Progressives: Defeat Romney/Ryan in Swing States

It is critical to prevent a Republican administration under Romney/Ryan from taking office in January 2013.

The election is just a week away, and I want to urge those whose values are generally like mine — progressives, especially activists — to make this a high priority.

An activist colleague recently said to me: “I hear you’re supporting Obama.”  I was startled, and took offense.

“I lose no opportunity,” I told him angrily, “to identify Obama publicly as a servant of Wall Street: a man who’s decriminalized torture and is still complicit in it, a drone assassin, someone who’s launched an unconstitutional war, who claims authority to detain American citizens and others indefinitely without charges or even to execute them without due process, and who has prosecuted more whistleblowers like myself than all previous presidents put together. Would you call that support?”

My friend said, “But on Democracy Now you urged people in swing states to vote for him!  How could you say that?  I don’t live in a swing state, but I will not and could not vote for Obama under any circumstances.”

I said to him: “Like it or not, we have a two-party system in America.” (Why a Two-Party System is Inevitable in the United States and What to do About it)  The only real alternative for the next four years is Mitt Romney, who has endorsed every one of those criminal and unconstitutional offenses. And those are promises I believe he will keep.  That’s a terrible situation, but it won’t be improved by replacing Obama with Romney.

“I don’t ‘support Obama.’ I oppose the current Republican party. Obama’s policies, as I see them, range from criminal to–at their best–improvements on the recent past, partial and inadequate.  But current Republican policies range from criminal to disastrous.  That’s not really a hard choice.”

This not a contest between Barack Obama and a progressive–primary challenger or major candidate–or even a Republican who’s good on foreign policy and civil liberties like Ron Paul or Gary Johnson. What voters in a handful or a dozen close-fought swing states are going to determine on November 6 is whether or not Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are going to wield great political power for four, maybe eight years.

A Romney/Ryan administration would be no better on any of the constitutional violations I mentioned, or on anything else. But it would be catastrophically worse on many other important issues: The likelihood of attacking Iran, Supreme and Federal Court appointments, the economy and jobs, women’s reproductive rights, health coverage, the safety net, green energy and the environment.

As Noam Chomsky said recently (The Role of the Executive): “The Republican organization today is extremely dangerous, not just to this country, but to the world. It’s worth expending some effort to prevent their rise to power, without sowing illusions about the Democratic alternatives.”

He also told an interviewer (How Progressives Should Approach Election 2012): “Between the two choices that are presented, there are I think some significant differences. If I were a person in a swing state, I’d vote against Romney/Ryan, which means voting for Obama because there is no other choice. I happen to be in a non-swing state, so I can either not vote or — as I probably will — vote for [Green Party candidate] Jill Stein.”

I see it the same way.  Chomsky lives in Massachusetts, a “safe” blue state.  I too live in a non-swing state, blue California, so I, too, intend to vote for a progressive candidate, either Jill Stein or (as a write-in) my friend Rocky Anderson of the Justice Party.

Along with Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Frances Fox Piven, Cornel West, and others, I have encouraged others in non-swing states (including red states like Texas and Mississippi) to consider doing the same, in contrast to what we urge progressives in swing states to do, which is to vote against Romney/Ryan by voting for Obama/Biden (Make Your Progressive Vote Count for President).

We see long-term merit for our movement in registering a large protest vote against both major candidates and in favor of a truly progressive platform.  In the almost 40 non-swing states–red or blue–that can be done without significant risk of affecting the electoral votes of those states or the final outcome in favor of the Republicans.

But that isn’t true in the dozen or less battleground states—Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Iowa, Colorado, Iowa, Wisconsin, along with Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania—where decisions by relatively small numbers of progressives to vote for a third party or not to vote at all would risk and might well result in a Republican triumph. That risk, as we see it, outweighs any benefits there might be in pursuing votes for a progressive third party in those states.

I personally agree with almost everything Jill Stein and Rocky Anderson have to say–except when they say “Vote for me” in a swing state.

This election is a toss-up.  That means this is one of the uncommon occasions when we progressives—a small minority of the electorate—could actually determine the outcome of a national election. We might swing it one way or the other by how we vote and what we say about voting to fellow progressives in the battleground states.

