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'We're Not Going to Let Our Campaign Be Dictated by Fact-Checkers'

'We're Not Going to Let Our Campaign Be Dictated by Fact-Checkers' | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by James Bennet, The Atlantic

 

Critics have for many years inveighed against "false equivalence" or "false balance" in the mainstream press. This long crusade has finally achieved its grail, or at least a version of it: In this campaign season, political reporters have been shucking the old he-said-she-said formulation and directly declaring that certain claims are false. This new approach was signaled on Sunday, when, as James Fallows has noted, The New York Times, in a front-page story, flatly stated that a Romney ad was "falsely charging that Mr. Obama has 'quietly announced' plans to eliminate work and job training requirements for welfare beneficiaries."

 

But what if it turns out that when the press calls a lie a lie, nobody cares?


Here in Tampa, the new assertiveness is getting its first test on a big stage, and so far the results are not encouraging. As Ben Smith of BuzzFeed has pointed out, the Romney campaign is simply swatting aside the media's objections to its welfare ad: "We're not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers," said Neil Newhouse, a Romney pollster.

 

Watch this exchange, from a panel here this morning. On one side is my colleague Ron Fournier, the editor-in-chief of National Journal, together with John Dickerson of CBS and Slate; on the other, Ron Kaufman of the Romney campaign. Both journalists call the ad false; Kaufman rejects their view -- both of the details of the ad, and of its political thrust, that it is, as Fournier argues, "playing the race card." The result is a stalemate -- or, actually, a kind of mind-blowing media-political meta-vortex that might be better fodder for students of epistemology or semiotics, and certainly of American Studies, than for journalists, though they should probably watch it, too. [MORE]

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GOP convention approves platform on banning abortions, gay marriage, transforming Medicare

GOP convention approves platform on banning abortions, gay marriage, transforming Medicare | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it
Republicans emphatically approved a toughly worded party platform at their national convention today that would ban all abortions and gay marriages, reshape Medicare into a voucher-like program and reject federal spending as an antidote for the...


MEDICARE AND MEDICAID
The platform pledges to move both Medicare and Medicaid away from “the current unsustainable defined-benefit entitlement model to a fiscally sound defined-contribution model.” It supports a Medicare transition to a premium-support model with an income-adjusted contribution toward a health plan of the enrollee’s choice. Age eligibility in Medicare must be made more realistic in light of longer life spans.
Medicaid services for low income people would be transformed into a block grant program in which the states would be given the flexibility to determine the best programs for their residents.

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"I Will Not Promise the Moon": Alf Landon Opposes the Social Security Act, 1936

"I Will Not Promise the Moon": Alf Landon Opposes the Social Security Act, 1936 | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

Alf Landon ran against FDR in 1936 when the Social Security Act was passed. This is his "I will not promise the moon" speech  that he gave during the campaign. This gives a good insight to what the Conservatives thought of the Social Security Act.

 

Does this sound familiar?

 

 

 

Image credit: Alfred Landon Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division LC-USZ62-106389

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Stephen Henderson: RNC platform confirms party’s rightward lurch

Stephen Henderson: RNC platform confirms party’s rightward lurch | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it
There are no real shockers in the platform adopted at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday, at least not if you’ve been paying attention to the party’s dramatic rightward lurch.


But it’s certainly worth paging through just to see just how antisocial, anti-science and anti-reason the party’s core has become under the domination of Tea Party delegates.


Platforms don’t bind candidates. They don’t even shape campaigns. But they do show, in this case, how much ground presidential candidate Mitt Romney has to bridge if he’s going to win in November.

Either he has no control over the party, because the platform contradicts a fair number of his ideas — or the party is going to try to control him, which would alienate large swaths of the voters he’ll need


Let’s start with taxes, which the platform pretty much derides as fuel for profligate waste. So why have them at all, right? The platform would eliminate taxes on interest, dividends and capital gains altogether (so Romney would pay 0% instead of 13%?) and would repeal both the estate tax and the alternative minimum tax. The platform would also permanently preserve the Bush tax cuts for everyone..

