The Best and the Worst

As we enter a shiny New Year, let us not forget the charms of the one that’s passing. 2010 was a memorable year. Economic depression, massive job losses, riots around the world, scandals, disasters, epic crimes and conspiracies. To top it all off, we enjoyed one of the most raucous, hilarious, unpredictable election campaigns in recent memory.

Before 2010 fades into history, I’d like to take a moment to revisit that election. Who can forget the demon sheep? Bring a chicken to the doctor? I’m not a witch?

Not all the entertainment came from Republicans and Teapers (though they were certainly wonderful.) We also had Joe Manchin shooting “Cap and Trade” right out of the sky…BANG!

But Manchin was immediately outclassed by Republican Pamela Gorman shooting everything…BANG BANG BANG BANG BANG!

Republicans gave us other matchless moments, like this guy with a “masters’ degree in communication.”

So, just for auld lang syne, and in memory of a truly marvellous election season, I’d like to solicit your nominees in four categories. During the 2010 mid-term campaign, what do you think was the:

  • Most damaging gaffe
  • Worst candidate
  • Best-run campaign
  • Best campaign commercial

If you want to create other categories in the comments section, feel free. It was a rich election. There’s lots of material.

My personal choices…the most damaging gaffe was Conway bringing up Rand Paul’s “Aqua Buddha” episode late in the campaign. This allowed Paul to smack his opponent down during the debate and look strong, manly, deeply wounded and righteously indignant. Voters love that.

Carl Paladino

Senator Harry Reid

Worst candidate…Carl Paladino, who was petty, malevolent and stupid on a truly colossal scale.

Best-run campaign…Harry Reid. He not only should never have won, it shouldn’t even have been close…but he got 50% of the vote. From negative ads to media handling to GOTV, it was a masterful performance. Future poli-sci courses will be taught on the 2010 Reid campaign.

Best commercial…Meg Whitman channels Arnold Schwarzenegger. Fantastic concept, masterful editing. I stand in awe.


About filistro

Filistro is a Canadian writer and prairie dog who maintains burrows on both sides of the 49th parallel. Like all prairie dogs, she is keenly interested in politics and language. (Prairie dogs have been known to build organized towns the size of Maryland, and are the only furry mammal with a documented language.)
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123 Responses to The Best and the Worst

  1. GROG says:

    A politician’s greatest asset is sincerity. If they can fake that, they’ve got it made.

  2. Bart DePalma says:

    The best campaign commercial bar none was Dale Peterson for Alabama Ag Commissioner:

  3. filistro says:

    LOL GROG…we should put that up in the quote corner.

    So who’s best at faking sincerity?

    Gotta be Bill Clinton.

  4. dcpetterson says:

    What the Meg Schwarzenegger commercial teaches us is how much of our politics is sound bites and talking points. Jon Stewart does a great job of displaying this. He’ll often take the Phrase of the Day and show it coming out of the mouths of (usually Republican) politicians and (usually FOX) “News” reporters.

    When canned phrases substitute for substantive debate, campaigns become meaningless, nothing but advertising jingles. Voters don’t actually express their preferences for policy, rather preferences for this catchphrase over that one — catchphrases which all too often have nothing to do with the underlying policy positions the candidate / corporate product will enact once elected.

    Who doesn’t want a “balanced budget” through “lower taxes” and “limited government?” How many voters know what these things would actually mean if implemented? Knowing what they do mean, you’ll notice no politicians have been stupid enough to actually explain how to carry out these slogans, much less propose legislation to actually accomplish it. Which is proof enough that campaign slogans such as these are meaningless noise, intended to stir emotion and accomplish nothing other than electoral wins.

    Politicians should face stiff penalties (including jail time) for repeating talking points rather than actually talking. I’m not serious about that — but are there any other suggestions?

  5. filistro says:

    @DC… I’m not serious about that — but are there any other suggestions?

    Good question. As it stands, political campaigns tell us nothing but who is best able to project (as GROG points out) “fake sincerity”… or to successfully smear their opponent.

    If Americans were really serious about politics they would outlaw the 30-second TV spot. Now that we have this enormously varied and ubiquitous media platform, there’s no reason campaigns couldn’t be a lot more substantive. We’d all know more about what we’re getting in a politician if there were more unscripted, less rigidly controlled debates and virtual town halls, with the public able to ask questions via twitter, call-in, whatever.

    In that kind of climate, lightweights like Sarah Palin wouldn’t get past the organizing stage, and parties would be a lot more careful about who they selected in their primaries.

  6. dcpetterson says:

    @filistro

    Gotta be Bill Clinton.

    “I feel your pain.”

    Say what you want about the Big Dog, the man’s got game. I don’t think the last half of the twentieth century saw a more brilliant politician. I believe he was the only president since Roosevelt who left office more popular than when he was first elected — and this, despite (or maybe because of) being impeached and having been embroiled in a sex scandal.

    Universally despised by Republicans, he still draws immense crowds, and has enough charisma to move continents. I recall hearing one FOX News reporter, in a candid moment, admitting that when she first met Bill, all she could think was how much she wanted to have his baby. And it doesn’t seem to matter how much he ages — he’s the Mick Jagger of American politics.

  7. filistro says:

    DC… and if there were real, actual campaigns where politicians had to debate freely, take unscripted questions from the public, have a command of policy and think on their feet… Bill Clinton would still blow everybody else right out of the water.

  8. Bart DePalma says:

    A Clinton “fake sincerity” admiration society? Wonderful.

    We conservatives simply call such folks liars and perjurers. Must be our lack of empathy.

  9. dcpetterson says:

    Must be our lack of empathy.

    … and overabundance of meaningless talking points.

  10. filistro says:

    We conservatives simply call such folks liars and perjurers.

    On second thought, maybe we should add another category for Republican sex scandals over the past year. There are so many it’s hard to think of all of them but if we make a concerted effort…

    I’ll start with the C-Street boardinghouse in DC, where evangelical Christian Republican lawmakers and pols live together for purposes of Bible study, communal prayer and adultery. That one dwelling gave us John Ensign, whose parents paid off his best friend (and campaign worker) in apology for Ensign boinking the guy’s wife, Chip Pickering whose wife obtained a divorce on grounds the congressman was having adulterous sex with another woman inside the very walls of C-Street, and Mark Sanford of Appalachian Trail fame, who sought the help of the more experienced roomie John Ensign to deal with his own paramour problems.

    And that was just ONE HOUSE. Who else has an example of Elephants Behaving Badly in the last year?

  11. filistro says:

    Mark Souder (R,Indiana), resigns May 18, 2010:

    “It is with great regret I announce that I am resigning from the U.S. House of Representatives as well as resigning as the Republican nominee for Congress in this fall’s election . I sinned against my God, my wife and my family by having a mutual relationship with a part time member of my staff. I am so shamed to have hurt those I love.”

  12. filistro says:

    State Sen. Roy Ashburn (R-Bakersfield)
    March 03, 2010

    “Ashburn is a “Traditional Family Values” conservative who has made a lot of headway organizing anti-gay marriage rallies. He was recently stopped by the Sacramento Police and given a DUI after leaving…you know it…a gay bar. A couple days later, the true extent of his homophobic hypocrisy was revealed when he admitted he was gay.”

  13. Number Seven says:

    Let’s not forget the ‘Ground Zero’ mosque that was not really a mosque and not really at Ground Zero. After all, we could not allow the sacred ground of an old Burlington Northern building be tarnished.

  14. Bart DePalma says:

    Fili:

    What does Clinton’s or your GOP examples of affairs have to do with Clinton’s lying which you so admire?

    Souder did the right thing by resigning in disgrace even though he was not guilty of felony crimes as was Clinton.