Given that third-party candidates with genuinely progressive platforms are on the ballots of most of these swing states, their supporters—who might successfully encourage those with the same values to vote for Jill Stein or Rocky Anderson instead of Obama—could well provide the margin for Romney that would send him to the White House.

If, to the contrary, such voters in those states could be convinced to overcome their disinclination to vote for Obama ,  they could crucially block the far more regressive agenda of the Republican Party.

Our task is clear. The only way to block Romney/Ryan from office is to persuade enough people in swing states to vote for Obama–not stay home or vote for someone else.  And that has to include progressives and disillusioned liberals who are inclined not to vote at all or vote for a third-party candidate (because like me, they’re not just disappointed but disgusted and even enraged by much of what Obama has done in the last four years and will probably keep doing).

This is not easy.  But it’s precisely the effort Chomsky says is worth expending right now to prevent the Republicans’ rise to power.  And it will take progressives—some of you reading this, I hope—to make that effort effectively.

It’s true the differences between the major parties are not nearly as large as they and their candidates claim, let alone what we would want. In many aspects, especially in the areas of foreign and military policy and civil liberties that are the focus of my own activism, their policies closely converge (though small differences remain significant, all favoring Obama/Biden over Romney/Ryan).

It’s even fair to use Gore Vidal’s metaphor that they form two wings (“two right wings”) of a single party, the Money or Plutocracy Party, or, as Justin Raimondo calls it, the War Party.

Still, the reality is there are two distinguishable wings, and one is even worse than the other.   To deny that reality serves only the possibly imminent, yet still avoidable, victory of the worse.

The traditional third-party mantra, “There’s no significant difference between the major parties” amounts to saying: “The Republicans are no worse, overall.”  And that’s absurd. It constitutes shameless apologetics for the Republicans, however unintended.  It’s crazily divorced from the present reality.  (I say that, although I agree with virtually every passionate criticism of Obama’s policies I’ve ever heard from the left.  What I don’t hear from third-party partisans is comparable realism about the Republicans.)

Some progressives who do acknowledge that the Romney/Ryan party is “marginally” worse in some respects nevertheless believe that “worse is better” for progress in the longer run, by evoking more effective protest and resistance—especially from Democrats in Congress and the media—and a popular turn to leftist leadership and policies. But, historically, they’re profoundly wrong. That hoary theory would seem to have been well-tested and demolished by eight years under George W. Bush.

And it’s very harmful to be propagating either of those false perspectives.  They encourage progressives in battleground states either to refrain from voting or to vote for someone other than Obama, and, more importantly, to influence others to do the same. That serves no one but the Republicans and the 1%, and not only in the short run.

It is true that Obama has often acted outrageously, not merely timidly or “disappointingly.”  If impeachment on constitutional grounds were politically imaginable, he’s earned it (like George W. Bush, and many of his predecessors!)  It is entirely understandable to not want to reward him with another term or a vote that might be taken to mean trust, hope, or approval.

But to punish Obama by depriving him of progressives’ votes in battleground states and hence of office, in favor of Romney and Ryan, would serve to punish most of the poor and marginal in society, along with women, workers and the middle class. It would mean the end of Roe v. Wade, via Supreme Court appointments.

And the damaging impact would be not only in the U.S. but worldwide. In terms of the economy, I believe the Republicans would not only deepen the recession, but could convert it to a Great Depression.  They would attack women’s reproductive rights globally, and further worsen the environment and the prospects of climate change.  Disastrously, it could lead to war with Iran (a possibility even with Obama, but far more likely under Romney).

The re-election of Obama, in itself, is not going to bring serious progressive change, end militarism and empire, or restore the Constitution and the rule of law.  That’s for us and the rest of the public to bring about after this election and for the rest of our lives — through organizing, building movements, and agitating.

But to urge people in swing states to “vote their conscience” by voting for a third-party candidate is dangerously misleading advice. I would say to a progressive in a battleground state that if your conscience is telling you to vote for someone other than Obama, you need a second opinion. Your conscience seems to be ignoring the realistic impact of your actions or inactions.  You need to reexamine your estimates of likely consequences and moral reasoning.