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Following Akin Controversy, Romney Changes Position On Abortion

Following Akin Controversy, Romney Changes Position On Abortion | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by Igor Volsky, Think Progress


Just one week after Rep. Todd Akin’s (R-MO) “legitimate rape” comments caused a political firestorm, Mitt Romney appears to have shifted his rhetoric on abortion.


Despite repeatedly insisting that he only supports abortion in cases of rape, incest, and if the woman’s life is in danger, Romney told CBS Evening News on Monday that he believes that the procedure should be legal if the woman’s “health and life” is in danger:


“My position has been clear throughout this campaign,” Romney said. “I’m in favor of abortion being legal in the case of rape and incest, and the health and life of the mother….This is a matter in the courts, it’s been settled for some time in the courts.” [MORE including video]

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Republicans Worry About Keeping Factions Reined In

Republicans Worry About Keeping Factions Reined In | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by ADAM NAGOURNEY, New York Times


Mitt Romney arrives here this week to accept his nomination from the increasingly disparate coalition of factions known as the Republican Party, confronting the challenge of unifying them behind him and — should he win — exerting his own authority over a party that is in many ways still forging a post-Bush identity.


In interviews, Republican leaders said they were united and energized by the prospect of defeating President Obama and enacting bedrock Republican principles: shrinking the government and reducing spending and taxes.


At the same time, many said they were concerned about the crosscurrents that have churned the party, particularly since the emergence of the Tea Party movement three years ago. And on Sunday, thousands who supported the presidential campaign of Representative Ron Paul of Texas rallied here to challenge what they view as business as usual among Republicans.


Some leaders expressed worry that the turn to contentious social issues in the days leading up to the Republican National Convention, where the party platform is likely to embrace a tough anti-abortion stance and strict curbs on immigration, could undercut the party’s need to broaden its appeal. Many of them said they feared it was hastening a march to becoming a smaller, older, whiter and more male party.


“The Republican Party needs to re-establish its philosophy of the big tent with principles,” said Dan Quayle, the Republican former vice president. “The philosophy you hear from time to time, which is unfortunate, is one of exclusion rather than inclusion. You have to be expanding the base, expanding the party, because compared to the Democratic Party, the Republican Party is a minority party.”


George E. Pataki, the Republican former governor of New York, said he agreed with the Tea Party’s principle of reducing taxes and the size of the government. But he said he was concerned that antigovernment sentiments advocated by some Tea Party activists could push it out of the political mainstream.


“What I fear is that that very positive desire to limit the power and the role of the federal government could turn into a philosophy that is antigovernment,” Mr. Pataki said. “Sometimes, those who I fear have that antigovernment view, as opposed to the limited-government view, rise to the center of the nominating process. I think that is not a good thing for the Republican Party.” [MORE]

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CHART: How Ending The High End Bush Tax Cuts Saves Nearly $1 Trillion

CHART: How Ending The High End Bush Tax Cuts Saves Nearly $1 Trillion | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it
President Obama has promised to end the Bush tax cuts on income in excess of $250,000 when they expire at the end of the year, with his aides saying that he is “100 percent committed” to preventing another extension.
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So, Mitt, what do you really believe?

So, Mitt, what do you really believe? | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

The Economist | Editorial


WHEN Mitt Romney was governor of liberal Massachusetts, he supported abortion, gun control, tackling climate change and a requirement that everyone should buy health insurance, backed up with generous subsidies for those who could not afford it. Now, as he prepares to fly to Tampa to accept the Republican Party’s nomination for president on August 30th, he opposes all those things. A year ago he favoured keeping income taxes at their current levels; now he wants to slash them for everybody, with the rate falling from 35% to 28% for the richest Americans.


All politicians flip-flop from time to time; but Mr Romney could win an Olympic medal in it (see article). And that is a pity, because this newspaper finds much to like in the history of this uncharismatic but dogged man, from his obvious business acumen to the way he worked across the political aisle as governor to get health reform passed and the state budget deficit down. We share many of his views about the excessive growth of regulation and of the state in general in America, and the effect that this has on investment, productivity and growth. After four years of soaring oratory and intermittent reforms, why not bring in a more businesslike figure who might start fixing the problems with America’s finances?


