Do You Believe in Magic?

Senator Rand Paul has an idea on how to deal with the fiscal cliff.  And here it is:

“Why don’t we let the Democrats pass whatever they want? If they are the party of higher taxes, all the Republicans vote present and let the Democrats raise taxes as high as they want to raise them, let Democrats in the Senate raise taxes, let the president sign it and then make them own the tax increase. And when the economy stalls, when the economy sputters, when people lose their jobs, they know which party to blame, the party of high taxes.”

It’s a great idea, except for one little thing.  He’s wrong.  The American people will not blame the party of high taxes.  They’ll blame the Republicans, the party of low taxes.

I’m with Senator Paul when he says the GOP should not become the party of “almost as high taxes.”  But while there are plenty of smart Republicans – and Senator Paul is certainly among them — they still haven’t been able to grasp two simple facts – one about President Obama, the other about the American people.

First, like it or not, Mr. Obama is magic.  He has that something that draws people to him.  FDR had it.  JFK had it.  Obama has it.  Maybe it’s the smile.  Maybe the swagger.  Could be the sharp clothes.  I don’t know.  But I do know that when you have that certain something, you can get away with all sorts of things.  But only if …

You’re dealing with easily-fooled people.  Which brings us to the second thing Republicans don’t seem to understand.  And that is that millions and millions and millions of Americans are not too smart.

It’s not just the summa-cum-dummies you see when Jay Leno goes out and interviews them at a mall, the ones who think the American Civil War was fought in 1973 or that Columbus discovered America in 1865, or the geniuses who when asked to identify a picture of Winston Churchill say it’s Mick Jagger.  It’s also the other Americans who are at home laughing at the dumb answers even though they don’t know the right answers either.

I mean it’s a safe bet that most Americans – if they’ve ever even heard the term “fiscal cliff” — think it’s a precipice someplace out west, maybe in Colorado.  I’ll also bet most Americans don’t know what the word precipice means and couldn’t pinpoint Colorado on a map if their lives depended on it.

You think most Americans understand that the reason the unemployment rate just dropped from 7.9 percent to 7.7 percent – the lowest figure in four years – is primarily because more people gave up looking for work and were no longer counted as unemployed?  I don’t.

Every poll tells us that a majority of Americans agree with President Obama and also want taxes to go up on the top two percent of wage earners.  Another safe bet is that most of those Americans don’t understand that if Senator Paul is proven right — if  in this slow growth economy the president gets his way and taxes on the “wealthy” go up — they, the regular folks not the top two percent, will be the ones who suffer the most when the economy stalls and sputters, and they will be the ones who lose their jobs.

In a more intelligent America the president would get the blame – as Senator Paul says – for all of this.  But it won’t happen in this America.  Senator Paul and the others in his party need to understand that magic trumps reason every time.  How else do you think Barack Obama got elected not once, but twice?



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  • 49corvette

    It’s the swagger—“My parents will not tell me what to do”—“Look at their screwed up lives”—“I will do it MY way”—in a larger context , choices made from emotional puberty sometimes work—sometimes not—really comes down to $$$—when that runs dry—I guess we can live as Neanderthal again—scary thing is—actually listening to a Ouija Board is a dead end—My 2cents—Thanx for Reading

  • Brian Gutherman

    I agree. It’s funny how most people consider themselves “smart” but don’t know much about anything of importance in our country or in the world. They know where Kim Kardshian had lunch today and if Brad Pitt is cheating on Angelina Jolie, but don’t know their own US Senators or Congressman, what their policies are, or the first thing about economics. These are the same dopes that signed up for mortgages they had no prayer of paying for and blamed the banks. Any wonder why the party than runs on the Santa Claus ticket wins?

  • Barry Fascist

    Unfortunately for this country, I fear you are correct sir.

  • Wheels55

    Even in my own little world, I experience otherwise smart people showing how dumb they are about what is going on. I conclude that they just don’t care. If they don’t care and the amount of truly dumb people never understand it, then where do we ever get enough people to decide that Obama is doing a lousy job? Even Reagan won on personality / likability.

  • Reservecop

    Bernie devour
    every one of your words in every column and think you are 99% spot on (as the
    Brits say) but give the credit to the Obama team not just to Obama’s charisma in
    both elections, they understood and manipulated the American electorate (how
    really stupid they are) to win both times. Unless some miracle occurs in 2016
    which will be harder (less of us and more of them) plus Hillary, Norman
    Rockwell’s America
    is gone so sad to say.

  • Coterie22

    Hollywood is used to make-believe, of course, and Obama is their quintessential genie.

  • Switchlight13

    JAMIE FOXX JOKES ABOUT KILLING ‘ALL THE WHITE PEOPLE’ on Saturday Night Live. Only problem with this is that its no joke. The sheep better wake up and realize race has become a religion to to blacks..

  • john nazzaro

    Bernie is right at least to the extent that the broader population really doesn’t understand the actual fiscal position of the country. Some otherwise very intelligent people whom I know believe they are actually getting back what they contributed to Social Security, and that it is an insurance/forced savings program instead of a generational transfer payment. The transfer payment nomenclature certainly should replace “entitlement” for purposes of legal definition and public discussion. I would suggest the following response on the issue of rates: give Obama his upper bracket tax increase with a tentative expiration date one year hence. Throw in the debt ceiling renewal as well. But attach several preconditions to any renewal of either: first a revision of the current baseline budgeting presentation eliminating many categories of automatic growth, with an accrual accounting (already available in the Trustees Report for Social Security and Medicare) as the standard reporting methodology i.e. accurately illustrating the unfunded liability, inclusive of all 3 deficit positions (current accounts, accrued and structural) and estimating future necessary/prospective middle class tax rates. Second a requirement that the administration propose and Congress adopt a budget (sorry Harry but your guys have to vote) with a trajectory to reduce the deficit to not more than 20% of GDP within a decade, coupled with a rewrite of the existent tax code. Finally an expansion of the FED’s current dual mandate to include an annual report on the state of the deficit and GDP implications. It would also be nice to throw in an independent committee of the trustees for Medicare and Social Security to recommend initiatives to put those programs on a sound footing (forget active duty politicians-get some guys with green eye shades not $1000 suits). The GOP has to pivot to hard cost containment and the real state of the budget; arguing about roughly 50 billion dollars on a trillion plus accruing current accounts deficit is an exercise in political foolishness. Its the long game that counts. Keep in mind in the short run the reset of going “off the cliff” gives Obama all the political advantage: he will simply propose,restoration of the “middle class tax cuts” (now he’s a “tax cutter”) and restore entitlements. He will cut defense, but modestly while “restoring” a large chunk of baseline. In short, the GOP has to recognize its options politically or bite a bullet. If Obama turns down the increase in rates (as too temporary) its on him.

  • Merrie

    Geez. That’s just about the most depressing summary of the fiscal cliff I’ve read yet. Unfortunately, it’s probably the most accurate. My husband was huffing last night about “why can’t they just make a deal” which shows that at least he’s paying attention. When I explained to him that no matter what, taxes are going up, Obama WANTS taxes to go up and the Republicans are going to get the blame either way, he said “Well, thanks. Now it makes more sense.”

  • Dave W


    Unfortunately, you are right! The average intelligence of the American voter is very low and to compound the problem, they also have no desire to understand the issues. Adding to this, those that are intelligent and informed who still voted for Obama did so because social issues are more important to them than financial issues. It all adds up to the Republicans (portrayed as the party of rich, white business men and far right religious crazies) being in deep trouble to ever get a president elected again.

    • paperpushermj

      We lost because the Democrats framed their message to the voter better then Republicans. The Goal of the Democrats was to retain power with that singular thought they did their research on the American Voter, then tailored that message with laser like accuracy. Some call it pandering I prefer to call it product research and then sales. We where out sold

  • Bob Hadley

    The amnesty bill that Pres Reagan advocated and signed into law gave amnesty to any illegal alien who entered the country before (I think) 1982. There were no promises of securing the borders, just talk mainly by the Reagan adminstration and the Repubs. Even if there were, the law would be totally unacceptable to a large sector of today’s Repub base. The employer penalty provision was, i think, stripped from the bill before signing it.
    You should read Pres. Reagan’s statements supporting the bill. He almost sounded like a Dem

    • Peter Kleinschmidt

      “I think” “I think”……… Bobby, you need several sources to gain a fair prospective. I do understand if you’re related to Barney Frank, but that does not mean you cannot change. Good luck to you

      • Bob Hadley

        I deal in facts. You’ve failed to deal in the facts I’ve given or any other facts. When you have a fact-based opinion get back to me.

      • Bob Hadley

        My sources are many and varied. In fact, I follow right wing MSM nore than I do liberal MSM. Apparently your sources are all right-wing loons who are long on ad hominem remarks and short on facts.

  • Bob Hadley

    I read the article you cited in the Daily Caller. It was a mealy mouth piece essentially saying that Pres. Reagan raised all sort of taxes after he lowered the tax rates. And yes, he didn’t raise marginal income taxes.
    If you removed his name from the article and substituted another name, the Tea partiers would declare him unacceptable.

  • paperpushermj

    Just showing you can fool some of the people all the time.

  • Switchlight13

    Another example of rewarding American idiots: FEMA is footing the bill to repair homes damaged in Sandy for those to dumb and/or cheap to NOT have home owners insurance. Americans being rewarded with FREE tax payers money for being stupid. Guess China approved another loan.