Our demonstrations, petitions, movement building and civil disobedience—including protest and resistance to the wrongful practices of the incumbent administration–are needed every month, every year, including campaign seasons like this one. [I faced trial two weeks ago, with fourteen others, for civil disobedience protesting Obama’s continued tests of the Minuteman III ICBM’s, my fifth arrest protesting policies of President Obama, including the treatment of Bradley Manning and the continuation of war in Afghanistan).

But it has been clear for months that this is a moment when effective resistance to an even worse alternative administration that is within sight of power is also urgently needed, leading up to and on Election Day.

In this last week of this campaign, there is no more effective or pressing political effort which progressives can undertake than to make their voices heard–through e-mails, blogs, social media, and public appearances–to encourage citizens in swing states to vote against a Romney victory by voting for the only real alternative, Barack Obama.

(Daniel Ellsberg is a former State and Defense Department official who released the top secret Pentagon Papers in 1971, for which he faced 115 years in prison (charges dismissed for governmental misconduct figuring in the impeachment hearings for Richard Nixon that led to his resignation).  He has been arrested more than 80 times subsequently for actions of non-violent civil disobedience.  He is the author of “Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers,” and is currently writing a book on his experience as a nuclear war planner.  He lives in Kensington, California, with his wife Patricia, sister of Barbara Marx Hubbard.)

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  • Sinclair

    So, whatever else the New Spirituality may be about or the God who wants “nothing” from us, we should definitely vote against Republicans and vote for Democrats even if we can’t make a decent argument for Democrats except that they are against Republicans.

    Good to know.

    Sounds enlightened to me.

  • Michael L.

    Thank you Daniel,

    Honor to read your words. You have put your life on the line for what you believe.

    Now you ask like minded folks to rally around your cause, a cause that progressives can get behind. And even though you say not much will change with your candidate getting elected, you don’t see any redeeming quality in the other candidate. Fine.

    So here we are back to the idea, picking one we think will hurt us the lest.

    I would say four more years of the same would change this country a lot. There would be a build up of frustration unheard of. Might be worth it to see that explosion of activism, and not this time from the left.

    Be careful what you wish for, you may get it!

  • Therese

    Sinclair and Michael,

    I just don’t get the same thing from this article as you do.

    I don’t see this as Mr. Ellsberg saying that the Democrats have nothing going for them except they are against Republicans. I see him saying that, (In CWG context, politics is our spirituality demonstrated) that neither is perfect, but one, the Democratic Party, is the platform from which we can begin to build. It is the jumping off point for the new paradigm referred to here, in the old TGC format, over and over again.

    Every journey must begin with the first step forward. It is for certain that we will not go forward by going backward.

    Michael, you seem to think that there is no frustration that builds in the left! This country is very much right of center in its activism, and the left is feeling quite disenfranchised by the power exerted by the right over this presidency via the tactics of the Republican Party and the Republican legislature…who, by the way, made removing this President as its (expressed) only goal for three years, to the point of torpedoing legislation co-written because it might help reelect Obama…to the detriment of the service members it claims to hold in high esteem. There is much resentment from this woman who is still being told she is a second class citizen. There is much resentment from Black people who, according to recent surveys, have 79% of Republicans prejudiced against them, and up to 59% of the nation! These are things that must be transformed for our country, and, indeed, the world to transform.

    I never thought President Obama would be able to do all he thought he might. In central Texas it was made clear, via the “good old boy network”, that they were going to do all they could to make this man a one term president, including assassination.

    What made this presidency significant to me was the fact that this man was even WILLING to take the job! This man was willing to be the first, in the same manner as women suffragettes, and civil rights marchers. He was willing to be called too black and not black enough. He was willing, literally, to lay down his life to be the first.