Details, details

But competence is worthless without direction and, frankly, character. Would that Candidate Romney had indeed presented himself as a solid chief executive who got things done. Instead he has appeared as a fawning PR man, apparently willing to do or say just about anything to get elected. In some areas, notably social policy and foreign affairs, the result is that he is now committed to needlessly extreme or dangerous courses that he may not actually believe in but will find hard to drop; in others, especially to do with the economy, the lack of details means that some attractive-sounding headline policies prove meaningless (and possibly dangerous) on closer inspection. Behind all this sits the worrying idea of a man who does not really know his own mind. America won’t vote for that man; nor would this newspaper. The convention offers Mr Romney his best chance to say what he really believes.


There are some areas where Mr Romney has shuffled to the right unnecessarily. In America’s culture wars he has followed the Republican trend of adopting ever more socially conservative positions. He says he will appoint anti-abortion justices to the Supreme Court and back the existing federal Defence of Marriage Act (DOMA). This goes down well with southern evangelicals, less so with independent voters: witness the furore over one (rapidly disowned) Republican’s ludicrous remarks about abortion and “legitimate rape” (see article). But the powers of the federal government are limited in this area; DOMA has not stopped a few states introducing gay marriage and many more recognising gay civil partnerships. [MORE]

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Former Gov. Charlie Crist: Here's why I'm backing Barack Obama

Former Gov. Charlie Crist: Here's why I'm backing Barack Obama | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by former the former Republican Governor of Florida CHARLIE CRIST, written for the Tampa Bay Times


I’ve studied, admired and gotten to know a lot of leaders in my life. Across Florida, in Washington and around the country, I've watched the failure of those who favor extreme rhetoric over sensible compromise, and I've seen how those who never lose sight of solutions sow the greatest successes.


As America prepares to pick our president for the next four years — and as Florida prepares once again to play a decisive role — I'm confident that President Barack Obama is the right leader for our state and the nation. I applaud and share his vision of a future built by a strong and confident middle class in an economy that gives us the opportunity to reap prosperity through hard work and personal responsibility. It is a vision of the future proven right by our history.


We often remind ourselves to learn the lessons of the past, lest we risk repeating its mistakes. Yet nearly as often, our short-term memory fails us. Many have already forgotten how deep and daunting our shared crisis was in the winter of 2009, as President Obama was inaugurated. It was no ordinary challenge, and the president served as the nation's calm through a historically turbulent storm.


The president's response was swift, smart and farsighted. He kept his compass pointed due north and relentlessly focused on saving jobs, creating more and helping the many who felt trapped beneath the house of cards that had collapsed upon them.


He knew we had to get people back to work as quickly as possible — but he also knew that the value of a recovery lies in its durability. Short-term healing had to be paired with an economy that would stay healthy over the long run. And he knew that happens best by investing in the right places.


President Obama invested in our children's schools because he believes a good education is a necessity, not a luxury, if we're going to create an economy built to last. He supported more than 400,000 K-12 teachers' jobs, and he is making college more affordable and making student loans, like the ones he took out, easier to pay back.

[MORE]

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Deb's comment, August 26, 2012 1:01 PM
Thanks Gov. Took a lot of guts to say that. You just moved up several more notches in my book.
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GOP Senate Candidate Suggests The Voting Rights Act Of 1965 Should Be Overturned

GOP Senate Candidate Suggests The Voting Rights Act Of 1965 Should Be Overturned | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by JUDD LEGUM, Think Progress


Rep. Todd Akin, the GOP’s candidate for U.S. Senate in Missouri, suggested in an interview that it was time to “look at or overturn” the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Asked directly if seminal federal civil rights legislation that prohibits discriminatory voting proceedures needed to be modified or scrapped, Akin said that states — not the federal government — should set voting rules. According to Akin, elections “have historically always been a state thing” and that’s a “good principle.”


Here’s how Fox 2 previewed the story on Twitter: "Todd Akin: Federal Voting Right Laws Oudated bit.ly/NO75LU #Fox2Now #STL


The Voting Rights Act of 1965 prohibits the states from implementing voting procedures that “discriminate on the basis of race, color or membership in a language minority group.” The law built on the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which “prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin in programs and activities receiving federal financial assistance.”