  15. shortchain says:

    The Bart methodology: although Clinton was never accused of anything but the ‘crime” (singular) of lying under oath about having an affair, and he was never convicted of that, it’s now “crimes” (plural).

    This is called, I believe, “begging the question”.

    By the way, I’m thinking that conservatives, as a whole, are ill-served for a spokesperson by someone who can’t make two comments without committing a logical error.

  16. shiloh says:

    Bartles, after being humiliated in the U.N. Takeover thread, you’re back for more ~ go love ‘ya!

    Bart is like a persistent Marine ie there is no percentage in quitting, although he keeps missing his target, so he’d be dead rather quickly in the field of battle.

    >

    hmm, campaign commercials ~ breaking … the mid -term is over and yes Bart, your teabaggers still grasped defeat from the Jaws of Victory! in many, many elections as Bart’s Colorado stayed Blue in the best political climate Reps will ever have, eh.

    And Obama is still president! 😀

    And yes, talking points can be fun …

  17. Bart DePalma says:

    shortchain says: The Bart methodology: although Clinton was never accused of anything but the ‘crime” (singular) of lying under oath about having an affair, and he was never convicted of that, it’s now “crimes” (plural).

    Clinton lied under oath to a civil court and then lied under oath to a criminal grand jury, while withholding evidence. This amounts to two counts of felony perjury, at least one count of obstruction of justice and at least one count of conspiracy.

    There is little doubt that Clinton lied or that the lies were material to the judicial action – the civil judge ruled against Clinton on the relevance issue of his history of sexual relationships with subordinates and the criminal grand jury was called specifically to investigate the first perjury.

    If Clinton were not President and his jury was not a divided Senate, the man would have done prison time.

  18. Bart DePalma says:

    shortchain:

    If you doubt that Clinton would have done prison time, see Martha Stewart’s stint in the pokey for doing far, far less.

  19. shortchain says:

    Bart,

    I decline to participate further in your attempted thread hijacking. Old arguments, chewed and spat out, do not convince.

  20. shiloh says:

    apologies to Marines as not only is Bart obsessed w/Obama, but Bill Clinton as well.

    If ifs and buts were candy and nuts, we’d all have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! ~ except Bart …

  21. shiloh says:

    A politician’s greatest asset is sincerity. If they can fake that, they’ve got it made.

    Totally not true as $$$/political climate determine elections … voters, as a rule, already take into account politicians insincerity ~ a given, and proceed accordingly. Except of course true believers, aka uneducated lemmings.

  22. dcpetterson says:

    @filistro :

    The amazing thing is that all those Republican sex scandals were so recent.

    Did you leave out Michael Steele and the thousands of dollars spent at the lesbian bondage theme park?

  23. shortchain says:

    Let’s note that we learned, in the last year, that George W. Bush and Dick Cheney committed crimes, not for sexual peccadilloes, and not only against US law but against humanity, as proven by their own public statements. Yet they remain un-charged.

  24. dcpetterson says:

    @shortchain
    By the way, I’m thinking that conservatives, as a whole, are ill-served for a spokesperson by someone who can’t make two comments without committing a logical error.

    I have to agree with you. Oh, for a rational conservative, able to maintain a consistent and coherent position without resorting either to 1) empty talking points (“Taxes Iz Bad!”), or 2) glaringly obvious internal contradictions (“Lowering taxes will increase revenue!”), or 3) mindless name-calling (“Obamacare!”), or 4) fantasy history (“Obama turned hard left after being elected!”).

    I assume there are conservatives who don’t have to resort to such mindless propaganda. It’s a shame there are apparently so few of them.

  25. shiloh says:

    Yet they remain un-charged.

    Indeed, Obama was born under a lucky star but, but, but Bush43 is light years ahead of him in the lucky star er silver spoon dept. lol ~ Like Lt. Col. Kilgore er Robert Duvall in Apocalypse Now! Bush could sand in the middle of a cross-fire attack and not get touched!

    I love the smell of napalm in the morning. ~ Smelled like … victory.

  26. Mule Rider says:

    Please don’t confuse Bart DePalma with an intelligent and/or reasonable conservative…

    …while there is assuredly some overlap in his and my own core belief structure, he very rarely, if ever, is speaking on my behalf with his hollow diatribes.

  27. dcpetterson says:

    Mule, thanks for the reassurance.

  28. Mule Rider says:

    Most damaging gaffe – Tough to call as there were so many; Joe Miller’s “handcuffing” incident comes to mind, as does Alan Grayson’s scurrilous ‘Taliban Dan’ ads; almost anything Christine O’Donnell said, but she wasn’t going to win anyway, so it was hardly “damaging”; the funniest gaffe (but not damaging) goes to Big Mouth Biden with his “this is a big f****ng deal” after health care passed.
    Worst candidate – Christine O’Donnell, although it’s hard to argue against Paladino who was mentioned above (honorable mention goes to Alan Grayson who, while he may have the “qualifications” and leadership acumen to be in Congress, is so consumed with incendiary and hate-filled rhetoric that he has no business being anywhere near elected office)
    Best-run campaign – Lisa Murkowski; storming back with a successful write-in campaign that ultimately turned into a rout is hard to ignore (bonus points for her giving both Rs and Ds something to cheer about; one side saying “At least she’s not Joe Miller” and the other saying “Hey, she’s still a Republican, at heart”)
    Best campaign commercial – N/A; I really try and avoid campaign commercials and forget the ones I do see.

  29. filistro says:

    Since we’re talking about “bests” and “worsts”… this might be one of the Best Things I’ve seen this year.

    It’s a website that allows the wealthy to calculate what their savings are under the Bush tax cuts, and if they wish, to pledge the difference to a selected charity.

  30. filistro says:

    OOOH Muley… good list!

    Since you mention Lisa Murkowsi, she also had a great commercial.. the one where little kids at a spelling bee had to spell her name, which allowed all of Alaska to hear the proper spelling OVER AND OVER AND OVER before they had to write it in on election day.

    Very smart, very creative.

    Note to the rest of you… Why was Muley the only one to submit a list?

    Oh yeah, I forgot… Bart hijacked the whole thread. AGAIN. Never mind 🙂

  31. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Worst gaffe – Sue “Pay the Doc with a chicken” Lowden
    Worst candidate – Tie: Paladino and Chrissy O
    Best Run Campaign – Murkowski – besides she became only the 2nd write-in Senator after Strom.
    Best Commercial – Brown Commercial of Meg talking about how she moved to CA 30 years ago because the state was so great . . . while Brown was governor then!

  32. filistro says:

    News quiz from Pew Research.

    There are 12 questions. One-third of the people responding got 3 or fewer answers right. (I got all but the last two.)

  33. shiloh says:

    10/12

    Missed 1) Federal budget deficit comparison and 7) national inflation rate

    Generally, which political party was regarded as doing best in the midterm elections? … What midterm ~ all midterms ?!? short term/long term ?!? 😉

    >

    Re: thread subject ~ Best political comeback from the brink/Best performance in the lame duck session? ~ Harry Reid !!!

    Best (538) 2010 Waaaahhhh! :::sniffle::: Waaaahhhh! winger whiner? ~ ok, ok, Bartles retired the crown a couple years ago …

    Bart thanx all the little people for this prestigious cry me a river award!

  34. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Sorry, fili.

    Aced it.

  35. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    C’mon, shiloh! We had SURPLUSES in the 90’s!

    Actually those two were the one’s that gave me pause. But then I remembered the budget under the last Dem President was in surplus nad 2.5% is closer to 1 than 5.

  36. shiloh says:

    Must have read the question wrong ~ that’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it! I like geography tests where hs students can’t place Florida on a map …

    Again, Americans are clueless re: SC Justices, but, but, but love Judge Judy!