    Mr. Ellsberg has clearly said that he doesn’t believe that this president is THE answer, but he does clearly believe that this current Republican candidate and party is NOT the answer, as you have pointed out. The flip side, Michael, of “picking the one we think will hurt us the lest.” is what? I choose to think of it as picking the one who will help me the most, even it that help is incremental and not at fast as I would like. Looking at it in this light keeps me focused and I get less distracted by those things that look like what I do not want. Looking at it in this light allows me to express my spirituality through my politics in a way that, I feel, works better for me.

    Obviously I notice all of the chaos. It is hard not to notice and not react. However, remember, spirituality does not mean that one sits back and takes no stand and no action. To me it means quite the contrary…get active, take a stand, make your point, engage when it seems appropriate to do so. But do all of this with the attitude that we are all, ultimately, in this whole thing together, and that we really do all, ultimately, desire the same things. As “The Only Thing That Matters” states, we must move into understanding. It will all move forward from there…and, no, understanding does not mean accepting that something that doesn’t work has to stay in the picture. It means understanding why it was there in the first place and finding the way to allow all to move past what doesn’t work and into what does.

    Yikes! I am pretty sure I do not even know what I have just written! I just know that we all have to stop tiptoeing around this whole thing. It is okay to think that this President is not perfect. What is not okay is to focus all of our attention on what doesn’t work, to the exclusion of that which does. We must, must, must start building on those things that do!

    Therese

  • Lloyd

    I mostly agree with your rational Daniel, and as a Progressive myself, a member of Occupy and Move On groups as well as a registered Democrate my vote has already been cast for Obama. Being from Texas I vote for any Democrat in hopes of sending support for Obama to congress so many more of his programs can be passed. It wasn’t Obama that did nothing to help move America ahead, it was the Republican House and many Blue Dog Dems that sold out the American public to the interest of big business.

    Republicans are antifreedom, authoriative facist who cling to the ideology that greed is good, and the general public are free loaders with their hands out. Listen to their rethoric, about immigrants, and welfare moms and retirees and students and on and on anyone who ask for assistance is a bum. Yet when their Wall Street crook brothers held their hands out they filled their pockets with our money and said it was a just need to save our economy. Those folks that lost their homes and jobs in this economic castastrophe were just stupid investors and should have known better and read the small print. What the Republicans want is Facism, wealthy ruling classes that determine how the working class is allowed to exist, and anyone who opposses them are terrorist.

    Look at the platform put forth by the Republican party plainly stating no freedom for half the population, women, and no marriage or acceptance of any person who isn’t like themselves, willing to hide their true nature behind a false face of greedy lust for what others have. How about imigrants, well we are all immigrants, the American culture has almost killed off all native Americans, but lets’ forget about those sins, no compassion for immigrants the dirty buggers.

    Now the Dems are more tolerant toward American citizens, women, veterans, and humanity in general. They are willing to accept the fact we need change, in education, in health care for ALL, in tolerance toward other countries political views, etc. and this makes them extremely dangerous to those who seek control of our society. Examples, endorsing an end to the war, reduction of military spending, and equal taxation for corporation and wealthy. Yes the Democratic party has a long, long way to go before they reach the goals I set out for my hopes for America, but they are at least willing to listen and show compassion for those of us struggling to survive. So vote Democratic on all issues involving this election. Keep the faith in the American people knowing who has their back in this situation, and who cares about their issues in this society, and watch the election results prove it to be true, America is not dead, nor ignorant. Namaste’
    Butch

  • Michael L

    Hi Therese,

    Thank you for you strongly held beliefs I honor them, too.
    You did say:
    “I don’t see this as Mr. Ellsberg saying that the Democrats have nothing going for them except they are against Republicans.

    But he did say this:
    “The re-election of Obama, in itself, is not going to bring serious progressive change,”

    You name me Therese as the face of your opposition, I am not.

    I honor your right to express your views. Thank you whole heatedly.

    You do make a lot of absolute statements. and it was my understanding that there is no right or wrong, just what works and what doesn’t. And from Mr. Ellsberg’s article he seems to believe that these last four years haven’t been very productive for the progressive party.

    I can see this election going either way and anything I say here will not change it. I don’t hold either party in high esteem , but these blog posts were so one sided it was too easy to just show the other side.