Akin has a reputation for extreme views on a variety of topics.


Fox 2 is scheduled to release more of their interview with Akin on Sunday. [MORE, including video]



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Theodore Roosevelt Progressive Covenant with the People 1912

The second half of the speech is an excerpt from "A Confession of Faith," an address originally delivered to the national convention of the Progressive party in Chicago on August 6, 1912.

 

Transcription of Speech:

 

Political parties exist to secure responsible government and to execute the will of the people. From these great staffs, both of the old parties have ganged aside. Instead of instruments to promote the general welfare they have become the tools of corrupt interests which use them in martialling [sic] to serve their selfish purposes. Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to befoul the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics is the first task of the statesmanship of the day. Unhampered by tradition, uncorrupted by power, undismayed by the magnitude of the task, the new party offers itself as the instrument of the people, to sweep away old abuses, to build a new and nobler government. This declaration is our covenant with the people and we hereby bind the party and its candidates with this [signation?] to the pledges made there herein. With all my heart and soul, with every particle of high purpose that is within me, I pledge you my word to do everything I can to put every particle of courage, of common sense, and of strength that I have at your disposal, and to endeavor so far as strength has given me to live up to the obligations you have put upon me and to endeavor to carry out in the interest of our whole people the policies to which you have today solemnly dedicated yourselves in the name of the millions of men and women for whom you speak.

 

Surely there never was a fight better worth making than the one in which we are in. It little matters what befalls any one of us who for the time being stands in the forefront of the battle. I hope we shall win, and I believe that if we can wake the people to what the fight really means we shall win. But, win or lose, we shall not falter. Whatever fate may at the moment overtake any of us, the movement itself will not stop. Our cause is based on the eternal principles of righteousness; even though we who now lead may for the time fail, in the end the cause itself shall triumph. Six weeks ago, here in Chicago, I spoke to the honest representatives of a convention which was not dominated by honest men; a convention wherein sat, alas! a majority of men who, with sneering indifference to every principle of right, so acted as to bring to a shameful end a party which had been founded over half a century ago by men in whose souls burned the fire of lofty endeavor. Now to you men, who, in your turn, have come together to spend and be spent in the endless crusade against wrong, to you who face the future resolute and confident, to you who strive in a spirit of brotherhood for the betterment of our nation, to you who gird yourselves for this great new fight in the never-ending warfare for the good of humankind, I say in closing what in that speech I said in closing: we stand at Armageddon, and we battle for the Lord.

 

Transcription from the Library of Congress.

http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/troosevelt_film/trfpcp.html#page_content

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Poll Uncovers GOP's Strongly Negative Views Of Muslims

Poll Uncovers GOP's Strongly Negative Views Of Muslims | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by Nick Wing, Huffington Post

 

Anti-Muslim and anti-Arab views are pervasive among members of the Republican Party, a new poll released this week suggests.

 

According to a survey on views toward various religions commissioned by the Arab American Institute, Republican sentiment toward Muslims produced the highest negative results, with 57 percent of respondents saying they had unfavorable opinions. Only 26 percent said they had favorable opinions. Republicans gave Muslim-Americans slightly higher marks, responding 47 percent unfavorably and 35 percent favorably. Though not gauging a direct religious following, the results were similar on questions regarding Arabs, who received 53 percent unfavorable to 27 percent favorable responses, as well as Arab-Americans, who received 48 percent unfavorable to 33 percent favorable responses.

 

Respondents on the other side of the aisle also provided less-negative responses toward Muslims. Among Democrats, 29 percent gave unfavorable responses, though 49 percent responded favorably.

 

Mormons received the highest negative ratings from Democrats, with 35 percent saying they viewed them unfavorably, and 45 percent responding favorably. Overall, Democrats gave net positive responses to all religions. Republicans delivered net negatives to Muslims, Muslim-Americans, Arabs and Arab-Americans, while also showing a tendency to give followers of other non-Western religions, such as Buddhists and Hindus, high unfavorable responses. [MORE]

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Reagan-appointed judge: Deregulation advocates made a fundamental mistake | The Raw Story

Reagan-appointed judge: Deregulation advocates made a fundamental mistake | The Raw Story | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

By Eric Dolan, The Raw Story


Richard Posner, a well-respected federal judge, said Thursday on Current TV that he no longer believed the financial industry should not be regulated.