    Interesting most teabaggers who believe Obama was born in Kenya couldn’t find Africa on a world map. My dad made jokes about Southern Rhodesia in the ’60s and many adults didn’t know S. Rhodesia er Zimbabwe was indeed, an actual country.

    I digress

  37. Monotreme says:

    I got 11/12. I thought we spent more on debt service than defense.

  38. dcpetterson says:

    News quiz from Pew Research.

    I got ’em all right.

    Me ‘n’ you, Max.

  39. filistro says:

    @Treme… I thought we spent more on debt service than defense.

    Me too. And I thought an android was “an automaton that is created from biological materials and resembles a human.”

    IOW… Mitch McConnell.

  40. dcpetterson says:

    What I find interesting is that the group that got the most questions right were college grads.

    This is why education matters. So much for Bart’s desire for America to be an idiotocrasy.

    Of course, even college grads only averaged 6.8 questions right.

  41. dcpetterson says:

    On debt services vs defense — we spend over $800 billion on military, far more than the rest of the world combined.

    For debt services, we’re fortunate that interest rates are so low these days (and that inflation is so low). If these times were more normal, the debt service amount would be far higher than it is. But I suspect war toys would still be outpacing it.

  42. Mainer says:

    I could pretty easily just go with Mules list. Good going mule man. But I will play any way.
    Worst gaffe – Sharon Angle running (I say running) away from reporters
    Worst candidate – Tie: Paladino and Chrissy O well at least they both wentdown in flames……..how about Michele Bachman……….except she won proving things I would rather not think about.
    Best Run Campaign – Murkowski – besides she became only the 2nd write-in Senator after Strom. Very well done but here in this state an Independent campaign for Cutler for govenor that came very very close to winning. But the ruralites like those in my area turned the state over to the Republicans that are now going to try and cut every service that is keeping the same rustics going. This is going to get ugly quick up here and already is generating some heat in some circles.
    Best Commercial – Brown Commercial of Meg talking about how she moved to CA 30 years ago because the state was so great . . . while Brown was governor then! I can’t top that.

  43. Mainer says:

    Ok being a sucker for just about every link fili puts up here I went and took the test when I got to her post. I went 12 for 12 but flat out guessed on 2. I have no clue what runs phones other than I know what my kids just went too and how great they say they are. On the debt I think some one on here had some thing a while back that at least made it possible to make an educated guess. I can’t imagine some of the numbers that were showing there. Where have people been? I actually thought at the end there would be some joke or some thing……….guess in some ways there was. Any one laughing yet.

  44. Mule Rider says:

    I got 9 out of 12 correct on the quiz…

    …missed 9, 11, and 12.

    I was 50/50 on whether or not it was “more than 1/2” or “less than 1/2” of TARP that was paid back and went with less. Also, I was 50/50 between Medicare and national defense being the largest budget item, and lost that coin flip as well.

    As for #12, well, I might be of the younger generation, but I’m no tech junkie and can be rather clueless about all the gizmos and gadgets that are out there.

  45. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Yeah, I really liked that Brown commercial about Meg because if there EVER was a case of a lady leaning over an old style washing machine and placing her own breast in the water removal device, THIS WAS IT!

  46. filistro says:

    Hey, looks like we’re a pretty sharp group!

    Now we need to establish whether we’re smart because we hang around this place… or do we hang around here because we’re all so smart? 😉

  47. dcpetterson says:

    Now we need to establish whether we’re smart because we hang around this place… or do we hang around here because we’re all so smart? 😉

    Some of both. We find the site great because we’re smart. And intelligent conversation teaches us stuff, and that makes us more smarter.

  48. Perfect score here. For what it’s worth. 8)

  49. And I thought an android was “an automaton that is created from biological materials and resembles a human.”

    I have an Android phone. Love it. Absolutely love it. I can’t imagine why someone would prefer an iPhone.

  50. I was 50/50 on whether or not it was “more than 1/2″ or “less than 1/2″ of TARP that was paid back and went with less. Also, I was 50/50 between Medicare and national defense being the largest budget item, and lost that coin flip as well.

    I suspect that you getting those two wrong has something to do with the source of your news. I could be wrong, of course, but the spin of conservative media outlets would lead one to the answers you gave.

    For TARP, I knew the answer because I had researched it a while back for fiscal analyses I’ve done for some articles here.

  51. Mr. Universe says:

    Agree with Bart. Dale Peterson’s ad was classic. But I think the worst gaffe was a toss up between Christine O’Donnell the good witch and the Chicken Lady. Who can forget this classic:

    Chickens for Checkups

    I still want my own demon sheep doll for my desk

  52. mclever says:

    12/12 on fili’s quiz… But I’ll confess to guessing on a couple of them, just not which ones!

    BTW, I think they randomly rearrange the order of the questions to avoid priming. So, saying you missed #9 doesn’t help if my #9 was different from yours.

    * Most damaging gaffe
    Hmm. I’ll give the nod Sharon Angle for just about everything she said to the press. Honorable mention to “Taliban Dan” and “Aqua Buddha.”

    * Worst candidate
    Alvin Greene, Democrat South Carolina. Seriously? Come on Dems! You can do better than that!

    * Best-run campaign
    Lisa Murkowski has to win for her write-in domination of Miller. Sheer brilliance to pull of a write-in win for the Senate. Considering his high negatives going in, Harry Reid gets a second place nod for his pedestrian yet highly-effective obliteration of Angle, but he loses points for the ineptitude of his opponent.

    * Best campaign commercial
    Every commercial here in Iowa seemed to be produced by the same writer using the same template. It got so funny that during one commercial break, we saw three nearly identical commercials for three completely different candidates (two repubs, one dem). It was beyond aggravating for an ad junkie like me!

    My personal favorite, from Bart’s state of Colorado:

    Hickenlooper takes a shower.

  53. Number Seven says:

    9 of 12 here on the quiz. Missed 9,10 and 11.

    Really thought TARP had been paid back, glad to see more then half has. Also thought the interest was even more then defense, dumb me, lol.

  54. Mr. Universe says:

    11 for 12. I know little about inflation rates.

  55. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    One thing not mentioned about the Murkowski win. Although that seat remains in the GOP column, it seems that the primary/general battle has pushed Lisa towards the center. Just take a look at her votes since November 2.

    It remains to be seen if McConnell will be able to corral her in the 112th.

  56. mclever says:

    Mr. U,

    I’m not an economist, but my understanding is that a “healthy” inflation rate is around 3%-5%. That means the economy is expanding, but not so rapidly that wages can’t keep up with prices. It’s a “slow boom” rate. (See the 1990’s for historical perspective.)

    I don’t know what the exact inflation figures are for the past two years, but there’s been fretting about deflation during the recession, so that suggests we’re below the “healthy” rate of 3%. (I’ll let someone smarter than me explain why deflation is bad. See the 1930’s for historical perspective…) Inflation rates dipped slightly negative for part of 2009, and the last figure I saw for 2010 was about 1.1%.

  57. Mule Rider says:

    “I suspect that you getting those two wrong has something to do with the source of your news. I could be wrong, of course, but the spin of conservative media outlets would lead one to the answers you gave.”

    Yes, you are wrong. And I’m a little shocked and disappointed that you, of all people, would play that card. I’d expect a cheap shot like that (of the “you’re getting suckered by “right wing propaganda/spin” variety) from some of the more staunch partisans in here (Number Seven, Max, et al), but not you.