  • TS1776frdm

    Absolutely! Nailed it! It wasn’t Bush’s Fault for anything Except He could have vetoed more trash-like everything with Sub-Prime Mortgage Loans and Over Regulation by Govt to allow such. Media wouldn’t even Cover Bush on this – The Canadian Press did; not the American. US did well under Bush-But not after Pelosi and Reid took over-then economy tanked- Liberal Democrats took tax dollars (like they always do) and used them as if they were from their own piggy bank. When Congress tried to stop Obama, he gave out money by Executive Order. How much was gas when Bush Left Office? Bush Tax Cuts Brought in Billions in Revenue – Obama has spun that Backwards. Cartoonist should show Obama giving Boehner advice: Lie John, Lie, Look what it has done for me – F&F, Fort Hood, Benghazi and a lot of things you’ll never know about- like when Bin Laden was really killed and a whole lot more. Teflon President.

  • moronpolitics3

    People should talk to other people OUTSIDE their little circle of friends and colleagues. Try asking the people who check out… OOOPS… guys like Bernie don’t ever shop for food etc. Picture him at Kroger pushing a cart with toilet paper and milk, bread and dog food whatever. Stopped laughing?? Actually this is why we have to put up with endless complaining about the terrible service at the Post Office — a place where service is generally good to excellant COMPARED TO WHAT US MORTALS RECEIVE. The P.O. is about the ONLY place executive types sometimes stop on the way home ( in return for leaving 3 hours early) or — GASP — go for their own needs. Point is…Senators and those in the stratosphere of the fourth estate basically NEVER speak with hoi polloi except servants for whom A. they make exceptions and B. THEIR servants are probably better informed than most people. Wander into an insurance company I.T. dept or a large warehouse providing backend service to Penneys, U-Haul or a drugstore chain. ASK questions about the constitution, congress or even about what percentage of people earn what almost ANYTHING. People don’t GET paychecks, but most frycooks still do. Ask 10 what that FICA thing is. ONE might know. 2 or 3 will guess Federal Income something tax… Who knows, it’s all a way to cheat you.

  • Phil Silverman

    yeah, Big Bern’…let’s keep playing games. ///// A shame that families who make 249,999.99 will get tax relief if we go back to 39.6%. better recheck your Roger Ailes memo cards.

  • Bruce A.

    Spot on Bernie. Mitt Romney promised work. 51% of the voters said no thanks.

  • Kevin Hubble

    I couldn’t agree with Rand Paul more. Republicans say that if President Obama gets his tax increases or if the Republicans do nothing and let the President’s tax increases just sail through without any real opposition that the President will “own” those tax increases. Also, the democrats will “own” them and will have to defend them in the next election. BUT, here’s the problem with that: What Senator Paul and the other GOP geniuses fail to see is that the people who will really own the tax increases are THE PEOPLE WHO WILL BE PAYING THE HIGHER TAX RATES! And, those are the people who vote for Republicans! Obama won’t own anything! His constituents won’t own anything because they don’t pay any taxes to begin with– they’re part of the 2%! The others are the “takers” who don’t pay anything anyway. When are Republicans going to defend low taxes and smaller government because it’s the Republican thing to do? When we start doing that, we’ll stop losing elections.

  • md

    I am never in one of those polls…where do they get these people?

  • JT Mooney

    Let’s just confiscate the top 2%’s assets completely and give it to Obama whiners and shut him up and their followers. The result would be that in 2 years the hard working innovative types would be back on top again,the pony tailed trust funders would be in government sponsored rehab and the real target-the middle class- would be getting screwed again. Then the president will put on his best smile and start calling on them to be patriotic and pay their fair share.

  • Jub

    Most Americans probably think “precipice” is a part of the penis

  • Pete

    It is not bad idea. However, there is a big problem, who will support those who lost their jobs. Foreclosure will go up, who economy will go down, and what then. What GOP needs to do is to stand up for ordinary people and show that they are willing to sacrifice for sake of those they are serving. That is what republicans and democrats forgot. They are not the kings and queens, they are our servant. People need to let them know who put them there.

  • souvoter

    As long as the govt pays them more to stay home than work; it will always be like this. Money talks; bs walks! After the dems made it easy to refinance and get loans to bring down the system; most of the money went to the drug dealers. And here come the dems to the rescue. They know how to manipulate the peasants.

  • heda_p

    Anybody who says that Obama Voters are not smart, is living in denial, its republican Voters who are not smart….look at stats…

    Obama Swept States With The Most Educated Workforces And
    The Highest Paid Teachers

    Worst Top ten states Voted for Romney (Except Nevada)

    look at all the top American companies and see their employees donations to Obama vs Romney…u will be amazed how big percentage of donors donated Obama….

    • Switchlight13

      The 97% Black vote he got was from the best and brightest not mention the SEIU vote in Vegas……lol

      • Phil Silverman

        sounds mildy racist, no? :)

        • Switchlight13

          White Guilt Liberals see racism in everything around them.

        • Peter Kleinschmidt

          Be real, race card is used because people have nothing intelligent to say. What exactly is “mildly” racist ? Is it like date rape or kind of pregnant???Watch this if you would like

      • heda_p

        ahh so black vote for Obama thus all democrats the not smart…..sir u are really bright….were you raised with stars:)

        • Switchlight13

          “…….all Democrats are not smart”…..your getting warm.

          • heda_p

            Almost all republicans are dumb….I am just started

    • Phil Silverman

      now let’s be fair!!!! the confederate states is smart!!!!

      • heda_p

        Question is what’s the criteria to judge who is smart….I heard this republican bullshit so many times that Democrats not smart people….and republicans or conservatives has no data to support their believes….I feel sorry for them cause whenever I talk to repubs on conservatives I found them talking completely without facts….they are still living in 19th century…

        Top most admired IT companies employees donated to obama by big margin versus Romney, some of them over 90% more money….check this out….

  • paperpushermj

    I’m starting to like this idea with one caveat. Hanging around to vote present is to susceptible to being spun or obfuscation by the press. To overcome this I would counter with a picture of the house Floor showing only Democrats present for the vote. That’s right, just prior to the vote all Republicans get up and walk out, leaving the visual that unequivocally shows the tax increases and subsequent effects on the economy squarely on the Democrats. The press can and has squelched Republican messages in the past, I don’t think they can make little of the picture that will be implanted in the voters mind with just one viewing.

    • Bob Hadley

      “Hanging around to vote present is to susceptible to being spun or obfuscation by the press..”
      Yes, you’re right. Just look at how Pres. Obama was demagogued for voting present while a state legislator.

      • paperpushermj

        That was a nonissue because the press said so.

  • CharlesWK

    So, Bernie, what exactly should Republicans do, because they are going to be blamed no matter what. They might as well try something principled, as opposed to bleating noble-sounding platitudes for a while and then caving in. I suggest an end-run on specific tax increases and advocating for a new IRS code, one page long, setting up a flat rate system. Then the hated rich will have to pay “their share” and so, gasp, will the moochers. The difference is that the moochers will get something for it, stuff, and the hated rich will get nothing.

    • paperpushermj

      Changing the tax code as it now stands will be almost impossible because those with the power to do so, receive to much power to themselves for them to do anything other then munch around the edges. Do you think CEO’s are cooling their heels waiting in some Senators antechamber just to say hello. Anyone promoting a serious alternative will receive the same fate as Mr Cain with his 999. So what ever did happened with all those women who came out of nowhere with their claims of sexual improprioty. If your plan starts gaining traction …..You are a dead man walking.

  • sonnyboy1

    I had commented on another website that Republicans would still be held to blame if Paul’s suggestion was adopted. I received many down arrows even though it’s true. The Bush admin is still being blamed for the woe’s brought upon us by a Democrat congress. Don’t get me wrong, the Bush admin didn’t do us any favors, but, why don’t people understand that is has much to do with the Congress and Senate?

  • gbandy

    I really don’t know of the GOP still has this much “grit” to allow the Dems to do this thing. Unfortunately the masses of ignorant cannot see the fact it is the Democrats who are destroying this Nation through insane spending and out of control debt. We voters allowed Obama another term based upon some empty headed “Forward” campaign and now we taxpayers must pay for this mistake for 4 years.

  • Switchlight13

    What do you expect when their heroes are millionaire thugs in professional sports. These thugs can’t even read or speak proper English yet dumb Americans worship them. No wonder the nation is sinking into a cesspool.

  • Charles Ivie

    Obama’s magic is easy to explain, when someone offers to sell you $5.00 bills for
    $2.00 it is difficult to resist. These same people fail to see that with currency devaluation the $5.00 is actually worth less than the$2.00 you paid for it. Like most magic tricks Obama’s magic is a con that lots of people like. True believers are easy to convince.

  • lsal

    We have demonized all the people I grew up looking up to. The people we wanted to be like, or our parents wanted us to be like. Policeman, now they are all on the take. Politicians now they are all corrupt. Religious, all sects, can’t be trusted alone with anyone. And now even smart businessman are bad guys. The words Sir and Mister are not used by the kids today. But Celebrity Status is Big. You don’t need to be smart, or even talented you just have to somehow get it. The 10 seconds of TV time can help you achieve it. But Celebrity Status, the A list, is what is now looked up to. Bill Clinton, has it, George Clooney, has it, as do many others. And it is what Barack Obama has that is keeping him where he is. Smarts, good person, hard worker, all those things we grew up with just don’t count. Celebrity Counts!!

  • FloridaJim

    With the lamestream media abdicating their job and becoming Obama sycophants the message of conservatives must be much more defined and clear….not easy.