“I was an advocate of the deregulation movement and I made — along with other, a lot of smarter people — made a fundamental mistake, which is that deregulation works fine in industries which do not pervade the economy in their consequences,” he said. “The financial industry undergirds the entire economy and if it is made riskier by deregulation and collapses and widespread bankrupties the entire economy freezes because it runs on credit.”


Posner, who was appointed to the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals by President Ronald Reagan, is associated with the conservative Chicago School of economics.


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Republican Platform Takes Turn to Right

Republican Platform Takes Turn to Right | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

Republicans in Tampa, Fla., adopted a platform more conservative than that passed at the start of the Reagan era.


Excerpt from article by MICHAEL COOPER, New York Times


The new platform — with its call to reshape Medicare to give fixed amounts of money to future beneficiaries so they can buy their own coverage, its tough stance on illegal immigration and its many calls to shrink the size and scope of government — shows just how far rightward the party has shifted in both tone and substance in the decades since it adopted the 1980 platform, which was considered a triumph for conservatives at the time.


Subtitled “We Believe in America,” the platform keeps its focus on the party’s traditional support for low taxes, national security and social conservatism. And it delves into a number of politically charged issues. It calls state court decisions recognizing same-sex marriage “an assault on the foundations of our society,” opposes gun legislation that would limit “the capacity of clips or magazines,” supports the “public display of the Ten Commandments,” calls on the federal government to drop its lawsuits challenging state laws adopted to combat illegal immigration, and salutes the Republican governors and lawmakers who “saved their states from fiscal disaster by reforming their laws governing public employee unions.”


Several prominent conservatives and conservative groups praised the new platform. FreedomWorks, an advocacy group associated with the Tea Party movement, applauded the Republican Party for adopting much of what it called “the Tea Party’s ‘Freedom Platform.’ ” Phyllis Schlafly, a longtime conservative icon, wrote in The Washington Times that this year’s Republican platform “may be the best one ever adopted.” And the platform’s gun-rights section — which included the party’s support for “the fundamental right to self-defense wherever a law-abiding citizen has a legal right to be” — drew strong praise from the National Rifle Association.


David Keene, president of the association, said on the group’s Web site that “the 2008 platform of the Republican Party was perhaps the most gun-friendly platform that any party had ever adopted, and I’m happy to be able to report that this year’s Republican platform is even stronger in terms of dedicating a major party to the protection of the Second Amendment.”


This year’s Republican platform contains several planks that were sought by supporters of Representative Ron Paul of Texas, whose insurgent Republican presidential campaign energized a new generation of libertarians. It calls for an annual audit of the Federal Reserve, and for forming a commission to “investigate possible ways to set a fixed value for the dollar” along the lines of a commission that was established three decades ago to study — and wound up opposing — a return to the gold standard.


The proposal to reshape Medicare, as Mr. Romney and his running mate, Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, have proposed, is now enshrined in the party platform.


Their plan would change the program for those under 55 so that they would receive a fixed amount of money to purchase health coverage from private insurers, or a traditional Medicare plan. “While retaining the option of traditional Medicare in competition with private plans, we call for a transition to a premium-support model for Medicare, with an income-adjusted contribution toward a health plan of the enrollee’s choice,” that platform states.


The platform also suggests raising the age at which people can receive Medicare. “Without disadvantaging retirees or those nearing retirement, the age eligibility for Medicare must be made more realistic in terms of today’s longer life span,” it says. [MORE]

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Where is today’s Teddy Roosevelt?

Where is today’s Teddy Roosevelt? | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

"What America feared above all was the growing concentration of wealth and political power. A Republican alliance with big business had flooded election campaigns with torrents of money, and it threatened to reduce — if not eliminate — whatever influence ordinary Americans had with their elected officials. Wall Street and the oil industry wielded outsize power and received commensurate criticism."

