Sunday, October 21, 2012

What's In a Name?

Photo:  Huffington Post, Saturday, October 20, 2012


"If you don't have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare voters.

If you don't have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from. You make a big election about small things.

And you know what? It's worked before, because it feeds into the cynicism we all have about government. When Washington doesn't work, all its promises seem empty. If your hopes have been dashed again and again, then it's best to stop hoping and settle for what you already know.
 
I get it. I realize that I am not the likeliest candidate for this office. I don't fit the typical pedigree, and I haven't spent my career in the halls of Washington.

But I stand before you tonight because all across America something is stirring. What the naysayers don't understand is that this election has never been about me; it's about you.

It's about you.

For 18 long months, you have stood up, one by one, and said, "Enough," to the politics of the past. You understand that, in this election, the greatest risk we can take is to try the same, old politics with the same, old players and expect a different result. You have shown what history teaches us, that at defining moments like this one, the change we need doesn't come from Washington. Change comes to Washington.

Change happens -- change happens because the American people demand it, because they rise up and insist on new ideas and new leadership, a new politics for a new time.

America, this is one of those moments.
...

It is that American spirit, that American promise, that pushes us forward even when the path is uncertain; that binds us together in spite of our differences; that makes us fix our eye not on what is seen, but what is unseen, that better place around the bend. That promise is our greatest inheritance. It's a promise I make to my daughters when I tuck them in at night and a promise that you make to yours, a promise that has led immigrants to cross oceans and pioneers to travel west, a promise that led workers to picket lines and women to reach for the ballot.

And it is that promise that, 45 years ago today, brought Americans from every corner of this land to stand together on a Mall in Washington, before Lincoln's Memorial, and hear a young preacher from Georgia speak of his dream.
 
The men and women who gathered there could've heard many things. They could've heard words of anger and discord. They could've been told to succumb to the fear and frustrations of so many dreams deferred." 

--- Junior Senator Barack Obama, DNC Acceptance Speech, August 28, 2008

.
Hard to believe that the above words were spoken by Barack Obama a little more than four years ago.  The lofty goals offered, the soaring rhetoric, the man's eyes raised above the crowd to scan for any who may have been overcome with the emotion of the moment, (requiring medical assistance), a quick wave to the EMT's and... 

The 'Hope'.  The 'Change'.  The 'Scam'.

Yes it was just over four years ago.

Twenty-Eight 'dog years'.

And seemingly a 'lifetime' ago for some reading this (I fall into this particular category).

Longer, though perhaps for those people who thought that Barack Obama WAS 'the guy they've been waiting for all their lives'.  They pinned their hopes, their dreams, their very futures on the man from the Land of Lincoln.  He followed Abraham Lincoln's example and 'rode the rails' from Illinois to Washington, DC in February 2009 to stake his claim in the history of America. 

Yes, what a difference four years makes.

Fast-forward from his chilly inauguration to the present day and we find President Obama NOT pointing to HIS accomplishments, but rather, AT his opponent. 

The President's major objections to Romney:  You can't trust THIS guy, he's rich, he's successful, he's managed budgets, he's made payroll, he's got a family who supports and respects him, how can YOU possibly trust HIM?  AND, may I remind you that, he's a MORMON, and I'm a MUS..., oh never mind, no one should bring religion into this as it denigrates the office of President!  Look how far we've come so far, we can't turn BACK now!  Plus, um, I really like that jet!!!

As I type this (waiting for the High School Marching Band to wrap their drill for this evening's competition) I am shocked at how quickly this President has been able to diminish his office.  There are those who may argue, "Well yeah, what about Bush?  You know, he stunk up the place too - right?!?!?"

Yup, I get it.  There were plenty of times when I was NOT a fan of GW Bush.  If you go back to my posts from 2007 and 2008 you will find that I was critical of President Bush.  The difference is that I never believed that President Bush wanted to damage our Nation, either by 'misunderestimation' or by 'design'. 

President Obama on the other hand? 

Well, he's no George W. Bush...

Photo:  AP
The 'Obama Roll' began early in his Presidency with America's first glimpse of the new President's unique method for handling political negotiations...