    Our National Nightmare has another 4 years to go and it will be tough but Obama has said “whites like black people if they are not angry like Jackson or Sharpton”and that has gotten him where he is a black man who can win the white vote. Some whites feel good when they vote for Obama, “look at me how fair I am, I voted for a black” instead of voting for the ideas or the experience of the individual.

    Obama won and now we must try to bring out better candidates with better ideas and the ability to articulate those ideas. John Boehner is not the answer.

  • glorstuart

    Amen. You got it exactly right.

  • Steve Cotton

    As an American Conservative, it matters not to me which of the two Progressive establishment parties get the blame–the Evil party or the Stupid party. The racism and corruption of those that voted for Obama is at the core of the problem–the political parties are just symptoms of the rot in the electorate. It isn’t a matter of IQ (a highly overrated attribute when compared to common sense), it’s a matter of the electorate being infested with people bad at being Americans–they are more closely related to the state welfare junkies of Europe than to God-fearing liberty-loving Americans.

  • eskay2012

    Your argument completely fails to support your conclusion. The fact that Obama managed to get re-elected just furthers Rand’s point. Up to this point Republicans have compromised, have taken part in negotiations and have played a role in implementing policies that most of them do not agree with. If they negotiate here, for example negotiating the proposed 40% rate down to 37%, all that does is allow the left to claim the economy got worse because Republicans got in the way of their tax hike. If the GOP finally for the first time completely steps aside and allows the Democrats to fully implement their proposed solution, when it fails, everyone will know who was responsible for the plan in its entirety and those responsible will have no one left to point the finger at.

  • Switchlight13

    The scary part is that if the WWII generation were as dumb and lazy as most of todays Americans we’d be speaking German today. Would you want some draftee like Obama in the foxhole next to yours?

  • AvonBikeRider

    Oh, how right you are, Mr. Goldberg, and how sad I am to have to agree with you.

  • Venter

    In this America everyone has been deliberatly dumbed down. Magic has become a ‘trick’. One of the tricks you can get cell phones, food stamps, loans for homes, and on and on. Another trick includes keeping people divided by calling anyone with a question a racist. Another trick is go after the rich, they only create jobs, and give to charities. Another trick job numbers go down and everyone has a great part time job. The best trick is the revenge trick. The Republicans will be blamed for everything. America’s eyes are on the magicians smile, everyting that was special about America is being changed by him. Too much trust in the Obama’s smile, has dumbed many , Lets come back after we go over the fiscal cliff . We don’t need this hanging over our heads any longer. Obama give us a magacial smile , do what you have to do and hope it’s the best for America.

  • Bob Hadley

    Bernie, You forgot to list President Reagan as one of those preseident with a magical appeal. He was the original Teflon president. He’s so magical that a lot of Tea Party types insist that he did not raise taxes, that he did not grant amnesty to illegal aliens, that he did not cut-and-run, etc.. That they disregard his moderate governance and insist that he was the messiah for true blue conservsatives is a testament to how magical he was.

    • Lizzie43

      Yes he did, after the democrats promised to reign in spending and close the borders, but as we have seen over and over again DEMOCRATS promise to get their way and then conveniently forget. Just like Pres.Obama with getting his healthcare bill passed, PROMISED immigration reform, then the Louisiana Purchase and the Cornhusker payback, none of which happened.

      • Bob Hadley

        You’re spouting Rep. rationalizations. Pres. Reagan raised taxes out of fairness and fiscal responsibility. Check Pres. Reagan’s statements during this period. At times he almost sounded like Pres. Obama. Heonce said something to the effect that it’s not fair for a truck driver to pay a higher rate than a CEO.

        Same thing with amnesty for illegals. There was no quid pro quo Pres. Obama failing to deliver comprehensive immigration reform has nothing to do with what Pres. Reagan did or did not do….Pres. Obama promised the Louisiana Purchase?????????????? Where did you come up with that one?

      • Bob Hadley

        One more thing, Pres. Reagan never proposed a balanced budget. Every budget he proposed had enormous deficits. You thinkig of Reagan the myth, not Reagan the president

  • Bob Hadley

    Most in the Republican Congress almost certainly realize that the economy will come roaring back if the current uncertainty over the budget and the debt ceiling is eliminated, no matter whose policies are enacted. The Republicans simply do not want Pres. Obama and his position on taxes to get the credit. There is oodles of liquidity in our economy, just waiting to be invested.
    Once the economy rebounds (i.e. if the uncertainty is dissipated), gov. revenues will climb and government safety net expenditures will automatically decline. At that point, the nation must do additional cost cutting.
    If the Republican Congress does vote “present’ on The D’s proposals as Sen. Paul suggests, they might later find themselves in a primary fight. Their Rep. primary opponent might accuse them of aping Pres. Obama – abdicating their reponsibilities by voting “present.”
    BTW, the boom under Pres. Clinton began before the bubble. It began after the 1993 buget was passed with “the largest tax increase in the history of the world.” Prominent R’s predicted economic armaggedon. That budget gave some certainty. As a result, Chairman Greenspan and the federal reserve lowered interest rates. When the 1995 R. Congress quit their antics and worked with Pres. Clinton, and once Pres. Clinton became even more moderate, there was even more market certainty. As a result the economy continued its assent.

    • nameless

      Why should they? As far as I’m concerned, President Obama and all liberals can go straight to hell…as well as anyone who defends them including ones who masquerade as fake independents as you do. I hate you, Hadley and I wish you would drop dead, Hadley, that’s all I have to say.

      That teacher was right, Democrats can’t go to heaven nor should they be able to.

      • Bob Hadley

        Why should they what?????? Why should they allow for the economic uncertainty dissipate by accepting Pres. Obama’s proposal (while wringing certain spending cuts from the D’ as a quid pro quo, as they could do if they negotiate)??????

        I’ll tell you why: because it wil allow the economy to be on the upswing and the deficit to drop. In other words, it’s in the best interest of the country. That’s why!

        Sure, the economy will be on the upswing and the defiicit will be reduced on Pres. Obama’s terms. But, guess what??????? He won the elction decisively. The R’s should swallow their ideology for the sake of the country.

        “Hadley, that’s all I have to say.” Nameless, did you say anything? If so, I missed it! :) lol……..Take a cold shower.

        • nameless

          Bob, I just wanted to apologize for my rude comments for you. I may disagree with you on some things, but that’s no excuse to name call or be rude to you the way I did. I’m sorry I was wrong. We may disagree on what’s the best way to go about fixing this country, but the important thing is we both love our country and we do want to fix it. Most importantly, we both want to stay informed on politics. So I’m sorry, I was wrong to respond to you the way I did.

          Just one note, he may have won the election, but he only did it by 2 point something percent, which means just about half the country did not vote for him. So if I were President Obama, I wouldn’t go around thinking I had a mandate, if anything he has only about half a mandate. But that’s a discussion for another day, the important thing is for me to say that I’m sorry for the way I treated and have been treating you. It was wrong of me.

          • Bob Hadley

            Thanks. Apology accepted. Best wishes.

    • Peter Kleinschmidt

      You are lost, it’s obvious you have built a story of what you want to believe instead of what actually happened. But maybe you have only scratched the surface. Dig deeper and challenge those who you repeat. For example, in 1994 was the 54 seat change in the House of Rep. which gave the Republicans majority that they had not seen in decades. Now Clinton was interesting as a President, good politician, but bad ideas and still knew when to give in. With that said, you act like it was Republican “antics”. When it was the new majority that pushed Clinton into welfare reform that was no idea of Clinton and of coarse he took credit. The 1993 Clinton tax increase raised the top two income tax rates to 36% and 39.6%, with the top rate hitting joint returns with incomes above $250,000. In addition, it removed the cap on the 2.9% Medicare payroll tax, raised the corporate tax rate to 35% from 34%, increased the taxable portion of Social Security benefits,and imposed over a 4 cent per gallon increase in transportation fuel taxes. With that they lost the house and senate plus no real solid increases in revenue as you speak of. Now look to the 1997 where he had started his 2nd term with a flip flop taking the capital gains tax from 28% to 20%, change death tax, allowed deductible contributions for IRA’S established ROTH’S. AS a result unemployment dropped nearly 1.5% and tax revenues went up almost 60%

      • Bob Hadley

        You’re forgettnig that one of pres. Clinton’s campaign promises in ’92 was to “end welfare as we know it.” As I stated above, the Republican Congress of 1995 helped Pres. Clinton be even more moderate and Pres. Clinton helped the Repub. Congress be less volatile. Both sides overreached – Pres. Clinton in ’93 – ’94 and the Reubs in ’95-’96. It was a symbiotic relationship.
        The economy starting taking off before the Repub Congress of 1995 had any of their legislation enacted. Again, the economy was improving when Pres. Clinton took office but got even better in the months after the ’93 budget passed. It created certainty and resulted in interest rates being lowered.
        It sounds as though YOU are the one who is parroting talking points in an effort to salvage yuor ideology.

        • Peter Kleinschmidt

          Too funny, yes except you are forgetting that its not my ideology that caused your big brother Billy to veto the welfare reform not once but twice.Bob time to let your college professor know the facts. Yes the economy was improving when he took office, so what? Not because of him or because you think that instead because you where told that. Try and think for yourself, it will help you, but your teacher won’t be able to grade you as well as before with a new symbolism for his opinion of his student that dared to challenge him. Good Luck and Cheers

          • Bob Hadley

            Do you think the welfare reform bill was the same each time it reached Pres. Clinton’s desk???????? If so, you need to go back to primary sources. Each time the Repubs moderated the bill until Pres. Clinton signed it, to the chagrin of many liberals.
            The economy improved substantially because of the 1993 budget, and even more so when the Repubs and Pres. Clinton started worknig together.
            You seem to think that anyone who thinks differently from you is not thinking for himself. Then you start making things up to support your deluded thinking.
            You need to come out of your bubble. It’ll be scary at first, but it might be worthwhile for you.