    Looking at my entire body of work (getting 9/12) and what I said I was debating between on 9 and 11, there’s no reason for you to question my news source(s) as “wrong” or “misguided.” I said I was torn between “>1/2” and “<1/2" on TARP. I was sure it wasn't "none" and was pretty sure it wasn't "all" but that still leaves me with everything from 0.0001% to 99.9999%. Honestly I thought it was about 1/2 but essentially flipped a mental coin and went with "<1/2." It was wrong. So sue me.

    As for the other question, Medicare was hardly a bad guess. I said I was 50/50 between that and national defense. I checked the stats, and it says national defense is at 23% and Medicare/Medicaid is at 19%. Those are pretty close and, again, I don't check that kind of stuff all the time, so for me to be roughly 50/50 on which one it was shouldn't say anything about my "news source(s)."

    So, please, check your partisanship and cheap shots at the door.

  58. Bart DePalma says:

    CNS reports:

    The federal government has accumulated more new debt–$3.22 trillion ($3,220,103,625,307.29)—during the tenure of the 111th Congress than it did during the first 100 Congresses combined, according to official debt figures published by the U.S. Treasury.

    That equals $10,429.64 in new debt for each and every one of the 308,745,538 people counted in the United States by the 2010 Census.

    What else needs to be said?

  59. shortchain says:

    MR has a point. Although, historically, Medicare has never come that close to defense spending, and at present they are still separated by about a hundred billion dollars, at some point in the next several years, if Medicare is not reigned in and the increase in defense spending continues as at present, the two curves will cross. The punditry has been screaming about Medicare for decades, now, while being virtually silent on defense spending since shortly after the end of the Cold War. This includes the main stream media, so a person with no reason to delve into the specifics could and should be forgiven for coming up wrong on that one.

    For my part, I thought more of the TARP money had been repaid (as in just about all of it), so I missed that one (got the rest). Since I routinely mute any and all political speech that appears on the TV, I don’t consider myself that well informed.

    For the perils of deflation you cannot do better than to read Krugman. He may not always be right, but he’s very good at explanations. Short answer: if money will be worth more tomorrow than today, people will stick it under their mattresses rather than spend it. This will reduce demand, which will drive further deflation. But some things, such as energy, healthcare, and food have relatively inelastic demand, so they’ll continue to cost more. We can see where this will end. Lots and lots of people out of work, most of the population having no money, while a small and shrinking class sits on their money. Bad for everybody, but — of course — worse for the working class, who won’t be, and devastating for the poor. (I am not an economist. In fact, I have an aversion to “sciences” in which no controlled experiments are possible.)

  60. shortchain says:

    Gosh, I wonder why Bart’s link wouldn’t include Congresses 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, and 110? It couldn’t be an attempt to lie with numbers — by picking arbitrary endpoints and pretending they matter — would it?

  61. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    shortchain, good guess.

    Let’s see now:

    Ronald Reagan created THREE TIMES more debt during HIS eight years as president than EVERY president before him COMBINED!

    George W. Bush created just under TWICE the amount of debt during HIS eight years as president than EVERY president before him COMBINED, INCLUDING Reagan!

    What more needs to be said.

    Lesson here: Never get your information from a PROVEN liar and inflammator.

  62. Bart DePalma says:

    Max:

    Congresses spend and borrow. Unless the President offers a larger budget than Congress and then somehow forces Congress to raise spending and borrowing, then Congress is primarily responsible for spending and borrowing.

    Reagan’s Dem Congresses always proposed more spending than the Gipper’s budgets.

    The only time in American history I have seen a President demand and get more spending that the Congress was willing to give was Clinton between 1995 and 2000.

  63. shortchain says:

    Bart,

    I think the prospect of you lecturing Max about how civics works is hilarious. Keep it up.

  64. drfunguy says:

    @shortchain
    “CNSNews.com (or Cybercast News Service), formerly called the Conservative News Service, is an American news website owned by the Media Research Center”
    – wikipedia
    what else needs to be said?

  65. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    While I do find the concept of being lectured on civics by a proven liar somewhat offensive, I consider that source and it’s relevancy. Ie. the equivalent of blank verse.

    But on the subject of civics:

    NO appropriations bill becomes law, and the money spent, WITHOUT THE SIGNATURE OF THE PRESIDENT AND THUS HIS TACIT APPROVAL. As such, the President carries a co-equal degree of responsibility for the spending.

  66. shiloh says:

    Bartles, after being humiliated in the U.N. Takeover thread, you’re back for more ~ god love ‘ya!

    Twice as nice …

  67. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Actually, with his descent into pure pro forma comments, Bart has become even less than a gadfly, but more as a tiny gnat buzzing in one’s ear.

  68. dcpetterson says:

    Barted:
    Congresses spend and borrow.

    This is a common right-wing response. And it is, of course, a meaningless argument.

    The fact remains that since Reagan, under Republican presidents, the deficit goes up, regardless of whether Congress has a Democratic (Reagan) or Republican (Bush 2) majority. Under Democratic Presidents, the deficit goes down, regardless of the party that holds Congress — Clinton actually achieved a surplus (with a Republican Congress) , and Obama (with a Democratic Congress) has managed to reduce the deficit in both of the last two fiscal years from the record $1.7 trillion deficit in FY 2008 (the last year of Bush budgets).

    The constant factor is the party of the President. The party of the Congress appears to be irrelevant.

    The President sets spending priorities and submits a budget which is always used as a blueprint. Congress fiddles around the margins, but the basic thrust of income and expenditures is set by the President.

    So, Bart, your argument here is meaningless. The historical record shows that Republican Presidents expand the deficit, and Democratic Presidents contract it, regardless of which party controls Congress.

  69. Bart DePalma says:

    drfunguy:

    The source is not CNS, it is the Obama Department of Treasury. CNS simply took the trouble to report an inconvenient factual context that would not even occur to the Dem news media.

    Max:

    Sticks and stones, son.

    DC:

    Congress’ plenary powers to spend and borrow are not “right wing talking points,” they are set forth in Article I of the Constitution. Have you even read our basic law? Most progressives have not or simply ignored what they read. One progressive moron on the news today claimed that the Constitution grants the President the right to rule by fiat through regulatory agencies.

  70. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    dc,

    Democratic Presidents also GROW JOBS. Job growth under Bush II was about one million in HIS eight years (Avg – 125k/yr). Under Clinton it was about 22 Million jobs over eight years (Avg – 2.27M/yr).

    Backing up to the Reagan, Bush I and Carter years, under Reagan there were about 16 Million jobs created in eight years (avg – 2.0M/yr), under Bush I there were 2.6 million jobs created in 4 years (Avg – 650k/yr), and under Carter 10.5 Million jobs (Avg – 2.6M/yr).

    So in order of annualized jobs growth over the past 5 Presidents:
    Carter(D) – 2.63 million jobs/yr
    Clinton(D) – 2.27 million jobs/yr
    Reagan(R) – 2.0 million jobs/yr
    Bush I(R) – 0.650 million jobs/yr
    Bush II(R) – 0.125 million jobs/yr

    Sad results for Bart to digest. But hey, he’ll lie and rationalize his way to optimistic irrationalism!

  71. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Bart said: ” . . .”

  72. And I’m a little shocked and disappointed that you, of all people, would play that card.

    It wasn’t meant to be a cheap shot. Few of the questions asked in that quiz would have had a partisan slant to them, except for the two you cited as incorrect. I figured you were interested enough in the topics to have been paying attention to what has been said publicly over the past year. In the case of TARP, it wasn’t even close. 90% has been recovered. What reason would there be for you to be that far off the mark? I presumed that it was your sources of information, since you didn’t claim to have had a wild guess.

