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bigtree

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Maryland
Member since: Sun Aug 17, 2003, 11:39 PM
Number of posts: 54,282

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The Press Can't Handle the Truth

_________________

What actual good is a press which treats folks they call liars as legitimate and credible?

There are plenty of good articles about the campaign of lies that the Romney campaign has adopted as its primary strategy against President Obama. In them, Romney's deliberate lies, half-truths, and other mendacious statements are detailed and confirmed. Yet, there isn't any real or obvious penalty in the press for lying to them. If anything, the prevaricating candidate is rewarded by even more coverage; more exposure, until the lies either fall from their promoted interest or the candidate is just allowed to move on to their next subject.

Romney and Ryan have found that politics creates its own reality for candidates which is directly related to the number of folks they're able to convince to go along with their distortions of the truth. If you can accept the lie, for whatever reason, that Barack Obama is a Muslim born in Kenya, you can help the liar perpetuate it by providing a bubble of support to lift them up and away from any accountability their opponents or detractors might provide.

That is why it is so important for their opponent to work as hard as they're able to convince a larger number of supporters to elevate their perspective and challenge of those lies by supporting a candidate who will represent their point of view in their campaign for office. Sadly, it's not always the truth which wins the day.

We saw George Bush buoyed by his Iraq lies, into reelection over the truth-telling John Kerry. Bush's lies didn't become true when he was elected, but, they were rendered operable; the elected official was able to carry those lies further -- into actual policy and practice.

As the press has found, it's not nearly enough to point out that a candidate is a liar; they need to actually convince someone to call them that for the liar to experience or suffer any sort of consequence. There is simply no mechanism to actually call these candidates on their lies, outside of voting them down with a majority of ballots. The electoral college makes that public accountability even less certain.

That's all a very real measure of the daunting task for President Obama and VP Biden in this race against two practiced and professional prevaricators; two republican, political liars looking for a voting public pass to continue their mendacious representations of their policy and initiatives into office. That's the next obvious step. The press can holler till they're blue that the emperor has no clothes, but until the public puts their scorn into the form of some kind of political action, the pretenders have room and incentive to carry on.

So, here's a hope that the VP, tonight, and the President, in the subsequent debates, convinces enough voting Americans that Romney and Ryan are inveterate liars; enough folks to vote them down. That's the challenge for our Democratic candidates in the remaining moments of this election. That's the only real accountability and consequence these candidates will actually experience for the way they handle the truth.

It might be kind of an elephant ~ Or a funny kind of kazoo!




(bigtree original)

more: http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021489698

And that's why I never abbreviate Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

Nicholas Kristof ‏@NickKristof 31m

Congrats to Philippines for peace deal with MILF rebels. If it sticks, that's a huge advance for a lovely country!

_____________________

Catherine Warrick ‏@CatWarr

And that's why I never abbreviate Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

Generations



Barack Obama in Cleveland, OH - October 5th

Photograph by Scout Tufankjian for Obama for America

I just have this feeling that I'm being followed



(bigtree original)

The Promise

_________________________



Barack Obama in Madison, WI - October 3rd
Photograph by Scout Tufankjian for Obama for America

Romney: Slave To His Own Mendacious Appeal

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The way the lie about 'cooked' job numbers has been spread and adopted by Romney's surrogates and supporters is disturbing and alarming.

Listening to some of his supporters today on c-span and news accounts of the reaction to yesterday's 7.8% unemployment rate, I was struck by the way that even the ridiculousness of this lie about the Labor Dept. manipulating job numbers hasn't stopped his supporters from repeating it like it was gospel.

It's clear that there is no floor to the campaign of lies against Barack Obama. It's also clear that Mitt Romney is singularly the person most responsible for the proliferation of a blatant and demonstrably false accusation against a bipartisan department of career Labor Dept. employees. His supporters are simply following his lead in using outright lies as campaign rhetoric and attacks; even after they have been proven false beyond any reasonable doubt.