          • Peter Kleinschmidt

            Lighten up! It’s a matter of opinion. I promise I won’t laugh when you finally come clean and admit you look up to Rachel Maddow,not to mention your other cousin Chris Matthews. CHEERS

          • Bob hadley

            In that one brief line you stooped to two tactics that right wing knuckle draggers use when they’re losing an argument: 1) resorting to ad hominem attacks and 2) saying “hey man, it’s just my opinion.”

          • Peter Kleinschmidt

            Bobby, no need to get all uptight. Please stop repeating what those you look up to taught you. It’s almost like you were told to memorize the backwards views. A little advice for you one more time-think for yourself, this will help so your veins won’t keep popping out of your neck. Good Luck and Cheers

          • Bob Hadley

            I’m actually very relaxed. My BP is very low. :) My opinions are fact-based. If my facts are wrong, show me where they’re wrong and cite your sources. I know this is a new concept for you, but try to look at facts, all the pertinent facts. The facts should inform yuor opinions, not these talking heads and other demagogues.

          • Bob Hadley

            You also need to develop critical thinking skills. You need to focus on the process of analyzing, not on coming up with conclusions that make you feel good.

      • Bob Hadley

        BTW, the reason the Dems lost so many seats in the House was that the nation was not ready for Hillarycare, and the Repubs reminded voters constantly. They also demagogued the tax increases ad nauseam.

  • Peter Kleinschmidt

    You have got to be kidding. Barry Obama holds some magic???? If you consider those who apologize because he says he’s black. Or is it the fact that as a democrat, he has went as far as any when it comes to gaining popularity on what happens to be the easiest and most shallow –preying on the stupid, uneducated,the lazy, the do gooder, or just anyone who receives a check. People are no more drawn to him then anybody and would you be willing to bet that many would never admit they even voter for this has been. Lucky is the word. It does not take much to understand how Barry, Clinton or Bush won not once but twice. When each went for their second term they faced Dole, Kerry or Romney. Dole was in no way electable same with Kerry. Romney was screwed from the time he stepped aside for McCain to run. The fact is we live in a country where independents do not want to make a decision. Closet voters are numerous that’s why the polls are messed up even the man you say has magic was surprised he won, but like a cat when it makes a mistake it acts like it didn’t or that somehow it was all apart of the plan. All B.S.

  • GhostWriter381

    I agree with you that millions and millions of Americans were not too smart. They elected George Bush President twice. The President and a Republican Congress that took a surplus and turned it into a deficit. Got us into a war they never paid for and ruined the economy to boot. The American people have finally woke up. Our top political priority for the upcoming midterm election
    cycle is to deny Mitch McConnell re-election . We must do everything possible
    to make this happen along with making sure every Republican candidate for
    Congress and the Senate does not succeed in their bid for office.

    • Peter Kleinschmidt

      That’s because you have tunnel vision. You think what you think, like most. Probably influenced by the same old talking heads that you respect but in reality you could be a lot smarter then those who think for you. If you look at either side you will find major problems, that it is hard to justify liking one or the other. I’m conservative, but I don’t care for Republicans because they have no backbone and let Democrats get away with practically anything simply because fake emotional based crap that the typical American sucks up due to laziness and no desire for truth. Every time someone whines or wants something people will just do what’s wrong , basically dealing with any issue always defending the whiner. Every Democrat will tell you whatever you want, the more you want the more they will say yes , not that you will get it, but they will tell you will. People tend to forget when Democrats fail holding them to no standard and raising the bar. You do because you like them . I do because what do you expect from a party that controlled the house of rep for 50yrs. Controlled Cal.,ILLINOIS, and New York which all are going bankrupt why? Spend spend want want

  • Russ Michaels

    Among all the goofy and malodorous assertions by the Left is the notion that returning to the tax rates under the Clinton Administration can be somehow a positive for the economy. I hear this meme repeated over and over. Like well trained parrots having just returned from aviary school.

    The economy during the Clinton’s years was stoked by the bubble before the latest bubble burst: that being High Tech/Dot Com/Internet. For those with a memory, it was eThis and eThat. Cab drivers were making fortunes and offering stock picks.

    What effect did those rates have on the economy at the time? It’s generally agreed that they didn’t help the economy in any way. In fact, if anything, they likely acted as a moderate damper on business. Rates could have been even higher and that bubble would have still been blown. And before you start screeching about the “venerated budget surplus”, everyone knows it was an accounting trick (although the Treasury did well with heightened business activity).

    Let the liberals have their tax increases. We can then watch this economy really go off a cliff and finally settle the question of how economies react to lower/higher rates and kill forever the crazy idea that higher taxes are somehow good for anything.

  • Kathie Ampela

    Excellent post! I agree!

  • DaveHop

    Why doesn’t the GOP just take a stand and vote “NO”. Seems simple and easy to me. That way they won’t compromise principles.

  • Chet Przygoda

    I disagree. Let the Dems pass the taxes. Let the lemmings who believe in the messiah continue to believe whatever they want to believe. Then, after the bottom falls out let’s return to a government made up of Americans. Naturally there would be very few if any Dems in that government and if the truth be told just about as many from the old GOP. Reality is that we don’t need to keep those whose view of our future is so distorted that they no longer have any idea of what to do, when to do it, nor why. The only way to get people’s attention in these United States is to put very large numbers of them on the soup lines without IPad of IPhones. That is the simple, unfortunate, but only realistic solution to this insane mess.

  • Randy

    All this angst over the fiscal cliff is irrelevant. The health care boondoggle has already taken care of wrecking the economy.

  • mike caddell

    When asked about leaving the presidency after their terms in office, Ike said it was like “death” and Nixon said it was “worse than death”. Clinton reportedly said that he spent the last months of his second term pouring over the constitutional amendment that limits the president’s term in office, hoping to find some way to stay in office for more than two terms. Why should any of us think that the most cunning and dishonest person to ever hold the office will be any different in 2016? With his charisma and power, it would be logical for B.O. to try anything and everything he can to stay in the White House, no matter how legal or illegal or unconstitutional it ends up being. One of the legal ways B.O. can stay for more terms would be to gain control of congress in the 2014 election and then push for a constitutional amendment, cancelling the previous amendment that limits his term to 8 years. If he does plan on this strategy he needs to start immediately campaigning for more seats in the House and the Senate. Another way would be for B.O. to declare martial law just prior to the elections in 2016 and then prevent any presidential election from happening. So, watch for B.O. to start really attacking all Republicans as soon as the presidential inauguration in January. Is the danger to our Republic that B.O. can destroy our economy? No, the danger is that he can become King instead of President! The second danger is that in the next 4 years he will probably be selecting at least one and possibly as many as three justices to the Supreme Court. With the weird way Chief Justice Roberts has acted this year, who knows which way they will vote on upcoming issues that involve the constitutionality of B.O.’s actions?

  • Shane

    I’m with Senator Paul. Let the Democrats raise taxes on the rich in exchange for spending cuts. When the economy tanks, then Obama and the Dems will get the blame.

  • Mike Niccum

    Not only are a lot of these people not real smart, but they also get all their news from lib tv news. So they don’t know the truth.

  • deny916

    GREAT article Bernie! I have been thinking the same thing Rand Paul said. I think the Republicans should just say: “Okay pass every thing you want.” Then when the Titanic REALLY starts sinking they can say you wanted it and now you’ve got it. Hard lesson but worth it.

  • digitalPimple

    I hear yeah. Gone Galt myself not because REP or DEM but because of Obama. Moving off the grid as much as possible and I certainly know I’m not the only one.

  • bonzo3244

    summa-cum-dummies is now my favorite word

  • sean1

    This is the single best explanation of Obama’s allure EVER written. Seriously.

  • Cecilio Mendez

    Several years ago, I was amazed at the amount of Americans who could not find many countries on a map. Then, most recently, I was amazed with the “answer” a beauty queen gave to the question about why do Americans can not locate those countries. And it dawned on me; “The American educational system is very damaged.” Albeit no complex problem has an easy answer, I am convinced that is of one the biggest, right at the top. I laughed at your remark that you are not worried about the answers Jay Leno gets from the “summa-cum-dummies”, but you worry about those at home; the ones who laugh but do not know the answers either. And that is true. That said, I think Senator Rand Paul is right. Yes, Republicans will be held responsible for it… so what! Roosevelt, Kennedy had and Obama has “magic”. The first two are dead and many “skeletons” are coming out of their closets for some time now. So will Obama’s. It took 50 years (roughly) to get us to where we are. In another 50, America will be back on track… if we can keep our Constitution whole. I am truly sorry for the grief this will cause to those who are very young now; and to the future couple of generations coming after them. But I think this is a necessary step. Lets ALL go down.

  • bethany carol

    I feel as discouraged and cynical as Bernie sounds here — he isn’t being pessimistic — just realistic … And that fact is enough to depress anybody….

  • trailbee

    O counted on the incredible stupidity of the people who voted him back in. Why bother discussing any issues which made the brain ache, just feed them trash and jealousy and all would be well. It was. It is. It will be. Amen!