    You’re correct that Medicare isn’t a horrible guess. It’s the third largest expenditure, if Social Security is included (some budget numbers include it, others exclude it). It was the largest expense in the 2007 budget…but that’s because the two wars were kept off the books. Including Afghanistan and Iraq, defense was again the largest part of the pie. This fudging was a second indicator of your information sources, albeit a less compelling one. Had this one been the only one you got wrong, I wouldn’t have come to the same conclusion.

    Typically, people gravitate to news sources that match their beliefs. Many, if not most, of my liberal friends get news from NPR and Huffington Post. All of my conservative friends get their news from Fox and sources like the Washington Times or Washington Examiner.

    As for me, I often get my news from a combination of CNN and the Washington Examiner, and then check what I read against other sources. More time consuming, but very enlightening.

  73. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Civics lesson for Tea Party maroons:

    One is NOT allowed to pick and choose what parts of the Constitution apply. THEY ALL DO!

    NO appropriations bill becomes law, and the money spent, WITHOUT THE SIGNATURE OF THE PRESIDENT AND THUS HIS TACIT APPROVAL. As such, the President carries a co-equal degree of responsibility for the spending.

    Test I Question: How many appropriations bills passed by Congress in the past 30 years have become Law WITHOUT the explicit approval, by his signature on the bill, of the President? (Hint: Before answering, how YOU read Article I, Section 7.2)

  74. dcpetterson says:

    Bart:
    Congress’ plenary powers to spend and borrow are not “right wing talking points,”

    But the idea that the President is irrelevant in this process is a right wing talking point, trotted out to absolve Reagan and Bush2 for their guilt in destroying the U.S. (and world) economy. Interestingly enough, during presidential campaigns, you guys never insist that we avoid talking about the deficit on the grounds that the President ha nothing to do with taxes or with spending.

    But anyway, since you insist that Presidents have nothing to do with deficits, clearly you will insist that Obama had nothing to do with America’s current economic situation, right?

    But no, you’ll trot out special arguments, thus implying that the President can affect the deficit.

    Try, for once, to be consistent. The attempt will, at the least, be amusing.

  75. shortchain says:

    Bart,

    The original facts may have been from a reputable source. However, when CNS got done with them, they were only factoids.

    It’s very characteristic, I’ve been told, for the ignorant or dishonest to fixate on a number and be unable to process or understand the reality.

  76. dcpetterson says:

    Max,

    You’re right about jobs.

    Regardless of the composition of Congress, the economy does better under Democratic presidents, and worse under Republican presidents.

    Conservatives can provide any arguments they wish about why the President should or should not be relevant. But 1) even conservatives pretend the President is relevant to these matters during election campaigns, and 2) historically, the party of the President is a much better indicator of the state of the economy than is the party that controls Congress.

    It is a typical conservative abandonment of reality to insist that the President has nothing to do with deficits. That they would make this argument is, all by itself, good indication that the arguments of conservatives need to be ignored.

    OTOH, a conservative who says, “Yes, Reagan and Bush 2 were very bad for the economy. We need to admit supply-side theories are nonsense and move beyond them to something rooted in reality” — such a conservative would have my attention, and I’d be most interested to hear the theories such a person would put forward.

    However, the conservative who insists supply-side is still defensible, and who claim that the President is uninvolved in what happens to the deficit, is someone who is merely mindlessly repeating right wing talking points, probably without even understanding what the words being used actually mean.

  77. dcpetterson says:

    Bart:
    One progressive moron on the news today claimed that the Constitution grants the President the right to rule by fiat through regulatory agencies.

    Please offer a link to the actual quote.

    In point of fact, Congress authorized the responsibilities that have been given to regulatory agencies. The Constitution authorizes Congress to enact laws, and authorizes the Executive branch to enforce them. Regulatory agencies act within the limits established by the laws which created them. Therefore, there is no question that regulatory agencies have the authority to exercise the powers granted to them by Congress.

    I’d be interested to see if the actual quote you refer to includes the phrase “rule by fiat” or even mentions the President — or if you just made that crap up.

  78. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Bart also said: “Max: Sticks and stones, son.

    No, not “sticks and stones”.

    Facts and figures and citations, when requested, to prove them, little child.

  79. Bart DePalma says:

    Max:

    The United States was a jobs creating machine between 1983 and 2007. During that period of time, we only had one mild recession and one near recession.

    What distinguishes this period from prior New Deal period of American history apart from a generation (regardless of President) is a flatter income tax code, deregulation, free trade and de-unionization. Clinton made the tax code somewhat more progressively punitive and slowed down the economy, while Bush flattened the tax code somewhat and sped up growth until the mortgage meltdown. However, both of these tax changes only played around at the margins and did not begin to reverse the Reagan tax reforms of 1982-87.

    Saddling Reagan with the Carter recession and Bush II with the Clinton-9/11 near recession does not change these overall trends. Indeed, I have no real problem with Clinton 95-00 apart from his creation of the subprime mortgage market. In many ways, Clinton and Gingrich completed the Reagan revolution.

  80. Bart DePalma says:

    DC:

    But Sarah Rosen Wartell, executive vice president of the left-leaning Center for American Progress, argues that President Obama’s efforts to exercise his regulatory authority are no different from those of other presidents.

    “If you think of the president’s job as somebody who just negotiates policy with Congress, than you have a very limited understanding of the authorities granted to the executive in the Constitution,” she said.

    http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/135417-healthcare-climate-change-at-center-of-pending-obama-gop-regulatory-war

    Moron.

  81. shiloh says:

    So let’s recap, shall we:

    Bart is saying re: Reagan’s ginormous debt/deficit that presidents are irrelevant.

    ie Reagan was irrelevant! Once again Bart’s logic er lack thereof is totally discombobulated. Indeed, Bart would stand naked on his head if it made his demigod look good! 😛 ~ which is basically what he’s been doing the past 2+ years at 538.

    apologies to naturists …

  82. shiloh says:

    Barted ~ Saddling Reagan with the Carter recession and Bush II with the Clinton-9/11 near recession does not change these overall trends.

    Disingenuous winger deflection aside …

    Waaaahhhh! :::sniffle::: Waaaahhhh!

  83. Bart DePalma says:

    DC:

    Here are more progressive morons on MSNBC ridiculing the Constitution as a “gimmick” because they claim it is impossible to understand.

    http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/checker.aspx?v=hd6UkU6UaG

  84. Bart DePalma says:

    Shiloh:

    Reagan did not enact any spending or borrowing, the Congress did.

    Reagan, like LBJ, translated a landslide victory and hundred of hours on the telephone and in meetings with Congress critters to convince Congress to enact what they wanted.

  85. shiloh says:

    Bart, deflecting to MSNBC isn’t gonna get you out of the hole you keep digging!

    solo estoy diciendo

  86. dcpetterson says:

    Bart:

    I was right, the quote you linked said nothing about “rule by fiat,” though it does mention the President.

    And you have once again demonstrated your ability — and that of right-wing propagandists — to take innocuous statements out of context and pretend they mean something they do not mean. I remain unimpressed.

    “I know what is best for you rabble.”
    – Bart DePalma

  87. shiloh says:

    Again, Bart is reiterating his demigod was totally irrelevant. btw again, even w/Reagan’s ’84 landslide, Dems kept control of the House!

    Indeed, Reagan’s still dead as much as Bart keeps trying to dig him up …

    take care

  88. Bart DePalma says:

    dcpetterson says: I was right, the quote you linked said nothing about “rule by fiat,” though it does mention the President.

    The subject of the article is Obama’s plans to bypass Congress and unilaterally enact legislation through regulation. This is rule by fiat.

