Is Rudy Senile?

I don’t ask this question based on Rudy Giuliani’s comment that “I do not believe that the President loves America.”  The statement is absurd and nasty, but it doesn’t mean he has dementia.

No, what makes me ask the question is Rudy’s follow-on assertion that “I’m not questioning his patriotism.”

What is patriotism?  It’s love of country.  So if you argue that Obama doesn’t love America, yet he’s patriotic, there must be something wrong with your brain.

The White House had it exactly right when they said they feel sorry for Rudy.

The Ultimate in Revisionist History

Hurricane Katrina occurred in August 2005.  President Obama was sworn in for his first term in January 2009.

Yet, in a new poll, 29% of Louisiana Republicans blame Obama for the government’s Katrina failure, while 28% blame Bush, the guy who was actually, you know, president at the time.  Another 44% aren’t sure which one to blame.

Armey Leaving FreedomWorks — Mystery Solved

The mystery of why former GOP House Majority Leader Dick Armey of Texas resigned as CEO of the Koch Brothers’ funded Tea Party group Freedom Works has been resolved.

He left over an ethics dispute with the group’s president, Matt Kibbe.  If you’ve ever seen Kibbe on TV, the guy just looks sleazy, so I wasn’t the least bit surprised.

From Politico*:

“Armey was concerned that Kibbe structured the deal to personally profit from the book, despite relying on FreedomWorks staff and resources to research, help write and promote it….

“So Armey declined to sign a memorandum presented to him…stating that the book was written without significant FreedomWorks resources and clearing the way for Kibbe to personally own the rights to the book and any royalties from it….

“‘I wrote this book and it is my property,’ [Kibbe] said, saying he wrote the 416-page book entirely ‘on my Christmas vacation’ last year. [416 pages over Christmas?  Were there elves involved?]

“But multiple sources who worked with FreedomWorks and had knowledge of the situation said that several staffers were asked to help research and write the book as part of their work duties.  The sources contend that FreedomWorks staff time and resources spent promoting the book detracted from the organization’s ability to mobilize conservative activists ahead of the election — one of its core focuses.”

All you people sending your hard-earned $25 or $50 to these Tea Party groups, thinking you’re fighting the Kenyan Muslim Socialist, I hope you realize that you’re just making creeps like Kibbe rich, and of course protecting the Koch Brothers’ billions.  Not a good use of your money.

* “Dick Armey, FreedomWorks president clashed over book deal,” Kenneth P. Vogel

Quote of the Day

“I recognize I’m not going to get 100 percent.  But what I’m not going to do is to agree to a plan in which we have some revenue that is vague and potentially comes out of the pockets of middle-class families in exchange for some very specific and tough entitlement cuts that would affect seniors or other folks who are vulnerable. That’s not the kind of balanced plan that I think would be good for growth, good for the economy, or good for the American people.”

President Obama

I think we’re heading towards raising rates on the top 2 percent, but not up to the Clinton-era level of 39.6 percent.

Mitt — A Hiccup Without Footprints

“Mr. Romney is not the leader of the party; he left no footprints in the sand.  There is no such thing as Romneyism, no movement of which he’s the standard-bearer.  Nor is he a Washington figure with followers.  Party leaders already view him as a kind of accident, the best of a bad 2008 lot, a hiccup.”

Peggy Noonan, The Drawn-Out Crisis:  It’s the Obama Way,” WSJ

This is the same woman who predicted a Romney win on November 5, writing in part:

“Romney’s crowds are building—28,000 in Morrisville, Pa., last night; 30,000 in West Chester, Ohio, Friday It isn’t only a triumph of advance planning: People came, they got through security and waited for hours in the cold. … In some new way he’s caught his stride. He looks happy and grateful. His closing speech has been positive, future-looking, sweetly patriotic. His closing ads are sharp—the one about what’s going on at the rallies is moving.

“All the vibrations are right. … Looking at the crowds on TV, hearing them chant ‘Three more days’ and ‘Two more days’—it feels like a lot of Republicans have gone from anti-Obama to pro-Romney.

“There is no denying the Republicans have the passion now, the enthusiasm. The Democrats do not. Independents are breaking for Romney.

“I suspect both Romney and Obama have a sense of what’s coming, and it’s part of why Romney looks so peaceful and Obama so roiled.”

And Noonan looks so idiotic.

Quote of the Day

“Perhaps the key lesson the White House took from the last couple of years is this:  Don’t negotiate with yourself.  If Republicans want to cut Medicare, let them propose the cuts.  If they want to raise revenue through tax reform, let them identify the deductions.  If they want deeper cuts in discretionary spending, let them settle on a number.  And, above all, if they don’t like the White House’s preferred policies, let them propose their own.  That way, if the White House eventually does give in and agree to some of their demands, Republicans will feel like they got one over on the president.  A compromise isn’t measured by what you offer, it’s measured by what the other side feels they made you concede.”  Emphasis added.

Ezra Klein, “Obama to GOP:   I’m done negotiating with myself,” WaPo

Paychecks Won’t Change Even Without Fiscal Cliff Deal

We’ve been told that if a fiscal cliff staircase deal doesn’t get done by 1/1/13, whenever it does get done, it will be retroactive to the beginning of 2013 as to middle class taxes, so their taxes really won’t go up.

But Timothy Geithner also has the power to keep payroll withholding the same next year*, so not only won’t taxes go up, but paychecks will stay the same even without a deal.

Keeping consumer spending power the same goes a long way to controlling economic damage from the failure to make a deal.  Hang tough, Mr. President.

See “Geithner Keeps Withholding Freeze as Weapon to Curb Cliff,” Richard Rubin, Bloomberg

It’s War

Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) will block a Rice nomination for Secretary of State if Obama chooses to proceed:  “I would place a hold on anybody who wanted to be promoted  for any job who had a role in the Benghazi situation.

The battle against Rice has led to charges of sexism and racism.  That’s why they’re putting a New Hampshire woman out front, to try to deflect those charges.  Both McCain and “Butters” Graham are male, obviously, plus Butters is from South Carolina.