    Love your passion, keep it up.

  • Therese

    Hi, Michael,

    Yeah, yeah, yeah…you caught me! After I posted I read your post again and went, crap! Michael didn’t say that…but Michael will “fore go forgiveness and move to understanding”, because he is such an understanding person! (hope, pray, fingers crossed!)

    Yes, I admit that I kind of dug my own heels in, and have been getting a little bit caught up in the agitation of these days, especially here in Texas where it is so very conservative for the most part. This is an area where many people refuse to call their President “President”, and fairly hiss “Mr.” Obama. But, you are absolutely correct, being the same way is not going to help balance anything.

    I will still, however, agree with the fundamental statement/message of Mr. Ellsberg’s piece, as I see it…

    “But to urge people in swing states to “vote their conscience” by voting for a third-party candidate is dangerously misleading advice. I would say to a progressive in a battleground state that if your conscience is telling you to vote for someone other than Obama, you need a second opinion. Your conscience seems to be ignoring the realistic impact of your actions or inactions. You need to reexamine your estimates of likely consequences and moral reasoning.” (and the consequences as he sees it, and enumerates in other parts of the article).

    T.

  • Michael L

    My Dearest Therese,

    Don’t give it a second thought!!!

    If we disenfranchised voters all got together for a more enlightened candidate, we might really make some changes around here.

    I would have to research how many voters in all those states have no voice because of where they live. It’s got to be significant as some elections the popular vote is bigger then the electoral college vote.

    Remember you do have voice in your local election.

  • larry siedell

    Why in the world would you be bringing something like this to this site. Do you guys not have any shame.. I spent 3o years in the FBI and had I had one instance of some affiliation with the communist party I would not have been hired. We have a President who has spent millions on hiding his background and he has the highest clearance in the government and factual ties to the communist party, as well as 80 other members of Congress, and all other ties to radicals and Islamist, and you worry about what the Republicans will do. He cares not for this country just see how he handled Libya and let 4 men die, and does he care. He says it is just a bump in the road. As I see it this site is about caring for your brother and wanting a world in which we have peace and harmony and your voice here does not represent that. Our government as it is does not work and you should read the CWG books and help us to get one that does instead of promoting an unqualified candidate.

  • mewabe

    A new film exposes how the Koch brothers and billionaire political donors to Romney and the Republicans backed re-segregation in Wake County, North Carolina.

    Charles and David Koch, the brains behind the massive Koch Industries conglomerate and the funders of so many right-wing political causes, are national figures, credited with launching the tea party movement and waging war on the Obama administration and its agenda.

    There are deep connections between the Koch and Wake County, and it’s all about the money. The latest installment in the Brave New Foundation’s “Koch Brothers Exposed” video series reveals how a Koch-founded and funded outfit, Americans for Prosperity, fueled a campaign to re-segregate the schools of Wake County, a prosperous area in central North Carolina

    The Koch brothers have also given massive amounts of money to Romney’s campaign and sent 50 000 pro Romney mailings to their employees.

    Can anyone help it if the right wing is so far out of touch with reality (except that of the ruling elite) that it is now consistently on the wrong side of the issues, anti-environmentalist, racist, anti-women, pro-war, anti-worker (anti union), and pro-deregulation so that big business can screw the population and the planet even more and without consumer and environmental protection?

    Please keep bringing such issues and commentaries as the one above by Daniel Ellsberg to this site, THANK YOU FOR TELLING IT LIKE IT IS!!!

  • Michael L

    Hi Larry,

    I understand your angst, as I also understand the disappointment the progressives have in their leadership.

    Both sides wish for change, we just disagree on how to get it.

    And there is no trust that the other side could ever be honest. Where is the trust going to come from? How do we ourselves who are co-creating, trust another with a different point of view? How do I love myself as I look other there at the others foreign mind?

    Remember there is no right or wrong here, and we are just trying to get to the highest truth. The honest truth as to what we are doing here.

    You know the more I delve into this mess we called “sides”, the more depressed I get. We are purposely separating our selves. so we can be BETTER and to be SUPERIOR and unfortunately to be “right”. Making the other half wrong.