  89. shortchain says:

    If the subject is the best and the worst in the last year, why is some idiot blathering about a president who has been out of office for more than 20 years? Not to mention that he’s making up shit about said president. There’s no evidence, not one shred, that Reagan actually talked anybody in Congress into anything. His administration was marked famously by a willingness to compromise with the Democrats, and the willingness of Democrats to compromise with his administration, in order to enact reforms.

    I wonder what’s different about the Congress and the administration today, and why the example of Reagan is totally inappropriate and meaningless in 2010?

  90. Mule Rider says:

    “What reason would there be for you to be that far off the mark?”

    Because some of us don’t slavishly gobble up every factoid we come across in the political and economic universe just so we can turn around and play “Gotcha!” every time there’s a pissing match on the Internet.

  91. dcpetterson says:

    The subject of the article is Obama’s plans to bypass Congress and unilaterally enact legislation through regulation. This is rule by fiat.

    Nonsense. It is regulatory agencies taking actions that Congress empowered them to take by setting up the regulatory agencies. Your right-wing spin does not override the law, or the Constitution.

    We the People empowered Congress, which means We the People, through Congress, set the powers and limits of these regulatory agencies. Your desire to counteract the will of We the People represents nothing other than an attempt to commit an arrogant right-wing coup, a destruction of the liberties that the Constitution grants to We the People.

    Take your totalitarian agitprop back to your underground seditionist cell, mmmkay?

  92. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Bart’s consistent inconsistency is amusing, at best, and pitifully stupid and transparent at worst.

    Quote: “Saddling Reagan with the Carter recession and Bush II with the Clinton-9/11 near recession does not change these overall trends.

    Therefore by BART’S OWN LOGIC, he is “saddling” the Bush II economic disaster and Great Recession, with it’s loss of jobs creation and everything else onto President Obama.

    Oh, the hypocrisy!

    Well, what may we expect from a proven liar. (You know, Bart, where you call abortion “murder”, even though it is not under the laws of every state and the federal code? And you, as an attorney, supposed to know legal terminology.)

  93. Bart DePalma says:

    shortchain says: There’s no evidence, not one shred, that Reagan actually talked anybody in Congress into anything. His administration was marked famously by a willingness to compromise with the Democrats, and the willingness of Democrats to compromise with his administration, in order to enact reforms.

    LMAO! Yup, Tip O’Neill and the Dems just agreed to the most massive tax rate reductions in American history and to fund the largest military buildup since WWII out of a generous spirit of bipartisanship.

    You definitely were not there to listen to O’Neill’s tirades against Reagan while Reagan was quietly convincing a quarter of the Dem caucus to support his policies.

    I recall a Doonesbury cartoon at the time whose subject was Dems gushing after being stroked by Reagan.

    I wonder what’s different about the Congress and the administration today, and why the example of Reagan is totally inappropriate and meaningless in 2010?

    Thankfully, Obama has no idea how to lobby for votes in the opposite party like Reagan or LBJ.

  94. Bart DePalma says:

    DC:

    The Constitution granted Congress plenary power over legislation.

    The progressive courts rewrote the Constitution in the in the first half of the 20th Century to allow Congress to delegate its Article I powers and the judiciary’s Article III powers to an unelected bureaucracy which is nowhere mentioned in the Constitution. This was progressivism’s most far reaching subversion of the separation of powers apart from stretching the Commerce Clause to cover almost anything.

    We the People did not create the regulatory bureaucracy nor do we have the power to do so except through amendment of the Constitution.

  95. shortchain says:

    Bart,

    Oooh, a Doonesbury cartoon, as evidence! How convincing.

    Sure, there could be no other reason, such as under-the-counter deals, back-room swaps. It had to be just the gipper, with his Altzheimer’s-enhanced argumentation skills, that just swayed everybody.

    You are truly delusional. I take my hat off to you.

  96. shiloh says:

    Bartles, after being humiliated in the U.N. Takeover thread, you’re back for more ~ god love ‘ya!

    Thrice as nice …

    Bart, why do Reps like yourself hate America! And re: your comparing Obama to LBJ 🙂 LBJ had (66) Dem senators after the ’64 election. And of course, the current winger sore losers since 2008 ie since losing to an African/American, Gasp! have been whining er saying no 24/7.

    Now, of course, we can look forward to boehner’s House leadership lol Indeed, Ain’t governing a bitch!, eh.

    Waaaahhhh! :::sniffle::: Waaaahhhh!

    Again Bartles, feel free to stop whining at any time … or not! 😛 Oh yea, Obama is still president and Dutch is still dead!

    carry on living in the past …

  97. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Yes, Bart, We the People DID create the regulatory bureaucracy, through our elected representatives, particularly in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. We the People did so in response to the vast changes brought about by industrialization. At the time of the “trust-busters”, the shocking nastiness of the meat and food industry, child-labor, and patent medicines that did more harm than good, etc. We the People demanded of our elected representatives that they rein in those excesses and create the regulatory bureaucracy to continue that task. We the People have continually re-elected our representatives and told them to follow in those same steps to protect us against corporations, whose only duty is to their shareholders and bottom line, that would, in the name of cost aversion, put unsafe cars on the road, poison in the air, poison in the water and advertising that is misleading at best and lies at worst, among other things, as technology progresses.

    You are worse than a fool if you think differently. You are purposely ignorant and ideologically blind. You need also to be reminded that the majority of We the People and those Progressives in the first half of the 20th century were Republicans like Theodore Roosevelt.

    Why don’t you spend less time spreading the TP and GOP bullshit here and more time reading civics, the Constitution, Law and history.

  98. dcpetterson says:

    Good going, Max. I was going to write something similar. But you did better.

    Republicans just can’t wrap their heads around the fact that we are the government, and the government is us. That’s the whole point of America. That’s why the Constitution begins with the words “We the People,” which phrase the Tea Party has attempted to corrupt and disfigure and re-define.

    Reagan began the corruption with his battle cry about the nine most frightening words. His hatred for the American form of self-government must have been boundless. And that the modern GOteaParty holds him in such high esteem is surely telling.

    Reagan’s was perhaps the most corrupt administration in our history — until Bush 2. Yet another proof that these people have no respect for our Constitution or our nation. As a tribute to the advertising industry, they’ve managed to dupe Tea Party consumers into buying their product. PT Barnum had something to say about what’s born every minute.

  99. Jean says:

    Bart,

    Speaking of what’s not written in the Constitution, the Constitution authorizes the Congress to raise an “army” and a “navy.” It says nothing about an air force.

    Even worse, the Constitution, Article II, Section 2, says only that “The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States”. So what about the Air Force? The President is not commander-in chief of that? So shall we sell it on eBay because the Air Force is not delineated in the Constitution? You and your teaper strict constructionist and anal adherence to the 200+ year old language of the Constitution is laughable.

    Further, if the US Constitution were perfect, why would the Founding Fathers have allowed AMENDMENTS, you literal idiots?

  100. Bart DePalma says:

    Shiloh: And re: your comparing Obama to LBJ LBJ had (66) Dem senators after the ’64 election.

    LBJ passed the Civil Rights Act after swinging GOP support because his racist Dems opposed it. A couple years back, they released tapes of LBJ’s telephone conversations and the man was an absolute artist at rounding up votes. Obama is completely hapless in comparison.

    Max aka Birdpilot says: Yes, Bart, We the People DID create the regulatory bureaucracy, through our elected representatives, particularly in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

    No, the people elected Congresses themselves to pass necessary safety laws, not to create an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy to do it for them.

    Progressives created an unelected bureaucracy so it could enact progressive policy the voters did not support so elected progressive politicians would not be punished at the polls for enacting these policies as legislation.

    You really should acquaint yourself with the progressive movement. They are openly hostile to democracy and believe in a rule of progressive experts.

