Friday, 9/28/12, Public Square


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19 responses to “Friday, 9/28/12, Public Square

  1. The Drudge Report splashed a video of an unidentified woman who claims to have received a free “Obama Phone.” Of course, it got the attention of the right-wing, who used it as proof that Obama supporters are dependent on government. Even Rush was talking about it on his show.

    LIMBAUGH: “So these are the people that don’t like Romney because of what he said about 47%? No, these are the 47%!… She knows. She knows how to get this free Obama phone. She knows everything about it. She may not know who George Washington is or Abraham Lincoln, but she knows how to get an Obama phone”

    Just one problem. The “Obama Phone” doesn’t exist. Since 2009, there has been a myth that Obama created a program to provide free phones to low-income Americans at taxpayer expense. There is, in fact, a government program that will provide low-income people with a free or low cost cell phone. It was started in 2008 under George W. Bush.

    The idea of providing low-income individuals with subsidized phone service was originated in the Reagan administration following the break-up of AT&T in 1984. (It was expanded and formalized by the Telecommunications Act of 1996.) The program is paid for by telecommunications companies through an independent non-profit, not through tax revenue.

    Facts….the right wing HATES them.

    Link about program idea originating under Reagan administration, and starting under GWB: http://www.factcheck.org/2009/10/the-obama-phone/

    Link to Limbaugh’s page about it: http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2012/09/27/the_47_speaks_she_s_voting_for_obama_because_he_gave_her_a_free_phone

    Link that explains how it’s paid for: http://www.universalservice.org/about/

    • I would add that all this is modernizing the implementation of the FCC’s Universal Access rules regarding access to telephones which were initially issued in either 1934 or 1935 )cannot recall, too lazy to look).

  2. In a recent speech to the American Legion, Mitt Romney leveled fresh criticism against President Obama, accusing his administration of cutting the benefits of veterans who are returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and going so far as to call plans to cut the Veterans Affairs Department budget a “crisis.”

    Romney charged that the defense budget cuts would affect services for veterans, including the men and women returning from conflict overseas who need psychological counseling. Romney invoked the rising number of suicides – “This is a crisis,” he declared – as he sharpened his attack on the Obama administration’s proposed spending cuts.

    Mitt’s claim is false. Earlier this month, the White House announced that virtually all of the Veterans Affairs Department budget will be exempt from mandatory cuts if and when sequestration goes into effect in January 2013. The only exception, according to VA Secretary Eric Shinseki, would be possible cuts to administrative costs. That means health care, vocational, and education services will remain fully funded while cuts are made elsewhere within the Department of Defense, despite Mitt Romney’s claims to the contrary.

    Of course, if Romney were actually concerned about the possibility of losing funding for the Veterans Affairs Department, he probably wouldn’t have embraced Paul Ryan or his budget, which could lead to reductions in veterans’ benefits: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/election-2012/wp/2012/09/27/romney-ties-veteran-suicides-to-defense-cut-fight/

    Article regarding the White house announcement that VA Dept being exempt: http://www.armytimes.com/news/2012/09/military-sequestration-budget-cuts-veterans-affairs-091412w/

    Article showing the Romney/Ryan budget would cut VA Dept benefits: http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=3708

  3. prairie pond

    Yesterday, it seemed as though the jobs Obama created were all over the news and he was being called the real job creator. I wonder if facts might finally be bursting through the Fux News bubble and into the psyche of the voting public? I know that’s a lot to ask of American Idol Nation, but wouldn’t it be wonderful if it were true? Maybe the MSM is finally catching on and reporting the facts, not spin?

    Probably not. But as Hemingway said, “It is pretty to think about.”

  4. wicked

    We all know politicians lie. They stretch the truth, bend it to their will, and pretty much dress it up in ribbons and bows, whenever they can get away with it. This election period, Romney appears to be all-time leader of those with a truth-telling problem.

    http://video.msnbc.msn.com/the-rachel-maddow-show/49188501

    What I want to know is why this is happening. Maybe the reason for that has to do with what I do, and I’m accustomed to looking for reasons aka motivation for every little thing. Maybe I’m just nuts and tend to over think some things.

    Does Romney say things he shouldn’t because he really believes them?

    Does Romney say things because he thinks that’s what his constituency believes?

    Does Romney lie because, in his church/religion,it’s okay to skip the truth “for a good reason?”

    Does Romney just not have a clue what he’s said in the past and think reporters and aids are making things up?

    Does Romney believe flip-flopping will gain him more votes, and then he can do what he wants to, if he wins?

    I understand that no one here or anywhere can answer these, except for the storyteller himself, but it might be fun to give it a try anyway. 😉

    • Bottom line – IMHO – Romney wants and EXPECTS to be president simply because it is his turn.

      And – he is worth $250 million – that alone should qualify him – correct?

      But the current GOP is so full of Far Right Winger Whackadoos that Romney has to be a human pretzel to survive in that bunch.

