This Is What It Comes Down To

There is no difference between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.   That’s the story for those voting third-party and bless ’em.  They have the luxury to think that.

I know better.

There is no difference between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.   That’s the story for those cynics who will stay home and sit the election out.

I know better.

Staying home on Election Day will never be an option and voting for overreaching third-party candidates isn’t either. Nothing against those that do because I did it myself when I voted for John Anderson, but I knew Reagan was going to kick Carter’s butt and had the presidency in the bag.

But that was then and this is now. I couldn’t look myself in the mirror if I sat on my ass and let Romney waltz into the White House based upon my lazy indifference.

The professional pundits of the Washington press corps sniffed Obama’s DNC speech was “dull,” “workmanlike” and a “failure.”   They miss the point.   Obama knew his speech wasn’t better than Clinton or Michelle’s.   It didn’t have to be.  All it had to be was better than Romney’s and he did it with something Romney doesn’t have and can’t buy: droll wit.

Now, our friends at the Republican convention were more than happy to talk about everything they think is wrong with America, but they didn’t have much to say about how they’d make it right.  They want your vote, but they don’t want you to know their plan. And that’s because all they have to offer is the same prescription they’ve had for the last thirty years: ‘Have a surplus? Try a tax cut. Deficit too high? Try another. Feel a cold coming on? Take two tax cuts, roll back some regulations, and call us in the morning!’

The president  was only half-joking.  The Republicans do seem to think like Robitussen, there’s nothing that can’t be fixed with more tax cuts.

I’m sorry for those folks who feel Obama didn’t deliver on the hope and change they were hoping for. I think they have to take into account the enormity of the mess he had to clean up and the fierceness of the opposition to his presidency he faced. Sure he’s made some bad mistakes, but I can’t think of a Chief Executive in my lifetime who hasn’t made me cuss them out multiple times.

Obama came up short on a lot of important issues, but before anybody switches to Mitt, I would appreciate if they could explain to me exactly how Mittens will make things better?  Nothing about his campaign or personality indicates he identifies with the problems of anyone but the wealthiest and most privileged Americans.

This is a reason Mittens is so doing so atrociously with African-Americans. Many of us have already figured out he has no use for us and is incapable of relating to issues of importance to Blacks.  Accordingly, the majority of Blacks have no use for Mittens.

Madonna’s got Obama’s back.

Maybe we are simply ahead of the curve.  Maybe we’re the canaries in the coalmine.  Maybe the rest of America might want to try to figure out why Romney is like a dull knife that just ain’t cuttin, talkin’ loud and sayin’ nothing.    Or maybe some of us see  Romney for who he is.  A rich guy who can’t identify with people who have to work for a living and has no understanding of what that means.   Whenever someone tells a kid who wants to go to college or start a business to borrow the money from their parents, that should tell you all you need to know about them.

It certainly tells me if next year Mitt if it left up to him who sits on the Supreme Court, which government program benefiting the middle class family the most or whether there’s a war with Iran,  how he decides is going to be brutal, cruel and nasty.    All his life Mitt has shown a willingness to shove aside a previously held belief when it becomes inconvenient.   That shouldn’t inspire confidence in his character.   A man who will say anything to get elected will do everything the billionaires and businessmen underwriting his campaign want him to do once he’s in the White House.

If you haven’t demonstrated you have steel in your spine when you’re running for president,  it’s too much to assume it will show up once you are.

I’m not naïve.  After four years on the job Obama is obliged to obey his own set of masters.   There are rich people and special interests that have their calls returned first and fast when they call on the president.   The Obama who spoke in Charlotte was a grayer, more sober and less confident in his own charisma and talents Obama than the one who ran for president four years ago.   Now it’s as he said, “I’m the president” and instead of answering questions about Reverend Wright, Tony Rezko or William Ayers, now he has to answer for the state of the economy, the lack of jobs and his inability to successfully negotiate with Congressional Republicans.

A President Romney can’t fix the problems of the economy and gloomy job numbers any easier than President Obama has.   He will have better relations with the Republicans on the Hill because they figure he will be following their directives, not the other way around.     And he will.   When Mitch McConnell, John Boehner,  Eric Cantor and  Jim DeMint say, “Jump Mitt,  Jump!”  Jump, he will.   The only questions are for how long and how high.