  • ahalbert

    Republicans will be blamed no matter what, Bernie, and you’re not suggesting an alternative.

    Might as well try voting present, make a big news item out of it, saying “While we don’t believe in it, we’re not going to stand in the way. We want to give the Democrat tax plan a chance to prove itself.

    Yes, Obama attracts millions. He also repels millions.

  • Michael Smith

    It’s a funny world, just two day’s ago I thought the same thing as Rand Paul, just let the democrats have their way, and no republican vote Ya, don’t give them the satisfaction of a yes vote, let them burn themselves, then when everything start going south on them, and all those employed Citizens, that voted for or against Barrack Hussien Obama becoming President will pay the price in the end, then the same thought came to me, unless CSpan or the maniatic stream media was involved filming and reporting on it, then the President will find a way to turn things around, and there are enough dummies out there in the Obama world, like a Chris Matthews, and UUUGly Ed Shultz’s that will help the president and the democratic party get out of the mess as well, like they did every other time the president screwed himself. I remember the time I first voted, it was the year that the first crop of 18 year old’s that was able to vote, of course I was 20 at the time, but it was the first major presidential election that I was able to vote for the First time ever, I remember thinking how much of a priviledge it was, and although I was a bit nervious, I wanted to make sure that my vote counted, so I kept up to what was going on in the world, and the problems at the time with our economy, and so on. It was important, along with Vietnam, and a Draft card number 99, in which I was asked by the Uncle to serve with many others in that far away land, so at that time in my I guess I did my best in maturing and started to pay attention to detail of what the two guys running for President was saying, so I listened to the anti-war guy, McGovern and the I want to stop the war, but a little later guy, Nixon in which I thought his timing was a little to long, so I ended up voting for a Democrat, and ever since that time, I never voted democrat again, and I would not have voted Big Mc if it wasn’t for the war. I say all that just to get to this, if it wasn’t for the Obama swag, and the promise of him paying the mortgage, and Obama money, and phone, The promise’s he made to everyone who did not work, which included ALL ethnic groups, I thought that I should make sure that was pointed out, or else be labled, RACIST aaaauugg, don’t want that to happen, oooono! Obama had the older boys & girls who were part of his Acorn and union groups feed the younger voters, and mentally deficient voters their Obama BS, then took them by the hand to their precinct and pointed to the name that THEY wanted THEM to vote for, and that is how he recieved his 2nd term, by the uninformed voters that know nothing, but thought Obama was a cool dude, and would allow them to smoke their dope, and he would join in with them. I can honestly say this, if it wasn’t for a few things about Obama that had NOTHING to do with him being capable of being president, because Obama’s record as President honestly SUCKED, so the only thing the President had was SWAG, bottom line. So, do we let him screw himself further down the road of legacy, or do we fight for our children and Grandchildren and do the right thing? FIGHT the good Fight of Faith, and believe that we can win if we stay on course? It’s up to us to keep the Republican faithful to their call of NO NEW TAXES.

  • Chris Matthewson

    The flaw in your logic, Bernie, (and it’s a whopper) is your implicit assertion that there is a higher “IQ” (Ignorance Quotient) in those who oppose your conservative agenda. Most polls suggest just the opposite, at least when it comes to the Red State/Blue State divide. For example, polls have repeatedly shown that Obama supporters tend to be better educated than those who supported Romney, although I would not assert that a better education necessarily leads to better judgment.

    However, your true cynicism shines through as you continue to attack the motivations and now the intelligence of your political opponents. On which side of the political fence are those who believe the Earth is less than 10,000 years old? Who deny the validity of the Scientific Method and many of the profound discoveries made by Science in the last couple centuries? Who cling to age-old beliefs written by nomadic Middle Eastern tribesmen? Who, indeed, engage daily in truly “magical” thinking (as evidenced by their religious practices and beliefs)?

    Your basic thesis is that America’s economy will collapse if we raise the tax rate a few percent on the wealthiest Americans; in effect, returning to the rates that existed under President Clinton. Further, you denigrate and brand as “dummies” those who believe in a balanced approach that includes both a modest increase in revenue and serious cuts in spending (for this is the true position of the majority of Americans). In so doing, you have spotlighted yourself on the political stage as the real Magician in this debate: one trying to deceive his audience with intellectual mirrors, polemical false bottoms and sleight of hand.

    • Patrick

      Hey Chris, just because you have a college degree doesn’t make you smart. And a modest approach? Give me a break! Name one thing that President Obama and the Democrats are willing to cut, by cut, I mean spend less money on, not just reducing increases in spending.

      As for returning to President Clinton levels, we can not exactly return to Clinton levels because we now have new taxes thanks to Obamacare that was not present in the Clinton administration.

      • Chris Matthewson

        I agree that a college degree doesn’t guarantee either intellectual acuity or good judgment, but there is certainly a correlation between those who attain higher education and “intelligence” (whatever that is!).

        An example of the verbal smoke & mirrors is the argument made by those on your side of the debate: Out of one side of your mouths you say, in effect, why raise taxes on the upper 2% because the amount raised will be insignificant to reduce the yearly deficit and, ultimately, the national debt. Out of the other side of your lips you attack the proposed tax increase as being an outrageous confiscation of hard earned and well-deserved income.

        Of course, you cannot see things objectively because Bernie and his legion of conservative hypnotists have you under a magic spell: You support, and even advocate for, positions that are contrary to your overall best interests. These are Master Magicians, indeed!

        • Patrick H.

          Well, when you have higher academica that’s dominated by liberals, it’s a sure thing that what will be considered smarter and educated are liberal ideas, they’re not unbiased people you know. It’d be the same thing if it was overwhelmingly dominated by conservatives.

          In any case, I can not understand what your argument is, but I’ll tell you one thing: I’m not so sure we should be giving our federal government more revenue when it has shown us that it can not be trusted to spend it wisely and we have a big spending problem. I would like to see the Democrats propose actual spending cuts as in cuts that would cause to spend less money, not just merely reducing the amount of the spending increases.

          • Chris Matthewson

            Have you ever wondered why higher academia is “dominated” by liberal thinking?

            Anyway, I completely agree with your call for dramatic spending reductions. For too long, interest groups from both parties, and especially the liberals, have been sucking so hard at the political teat that they’ve not only drained the cash cow of all its milk, but its blood and its sweat, too!

            As I’ve written here before, I believe Congress and the administration should not only adopt ALL of the Bowles-Simpson recommendations, but also go far beyond them. I support a long-term plan for a truly balanced budget and even eventual retirement of the National Debt.

            I am not holding my breath, however; my fingers are busy holding my nose.

          • Patrick H.

            I’m thinking it’s because the same people in the Vietnam generation who were out protesting against the establishment grew up and became the establishment thus bringing their own beliefs and values to it? It’s essentially the cohort effect, many of those liberal protestors wanted to go out and change the world and they found they could do that through academia. It’s not a conspiracy I’m arguing about, it’s just a group-think, an echo chamber if you will use the term. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want academia to dominated by conservatives anymore than I want it be dominated by liberals. There’s more than enough room for competing ideologies in this area.

            I’m also glad we’re on the same page when it comes to dramatic spending reductions. Too often, politicians on both sides of the idle try and get away by just reducing the amount they increase in spending and calling that “cuts”. It’s quite a shame that even when we’re facing fiscal disaster, it’s like pulling teeth just to cut even a little of the budget.

            I’m not holding my breath either. The problem is we elect presidents that claim (either truely or falsely) to be to fiscally serious and who will cut spending, but we elect congressmen who promise to “bring home the bacon.” Let’s cut spending…but don’t touch our bacon! So we, the people, are part of the problem in that sense.

          • Chris Matthewson

            I like your accidental typing of “both sides of the idle”! I think that fairly characterizes what’s going on!

          • Patrick H.

            Isn’t that the truth?

          • M Snow

            Those can, do; those who can’t, teach. A cliche to be sure, but there is a grain of truth to it.

  • nono524

    You are right on Bernie. I am convinced that the beginning of the decline of America began with the Department of Education.

  • Chris Oakley

    Sorry, Bernie, but if he wants to let America go over the fiscal cliff Rand Paul can’t be all that smart….or patriotic. And I’ll have you know I can find Colorado on a map with my eyes shut.

  • Roscoe Bonnifitucci

    Great article Bernie. I would add:
    Our Democracy is failing because folks should NOT be voting unless the 5 below Basic Criteria are met. Voting should be SIMPLE, DIRECT and HONEST!

    Voters should be culled for veracity to vote and pass:

    1. Basic Education / Intelligence Test

    2. Basic Civics Test

    3. USA Citizens only

    4. Positive Voter ID

    5. Disqualified if you are on Welfare

    Time for King Obama-Claus to get a real grip on what is good for the Nation and not just His own Selfish, Petulant and Narcissistic Self. Likewise for the Democrat Goofs; they are destroying the Nation so to ease their Liberal Guilt!

    Repubs need to Buy off the Media and create a Magic Rockstar like Obama-Claus…except one with Integrity, Courage and Patriotic to the USA.

    • Patrick

      I can hear the Civil Rights leaders screaming racism right now!

  • Bloefeld

    Paul is right. The American people are going to blame the Republicans for whatever happens after the fiscal cliff. The Democrats somehow believe that the Clinton tax rates are he panacea for everything. They look at the ‘good’ years under the liar in Chief and somehow believe that the positive correlation is caused by taxes.

