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Old 11-24-2017, 01:21 AM  
oaklandhater oaklandhater is offline
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Bruce Bartlett The Republican Party needs to die

https://www.salon.com/2017/11/23/gop...-needs-to-die/

Bruce Bartlett

CHAUNCEY DEVEGA
11.23.2017ē9:00 AM
American democracy is in crisis, a fact that should be obvious to everyone but that too many people keep ignoring. The president of the United States, Donald Trump, does not believe in or respect basic norms of democratic governance. His words and behavior reveal a deep affinity for fascism.
Over the last few decades there has been an increase in authoritarian values among American voters, and this is especially true for Republicans and other conservatives.
The Citizens United decision defined corporate money as free speech. This undermines American democracy by allowing the most powerful business interests and the richest individuals to overrule and veto the desires of the American people.
The United States is an oligarchy. Recent research shows that the country's elected officials are most responsive to the rich, business interest groups and others with the resources to buy access.

The Republican Party uses gerrymandering and voter suppression to remain in power. It has ceased to believe in any form of compromise or negotiation with Democrats or liberals. This has made consensus politics and a healthy, responsive, functioning government all but impossible.

Public faith in basic social institutions is declining and the American public, broadly speaking, lacks civic literacy. This is a recipe for the American authoritarianism and demagoguery embodied by Trump and the Republican Party.
Journalists, the so-called Fourth Estate, were supposed to sound the alarm about these developments. Instead, the corporate news media has all too often defaulted to a naÔve belief that America's democratic institutions are healthy and strong, thus able to resist any challenge or corruption. Instead of being truth-tellers who balance power by informing the public so the latter can make good decisions, the corporate media empowered Donald Trump and the Republican Party through a slavish devotion to "fairness" and "balance" and a "both sides do it" narrative.
How has the truth been assaulted by Donald Trump and the Republican Party? What role did Trump's incessant lies and his talking points about "fake news" play in his election? How does the myth of the "liberal media" empower the American right? Is there any space for a liberal or centrist alternative to Fox News and the broader right-wing disinformation-propaganda machine? Can the Republican Party in its present form be saved? Does the Trump campaign's alleged collusion with Russia during the 2016 presidential election reflect a larger cultural and political problem?

In an effort to answer these questions I recently spoke with Bruce Bartlett. He was a former White House adviser under President Ronald Reagan and also served under President George H.W. Bush. Bartlett is a regular contributor to the New York Times and has appeared on CNN, MSNBC and other major news networks. He is the author of the new book "The Truth Matters: A Citizen's Guide to Separating Facts From Lies and Stopping Fake News in Its Tracks."
A longer version of this conversation can be heard on my podcast, which is available on Salonís Featured Audio page.

How do you think Donald Trump was able to get elected?
I admit that I was dismayed by the election results. As I thought about how it happened, it just seemed to me that a big part of the story is the media. The media is broken and has adopted certain conventions that I think have normalized Trumpís craziness as well as the craziness of the Republican Party.
Why do you think the mainstream news media was so reluctant to directly confront and expose Trump's lies?

When the mainstream media began to downsize to cope with the loss of revenue from advertising and subscribers, the first thing they did was lay off their most senior reporters. They were able to save a lot of money that way. The problem is that a lot of journalistic training takes place informally in the newsroom, where young reporters learn from the old veterans who have been around for a long time. One of the things that you learn in that way that can't be taught in the university is how to tell when somebody is lying.
There is also ďhe said, she saidĒ journalism, where in order to gain access to a source that can now go around the traditional news media through Twitter and other methods you have to give them whatever they want.
Your source has to be convinced that youíre going to be good to them and get their message out the way they want it to be gotten out, so reporters are now almost forced to be stenographers. Now, obviously the reporters can't just do that, but neither can they inject themselves into the story and say, ďOK, hereís what my source inside the campaign is saying but my reporting and examination of the facts says this is all bullshit, that itís a lie." They can't do that because then they burn their source, the source will never talk to them again if they tell the truth.

Instead, they go to the Clinton campaign and say, ďWhat do you think about this statement that was just given to me by somebody in the Trump campaign?Ē They will say whatever it is they say and the reporter will take that down. ďTrump said this, Clinton said that,Ē and thatís all you get. You donít get the follow-up, you donít get the reporting, the analysis, the fact-checking that would tell you which one is right and which one is wrong.
Conservatives have also created a cudgel with the myth of the "liberal news media." It intimidates the press into being subservient to their agenda in the interest of "fairness" and "balance."

Yes, but I also think that organizations like the New York Times bend over much too far backwards. I donít know why they bother. Conservatives donít read the New York Times; theyíre not going to lose any subscribers by telling the truth.
If you were to pick a moment when the media landscape changed in a way that helped to birth Donald Trump's presidency, what would it be?

I think there are several inflection points. I would go back to 1969 as the beginning, because that was the year that Spiro Agnew gave his famous speech attacking the media. It set the tone for everything conservatives have thought about the media ever since, which is that it is "elitist," opposed to their values, and hopelessly liberal. It was nonsense then and itís certainly nonsense now.

