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Monday, September 03, 2012

History as caricature - Republicans selling malaise like it's 1979

"[O]n issue after issue, Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan want to go backwards." -President Obama, Boulder, Colorado, September 2, 2012
The Republicans want you to be morose, sad and resigned. One of the themes that emerged from the Republican National Convention, in Tampa, last week, was how sad are the times, how disappointing is the economy, how grey the outlook for hope. You could see it in the drooping, puppy dog eyelids of vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), when he spoke of the Janesville, Wisconsin, shuttered GM plant. "It is locked up and empty to this day," he lamented, the corners of his wide, disappearing lips, drawing downward, feeling your pain, out there in the unemployed, closed factory towns around the country, "And that’s how it is in so many towns today, where the recovery that was promised is nowhere in sight." Hopeless. So hopeless. If you are resigned to the hopelessness of the "fading Obama posters" on your bedroom ceiling, for attacks on success and for government assistance to help you get your slice of the American pie, they said, than vote for Obama. "If you're looking for free stuff, that you don't have to pay for," like health care and food and the ability to afford a college education, the Republican nominee told a heckler during the heat of the campaign, "then vote for the other guy. That's what he's all about." Gov. Romney, continued the RNC's theme of Obama destroying American drive, the night after Ryan's appeal to despair, in (not surprisingly) a less nuanced, more direct approach:
"Every family in America wanted this to be a time when they could get ahead a little more... Every small business wanted these to be their best years ever, when they could hire more... Every new college graduate thought they'd have a good job by now, a place of their own... "This was the hope and change America voted for... "I wish President Obama had succeeded... [b]ut his promises gave way to disappointment and division."
Oh, it's so sad, too sad, that this president has turned your lives into a brother-can-you-spare-a-dime, ponderous time of high gas prices and low self esteem, he insists. Despite Romney's claim that "every president since the Great Depression who came before the American people asking for a second term could look back at the last four years and say with satisfaction: 'you are better off today than you were four years ago,'" it is only Reagan who thought that question relevant, and because he won on it, every Republican challenger to an incumbent has felt it necessary to ask the same. READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE...
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