    It is the same as believing that a correlation of CO2 and Temperature change is the sole cause of global climate change. Its a simple concept that even left-wing goofs can get.

    So let them have the entire Clinton tax regime. There is no Dot.Com craze ahead to fuel the economy. The government is out of bullets to stimulate the economy, and soon ‘real’ inflation will rear its nasty head.

    Four years from now the American public will have gone through enough economic horror to have completely forgotten that they thought the Republican’s caused it and will hang the coming years of financial disaster on the heads of those who truly own it, the Democrats and most particularly Obama.

    And so the cycle back to the centre and then the right will come to fruition again. Thatcherism will replace Marxism and for the next 16 years the Republican’s will dominate.



  • Chris Matthewson

    The flaw in your logic, Bernie, (and it’s a whopper) is your implicit assertion that there is a higher “IQ” (Ignorance Quotient) in those who oppose your conservative agenda. Most polls suggest just the opposite, at least when it comes to the Red State/Blue State divide. For example, polls have repeatedly shown that Obama supporters tend to be better educated than those who supported Romney, although I would not assert that a better education necessarily leads to better judgment.

    However, your true cynicism shines through as you continue to attack the motivations and now the intelligence of your political opponents. Which side of the political fence has those who belive the Earth is less tha

    • ahalbert

      Since when do Obama voters want “serious cuts” in spending. Get real.

      • Patrick

        ahalbert, also, here’s a little dirty secret that the politicians don’t want you to know. Their definition of a cut is not spending less money, it’s just reducing the amount of spending they increase by. So in other words, if their budget is for the next year is to increase spending by 4%, but they reduce the spending increase to only 2%, they call that a cut. Note, how they’re still spending more money the next year than they did the previous year, but they still call that a “cut”.

        • Chris Matthewson

          Since the population is increasing every year, can’t you see why federal spending and tax revenue might go up year after year, too?

          • Patrick

            Perhaps, but it doesn’t take away from my point about how politicians of both parties use the term “cut” deceitfully when it comes to the budget. When people hear the word “cut” when it relates to the budget, they think of spending less than at current levels, but to politicians, it just means you’re still going to spending more, but they don’t increase the spending as much as their dream budget would have it.

          • Patrick

            And oh Chris, whether the population grows larger or smaller, as your parents might have told you, money still doesn’t grow on trees.

          • ahalbert

            Yes, but the fed gov refuses to limit its spending to its revenue, like you, and I, and any other organization must do. Coming up with reasons to overspend is how politicians get re-elected, and despite the polls that supposedly say 60%+ care about about too much spending, obviously the beneficiaries don’t mind! Poll Obama voters and I’ll bet less than 50% have a problem with current spending. I have heard a number of Dem politicians say in interviews that the deficit and debt are NOT REALLY A PROBLEM. I think they actually believe that fed govt power is so great that it can wipe out debt to itself with some technicality or stroke of the pen. The insanity continues, and the inmates approve.

  • TheSystemIsBroken

    Rand Paul 2016

  • chief98110

    It is unbelievable how stupid the vast amount of Americans have become. I blame the richness of our country, people have nothing to work towards. If you have a little stress in your life get a prescription foe marijuana and then apply for federal disability, otherwise know as Obama bucks! It is a shame that this wonderful country is circling the bowl.

  • ron1443

    And we can credit the “Dumbing of America”, starting with our government schools and the decline of family.

  • Sheryl

    The Repubs will get blamed no matter what (thanks largely to the MSM who’ve helped create the Teflon coating around Obama, and Axelrod who can spin anything to make Obama look good) — so I agree with Rand Paul.

    Everyone knows raising taxes on the rich won’t do a thing to help the economy — the sole purpose of that policy is to create discord in the GOP. If every “R” votes Present, at least Obama won’t succeed in destroying the GOP, and the Repubs won’t be forced into compromising their principles.

  • Switchlight 13

    I agree 100%, most Americans are idiots and don’t know history or geography among other things. To busy watching “reality” TV and the endless parade of human trash on MTV, VH1 etc for the youth of America. Those born after 1980 have been brainwashed in school on “multi-culuralism”, diversity and political correctness.They believe anything the Govt spoon feeds them. The election results is proof of what you say. The nation isn’t going to have a good ending. btw: Hitler & Kim Il Sung had the same “mojo” Obama has in addition to the ones you mentioned.

  • Jrod

    Agree on the increasing stupidity of the populace…we can heartily thank the miserable government schools’ failures for the last 40 years!

    • Somekindofpatriot

      The schools didn’t fail, this is exactly what the government wanted them to accomplish. We now have two generations of sheeple being led down the Socialist hole.

  • RonKean

    I agree, Bernie…almost. True – some if not many see Obama as a god. This is public record. True – many more Americans than we think are as dumb as a box of rocks. Schools, the media and the entertainment industry in general has seen to that. True – reinstating the pre-Bush tax structure will cause pain and suffering. The Democrats and their constituency are riding so high and the media is so on their side. I don’t believe anything Republicans do will be viewed in a positive light. It’s all the lessor of many evils. But no matter what happens, future generations will see how destructive Obama’s presidency was and only then will we be vindicated.

  • annettaf3

    I think Bernie is correct in his assessment of Obama’s ability to appear to be what his supporters want him to be and no amount of facts will change their mind.

    For all the grumbling and growling about whether Mitt Romney was the right candidate or whether another candidate could have won, I say this election was Obama’s to lose and he didn’t. Yes, the consultants and Romney made mistakes, but when you look at who continued to vote for Obama regardless of their personal well-being, it bolsters the case that the guy is ‘magic’ in the political year of 2012 and probably the next few years to come. Fortunately for us he is to self-involved to want to invest in anyone else, so we may have a chance to take back the White House in 2016.

  • Patrick J. Brown

    The psychology of propaganda is to use an emotional argument, which appeals to the right brain, and which can only be countered with facts and logic, which the left brain understands. Obama and his minions are masters of the emotional argument. He and they are Chicago thugs. He’s deceitful and dishonest. Period.

  • RickonhisHarleyJohnson

    Sorry, I believe Rand Paul is correct. If there is any possibility of laying the blame on the Democrats, this is it. If Obama has magic, 50.9% of the vote doesn’t support that case. I agree that too many in the US are dumb and if we are finally outnumbered then it makes no difference what we do. At least Rand Paul’s approach has the merit of trying to awaken those left with some semblance of self-respect.

  • Steve Bonomo

    Republicans voting present to allow the big tax hikes the Democrats want would be the doomsday scenario. Republicans leading not from behind, but from surrender.

  • sewcajun

    I have observed over the years the slow decline of civility, the inability of most to take responsibility for one’s actions, and the mentality of “it’s all about me.” It’s not surprising a majority of people voted for someone who they think will give them what they want without having to do anything. We have become a nation of lazy undereducated whiners and takers. How else can you explain the re-elections of people like President Obama, Nancy Pelosi, or Harry Reid?

    • Chris Matthewson

      The flaw in Bernie’s logic (and it’s a whopper) is his implicit assertion that there is a higher “IQ” (Ignorance Quotient) in those who oppose his conservative agenda. Most polls suggest just the opposite, at least when it comes to the Red State/Blue State divide. For example, polls have repeatedly shown that Obama supporters tend to be better educated than those who supported Romney, although I would not assert that a better education necessarily leads to better judgment.

      However, Bernie’s true cynicism shines through as he continues to attack the motivations and now the intelligence of his political opponents. On which side of the political fence are those who believe the Earth is less than 10,000 years old? Who deny the validity of the Scientific Method and many of the profound discoveries made by Science in the last couple centuries? Who cling to age-old beliefs written by nomadic Middle Eastern tribesmen? Who, indeed, engage daily in truly “magical” thinking (as evidenced by their religious practices and beliefs)?

      Bernie’s basic thesis is that America’s economy will collapse if we raise the tax rate a few percent on the wealthiest Americans; in effect, returning to the rates that existed under President Clinton. Further, he denigrates and brands as “dummies” those who believe in a balanced approach that includes both a modest increase in revenue and serious cuts in spending (for this is the true position of the majority of Americans). In so doing, Bernie has spotlighted himself on the political stage as the real Magician in this debate: one trying to deceive his audience with intellectual mirrors, polemical false bottoms and sleight of hand.

      • Patrick

        You have posted the same thing three times already, we get it!

        • Chris Matthewson


          • Patrick

            What I meant was don’t bother posting the same thing three times, we can see your first post, read it, and judge it on it merits. You do not need to copy and paste the post and post it two more times. We can probably understand what your argument is the first time we read it and posting two more times copied and pasted will not make us more likely to agree with you.

          • Chris Matthewson

            Sorry, I thought I had deleted the first post as I was re-typing the second, but the delete didn’t work. Also, the second post now has a conversation thread attached to it, so it apparently cannot be deleted. The above post is the only one I intended to preserve.

      • costhetadtheta

        I’m sure you are aware that arguments are not won based on how pretty they sound, but only on their merits. Aesthetics may sell your argument but we can only feel sorry for the poor saps that buy it. The sad part is that the Obama argument though well sold, has no merit, and the poor saps that bought it, bought it for all of us.

        So you don’t believe in the Bible. Fine. We get that. That doesn’t make you more intelligent than every single of the more than 80% of Americans who claim to believe in a deity. Whether they look at it scientifically or not, many of them (as a smart guy like you must understand, given its basis in statistical probability) are smarter than you are. I would even wager that they also voted for Romney.