Romney certainly didn't invent campaign lies, but, he's made the practice of deliberate and repeated prevarication (even after being directly called on his distortions by an objective press) a standard in republican presidential politics.

Romney is pushing forward with his campaign of deliberate and encouraged distortions and lies -- with no apparent intention to even try and hew his rhetoric and campaign claims to the truth and facts. His advertising campaign has been an amazingly corrupt challenge to the press and others who normally seek to provide accountability to these election-season claims and attacks.

So far, the press has been remarkably responsive in pointing out the lies and distortions, but, there's really no mechanism of restitution or reprieve for the deliberate bull which has proven effective at confronting the candidate, penalizing him, and rehabilitating the reputation of his opponent. What we have now is a shameful dialog from the republican candidate and his right-wing supporters which is so personal -- so demeaning toward his Democratic rival -- that the standard of discourse among the supporting public threatens to descend into a free-for-all of character assassination and deliberate obfuscation. Heck, we have that right now.

I'm not a fan of Ayn Rand, but she made an interesting and relevant quote that, perhaps, Romney's partner Ryan's admiration for the writer might cause him to reflect on with a personal interest of his own:

“People think that a liar gains a victory over his victim," Rand wrote in her book, 'Atlas Shrugged.'

"What I’ve learned is that a lie is an act of self-abdication, because one surrenders one’s reality to the person to whom one lies, making that person one’s master, condemning oneself from then on to faking the sort of reality that person’s view requires to be faked…The man who lies to the world, is the world’s slave from then on…There are no white lies, there is only the blackest of destruction, and a white lie is the blackest of all,” Rand wrote.


In the unlikely event that Romney actually managed to assume the presidency, after a campaign of deliberate and encouraged lies and distortions, he'd be resigned to a political landscape without the accountability that a well and properly informed electorate would provide to measure his own actions and conduct in office. That Labor Dept. he's allowing to be demeaned and slandered today would be his own; presenting job numbers in a Romney administration that would be marred and mostly ignored by a cynical public encouraged to distrust and reject the very product of the very government he propounds to lead.

For most of McCain's campaign against Barack Obama, the republican and his running-mate took great relish in distorting the record and character of their Democratic opponent. Their campaign also benefited from a deliberate campaign to characterize Barack Obama as someone who's values and intentions were, somehow, un-American and dangerous.

Much of that sentiment, deliberately proffered up from the actual republican campaign and candidates, still hangs around President Obama's neck today. Indeed, the Romney campaign has done what they could to capitalize on that sentiment among supporters, like one of their major promoters, Donald 'Birther' Trump.

Yet, one of the most edifying, and redeeming moments in the McCain campaign came from the candidate, himself, in a town hall appearance. A lady stood up and tried to insist that President Obama was an 'Arab' that she 'couldn't trust,' and was interrupted, corrected, and rebuked by John McCain in a profile in courage which I still appreciate greatly today.

At the risk of alienating a sizable number of his base supporters who had invested their opposition in many of the lurid and bigoted characterizations swirling around about Barack Obama, John McCain checked himself and told the woman (against a chorus of boos from the conservative audience), point blank:

"He is a decent person and a person that you do not have to be scared about as President of the United States. If I didn't think I would be one heck of a better president I wouldn't be running."

Older Woman: "I have read about him. He's an Arab".

"No, ma'am. No, ma'am. He's a decent, family man, citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues and that's what this campaign is all about."


John McCain's campaign had already benefited from the deliberate character assassination of Barack Obama by his surrogates and supporters; yet, he couldn't continue to countenance a following which insisted on such divisive, false, and demeaning rhetoric that the lady had demonstrated in her opposition to his Democratic rival. McCain had an inner limit to the degradation of our public discourse which he refused to ignore or put aside to further his political ambition.

There is no apparent limit to Mitt Romney's ambition for the presidency. He sees no need to temper or reject the more extreme factions of his republican party in their character assassination of the president; or repudiate their deliberate lies and distortions about this Democratic president and the government Barack Obama oversees and manages.

