but for the wrong reasons; one being that it is how media conglomerates generate large sums for themselves during an election year.  So when the media crows again how this will not only be close, but the most expensive ever, don’t think they aren’t at the same time counting on the millions they will earn throughout.

We must understand that the protracted Obama-Hillary primary wars of 2008 were a boon to media coffers!  Couple that with the birth of the limitless Super PACs (thanks to our Republican-dominated SCOTUS), and you can easily see what I see: media mavens relying on  their potential earnings after facing lean advertising years. If you hadn’t thought about it before, think about it now, while closely observing how desperately reporters are handling the Republican primaries. It may seem quite entertaining at the moment (to some of us), but I would respectfully suggest that we ought to be preparing for what is to come in the general.

Speaking of the current sorry-ass Republican primaries, it is mighty strange that although there is only one halfway electable Republican left standing, we are now witnessing a media-termed “horse race” as we head toward Super PAC-spending Tuesday. It’s not because the alternative candidates to Romney are actually worth anything (because they aren’t); it is because the faster the Republican Primaries end, the less money the Super PAC will spend, and that would greatly reduce the media’s anticipated advertising windfall.

Look, it’s no accident that the media has been all over candidate Romney since his big win in New Hampshire.  At the exact time the announcement was made that Mitt held an insurmountable double-digit lead in South Carolina polls, the corporate media got hella serious!   To add to the media’s trouble, GOP candidates were dropping like flies, Mitt Romney reeked of the inevitable stench, and the primary season was ending before it had started.  But by golly, all was not lost, as we witnessed the re-resurrection of the twice-fallen Newt in just 7 days!  I will add that this wasn’t an easy get by any means. Just ask Ginger Chuckie on MSNBC; he seemed quite exhausted with that renewed Newt surge!

Yes, truth be told, our poor corporate media has had the hardest time coming up with a plausible scenario to get that primary GOP Super PAC money bomb coming their way, considering what they were given to work with! It isn’t typical of our media to get so resourceful as to report on the manner in which a GOP millionaire candidate built his fortune, or to just allow GOP candidates to be dumb enough to literally destroy each other, after all that St. Reagan preached on that subject!  The media corporations, after all, are not left-leaning, nor have they been for quite some time.  No, the media corporations lean green with greed, and we shouldn’t allow ourselves to forget that.

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January 25, 2012 Posted by | 2012 Election, Media, MSM, President Barack Obama | 18 Comments

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