  5. “The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.” ― Leo Tolstoy

    • It’s so easy for most voters to remember the Bush2 (now Romney) economic policies and consequences. It’s so easy for most voters to determine austerity measures are behind the inability of many European countries to gain financial progress. It’s a fact that Medicare is an entitlement that allows Seniors to live out their later years with dignity and keeps many of them alive and productive for extra years. A voucher won’t do it, it has to be guaranteed coverage. And, Americans expect their government to provide those kinds of services and guarantees to citizens. Our environment must be protected. Science is a way of thinking that should be encouraged because of the benefits it brings to mankind. Humans are equal and none of the qualifiers — sex, sexual persuasion, race, religion, age — change that.

      The Republican Party is one step behind (or maybe a century behind). The Party of old white rich men hasn’t kept up, is standing in the way of progress. Voters recognize that.

  6. Ecclesiastes 3:1, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose.” 🙂

    This political season is not one where lies, exaggerations, or fear tactics are effective. Everyone knows President Obama didn’t relax any work requirements for welfare — that lie doesn’t work and neither do all the others. Everyone knows spending has gone down under President Obama. We all know the debt is increasing due to tax cuts, two wars and a prescription drug benefit that weren’t paid for. We understand the concept of compounding interest on the debt. We know the top 1% are creating jobs overseas, not in America. Every time one of these lies is used we know who we can’t trust.

    Voters want the truth, no matter how dire, and they expect to be talked to as competent adults. We’re all able to recognize the politician who tailors his comments to his audience. Even if Romney can’t remember what he said yesterday, voters can, and we don’t trust someone who takes different positions from day to day, depending on the audience. What part of recordings does Romney not understand? We hear his lies, we can compare them to what he said yesterday with ease. Repeating lies has worked for republicans in the past, but we’ve learned, we’re not as dumb as the Republican Party needs or expects us to be.

    We’re all able to recognize political obstructionism and we know who is most guilty, who is standing in the way of progress. We’ve seen how often the filibuster is used, how few bills have been passed.


  7. Extreme Weather, Extreme Prices
    The costs of feeding a warming world

    http://www.oxfam.org/en/grow/policy/extreme-weather-extreme-prices

  8. The Star’s editorial | Waiting for the budget ax to fall in Kansas

    (from the link): Gov. Sam Brownback and his team are taking the first steps to prepare for financial Armageddon and a bleaker future for Kansas.

    So his administration gets a few points for belated candor. At least it’s coming to grips with the reality that the income tax cuts passed by the Legislature and signed into law earlier this year are going to create significant budget problems.

    Brownback’s budget team recently told state agencies to show how they could cut 10 percent out of their requests for funding in 2013. Budget Director Steve Anderson said Kansas needed to “require prioritization of programs, consolidation of resources and consideration of alternatives to current organizational structures, funding streams and outdated ways of doing business.”

    Let us translate: It’s time to slash and burn because Kansas soon could run out of money.

    Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/09/27/3837064/the-stars-editorial-waiting-for.html#storylink=cpy

    • wicked

      And therein lies the problem. I don’t mind paying taxes. As a citizen, I understand that it’s my duty to help provide the things that I and all others need to survive and that help us live a life without being threatened at every turn. Just as every other person who pays taxes, my money goes for some things I don’t agree with. I don’t complain. Well, not really loud, that is. 😉 But the wealthy who aren’t hurt in any way by paying their share of taxes are the ones who scream the loudest and expect to get something for nothing. Maybe they should come down here where the rest of us live and try it on for size. Permanently.

  9. wicked

    Maybe the 1% and their buddies should remember the outcome of “Let them eat cake.”

  10. We’ve talked about subjects including global economy, changing demographics, diversity, and how knowledge / education is the solution to hate and fear. This is a very interesting video, just three minutes long, that gets you thinking.

  11. Democrats are now screaming they’ve found voter fraud because they found some people hired by republicans to register people and there were some troubling parts of this process.

    But let’s be clear! Not one of those people voted, it was found and stopped at the registration level. Why in the world would anyone call this voter fraud? We’ve had past instances of problems at the registration level, and they’ve also been discovered and stopped at that level.

    Democrats should stop this finger pointing hypocrisy! NO ONE VOTED!

    I’m still waiting for anyone to show that voter fraud is a problem.

    • I think it’s because the Republicans were riding their sanctimonius pious high horse when they harassed ACORN out of existence – so Democrats are now simply saying that Republicans are guilty of falsely registering voters.

      But – hey – if the dancing horse shoe fits – RePUKES have to wear it.

      • I don’t find lowering yourself to the level of behavior that is wrong to be anything to toot your horn about. It’s wrong — for everybody.

        And, I’m still waiting for that proof that voter fraud is a problem.

      • Bu the Republicans called it voter fraud when ACORN was harassed – just goes to show – there are rotten apples on both sides of the aisle.

      • You can absolutely count on the fact republicans will call ACORN a scandal and exaggerate it all to hell while downplaying the same behavior in their own party.

        Even scandals aren’t equal. 🙂

        The difference is more people are realizing republicans have nothing but old tired and failed policies plus big batches of criticism and obstructionism.

        God doesn’t have a political party and voters aren’t buying hypocrisy.