Mitt Romney is short-sightedly 'condemning' himself (as Ayn Rand wrote) to 'faking the sort of reality that person’s view requires to be faked.' The government and country he would inherit, if elected, would certainly reflect that cynicism and prevarication that he bred into his supporters with his own unapologetic distortions and acquiescence to the deliberate lies from surrogates and supporters. He's surrendering to the 'blackest of destruction;' he's auguring to become a hapless 'slave' to his own mendacious appeal.

Obama Attacks Swiftly on Twitter, Jabs Romney on Swing Sites

President Barack Obama isn't getting lots of accolades for his debate performance last night, but his digital campaign team might deserve them when it comes to combining digital media planning and direct response messaging. Today, Obama for America is running the Promoted Trend on Twitter using the #ForwardNotBack hashtag leading to a video that came together in mere hours.

Obama is also running anti-Romney expandable ads on key swing state news sites with a message aimed squarely at younger voters, along with a more-general anti-Romney ad takeover mirroring the #ForwardNotBack theme on HuffingtonPost.com.

The Obama paid trend links to search results topped with a video tweet from the Obama camp: therein lies about a minute-and-a-half of mainstream media response to the debate, all suggesting statements by Republican Mitt Romney were light on facts. TV coverage clips are coupled with several screenshots of equally damning conclusions on Twitter about Romney statements from non-partisan fact-checking groups FactCheck.org and Politifact.

"The results are in. Romney played fast and loose with the facts," states text that introduces the Obama video. (http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021467229)

Before the debate, Obama's campaign surrogates played down his chances of scoring high points last night, in part because Romney had more recent debate experience and more time to prepare. Today's video-enhanced Twitter move seems to follow that strategy. Rather than highlighting the President and his own words, the video uses trusted media outlets to reinforce one of Obama's primary messages last night: Romney's claims regarding issues such as healthcare and his tax plan are not based in fact.


read: http://www.clickz.com/clickz/news/2214850/obama-attacks-swiftly-on-twitter-jabs-romney-on-swing-sites

Watch the polls . . . none of the superficial, performance judgments about the debate will matter

Folks who are undecided at this point won't be swayed by a scowl or a sneer. Romney is challenged to find votes from a narrow group of undecided voters. I'd be surprised to see even a dent in that number post-debate.

More important, he didn't do anything to change the most damaging feature of his personality, which is his lack of concern for the plights of average Americans. He focused his defenses on millionaires, insurers, providers, banks; contrasted against Pres. Obama's sharp focus on the plights of the vast majority in the middle-class.

Jackassery in one debate isn't going to overcome the narrative already cemented on Romney by the Obama campaign; that Romney is a wealthy elitist who cares more about propping up corporations and the rich, than he does about helping average Americans grow and prosper.

Watch the polls.

Watching the debates, voters will be looking to make judgments about both candidates

Romney will certainly be of interest to voters watching, because he's relatively unknown right now (yes, even despite the exposure he's had over two election cycles and everything in-between).

However, President Obama will also get a close level of scrutiny, because of the cottage industry of misinformation and distortions about his person and policies.

Here's how the dynamic should work;

Romney will confirm the worst voters have heard or read about him. He's wrapped his policy around the worst of his personal privilege and greed. The rest is a demagogic and prevaricating attack on Barack Obama's character and record.

President Obama will easily render all of that nonsense, that republicans have convinced themselves he represents, moot and ridiculous. Barack Obama will resemble none of that; instead, the debate will be a welcome platform for his very inclusive, and substantive appeal.

Romney can't sell his economic plan because it doesn't add up. He can't sell his foreign policy criticisms because he's functionally clueless, even with cues from the Bushites advising him. He can't even sell himself. With or without zingers, Romney will be left looking like a spoiled brat who's too privileged and elitist to actually care a wit about the voters watching.
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