    What IS happening on a cultural consciousnesses level. Who will stop the grid lock? Or do we care.

  • larry siedell

    Wow are you people brainwashed? You need to stop buying what these people are saying and look at what is really happening. I truly believe this is why God is reaching out to us since the 90’s in the CWG books and other places. If you haven’t read them you need to!!!!

    Remember God saying, Hitler went to Heaven because 10 million people let him do it. Why would he think he is crazy when 10 million people supported him.

    Think about it, look who the major people are supporting the President, people who are dependent on the government. Dependency fails in the long run, read the CWG books again. But the bigger picture is this, we have a major war building in the middle east and this President is not doing anything to stop it. This war is about religion period, been that way for thousands of years and now they think they have the perfect storm to get it done because the US is ok with it. We have done nothing to stop the build up of nuclear arms and when a maniac gets his hand on the button, watch out. Hell, the unions were behind the overthrowing of the governments in the middle east and remember the white house saying the muslim brotherhood is not a threat.. read what is going on in Egypt now and what they said would not happen is happening.
    That is problem number one.

    Bet you didn’t know the real reason behind Obamacare and its not to help the poor, it is to create 21 million new members into the union, why do you think the union boss was at the white house more than anyone else. Did you believe him when he said their would be no death panels, funny how they are now saying there will be along with rationing. Think Obama cares for the illegals, yeah right, he just wants their vote. How ridiculous is it to sue a state to stop doing what is law in the state. And you talk about the Koch brothers, why don’t you google George Soros and then talk to me about the Koch brothers. Everything Soros has created has been to bring down our country. He owns the liberal media and that’s why you don’t get the full truth from the media anymore. And he is the one pulling the strings on Obama.

    I am sorry to vent here but there are a lot of people buying into what this man says, a person who will lie directly to your face on TV, but you had better wake up for the next 4 years without an election to worry about, this man will destroy us as a free country. He did 930 executive orders and you should read what freedoms those take away, google them. He will destroy the Constitution.

    The CWG books explains how we can change things and that is what I thought this site was suppose to be about but first thing I find is ad about obama, how sic is that. Ellsberg never says anything about CWG, it is just a blunt promotion for obama and you guys buy it…
    I am not saying the Republicans are any better, but I do know where Obama is leading us and it is not going to be pretty…

  • larry siedell

    On second thought, this is exactly where we should be having this conversation!! Our collective consciousness is fundamentally wrong and it is leading us down the wrong side of the cliff. Government is the problem here period. No matter who is President, it is the masses in the government that is the problem. We have to change our collective conscientious if we want our world to continue as a free nation that we were built on. But then it really doesn’t matter, we are making it all up and there is no end to the game; but it would be sad that we left this country in a primitive state. We as a nation could not even solve the problem of people starving to death. How sad is that. Our politicians go into government making 100 k a year and come out multimillionaires, really. Corruption is rampant.
    I would like to move this conversation to doing that, changing our thought process toward what the CWG books say we need to do.

    By Charles Krauthammer, Published: November 1

    “Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that Richard Nixon did not and in a way that Bill Clinton did not.” That was Barack Obama in 2008. And he was right. Reagan was an ideological inflection point, ending a 50-year liberal ascendancy and beginning a 30-year conservative ascendancy.

    It is common for one party to take control and enact its ideological agenda. Ascendancy, however, occurs only when the opposition inevitably regains power and then proceeds to accept the basic premises of the preceding revolution.

    Thus, Republicans railed for 20 years against the New Deal. Yet when they regained the White House in 1953, they kept the New Deal intact.

    And when Nixon followed LBJ’s Great Society — liberalism’s second wave — he didn’t repeal it. He actually expanded it. Nixon created the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), gave teeth to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and institutionalized affirmative action — major adornments of contemporary liberalism.

    Until Reagan. Ten minutes into his presidency, Reagan declares that “government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem.” Having thus rhetorically rejected the very premise of the New Deal/Great Society, he sets about attacking its foundations — with radical tax reduction, major deregulation, a frontal challenge to unionism (breaking the air traffic controllers for striking illegally) and an (only partially successful) attempt at restraining government growth.