  101. Jean says:

    Max,

    re: We the People did so in response to the vast changes brought about by industrialization. At the time of the “trust-busters”, the shocking nastiness of the meat and food industry, child-labor, and patent medicines that did more harm than good, etc.

    In the 1910s and ’20s the Supreme Court regularly struck down child labor laws — child labor laws! — because they were not authorized by the Constitution.

    That changed in 1937 after the court-packing threat. Conservatives see 1937 as a illegitimate constitutional coup, in which they think that Roosevelt improperly “rewrote” the document to put us on a road to serfdom. They want to get back to pre-1937 thinking.

  102. Jean says:

    Bart,

    re: LBJ passed the Civil Rights Act after swinging GOP support because his racist Dems opposed it. A couple years back, they released tapes of LBJ’s telephone conversations and the man was an absolute artist at rounding up votes. Obama is completely hapless in comparison.

    And what did those southern racist Dems become upon passage of the Civil Rights Act? Do tell.

    I will agree that LBJ was a master at rounding up votes. Books well worth the read are Robert J Caro’s series on LBJ, specifically in this case his book titled: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Master of the Senate.

    Caro, so far, has published, I think, a total of four book about LBJ. They are all excellent and athough are a lot to absorb in each volume, on the other hand they read like a novel. All fascinating and books that are hard to put down. I highly recommend all of Robert A Caro’s books on LBJ.

  103. shiloh says:

    Bart again, we know you’re totally obsessed w/Obama and despise him w/every fiber of your being yada yada yada ~ no need for redundancy, but do as you must to refrain from going postal! lol

    btw, how often do you dream about Barack Hussein Obama, the freely elected 44th President of the United States of America! A bi-racial African/American who received (((69 million))) votes in a country w/a 300/400 year history of racial oppression!

    Sorry 😉 no Bradley Effect

    take care

  104. shiloh says:

    Indeed again, LBJ knew by signing the Civil Rights ’64/’65 legislation he was giving the South to the Reps for several generations, but bottom line, he did the right thing!

    Whereas Bartles and many, many of his uneducated, misinformed, disgruntled brethren ie old yahoo birthers, 10thers, deathers, truthers, teabaggers, secessionists, 14thers etc. are still fighting the American Civil War …

    Sore losers, eh.

    Waaaahhhh! :::sniffle::: Waaaahhhh!

  105. dcpetterson says:

    Barted:
    No, the people elected Congresses themselves to pass necessary safety laws, not to create an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy to do it for them.

    Provide proof, please. You make this statement as if it is accepted fact. Prove it.

    In the other direction, we have roughly a century of the existence of these regulatory bodies. If We the People did not want them, We have had ample opportunity to elect representatives who would have gotten rid of them. We haven’t. That supports the argument that We the People approve of them.

    I note also that you have moved the goalposts. You previously maintained that these bodies were unconstitutional. Having been shown that they are acting as constitutionally-empowered executive enforcement bodies, acting under constitutionally-enacted Congressional laws, you now disapprove of them on the unsupported claim that We the People don’t want them, despite the fact that We the People have allowed (and therefore supported) their existence for a century or more.

    We all breathlessly await any proof of your sweeping and unsupported statements.

    While you’re at it, please address mclever’s previous point, that if you insist a fetus must have all the rights of a human being, should we not have an inquest into the causes of every miscarriage? Must we not put the mother under suspicion of murder?

  106. dcpetterson says:

    By the way, we do not have any “unaccountable bureaucracies.” We the People can, at any time, elect representative who will utterly abolish any regulatory bodies that We disapprove of. All regulatory bodies are, therefore, completely and utterly accountable to We the People.

    We know you like to play the paranoid fear card, but it never stands up to scrutiny — or even to the most surface-level consideration, let alone any close examination.

  107. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    We the People could also elect representatives who could balance the budget, begin to bring down the Debt and make provision for exceptions and corrections during times of national emergencies, but we don’t because We the People have enjoyed living above our means ever since the Reagan administration’s “voodoo economics”. But, sadly, the day WILL come.

    Bart: “No, the people elected Congresses themselves to pass necessary safety laws, not to create an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy to do it for them.

    Separation of Powers. Co-equal branches of Government. For someone who fancies himself a civics teacher and Constitutional expert(Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha, Oh God! It brings tears to my eyes!) Bart missed ANOTHER one when it comes to these concepts at the bedrock of our republic. Further, he is ignoring the fact that We the People give our approval to the actions of Congress by re-electing those representatives and that the SCOTUS could declare a Law unconstitutional. That the SCOTUS has, consistently, NOT declared Laws creating Regulatory agencies and their ability regulate as defined by Congress, unconstitutional demonstrates that ALL THREE branches of the government, elected and re-elected every 2-, 4- and 6-years by We the People is working according to our wishes.

    (Bythe way, Justice Stephens wrote a short book “Active Liberty”, several years back that delves into the SCOTUS vs. the Congressionally created regulatory agencies.)

    Congress passes legislation that becomes law upon the signature of the President. (Art. 1, Sec. 7, Para. 2)

    The President enforces laws through the various “heads of departments” and other “such inferior Officers” that “Congress, may by Law vest the appointment of. (Art.2, Sect. 2, Paras 1 and 2)

    Selective reading of the Constitution, as with the Bible, proves NOTHING except intellectual laziness and prejudice of one’s personal beliefs.

    Bart, it would truly help you make coherent, consistent and sound arguments if you would actually read the whole Bible, Constitution, American history and Law.

    Also, if you would remove your cranium from your rectum.

  108. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Scratch that: I misspoke.

    The book is by Justice Breyer, NOT Stephens

  109. Bart DePalma says:

    Jean says: And what did those southern racist Dems become upon passage of the Civil Rights Act? Do tell.

    They stayed Dems. The GOP did not recapture Congress for 30 years. In that period, Dems discovered new versions of racial preferences to enact into law.

    BD: “No, the people elected Congresses themselves to pass necessary safety laws, not to create an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy to do it for them.”

    Birdman: That the SCOTUS has, consistently, NOT declared Laws creating Regulatory agencies and their ability regulate as defined by Congress…(Bythe way, Justice Stephens wrote a short book “Active Liberty”, several years back that delves into the SCOTUS vs. the Congressionally created regulatory agencies.)

    Hero, Justice Bryer, not Stevens, wrote Active Liberty to offer the reasons why he attempts to rewrite the Constitution and appropriately cited the regulatory agencies as an example of that effort.

    Congress passes legislation that becomes law upon the signature of the President. (Art. 1, Sec. 7, Para. 2)

    The President enforces laws through the various “heads of departments” and other “such inferior Officers” that “Congress, may by Law vest the appointment of. (Art.2, Sect. 2, Paras 1 and 2)

    And? Do you know the difference between passing legislation and enforcing that legislation? Into which of those categories does enacting regulations fall? To which branch does Art. 1, Sec. 7, Para. 2 of the Constitution grant sole authority to enact such regulations?

    Are you simply ignorant or a true mental midget?

  110. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Easy:
    Enacting regulation, as constitutionally decreed by the Congress elected by We the People, falls under the enforcement thereof by that agency of the Executive Branch.

    Bart: “Are you simply ignorant or a true mental midget?”.

    You tell me, as you would be eye-to-eye with any mental midgets out there.

    Should you stand on a ladder.

  111. shortchain says:

    As has been held lawful in a whole bunch of courts, the federal bureaucracy, including the IRS, can make regulations. This does not constitute “legislation” except in Bart-word, where the sky is a dusky shade of yellow (the complementary color to blue), and everybody hangs from the ground overhead.

    The closer we get to seating the new Congress and discovering, incontrovertibly, that the teaparty contingent is hopelessly corrupt, inept, and worthless, the more irritable Bart seems to become. He’s getting very careless with name-calling, for someone who used to pride himself on being above such pathetic behavior.