Politico.com, January 23, 2009:  Obama to GOP, "I Won"
President Obama listened to Republican gripes about his stimulus package during a meeting with congressional leaders Friday morning - but he also left no doubt about who's in charge of these negotiations. "I won," Obama noted matter-of-factly, according to sources familiar with the conversation.

...

But perhaps taking a cue from Obama’s “I won” line when Democrats were asked if they were concerned about Republicans blocking the package, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had a swift one-word answer: “No.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the bill was on track for passage by February 16, while Republicans continued to voice their opposition.

“We expressed our concerns about some of the spending that’s being proposed in the House bill,” House Minority Leader John Boehner said after meeting with Obama.

“How can you spend hundreds of millions of dollars on contraceptives?” Boehner asked. “How does that stimulate the economy?”

Boehner said congressional Republicans are also concerned about the size of the package.

[Moos Note:  Something about Boehner questioning contraceptives and the 'size of the package' strikes me as funny, but that's probably just me...]


But once again, I digress.  The bottom line is that the President who coined (read on the teleprompter is more likely) 'Hope and Change' has devolved to 'NameCalling' as his primary strategy for defending his record.  I must admit, it's an interesting political strategy, last employed by myself and another kid in Third Grade when we had our 'nearly legendary' "Rank Out" contest at recess by the swing set.  To quote the President:  "I won" that particular skirmish.

Then, of course, three other kids beat me mercilessly on the playground to prove that sticks and stones COULD 'break my bones' but words?  Not so much. 

[Note to Mom:  I made this up, nobody every beat your #2 boy at school (sometimes being 'big' is a good thing.  You know, I come from 'Big People'...]

Tomorrow the Nation will see President Obama and Mitt Romney (and the Moderator) 'go at it' one last time.  Whether Bob Schieffer becomes the 'lightning rod' of this debate as Candy Crowley was in the last, well, we'll see. 

Questions I have:
  • Will President Obama reference Romney's "Romnesia" during the debate to Romney's face? 
  • Will the word "Binder" be used in a sentence? 
  • Will a large yellow bird have anything to do with this conversation of National Security issues? 
  • Will contraception be another pivotal National Security issue introduced by the President, or 'Women's Rights', in general? 
  • Conversely, will Romney cite actual facts about international policy and National Security to make the President look inept? 
  • Will Michelle Obama once again break with pre-approved debate guidelines and begin clapping for her husband in the unlikely chance that he puts 8 - 10 coherent words together?
  • Will Candy Crowley show up to say that she was wrong during the last debate for interjecting herself into the Libya conversation?  
  • Will Bob Schieffer end his professional Presidential Moderating career with a bang, a whimper, or a thud?

Will either of these guys change any one's mind about them, or their respective vision of the next Four Years with this last debate? 

As for myself, I don't think so. 

If you don't have an opinion on 'your guy' by now, you probably ought not be dressing yourself in the morning.  The differences between these two guys are pretty distinct.

If you don't see this, please, do us all a favor... Stay home.  For if the 2008 election taught us nothing else, it taught us that the uninformed voter is a Democrat's 'Best' constituent.

Indications are that in 2012, we're in for 'More of the Same'...


Jimmy Kimmel Video Link:  HERE

p.s.:  FREE ADVICE for President Obama - I know it's hard NOT to descend to name-calling your opponent since you have nothing much to run positively on.  But four years ago you gave America 'Hope'...  Why has all that 'Changed'?  Spend your time in the last debate talking about what you have personally DONE to increase our National Security - be positive, be assertive, most importantly, be factually correct!

p.p.s.:  NO this will not help you, but it will keep your answers much shorter than they have been in the past, and between you and me?  I've heard enough.  Since your team is averaging almost 10% more 'talk time' than Romney and Ryan's in the prior three debates, give these guys the mic a bit more, unless of course, you're afraid of what they might say?  But you're not afraid.  Are you?  That's right Mr. President Scaredy-Cat, you're not afraid of nothing, are you???  You've got a (greatly diminished in the past four years') military, don't cha?  And all I've got is this old HP laptop...

p.p.p.s.:  Please note that I have devolved to name calling.

p.p.p.p.s.:  I feel so, so, Presidential!

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