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U.S. announces tough new 54.5-mpg CAFE standard for vehicle fuel economy

U.S. announces tough new 54.5-mpg CAFE standard for vehicle fuel economy | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it
The Obama administration ushered in a new era of fuel efficiency standards today by announcing aggressive new regulations that will nearly double fuel economy by 2025 to 54.5 miles per gallon.


The Obama administration says the new standards will spur economic growth and create high-quality domestic jobs in cutting edge industries across America.

“This is truly a watershed moment,” Michelle Robinson, director of Union of Concerned Scientists Clean Vehicles program said in a statement. “These standards will protect consumers from high gas prices, curb global warming pollution, cut our oil use, and create new jobs in the American auto industry and around the nation.”

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What is a Living Wage?

What is a Living Wage? | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by Theresa Riley, BillMoyers.com


Just last month, the federal minimum wage — currently at $7.25 an hour — celebrated its three-year anniversary. At that rate, a security guard, retail store clerk or nanny working full-time for minimum wage makes just $15,080 a year. That’s barely above the poverty line for a single person ($11,344) and far below it for a family of four ($22,314).


In this week’s episode, Sister Simone Campbell talks about our poverty crisis and her belief that we need to replace minimum wages with “living wages.” Sister Simone is not alone in advocating for the living wage concept. Economist Robert Pollin wrote his book, The Living Wage: Building a Fair Economy, in 2000. It chronicled the living wage campaigns that swept the country in the 1990s. At the time journalist Robert Kuttner, co-editor of The American Prospect , noted in a back-of-the-book blurb that “The living wage campaign is the most interesting (and under-reported) grassroots enterprise to emerge since the civil rights movement.” [MORE]

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SQUANDERING THE HISPANIC VOTE: AN OPEN LETTER TO THE GOP

SQUANDERING THE HISPANIC VOTE: AN OPEN LETTER TO THE GOP | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

By Jorge Ramos


So, Republicans, you are going to lose the Hispanic vote this year, and you have done everything in your power to bring about that outcome. Now the question is: How are you going to avoid losing the White House for generations?


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80-year study: Democrats better at economics | WashingtonExaminer.com

80-year study: Democrats better at economics | WashingtonExaminer.com | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

by Paul Bedard, The Examiner


When it comes to which party is better for the economy, Republicans talk the talk, but it's Democrats who deliver the goods according to an unusual 80-year study of the impact presidents have on growth, personal wealth, the stock market and even 401ks.


The bottom line, according to Bulls, Bears and the Ballot Box: Of the five best economic presidents since Herbert Hoover, only one is a Republican. The paydirt finding: $100,000 invested during the 40 years Republicans had the White House would be worth $126,027. The same amount invested in the stock market during the Democrat's 40 years would be $3,912,210.


"Our book is a myth buster," said financial planner Bob Deitrick who co-authored Bulls, Bears with CPA and educator Lew Goldfarb.


Goldfarb blamed the conventional wisdom that Republican presidents are better economic managers on the inability of Democrats to tell their story. "Democrats stand on their message so poorly," he said. "Republicans, on the other hand, win the salesmanship merit badge every single year."


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U.S. election: Ron Paul stripped of delegates on eve of Republican convention

U.S. election: Ron Paul stripped of delegates on eve of Republican convention | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

Last-minute manoeuvring by Mitt Romney’s legal team ensures Romney holds the only hand going in to this week’s Republican National Convention.


by MITCH POTTER, The Star


He was the last wild card left in the Republican deck. But now Ron Paul too has been deftly played, ensuring Mitt Romney holds the only hand going in to this week’s Republican National Convention.


Up until Friday, Paul’s young and wildly committed supporters held out hope of mounting a coup on the convention floor in Tampa, or at least raising the flag noisily for their 77-year-old candidate.


But last-minute manoeuvring by Mitt Romney’s legal team stripped Paul of a trove of delegates, leaving many of Paul’s libertarian-leaning supporters all dressed up with nowhere to go.


Instead Paul will end his third and likely final run for the presidency with what amounts to a political whimper: a “video tribute” to the former obstetrician and longtime Texas congressman will play on the convention floor.