  112. Bart DePalma says:

    Birdhead:

    The progressive courts have created a legal fiction called quasi legislation to cover the executive enacting regulations. No one apart from you claims that the executive is enforcing the law by writing regulations.

    An ignorant man learns when presented from the fact. You are definitely a mental midget.

    Stop wasting everyone’s time and read a damn book.

  113. shortchain says:

    I’m thinking “legal fiction” refers to all of what Bart coughs up.

    Ah, well. Enough amusement for this morning.

  114. dcpetterson says:

    You can read about the “quasi-legislative” capacity of regulatory agencies here.

    Among the most important aspects:

    Administrative agencies acquire this authority to make rules and regulations that affect legal rights through statutes…
    Administrative agency rules are made only with the permission of elected lawmakers, and elected lawmakers may strike down an administrative rule or even eliminate an agency…
    Except where prohibited by statute or judicial precedent, quasi-legislative activity may be challenged in a court of law…
    Another distinctive feature of quasi-legislative activity is the provision of notice and a hearing. When an administrative agency intends to pass or change a rule that affects substantive legal rights, it usually must provide notice of this intent and hold a public hearing. This gives members of the public a voice in the quasi-legislative activity.

    There is nothing in the least bit “unconstitutional” about these matters. Nor are these bodies “unaccountable bureaucracies.” They were set up by We the People (acting through our elected representatives), they solicit input on the rules they enact, and they can be disbanded or defunded, or their rules altered, at any time — again, by our elected representatives acting as agents of We the People.

  115. dcpetterson says:

    Incidentally, all legal and constitutional concepts are “legal fictions.” All of them exist simply because we say they do. None of them have an independent, objective existence outside of our agreed-upon definitions.

    Therefore, when Bart calls “quasi-legislation” a legal fiction, he is putting it into the same category that contains any other type of legislation. It’s like saying, “Blue flowers are blue! And they’re flowers!”

  116. shiloh says:

    Barted ~ The progressive courts have created a legal fiction called quasi legislation to cover the executive enacting regulations.

    Childish ad hominems aside, Bartles continues to make sh*t up w/out proof …

    Waaaahhhh! :::sniffle::: Waaaahhhh!

  117. Bart DePalma says:

    DC:

    I do not need to go to Answers.com to obtain my legal education. We covered this in Con Law and Administrative Law.

    Now look up “plenary powers,” “separation of powers” and “delegation of powers” and report back with what you learned.

    Even my ACLU left Con Law professors freely admitted that the courts changed the Constitution to accommodate the regulatory bureaucracy. Where we disagreed is that they thought the judiciary was not acting like a gang of constitutional outlaws when they rewrote the Constitution.

  118. Bart DePalma says:

    C:

    BTW, a legal fiction is a court holding which is unsupported by the text of a statute or constitution provided to arrive at a preferred result.

  119. Max aka Birdpilot says:

    Bart said: “No one apart from you claims that the executive is enforcing the law by writing regulations.” and “You are definitely a mental midget. Stop wasting everyone’s time and read a damn book.

    Well actually that would be me and West’s Encyclopedia of American Law!

    I KNEW Bart was standing on a ladder to be able to recognize a mental midget.

    Bart, I’ll stop wasting everyone’s time and read a book if you’ll stop wasting our time and go do some defending of drunk drivers.

    Oops, sorry, I forgot that, by your admission, you are failing at that endeavor as well. Damn, well then, go and make a run for Meals on Wheels or something else useful with all the time you are currently spending making crap up you have no proof for and telling LIES.

  120. dcpetterson says:

    Bart:
    Even my ACLU left Con Law professors freely admitted that the courts changed the Constitution

    Yes, and we all have access to their exact quotes where they “admit” this.

    You are welcome to your interpretations. However, yours is not the view accepted by our courts or our legislature or our executive. Which means your view doesn’t hold any sway in the real world. There is a word for people who hold a view of the world that does not conform to the actual world. Read up on schizophrenia.

  121. shiloh says:

    Bart is currently checking into a clinic for his schizophrenia and hopefully Obama Care can pull him back from the brink … wishin’ him all the best!

  122. Jean says:

    Bart,

    re: Jean says: And what did those southern racist Dems become upon passage of the Civil Rights Act? Do tell.

    They stayed Dems. The GOP did not recapture Congress for 30 years. In that period, Dems discovered new versions of racial preferences to enact into law.

    Bart, despite what you pretend, you do know better than that.

    As the National Journal notes: For seven decades after the end of Reconstruction, Republicans were pariahs in Southern politics. In terms of presidential politics, Republicans made their first inroads into the South from 1952 to 1964, when Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, and Barry Goldwater each won five to seven states there.

    After the Democratic-controlled Congress joined with Democratic President Johnson to end state-sponsored segregation by enacting the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the traditional Southern Democratic coalition shattered. In 1968, Democratic presidential nominee Hubert Humphrey won only one Southern state, Texas; Nixon carried seven; and former Gov. George Wallace of Alabama, a segregationist running as an independent, carried the other five.

    Since then, Republican presidential nominees have dominated the South. In the five elections from 1972 to 1988, Republicans won all of the South’s electoral votes three times (1972, 1984, and 1988) and more than 90 percent of them in 1980. During that period, the only Democrat to win a majority of Southern Electoral College votes was former Georgia Gov. Jimmy Carter in 1976.

    A similar pattern on the Hill: Republicans were just as marginalized in Southern congressional contests as they were in the region’s presidential races for many decades after Reconstruction. From 1900 through 1960, Republicans held more than 10 percent of the South’s House seats in only three Congresses. In the Senate, between 1878 and 1960, the GOP only once — in 1924 — held more than two of the region’s 26 seats. In the 20th century, Republicans did not elect a senator from the Old Confederacy until John Tower won the Texas seat that Lyndon Johnson vacated in 1961.

    In both chambers, Southern Republicans started advancing in the early 1960s. Their gains accelerated over the next quarter-century, as a powerful constellation of issues — including school busing and civil rights, abortion, gun control, gay rights, taxes, and national security — drove legions of conservative white Southerners from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party.

    http://nationaljournal.com/magazine/for-gop-a-southern-exposure-20090523

    The political repercussions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as noted on wikipedia: The bill divided and engendered a long-term change in the demographics of both parties. President Johnson realized that supporting this bill would risk losing the South’s overwhelming support of the Democratic Party. Both Attorney General Robert Kennedy and Vice President Johnson had pushed for the introduction of the civil rights legislation. Johnson told Kennedy aide Ted Sorensen that “I know the risks are great and we might lose the South, but those sorts of states may be lost anyway.”[25] Senator Richard Russell, Jr. warned President Johnson that his strong support for the civil rights bill “will not only cost you the South, it will cost you the election.”[26] Johnson, however, went on to win the 1964 election by one of the biggest landslides in American history. The South, which had started to vote increasingly Republican beginning in the 1930s, continued that trend and became majority Republican in the 1990s.[27] .

    Although majorities in both parties voted for the bill, there were notable exceptions. Most Democrats from the Southern states opposed the bill and led an unsuccessful 83-day filibuster, including Senators Albert Gore, Sr. (D-TN), J. William Fulbright (D-AR), and Robert Byrd (D-WV), who personally filibustered for 14 hours straight.

    After the Civil Rights law was signed into law, conservative Democrats left the party. Strom Thurmond, who ran as a segregationist in 1948, became a Republican, as did Jesse Helms (who went on to filibuster against making Martin Luther King Jr. day a federal holiday).

  123. dcpetterson says:

    Jean,

    Great smackdown.

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