Rubber Stamp Romney would be far weaker and less effective than Obama.     What his presidency would mean to anyone who isn’t part of Romney’s diversity-free America isn’t hard to figure out.   Four years of neglect and contempt interrupted by occasional actions of malicious hostility.

On one side there’s Obama.  On the other there’s Romney.  If you want me to believe there’s no difference between them, you’re going to have to first convince me there’s no difference between going forward and going backwards.

Boosting Barack: Yeah, They Built That.

Game recognizes Game.

Going into their convention, Democrats had a disadvantage the Republicans did not.   The GOP base is fired up to vote against Obama.  The Democrats need to get theirs fired up to vote for Obama.    The advantage Democrats have  is it is easier to get people to vote for someone than against them.   But too much of the Democratic base hasn’t been engaged thus far in the president’s reelection and that could imperil it.

Michelle Obama and Bill Clinton delivered show-stopping speeches to set it up for  President Obama to make the case  he deserves four more years.   The speculation was which Clinton would show up in Charlotte.  Would it be Bad Bill looking to stick a shiv in the back of the guy who blocked his wife’s bid for his old job or Good Bill rallying the faithful to help Obama join him and Harry Truman as the only  Democratic incumbents to win a second term since FDR?

It  took 48 minutes for him to say it,  but Clinton left no doubt he’s all in with Team Obama and squash any speculation he wasn’t.   Obama and Clinton have had a prickly relationship, but with his ringing endorsement of the embattled president and shredding of the Republicans,  Clinton is poised to become a significant asset to Obama’s campaign.

Michelle Obama’s job was tougher than the one Clinton had.  He had to say the things about the opposition in the way a former president can that a current one can’t.   Bill had to draw the distinctions between Obama and the Republicans.   Michelle had to reach out to disillusioned and disappointed Democrats to remind them, yes, there is are good reasons to show up and vote for her husband.

The Big Dog and the First Mom share a moment.

More than a few amateur psychologists such as D’nesh D’Souza have attempted to put the president on the couch trying to figure out why he hates America so much.  He doesn’t, but they are too full of hate for him to realize it.   With the First Lady, they can’t question her “Americaness” so they hit on her as being “angry.”   The go-to move for right-wingers too lazy or too stupid (or both) to understand the Obamas is to write him off as uppity and her as angry.

Stereotyping Michelle is a way to minimize her intellect and beauty.  She has been hammered by her critics as snobbish, materialistic, bossy and nosing into the dietary habits of American’s children.   It’s amazing how low they will go not to take Michelle seriously.   She has more grace, charm and smarts in one finger than most of the haters do in their entire flabby bodies.

She is also thought of as being the true liberal in the marriage or at least more than her husband.  That’s a sentiment shared by Salon’s Joan Walsh:

 There are Democrats who believe Michelle Obama carries the torch for liberalism, and reminds her husband what he came to Washington to do, when his Beltway advisers may be telling him something different. Tuesday night she spoke to those Democrats, who may not be as enthusiastic or optimistic as they were in 2008. She told them she loves her husband even more than she did four years ago, because of all that he’s done for the country – and maybe helped them to love him a little more, too.

All the professional and amateur “fact-checkers” will comb through every last word of their speeches looking for exaggerations, half-truths, and outright lies of a Paul Ryan level, but a fact is not the same as the truth and what Michelle Obama  said about character and what Bill Clinton said about the economy Obama inherited was the gospel truth.

The First Lady said, “I have seen firsthand that being president doesn’t change who you are – it reveals who you are.”

President Clinton said“President Obama started with a much weaker economy than I did. No President – not me or any of my predecessors could have repaired all the damage in just four years.

Today is the last night of the Democratic National Convention with Joe Biden and Obama himself ringing down the curtain with perhaps the two most important speeches of their political lives.  What they say doesn’t have to be as good as what Bill and Michelle said,  but it would go a long ways to waking up the base if it’s every bit as good

If the Democrats don’t come out of their convention energized and mobilized to send Mitt back to one of his six homes it won’t be because the Big Dog and the First Lady didn’t do their part.

Motivation?  Yeah.  They built that.

The First Lady killed in Charlotte.