However, Paul himself will not be trusted to speak. Though an invitation was proffered, it came with rigid conditions — Paul’s words would be vetted by Team Romney and include a full-throated endorsement. Ron Paul said no.


“It wouldn’t be my speech,” Paul told the New York Times. “That would undo everything I’ve done for the last 30 years. I don’t fully endorse him for president.”


It’s all adds up to a bitter pill for his true believers, several thousand of whom gathered Saturday at the Florida State Fairgrounds for an event billed as the Paul Festival. [MORE]


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Misinformed USA: Why average Americans vote for Republicans

Misinformed USA: Why average Americans vote for Republicans | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it

BY: ROBERT SOBEL, examiner.com


One can only wonder why average working class Americans would vote for a party that is so obvious in their bias towards the wealthy. It would make sense that someone in the top 1% of the income bracket would vote for the Republican party since they have the wealthiest American's best interest at heart. You could even make the case that highly religious Christians would vote for Republicans even though, at times, they vote against their own best economic interests. So the question remains, while scratching your head, why do working class Americans vote for Republican candidates?


I recently sat down and spoke with an acquaintance of mine, trying to get a grip on what people are thinking about the future of our country. He said he will vote for Mitt Romney because, "we need a business person to get our debt down." I asked where he got his news, and after trying to deflect from the question, the answer finally came. "I don't pay attention too much, but when I do, I watch Fox." Fox News is the primary source for information for millions of Americans across the country and that's where the problem starts.


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Theodore Roosevelt Speech - Social and Industrial Justice

This speech contains excerpts from "A Confession of Faith," an address originally delivered to the national convention of the Progressive party in Chicago on August 6, 1912.

 

Transcription: 

 

Our prime concern is that in dealing with the fundamental law of the land, in assuming finally to interpret it, and therefore finally to make it, the acts of the courts should be subject to and not above the final control of the people as a whole. I deny that the American people have surrendered to any set of men, no matter what their position or their character, the final right to determine those fundamental questions upon which free self-government ultimately depends.

 

The people themselves must be the ultimate makers of their own Constitution, and where their agents differ in their interpretations of the Constitution the people themselves should be given the chance, after full and deliberate judgment, authoritatively to settle what interpretation it is that their representatives shall thereafter adopt as binding.


We do not question the general honesty of the courts. But in applying to present-day social conditions the general prohibitions that were intended originally as safeguards to the citizen against the arbitrary power of government in the hands of caste and privilege, these prohibitions have been turned by the courts from safeguards against political and social privilege into barriers against political and social justice and advancement.


Our purpose is not to impugn the courts, but to emancipate them from a position where they stand in the way of social justice; and to emancipate the people, in an orderly way, from the iniquity of enforced submission to a doctrine which would turn constitutional provisions which were intended to favor social justice and advancement into prohibitions against such justice and advancement.


In the last twenty years an increasing percentage of our people have come to depend on industry for their livelihood, so that today the wage-workers in industry rank in importance side by side with the tillers of the soil. As a people we cannot afford to let any group of citizens or any individual citizen live or labor under conditions which are injurious to the common welfare. Industry, therefore, must submit to such public regulation as will make it a means of life and health, not of death or inefficiency. We must protect the crushable elements at the base of our present industrial structure.


We stand for a living wage. Wages are subnormal if they fail to provide a living for those who devote their time and energy to industrial occupations. The monetary equivalent of a living wage varies according to local conditions, but must include enough to secure the elements of a normal standard of living--a standard high enough to make morality possible, to provide for education and recreation, to care for immature members of the family, to maintain the family during periods of sickness, and to permit a reasonable saving for old age.


Hours are excessive if they fail to afford the worker sufficient time to recuperate and return to his work thoroughly refreshed. We hold that the night labor of women and children is abnormal and should be prohibited; we hold that the employment of women over forty-eight hours per week is abnormal and should be prohibited. We hold that the seven-day working week is abnormal, and we hold that one day of rest in seven should be provided by law. We hold that the continuous industries, operating twenty-four hours out of twenty-four, are abnormal, and where, because of public necessity or for technical reasons (such as molten metal), the twenty-four hours must be divided into two shifts of twelve hours or three shifts of eight, they should by law be divided into three of eight.