    Reaganism’s ascendancy was confirmed when the other guys came to power and their leader, Bill Clinton, declared (in his 1996 State of the Union address) that “the era of big government is over” — and then abolished welfare, the centerpiece “relief” program of modern liberalism.

    In Britain, the same phenomenon: Tony Blair did to Thatcherism what Clinton did to Reaganism. He made it the norm.

    Obama’s intention has always been to re-normalize, to reverse ideological course, to be the anti-Reagan — the author of a new liberal ascendancy. Nor did he hide his ambition. In his February 2009 address to Congress he declared his intention to transform America. This was no abstraction. He would do it in three areas: health care, education and energy.

    Think about that. Health care is one-sixth of the economy. Education is the future. And energy is the lifeblood of any advanced country — control pricing and production, and you’ve controlled the industrial economy.

    And it wasn’t just rhetoric. He enacted liberalism’s holy grail: the nationalization of health care. His $830 billion stimulus, by far the largest spending bill in U.S. history, massively injected government into the free market — lavishing immense amounts of tax dollars on favored companies and industries in a naked display of industrial policy.

    And what Obama failed to pass through Congress, he enacted unilaterally by executive action. He could not pass cap-and-trade, but his EPA is killing coal. (No new coal-fired power plant would ever be built.) In 2006, liberals failed legislatively to gut welfare’s work requirement. Obama’s new Health and Human Services rule does that by fiat. Continued in a second term, it would abolish welfare reform as we know it — just as in a second term, natural gas will follow coal, as Obama’s EPA regulates fracking into noncompetitiveness.

    Government grows in size and power as the individual shrinks into dependency. Until the tipping point where dependency becomes the new norm — as it is in Europe, where even minor retrenchment of the entitlement state has led to despair and, for the more energetic, rioting.

    An Obama second term means that the movement toward European-style social democracy continues, in part by legislation, in part by executive decree. The American experiment — the more individualistic, energetic, innovative, risk-taking model of democratic governance — continues to recede, yielding to the supervised life of the entitlement state.

    If Obama loses, however, his presidency becomes a historical parenthesis, a passing interlude of overreaching hyper-liberalism, rejected by a center-right country that is 80 percent nonliberal.

    Should they summon the skill and dexterity, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan could guide the country to the restoration of a more austere and modest government with more restrained entitlements and a more equitable and efficient tax code. Those achievements alone would mark a new trajectory — a return to what Reagan started three decades ago.

    Every four years we are told that the coming election is the most important of one’s life. This time it might actually be true. At stake is the relation between citizen and state, the very nature of the American social contract.

  • mewabe

    Not to worry, America is still the best country in the nation Ha Ha…

  • mewabe

    Goldman Sachs, the most dominant investment bank in the world, is now predicting that America will outpace Saudi Arabia in oil production before the end of this decade.

    “Goldman Sachs estimates that the United States will be the largest producer of oil in the world by 2017 at over 10.7 barrels per year, up from about 8.9 billion today”
    MarketWatch

    Most people still don’t know that an oil boom is happening right now. The technologies that led to the natural gas glut between 2008 and 2012 have been put to work in oilfields across the U.S. The resulting oil boom, underway right now, will become the greatest creation of wealth in America’s history.

    New major oil reserves are being discovered faster now than ever before in American history. Thousands of new drilling rigs are being put to work, along with hundreds of thousands of Americans. The size of America’s proven reserves of oil (not just natural gas) are poised to soar.

    To give you some idea about the scope of these discoveries, consider that the total proven oil reserves in the United States today stand at 21 billion barrels. But in each of the major oil shale plays we’re following, our sources tell us that there are more than 20 billion barrels of oil. Harold Hamm, for example, who is the CEO of Continental Resources, says there’s 24 billion barrels of oil in North Dakota’s Bakken formation. He would know. He’s drilled more oil wells up there than anyone else.

    —————————————————————————————-

    Quoted from Stransberry’s Investment Advisory.

