Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Catnip 4/25/12


Because nothing says "welcome to the ball game" like razor wire.

Oakland. Not for wusses.

Here now the news:

This. Must Read. With a capital "R". About Romney's "victory" speech: "In an ideal world, all of this would be a part of the political conversation in an election year. As the standard-bearer for the Republican Party, Mitt Romney would have to answer a few questions: Is it not true that Obama has spent his term cleaning up the wreckage of the last Republican president? Why shouldn’t we hold the GOP responsible for the gridlock of the past three years? How do you intend to fix the economy, if you are touting the same policies as your Republican predecessor?

Of course, none of this will be asked. As he did in this speech, Romney will be allowed to campaign as if the past never happened, and the Republican Party didn’t have a part in producing the current circumstances. His campaign will run on clich├ęs, and angrily swat back at anyone who questions his refusal to acknowledge the people—his fellow Republicans—who created this mess in the first place."

Romney's speech as a wordcloud: Hat tip to BuzzFeed.

Ezra's review: "Romney never makes the turn to how he would achieve this America. Believing in it is apparently enough. The end result isn't so much a preview of how Romney would govern the country as a game of "I Spy: America the Beautiful" edition. I'm not a pollster. I don't know if the American people want to hear about policy. Perhaps they prefer gauzy generalities. Perhaps they're more interested in what candidates think of America than what they want to do for America. But if this is what the general election is going to be like, then it's not going to be a clash of visions. It's going to be a clash of adjectives. And in that case, it really will be the economy, stupid, as the American people will have nothing in particular to vote for." Romney formula: Take the words "freedom" and "America", and say them often. Apparently it polls well.

House Republicans are backing away from the draconian Ryan budget. Don't let them get away with it. They already voted for it. It's on record and everything.

Andrew Kaczynski at BuzzFeed kindly digs up this article from 2007 that shows Mitt Romney loved him some taxes back with he was governor of Massachusetts. Thing is, he raised them for the poor and disabled in the form of fines and fee increases. Massachusetts "led the nation during Romney's first year, raising fees and fines by $501 million." IOKIYAR.

Woe to those in the swing states, for the ad wars are coming for you. Yesterday it was Crossroads targeting Senate races with a million dollar buy, today it's a million from President Obama's SuperPac and the League of Conservation Voters targeting Colorado and Nevada on Romney's cozy relationship with Big Oil.

When Karl Rove warns that you've gone "over the top" with accusations made for political purposes (re: Secret Service, GSA), you know you have a problem.

Speaking of "over the top", Boehner indicates that if Obama is re-elected, it's the end for America. Sargent: "This is really crazy stuff, but such lurid invocations of impending Big Government Apocalpyse have become par for the course among today’s Republican leaders. Paul Ryan, who has become the intellectual leader of the party on fiscal matters, claims we are approaching a ”tipping point beyond which the nation will be unable to change course.” Government. It's the new "terrorist" or "gay marriage", as the Republicans only know how to sell and/or inspire fear. All you know is you're supposed to be afraid. (See: Romney attacks on Obama, victory speech)

Harry Reid draws a line on Keystone. We will see if it sticks.

This is bad: "Durable goods orders tumbled 4.2 percent (in March), the largest decline since January 2009, the Commerce Department said on Wednesday after a downwardly revised 1.9 percent increase in February." Durable goods are basically a leading indicator/overall measure of economic growth.

President Obama is hitting the media circuit. Besides the Fallon appearance last night, there will be a cover of the Rolling Stone story, and Greg Sargent points out a L.A. Times as well as a National Journal article today. Get ready to get re-acquainted with the President's personal story over the next few months. He's a nice guy.