        The reality is. Whether it be the left or right side, if a voter is voting based on a television ad… then they shouldn’t be voting. And that’s what Bernie is calling out. Those people that were apathetic with their vote until a campaign staffer stopped by their house, banged on their door, and dragged them to the polls. That’s one of the rabbits Obama pulled out on election day. The other magic trick is the fact that smart guys like you are willing to vote for him despite his campaign to destroy our currency, stifle economic growth, and oppress our religious freedoms.

        The sad thing is not so much the low information voters, it’s the high information voters who can’t count to 16 trillion. We, on the right, can blame the low information voters for losing us the election, but it’s the intelligent ones that duped them after being duped themselves who really make us sorrowful.

        • Chris Matthewson

          Well, the last time I checked we still live in a democracy in which the majority opinion prevails (except apparently in the Senate).

          And I completely agree with you that most, and perhaps even the vast majority of, Americans are smarter than I, especially when we consider the collective judgment of the people. I never even implied anything different. However, that fact and your comments prove my main point. You and Bernie not only assert your superior wisdom in this regard, you derogate the majority of Americans who have decided the issue quite differently from you.

          For every clueless voter that actually made the effort to vote for the President, there was probably an equally uninformed supporter of Romney who made the trek to the polls. To claim, as you, Bernie and most of the readers of this website do, that Obama was elected because he appealed to the majority of the nation’s ignorant “dummies” is the epitome of arrogance and elitism–the very sins you decry in the far left.

          So, all you have accomplished, at the end of the day, is to pull another hypocritical rabbit out of your hat.

          • Patrick H.

            I just want to point that we don’t exactly live in a democracy. We live in a democratic-republic. In a pure democracy, we would be voting directly on more of the legislation as opposed to representatives who we believe represent our best interests (always this is sadly not always the case) and they do the voting on the legislation.

          • costhetadtheta

            It’s actually a Constitutional Republic. Pure Democracies are doomed to fail, as has been proven by history. Because the have-nots end up outweighing the haves and they vote to enact laws and taxes to overthrow the haves and steal their money. Masked as fairness, all it is really is selfishness.

          • Patrick H.

            I do agree with you on pure democracies and we aren’t one especially since representatives vote on the legislation rather than the people directly.

          • costhetadtheta

            First off, the point I was trying to make was that the low information vote was not equally distributed since Obama’s campaign was far superior in their get-out-to-vote effort. As I’m sure you are aware, Romney’s voter database crashed on election day so there was virtually no get-out-to-vote effort by the Romney campaign. So I’m sorry… low-information voters were not equally distributed for that reason alone. But what if it didn’t: I still wouldn’t agree with you and here’s why. I have the misfortune of living in the Chicago area. Cook county went 1.4 million to Obama, 400k to Romney (last I looked). Chicago has a 60% high school graduation rate. I’d look up Los Angeles, New York City, Orlando, Cleveland, Columbus, etc. but I don’t need to.

          • Chris Matthewson

            “Low information” voters were at least as likely to vote for your candidate, if they were somehow able to find their way to the polls at all. Neither party has a clear advantage in the “dummy” department. In fact, 22 of the top 24 states with the highest proportion of post-graduate degrees went to Obama.

            Although there were clear divisions when it came to gender, age and race; there was no such clear difference when it came to “intelligence” (whatever that is), unless you are claiming there are significant differences in intelligence in the groups that did demonstrate a clear divide (gender, age and race). Since you are probably a white male over 40, you may secretly harbor these prejudices, but you would not be so bold to publicly make such an assertion.

            The attempts by you, Bernie and the vast majority of others on this site to derogate those who voted for the President by dismissing them as “dummies” is the height of arrogance and elitism. Your name-calling may feel good, but it subjects you to further ridicule by your political opponents.

          • Warren Wessel

            Chris we live in a Representative Republic, or a Constitutional Republic, not a Democracy. Again more evidence for Bernie.

      • soundnfury

        Your response ignores the basic differences in the Clinton “balanced budget” approach. To be sure, he raised the top rate to 39.5%, but he also imposed spending cuts, thanks to pressure from Newt Gingrich & the GOP. He also did so in the context of a much stronger economy. By discouraging investment & risk-taking on the part of America’s small biz owners, without any spending cuts to speak of, all to fund the federal government for a total of 8 days, Obama is accomplishing nothing but his own perverted idea of fairness. To Bernie’s larger point, most democrat voters, including uninformed college students, are ignorant of this.

        • Chris Matthewson

          But the majority of the country wants BOTH an increase in taxes (on the upper 2%) AND a significant reduction is spending! If you had read (much) further down, you would have seen my response to a similar comment:

          “I completely agree with your call for dramatic spending reductions. For too long, interest groups from both parties, and especially the liberals, have been sucking so hard at the political teat that they’ve not only drained the cash cow of all its milk, but its blood and its sweat, too!

          “As I’ve written here before, I believe Congress and the administration should not only adopt ALL of the Bowles-Simpson recommendations, but also go far beyond them. I support a long-term plan for a truly balanced budget and even eventual retirement of the National Debt.

          “I am not holding my breath, however; I’m busy holding my nose.”

          • DrSique

            C’mon, Chris, take the “on” off of your name and go back to massaging that tingle out of your leg.

          • tim ned

            Chris, President Obama has used the “Balanced Approach” to the public but has let to deliver any serious tax cuts and you’re buying it. “That’s Magic”!

          • alegalcitizen

            To those making over 5 MILLION, hit them in the pocketbook, you know those Holllyweirdo’s, those singers, those sports people, sock it to em, hit em hard, hit em often, hit em high hit em low, take all but 1 MILLION, after all they were the big movers on taxing the rich, had it over now, we’re watching.

      • Tony Bulver

        Your only problem, Mr. Mathewson, if that’s your real name, is your supposed “belief” that Obama has any intention at all of cutting federal spending. It’s very obvious that cutting spending is NOT on Obama’s recipe card. Were he serious about cutting spending, he’d have been doing those spending cuts the first four years he was in office.
        Nope, Bernie has it correct, so you can spout off all you want, but Bernie is right and you are WRONG.

        • Chris Matthewson

          Thank you for your very persuasive arguments, Mr. Bulver, and it does sound like that must be your real name. Fortunately, the conservatives can test your thesis by offering to accept Obama’s modest tax proposals on condition that he accept their more radical suggestions for budget cuts. I would support the R’s if they raised the stakes by calling Obama’s proposal and raising the stakes to include ALL of the Bowles-Simpson recommendations (or as many as the R’s could agree to include).

      • 10579

        i have to disahree. if you watch the man on the street interviews they show a large swatch of americana who know nothing about america,it’s history or how far it has fallen sinse the g.i.’s came home after the korean war. we have been on this slippery slope for quite awhile now with a slow down during the regan years,only to start speeding up with bush 1. remember the line read my lips no new taxes. so here we are 16 trillion in debt heading willy nilly toward 25 trillion in less than 13 years. can you say greece,spain, portugal,italy and most of the e.u.. God save the republic

        • Chris Matthewson

          If you are bemoaning our budget deficit, I agree with you. But a deficit is comprised of two components: overspending and “under revenue.”

          However, I don’t agree with your pining for the “good old days.” The early fifties were, perhaps, simpler times, and great for certain segments of American society, but we have actually made a lot of progress as a nation since then. And don’t forget, Reagan and “W” both presided over significant deficits as they refused to pay for their very expensive military adventures. (However, the D’s were more than complicit in this regard.)

      • LarryInIowa

        First, that’s BS. Second, even if they had more degrees, degrees granted by leftist institutions mean very little when it comes to actually knowing anything. Most of the stars of Jaywalking have degrees or are in college.

        Next, are you really stupid enough to believe that wealthy people will not change how the arrange their financial affairs if you decide to take more of what they earn? Have you actually looked at the numbers and discovered that if Obama gets everything he wants it won’t even cover the spending increases he wants, much less reduce the deficit?

        Balanced approach my little pink derriere. There is NOTHING balanced in Obama’s approach. It’s all tax increases, ON EVERYONE, and spending increases. Simply parroting the “Balanced” lie does not make it true.

        • Chris Matthewson

          I’m afraid your comments qualify you for an appearance on Jaywalking.

          I do agree that significant cuts on spending are necessary. I would even beyond those suggested in Bowles-Simpson.

          • LarryInIowa

            As usual, an insult with no facts or even a counter argument. I expect no more from a Obama worshiper. Just take his comments as gospel do you? No wonder you haven’t a clue. Neither does he.

          • Chris Matthewson

            And your calling me “stupid” and agreeing with Bernie’s name-calling of your political opponents, along with denigrating those who have worked hard to obtain an advanced degree is not insulting?

            I’ll make it clear: Bernie and most of his eager, head-nodding, unthinking fans (including you) are now engaged in ad hominem attacks on their political opponents, probably out of frustration that their propaganda and lying by omission have clearly failed to win over a majority of America to their ultra conservative, anti-tax policies.

            As for counter-arguments, I’ve made multiple ones in this thread and elsewhere, but it would take an intellectually curious person to search them out. That is obviously a rarity on this website.

      • Warren Wessel

        I believe you have just demonstrated the ignorance that Bernie speaks of. There are 2 issues that escape you. Here is a simple concept: Money in the private sector creates jobs, money in government creates waste. Another way of saying it is, people spend their own money more cautiously then they spend other people’s money.

        The other simple concept is, it isn’t the governments job to take from one citizen to give to another.

        To recap: 1) Not economically efficient to have big government, 2) Not Constitutional to have big government.