 

 

Transcription from the Library of Congress:http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/troosevelt_film/trfpcp.html#page_content

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lexi shea's curator insight, February 11, 2015 2:03 PM

a speech he gave

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Video: Lost Decade of the Middle Class

Video:  Lost Decade of the Middle Class | Coffee Party News | Scoop.it
Since 2000, the middle class has shrunk in size, fallen backward in income and wealth and shed some — but by no means all– of its characteristic faith in the future. Our new report explores how middle-class Americans view themselves, as well as their outlook on the future and on the presidential candidates who are courting their votes.

 

This video provides a summary of findings about the middle class.

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Theodore Roosevelt The Right of the People to Rule Speech

This speech contains excerpts from "The Right of People to Rule," an address originally delivered at Carnegie Hall, New York City, on March 20, 1912.

 

Transcription of Speech:

 

The great fundamental issue now before our people can be stated briefly. It is, are the American people fit to govern themselves, to rule themselves, to control themselves? I believe they are. My opponents do not. I believe in the right of the people to rule. I believe that the majority of the plain people of the United States will, day in and day out, make fewer mistakes in governing themselves than any smaller class or body of men, no matter what their training, will make in trying to govern them. I believe, again, that the American people are, as a whole, capable of self-control, and of learning by their mistakes. Our opponents pay lip-loyalty to this doctrine; but they show their real beliefs by the way in which they champion every device to make the nominal rule of the people a sham.

 

I am not leading this fight as a matter of aesthetic pleasure. I am leading because somebody must lead, or else the fight would not be made at all. I prefer to work with moderate, with rational, conservatives, provided only that they do in good faith strive forward toward the light. But when they halt and turn their backs to the light, and sit with the scorners on the seats of reaction, then I must part company with them. We the people cannot turn back. Our aim must be steady, wise progress.

 

It would be well if our people would study the history of a sister republic. All the woes of France for a century and a quarter have been due to the folly of her people in splitting into the two camps of unreasonable conservatism and unreasonable radicalism. Had pre-Revolutionary France listened to men like Turgot, and backed them up, all would have gone well. But the beneficiaries of privilege, the Bourbon reactionaries, the shortsighted ultra-conservatives, turned down Turgot; and then found that instead of him they had obtained Robespierre. They gained twenty years' freedom from all restraint and reform, at the cost of the whirlwind of the red terror; and in their turn the unbridled extremists of the terror induced a blind reaction; and so, with convulsion and oscillation from one extreme to another, with alternations of violent radicalism and violent Bourbonism, the French people went through misery toward a shattered goal. May we profit by the experiences of our brother republicans across the water, and go forward steadily, avoiding all wild extremes; and may our ultra-conservatives remember that the rule of the Bourbons brought on the Revolution, and may our would-be revolutionaries remember that no Bourbon was ever such a dangerous enemy of the people and of freedom as the professed friend of both, Robespierre.

 

There is no danger of a revolution in this country; but there is grave discontent and unrest, and in order to remove them there is need of all the wisdom and probity and deep-seated faith in and purpose to uplift humanity we have at our command. Friends, our task as Americans is to strive for social and industrial justice, achieved through the genuine rule of the people. This is our end, our purpose. The methods for achieving the end are merely expedients, to be finally accepted or rejected according as actual experience shows that they work well or ill. But in our hearts we must have this lofty purpose, and we must strive for it in all earnestness and sincerity, or our work will come to nothing. In order to succeed we need leaders of inspired idealism, leaders to whom are granted great visions, who dream greatly and strive to make their dreams come true; who can kindle the people with the fire from their own burning souls. The leader for the time being, whoever he may be, is but an instrument, to be used until broken and then to be cast aside; and if he is worth his salt he will care no more when he is broken than a soldier cares when he is sent where his life is forfeit in order that the victory may be won. In the long fight for righteousness the watchword for all of us is spend and be spent.

 

Transcription from the Library of Congress. 

http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/troosevelt_film/trfpcp.html#page_content

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