Posts Tagged 'political ads'

Please…enough already

Please…enough already.

I’ve worn down the delete key of my old HP PC by banishing hundreds of political messages to the trash bin. Messages that warn me that Republican Armageddon will arrive right on schedule on November 4…unless I send money.  Lots of money.  The world will come crashing down on us if my deficit-saddled candidates don’t meet their October fund-raising goals.  And I’m solely responsible.

But things can’t be all that bad, can they? This morning I saw a CNN footer crawl across my bloated political message laden screen that announced “candidates are having a very tough time finding available ad space on TV.”  Big surprise.

More importantly, why is everyone so down in the mouth about the Democrats’ chances of keeping even one back row seat in the 2015 Senate? Live with it I say. It’s your turn in the barrel.  A much improved economy, healthcare for millions, military exits from places we never should have been, and a surprisingly robust stock market have no bearing on the voting habits of the general public.  TV has seen to that.

And then there’s the House of Representatives. There’s not a chance that the House might even seat one surprise Democrat victor.  Everyone knows that the Republicans have a lock on that asylum.  The Democrats have thrown in the towel and the bathtub.  Fugedaboudit.

And what’s up with that eerie silence of late in both the House and among the Senate minority Republicans about their god-given moral assignment to repeal Obamacare.  Accustomed as I am to their single-mindedness about the issue, I find myself missing the vitriolic speeches about the days of death panels, government control of my body and the first step toward a Communist takeover.

Perhaps the ebola virus has taken center stage. Along with the obvious…that it’s all Obama’s fault.  The two cases of the dreaded pestilence could surely have been prevented had the President been on duty in that Texas hospital emergency room when the first of what surely will be tens of millions of cases turned up.  You won’t have to rely on Hollywood manufactured Zombie movies anymore.  They’ll be right at your doorstep.

Fortunately, this morning I was relieved of any concern that something might actually get done in the newly constituted, Republican majority Senate. On Tuesday, in a rare instance of stark realism, the about-to-be Senate leader Mitch McConnell admitted that Obamacare could not be repealed since the Republicans will not, save a miracle conjured up by Pat Robertson or Billy Graham, have the required sixty seats to ram through the as yet unannounced Republican version of a new, more wonderful, healthcare system. But then all hell broke loose in the Conservative ranks.  How dare Mitch, that normally reliable Luddite, even for a moment consider such a logical, but never-to-be-spoken-of possibility.

“Ooops, my bad”, he said. Remembering that he was up for re-election in less than a week, Mitch regained his other-world composure and quickly announced that he was “fully committed to the repeal of Obamacare.”  Shocking.  In brief, he would do so through the previously despised (when the Democrats did it) slippery procedure called Reconciliation.  Requiring only a simple majority in the Senate, Mitch would send blizzards of bills to the President that would, if signed, assure the continuation of the Government (budgets, appointments, housekeeping stuff) in the Republican mode (you know, banning abortion, stopping gay marriage, easing pollution regulations, liberalizing banking rules, loosening consumer protections, strengthening the military and maybe impeaching the black guy.)  And, attached to those bills would be a few succinct phrases that would also dismantle Obamacare.  Aaaah, a breath of fresh air.

Forced to watch the Government descend into nothingness should he not sign the bills, the black guy could cave and Obamacare will be the first victim of its own death panel. A barrage of vetoes by the reclusive (or is it dictatorial) foreign born alien would assure the Republicans of two years worth of talking points that blame the Kenyan sitting in the Oval Office for everything from the disgrace of an unprepared military to a lack of toilet paper in the Senate visitors’ gallery.  Then again, maybe a lack of toilet paper is just the right accompaniment for a constipated Congress.

So, my friends. Not to worry.  We will have the same sort of gridlock for the next two years.  But at least we won’t have to worry about good government interfering with the circus-like atmosphere of nominating the 2016 presidential candidates.

Lies, lies and more lies

It’s a wonder that anyone tells the truth in politics.  Negative ads, financed by folks who have no interest in the facts, are the soup du jour of our TV screens.  Based on my careful calculations, superpacs alone have contributed about a bazillion dollars per lie to the current Republican primary battle.  Can you even fathom the money that is yet to be spent creating the image that the sky will fall if the black guy gets another four years.  But that should surprise no one.  Lies have been a mainstay in creating fear in the minds of those most vulnerable.  And in finding convenient scapegoats to blame for the liars’ own failures.

I am reasonably conversant with anti-Semitism having been exposed to it on several memorable occasions.  But it never hurts to take a refresher course.  I’m currently reading Phyllis Goldstein’s treatise on the subject  A Convenient Hatred.  Ms. Goldstein chronicles the use of misinformation and lies in subjugating and blaming Jews for many of the world’s catastrophes including  plagues, wars, economic collapse and Lindsay Lohan.  Coursing through her book, you are repeatedly exposed to the willingness of the majority to accept, cheer and rebroadcast blatant falsehoods.

Maybe that’s why most Jews place great importance on the truth.  Why we are taught early on that lying is immoral and unjust.  Why lies stick in our mouths.  And maybe that’s why I was taken aback earlier this week.

My old school chum Gary, a Jew, has tobogganed to the political right…way right.  He does e-blasts that generally chronicle the reasons why the left is to be blamed for all our ills.  I scan his mail with a grain of salt and will occasionally trade notes with Gary that take issue with his observations.  On Wednesday I opened the latest Gary-blast and found the following which he had probably cribbed from some other blast…

 It is time to clean the congressional house and the presidency for the sake  of our children and grandchildren.  We need some honest people in politics who are able to read any bill that jeopardizes the public like this one that you are about to read!!!!

Did you know that if you sell your house after 2012 you will pay a 3.8% sales tax on it?  That’s $3,800 on a $100,000 home,  etc.  When did this happen?  It’s in the health care bill and goes into effect in 2013.

Not one to take this at face value, I read about the tax and found that Gary had been a bit over-zealous.

Dear Gary, I wrote…You really need to read the facts about this.  The tax is on the profits over $500,000 made on the sale of a home and you need an income that exceeds $250,000. Here’s a link.  Oh, and I assume you will publish a retraction.

Dear Fred, he wrote… Doesn’t your property exceed $500,00?  And I just love the fact that no one read the entire bill until it was passed (Thanks Ms. Pelosi).

Dear Gary, I wrote… Don’t be like Ms. Pelosi.  Read the facts.  The tax is on the profit from the sale, not the sale price.  And, for a couple, the first $500,000 of profit is excludable.  So, if I made a million in profit I’d pay about $20,000 in tax.  I should live so long.  And, of equal importance, the tax only falls on those with an income of more than $250,000.  Now will you publish a retraction?

I guess Gary is busy since no retraction has found its way to my mailbox.

Now maybe this doesn’t rise to Holocaust proportions but what really bothers me is that a Jew can ignore his own history and proceed down a path that should be abhorrent to him.  Yes, I can hear some of you say “What’s he so bent out of shape about?  This is 2012. All that stuff is behind us.  Lying is part of the political process.  Everyone does it.”  Really?

Last week we heard the upbeat news about jobs.  Hooray we said.  Progress.  Some of us were pleased.  Some claimed the books were cooked.  Paul Krugman, a Jew writing for that Commie paper the Times, had this to say about how to attack the facts…The answer is to throw a bunch of bogus numbers at the issues, in the hope that something sticks, or at least that the discussion becomes confused.

…and that’s in a best case.


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