    And all this under Obama Larry, this should make you feel better!

    By the way, how do you explain the creation of the largest government bureaucracy in decades under a Republican administration, Homeland Security, under GWB?

    The current extreme right wing does not like business to be regulated to protect workers or the environment for future generations (just like China by the way, that imprisons and tortures union leaders), but when it comes to the police state, it seem to have no objection over big government. Of course not.

    “Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the
    merger of corporate and government power” – Benito Mussolini

  • Erin/IAm

    Personally, I have not experienced to-date the incredible indecision of these present elections. I See this as a major crossroads of J.Q. Public. And what is the purpose of ‘crossroads’? Opts for Change of Direction. Usually these are Life-rocking stops before re-movement.

    We may not ‘get what we want’ of present choices, but a majority is thinking deeper of the process for future decisions…The opening of new avenues to venture toward are being sought. This, to me, is as a ‘refresh’ button looking for a push…’pro’-gression at it’s finest.

    Instead of being disgruntled of our political chains, perhaps a bit of celebrating a grander vision…grander possibilities…would bring about the weak-link breakage that is so needed.
    Allow the Chaos ensue…Allow a time of ‘sorting out the dysfunctions’…Allow the ‘Calm’ to move us in new direction with enlightened directives.

    Good Journey, Beloveds! We are in interesting times, indeed!:)

  • Therese W.

    Mewabe,

    I just listened to that Stansberry thing (sheesh! and hour and a half and no pause??). If this is true, it could lead to a delay in doing what really works for our environment, because oil and natural gas will be cheap again. I am hoping for balance. I believe that there is a requirement for oil/gas and their byproducts, but I don’t believe they should be used when an eco friendly solution is present…for instance, there are cars that run on compressed air! Not the prettiest, and not the fastest, but, for heaven sake, compressed air!

    Stansberry also believes that this will cause President Obama to run for a third and possibly 4th term, and predicts other things, some he views as good, and others he doesn’t. I listened to it with a dual mind. Of course I would like to see this economic malaise end, but not if it is going to result in some dynastic presidency, as he envisions. The other part of my mind said that Stansberry is one of the “them” we have been talking about, whose life revolves around money and consolidating the power of money, and dangling those carrots.

    I think, if the oil and natural gas projections are true (and some quick fact checking says that they are), this is yet another opportunity for we, who believe there is a better way, can change the direction this money is used, and have a prosperity that benefits the masses and not the few. Stansberry’s descriptions of what President Obama would do, actually, fit into what The Global Conversation is envisioning! Stansberry and others sneeringly use the word “socialism”, but it isn’t a dirty word! Just as “communism” isn’t a dirty word! It has been the human application of ideals that has gone awry. The U.S., as he points out, has actually been quite socialist since the early 1900’s! The U.S. has two of the purest socialist structures in the world, and they actually work quite well…Medicare and the V.A. system.

    As with everything, it is in the viewing of the situation, and not looking at anything in only one way. As was pointed out in another article here, we have to look at things with a view to understanding, rather than judging…well, as best as we are capable of weighing the information, vs “judging”!

    T.

  • mewabe

    Therese, I totally agree with you, everything you wrote…I like to see what someone like Stansberry has to say because, although I disagree with his ideology completely, I want to know what is happening concerning the environment etc, and he usually has accurate information.

    I do not see this oil and natural gas (fracking technology) development as being positive at all…it will be an environmental disaster if allowed…but this information certainly contradicts the Romney lies about Obama not allowing the oil industry to drill, and puts the Republican lies in a new perspective, and that was my goal here.

    There is nothing better than an investment newsletter (especially a free one) to keep track of potential environmental disasters…from such a newsletter I usually get the information weeks before environmentalist groups send me an update and a petition to sign about a potential problem in the making.

    I think Stansberry’s idea that Obama is going to run for a third or fourth term is part of some paranoia that seems to surface around conservative circles these days…but to be fair some on the other side feared that GW Bush would declare martial law and stay in office for an indefinite amount of time under the pretext of a “national emergency”…everyone seems to fear the executive branch’s power today.