Friday, March 16, 2012


Like a Venus fly trap, Republican voters close their minds around false information as soon as they're fed it by Fox "news" and the rest of the RWS™. Thenceforward, it may as well be mummified and buried at sea. Ain't never gonna see the light of day again. Of all the things that drive me certifiably crazy, that's the worst. Because I can see no solution; and because democracy, in the world of reality, depends on well-informed voters. With the current iteration of Republicans, once the falsehoods are installed, there's simply no penetrating the carefully constructed wall of deliberate deception around them. And, depressing as it is to see people who have no information about what's really going on, what's indescribably worse is hearing about those who have absolutely wrong information, cling to it like electric charge on hair, and will never be put right. Here are a couple of charts that say a lot, loudly. (Even more loudly, if you click on them.)

The second one shows that Democrats aren't without misinformation either; but it's striking how different are the two parties, how far Rs wander from reality: taxes on the middle class have, in fact, gone down under President Obama. It's not statistical trickery, it's not a matter of opinion. It's straightforward, simple, and undeniable. (For the record, I think it'd have been much better to have spent more money on stimulus, and to have passed on the tax cut.) But it's the work of a deadly combination: desire to believe the worst about the black guy, and a constant stream of disinformation feeding the needing of preconditioned minds.

I admit I haven't looked for the data behind chart #1; when you start graphing rate of change, I start thinking it could be fuzzy. But I do know stimulus spending has ended (probably too soon), and that deficit projections are looking better. It's also a fact that only under Democrats have deficits gone down, and that they've always gone up under Republicans, ever since Ronald Reagan and his voodoo economics. Even for fact-averse head-in-sanders, the Clinton era is not so long ago that its budget surplus -- and what happened to it when Bush took over -- is beyond recall. Is it?

R fiscal policy has never accomplished what it's claimed it would, namely budgetary balance without raising taxes while serving the needs of the country. Yet every single R candidate continues to make the same claim; and the budget plans that they've produced, on which they continue to campaign, have been shown to do exactly the opposite: increasing debt, cutting essential spending (except military, of course), and raising the tax burden on all but the highest earners). But they don't care, because they know they don't need to: their voters snap tight around the lies and suck them dry. No amount of honest information will change it. It's an intentionally rigged game, and since they're roughly half the voting population, in our democracy we're all the losers.

Added 3/16: I saw the following after the preceding was published:


  1. Classy segment by Bill Maher. How come he didn't follow up by strolling down to Philly where the Black Panthers hang out in front of the polling stations (Obama's attorney general acquitted them, ya know.) and ask a few questions? Maybe meander down to Frank's neck of the woods too? Posting garbage journalism lie that certainly desn't help your cause if you're actually trying to influence people.

    How bout ya stop foaming for a few and check out the Republcans proposal for Medicare reform:

    partial privatization of social security would make retired American's better off, even with the recession. It's working in Chile already. Look it up.


  2. Guess you didn't watch Bill Maher tonight, huh?

  3. PT- Do you really believe everything you read at the CATO and the Heritage? Those are the basis of your "relevant" arguments? And you didn't really present for reference and empirical information Rands own Senate web site did you? Did you really? What the hell are you thinking? Moreover, what the hell are you smoking? My god PT, I think you're foaming from inside the bubble! Quick, try to save yourself! Wait.... never mind, it's probably too late... poor thing. Then again... you're not trying to make a joke are you?

  4. And let's not forget that, as usual, Mr T ignored the point of the post: that Rs overwhelmingly believe falsehoods when it comes to that black guy in the white house.

    But, since he veered away from that particular undeniable reality, he could also look at not-Cato views of the world once in a while, like this one. Not that it would make a difference. Because, as this post says, Rs do not much appreciate facts when they get in their way.

  5. 3 points:

    1.) In Chile, 70% of the workforce contributes less than six months each year into their pension accounts, and over half of the workforce contributes less than 4 months each year. Neither a public nor private system can be funded with such a high unemployment rate.

    2.) A MANDATORY system that has ONLY 6 govt approved choices is going to have high fees; it's a pseudo-monopoly. Perhaps the govt should a.) negotiate lower fees on behalf of the taxpayers who are forced to pay into the system b.) give an option to go 1/2 public and 1/2 private?

    3.) apparently, the investment is only in the Chilean stock markets? Gotta diversify in foreign stocks and bonds, man!

    I'm open to a mixed public-private system. At least the worker gets to choose who screws him that way; politicians "borrowing" from the public system vs high broker fees from "governmentally approved" companies in the private system.


  6. Amusing. You were the one that brought up Chile, PT, claiming it was working (and ignoring the actual point of the post). Now, presented with info, you criticize it, flipping the flop. Funny how that works, huh? Not that you have no role models.

    I'll give you credit, though: at least you ingested the facts before finding a way to leave them behind in order to maintain your original premise. In the case of your fellows, they eliminate that middle step and go right to ignoring them while clinging to their misapprehensions. So congrats: you're as good as the right wing gets.

  7. Thanks for the compliment, I think.

    By the way, YOU failed to acknowledge the Repub Medicare reform plan which is a Dem's wet dream; give retirees the same options as all federal employees have, make the "rich" pay more, and raise retirement age slowly. Did that send a tingle down your leg?

    By the way, when Barney Frank was claiming Fannie/Freddie were fine, I was busy selling off real estate in high appreciation areas and transferring the equity to low appreciation areas. Could you believe an idiot like me, probably 30 years your junior, could intuitively foresee a decline in real estate prices months before anyone else? I'd prefer to keep my social security money and plan my own retirement, but you liberals insist on "helping" morons like me with social security. Gee, thanks.

    Only an idiot would want some control over how a portion of his/her retirement funds are invested. The Nomenklatura knows what's best for the proletariat.


  8. I don't think it's failing to acknowledge when it's off the point of the post. It's trying, unsuccessfully, to stay on topic.

    But, okay, sure: taking Medicare, which is the only sensible health insurance model currently in place, and replace it with private insurance with its 30% additional overhead and profit-taking, is about as sensible as, well, believing Obama raised taxes on the middle class.

  9. Then how come 'Bama won't put federal employees and Congress on Medicare with the proletariat? That should save a few bucks, treat all equally, and move all a step closer to single payer, right?

    I suffered thru Maher as a self imposed penalty for misrepresenting Chilean social security. Gotta say, young Pelosi didn't fall too far from the tree; classy journalist she is. Interesting how Maher gets visibly uncomfortable when she showed her welfare office video and feels the need to remind everyone how much he has done for black people. "Obama bucks" is catchy though. I wanna get me some.

    What was your blog post about again?



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