        Taking from private to give to government BAD!

        Please read Thomas Payne “Common Sense”

        • Chris Matthewson

          You show very little “Common Sense” when you claim that government cannot more efficiently deliver a whole host of services: national security and defense, police and fire protection, an adequate safety net for those who truly need it, a national transportation system, space exploration and research, sensible regulation of a whole host of capitalist activity, and on and on.

          An unregulated private sector will tend towards greed gone wild, with the nation ultimately controlled my a small cadre of wealthy oligarchs. Your unthinking parroting of the “party line” also grossly overstates the adverse employment effects of a moderate increase in taxes on the wealthiest 2%. Don’t you understand that the budget needs to be balanced? Any significant move towards that goal will have a very positive effect on the economy.

      • Dave W

        I would agree with many of your comments including when you refer to “a balanced approach that includes both modest increase in revenue and serious cuts in spending”. The problem is that Obama and the far left democrats do not want to do serious spending cuts and yet they got re-elected. This is the most frustrating thing to most Republicans and independents who voted for Romney. The “magic” that Bernie refers to is Obama’s appeal despite his failure to address the most important issue facing America.

        • Chris Matthewson

          That’s why the Rs should have quickly accepted the moderate tax increase on our wealthiest 2% (and even suggested some revenue enhancements of their own), but conditioned their acceptance on the Ds going along with truly significant spending cuts. The conservatives’ stubborn resistance on this threshold tax issue has been a continuing P.R. disaster and has greatly increased the President’s overall bargaining position.

          The sooner we get past the tax issue, the sooner the debate will shift to much more fertile ground: making the case for why deep cuts in spending are necessary. This is a debate conservatives can actually win, putting the President on the defensive and shifting public opinion against the liberals in Congress.

          Obama’s charm will only get him so far when the conservatives stop coddling their millionaires and start fighting for our future generations.

          • Dave W

            I agree with you. Along time ago I felt that R’s should have given in on tax increases and really turned up the heat on serious spending cuts. By agreeing to the tax increases they would have taken the wind out of the D’s arguments.

    • NorCal1

      I for the most part agree with your opinion about the takers. But who are these people? In many states it is sooo easy to obtain false ID, drivers Lic, etc .. don’t we think many of these folks are voting? These folks are also many times the takers. What I don’t know is how we fight this. Even voter ID won’t do a whole lot of good .. they have what looks like valid IDs. Since dems are giving all of the goodies they will keep voting for them. Anyway, JMO.

    • Phil Silverman

      lazy? and you write “whiners and takers”? ya mean among the 47% who include Vietnam & Iraqui veterans and all those gov’t workers like Teachers and Police layed off for partisan reasons? you know is what welfare reform? heard of the Contract 4 America…or did Reagan-Gingrich-Clinton fail?

  • Buz

    Bernie is right. in a recent survey 9 out of ten Obama voters thought asphalt meant hemorroids

  • lor

    The time has come for the Republicans to get their own magician and use the same slimy tactics and rhetoric that the dems have perfected. The time for reason has gone.

  • Browser1

    So the answer is? Mr Goldberg? What is it the repub’s do? Nothing seems to be the right thing! Mr. Teflon (Obama) has it all so what do yu feel is the right course?

    • Stimpy

      Give them the tax hikes but hold the line on increasing the debt ceiling and whatever we do, don’t relinquish the right of congress to vote on that debt ceiling. If O ever usurps that right it is game over for these here United States.

    • Phil Silverman

      yeah, Mr. Teflon…the most vilified man in USA history……….

  • waterlylies84

    I don’t like the idea at all. For one reason, I don’t want to be in the fall out from higher taxes. No matter what is done, Republicans have become the new Jew’s, they will be blamed for everything.

  • Thunderdome

    You are right again Bernard. I think there are a couple of other things to remember:
    1. People have always liked and voted for somebody else’s taxes to go up. So if the issue is 98% vs. 2% – it’s no contest. Of course, back to your point, people are too stupid to understand that all taxes eventually come out of everyone’s pockets.
    2. Most people have been suffering for the past 4 years, and they don’t see it getting better anytime soon. So it doesn’t matter if we raise taxes or lower taxes, the rich will still be rich, and the economy will still suck. Nobody likes to pay taxes, but if you don’t have any money, what is there to worry about?

    • happel

      What I like to call the ‘funny’ math when I see people discuss the 2% vs. 98% – those that are going after the 2% fail to realize that they are paying a majority of the taxes to begin with already. (I believe Bernie covered this as well, recently.)

      • Phil Silverman

        really? I guess that means never tax the 2% because there’s too little to accumulate from too small a group? yeah, let’s only tax the middle..who sent their $$$$ up to that 2% in the stimulus who immediately hid the $$$ here or sent it overseas. Yeah, the “job creators”. Who pays for the 2% tax loopholes and deductions? who fights in their manufactured wars? the 98%. I guess U are upset about going back to 39.6% so we can give tax relief to families under 250k per year. Are you an O’Reilly *premium* member? jk!

        • happel

          Where exactly did you surmise I was an O’Reilly premium member? Was it the same place that helped you generate your straw man argument? You’re absolutely right. Let’s just tax everyone and everything. The government in its obesity has truly proven how effective it is at distributing resources. That sounds like a sound plan. I love it. This conversation had nothing to do with corporations and their loopholes; nothing to do with manufactured wars. I am a Libertarian and think both of those are a joke. What I do know, along with many other small business owners in America is that all the taxes justify more regulation for more nonsense, thus keeping all those government office employees and bureaucrats gainfully employed on the back of the real job creators. I suspect, since you starting making assumptions about my O’Reilly membership I will return the favor, that you have never started any business in your life; have never put any risk capital into building anything of your own. You have the typical collectivist tone I would expect from an Entitlement Generation educator or government employee. Well, sir, when the stifling regulations and the countries lack of entrepreneurial spirit dies, so will the vast sums of money being paid from the backs of the businessmen and women that are really footing the bill. Corporations, like GE in the back pocket of every administration since I was born, will always pay their lobbyists to bribe Congress from exempting them from all kinds of tax burdens. Your plan, which I do not even see backed with facts or statistic, just typical rhetoric, is a sound one. When the innovators and creators of jobs leave America, I will gaze from afar with a smirk on my face.

  • Sue

    My only hope is that when the pink slips go out, Obama voters will be given priority to get theirs first.

    • Somekindofpatriot

      Sue, get serious, most Obama supporters that do have a job are wishing and hoping (notice I did not say praying) for the pink slip in order to join their comrades on the government dole.

  • bobemakk

    I am losing faith in both parties. Look at who won re-election, it makes me sick to see that man in the WH again. He is to blame for all our deficit problems, and he also wants to cut the defense budget in these tumultuous times. As Mike Huckabee said, our allies don’t trust US and our enemies dislike US. We have lost our backbone.

    • happel

      “HE” is Obama? Well, actually incorrect. THEY is more appropriate, Congress for the past 12 years, Obama, Bush – they are responsible for the debt fiasco we have fallen prey to this century. The Federal Reserve is also somewhat complicit in this mess as they are necessitating or justifying increased borrowing while suppressing interest rates in hopes of generated ‘investment’. I have abandoned both mainstream parties for those more fiscally sound, like the Libertarian party, and support getting out of all of these unaffordable and unnecessary wars the USA has been engaging in.

  • ulyssesmsu

    So, what’s the solution? Just keep buggering on like we are? Tolstoy said it–WHAT THEN MUST WE DO? Give us an idea, Bernie. Don’t just tell us that nothing will work. WHAT SHOULD WE DO?

  • Kathie Ampela

    I’m sorry Bernie, but I have to disagree with you. I believe Sen. Rand Paul is right. It won’t be enough to raise taxes on high earners alone. The middle class will get a tax hike too. Let the saps learn their lesson the hard way. They’d better pay attention next time.

    • Patrick H.

      I somewhat think the same thing too Kathie, but I see Bernie’s point. President Obama may be left wing in his political views, but he’s charismatic, is an excellent speaker, and knows how to speak the populist language which makes him a hard combination to beat either way. He’s a spell-binder who makes Harold Hill look like an amateur.

      • Kathie Ampela

        I think Senator Paul has the perfect idea. It offers the stark contrast between the two parties that Team Romney didn’t deliver to driveby America during the campaign. I don’t believe the republicans will be blamed. The pendulum will swing to the right when the economic plane hits the proverbial tower, it has throughout history. 2012 wasn’t the right time yet, but it’s coming.

    • trailbee

      Whoa, there, Kathie A! I’m part of your middle class and I did not ask for another four years of this. Definitely not. My health insurance has already gone up twice, and I’m retired. There are no raises in pensions, Lady. I already paid attention in ’08, which didn’t get me anything but an upset stomach. I paid more attention this year! Sap? You apologize!
      Just kidding – I got the message. :)


      You are correct, Kathie. Once Obama and his ilk spend all the “rich” peoples money, they will simply step down to the next group to extort more until everybody is working for the government not for themselves. As the old saying goes, feces rolls downhill.

  • Reed Williams

    always watch the other hand.. it was obvious and still people let themselves be taken in. Talk Radio for all:

  • Noonien_Soong

    Sorry if sounds too crude, there was case where a woman contestant was given a dare to drink as much water as she could. She eventually died. This is thee way to treat the debt menace. Overwhelm with excess until they can’t take any more. IOW drown the Dems in debt legislation until they ask politely for help

  • Cyberquill

    Too many long and complicated sentences in this post, and not enough pictures.