As a consequence, conservatives I think have long drifted away from the mainstream media and sought out alternative media. Even before talk radio, it was very common that conservatives would get much of their news from newsletters and small magazines like Human Events. The fact that conservatives had an alternative media network actually put them in a good position once the mainstream media began to decline.

I think liberals, by contrast, have always been very happy with the mainstream media. I think Democrats really depended on the New York Times to come up with good ideas for policies and hearings and so on. Then came the ending of the Fairness Doctrine, which immediately gave rise to Rush Limbaugh and others of his ilk. I think the next inflection point was of course the Republican takeover of Congress [in 1994] and then the creation of Fox News very shortly thereafter.

Why do you think there has not been a successful counter to right-wing talk radio, and right-wing media more generally, from liberals and centrists?
Well I think the simple answer is that liberals and centrists are perfectly content with the mainstream media. Theyíre very happy with the New York Times and the Washington Post exactly as they are; theyíre happy with ABC, CBS, NBC and NPR. People forget that NPR is essentially liberal talk radio, and thatís one reason why a more explicitly liberal type of talk radio couldnít compete. NPR, like Limbaugh, is very, very good at what it does. I think thatís a big part of the problem.

And of course liberals never had a chip on their shoulder -- they never felt that the media was biased against them and they never felt that their ideas were ridiculed the way Republicans and conservatives have always believed. The soil is simply not conducive to something that would be more explicitly liberal.

Back in the 1960s, the political scientist and historian Richard Hofstadter famously wrote about the power that anti-intellectualism and the "paranoid style," i.e., conspiracy theories, held over American conservatives. Decades later, fringe narratives are now the mainstream in American conservative thought and media. This is extremely dangerous for democracy. How can we find solutions to problems when we can't agree on the nature of empirical reality?

I think youíve touched on one of the most disturbing aspects of the Fox News phenomenon, which is that it normalizes and mainstreams a lot of nutty crackpot conspiracy crap that would otherwise stay in the fever swamps of the far right.
I have an idea, and tell me if you think it is viable. The so-called experts and other talking heads who appear on the TV news should have their qualifications, professional relationships (i.e., who is paying them) and political affiliations listed under their names. This would help the public to understand the agenda at work. Do you think that would actually help our public discourse?

Well, I donít know if it would help, but I do think it is genuinely desirable. There is no reason why that information could not at a minimum be posted online. You reminded me of another moment that changed my thinking about how this all operates. Many years ago when cable news became ubiquitous, I was working for a conservative think tank and I was often invited to be a talking head on various networks.

In the very early years I would usually be on with somebody like myself -- for example, a senior fellow at a liberal think tank. The problem from the point of view of producers was there were no fireworks because we respected each other. We understood what the data was, we understood what the literature was, our differences were not that great and we often agreed with each other. Producers hated this.

I noticed after a few years that I was no longer being put on against a peer but instead people that I had no idea who they were. For example they were a "Democratic consultant" or a "liberal activist" -- very vague terms. I'd never heard of these people and in fact when I would go online to look them up I couldnít find anything. It was as if they literally didnít exist. Another problem was that these people I was up against clearly had gotten media training. All the networks have the same attitude about talking heads, which is that they want somebody whoíll give the rote repetition of the Republican line of the day and someone else whoíll give the rote repetition of the Democratic line of the day. There will be absolutely zero agreement and preferably theyíll yell at each other and scream and weíll have fireworks, which are good for ratings.

With your many years of experience in Washington, with the news media, and now your new book on "fake news," how much does the Russia scandal remind you of Watergate? Or do you think what Robert Mueller uncovers about Donald Trump and his associates will be even worse?
I hope not. But I am prepared for it. Trump is clearly the most incompetent president weíve ever had in our lives. Richard Nixon may well have been the smartest. Nixon was cursed by paranoia, and I think Trump is as well. The question then becomes: Is this incompetence a good thing or a bad thing? Is it more dangerous to have a paranoid incompetent than it was to have a highly intelligent paranoid person as president? I donít think we can tell. When I hear Trump talk, I sometimes have this feeling that he literally had no idea what was going on in his own campaign. He can deny these allegations and be perfectly truthful in his own mind because nobody told him.

Heís a useful idiot.
Thatís one way of describing him. It may be that he is the person who will be the most shocked when the truth finally comes out. He may say, ďOh my God, I had no idea my son-in-law was doing such stupid things.Ē
To watch the national and global calamity that is Trump's presidency in real time is unbelievable. If someone had told me 10 years ago that the country would be in such a crisis I would have said they were crazy. Do you feel the same way, or did you see it coming given how extreme the Republican Party has become over the last few decades?
Well, itís vastly worse than I could possibly have imagined. I had this naÔve idea that Trump had been a successful businessman because he had competent staff. I just assumed that Trump's company had an army of lawyers and vice presidents with MBAs from Harvard Business School who went around like the guy behind the elephant in the parade with a broom and a shovel cleaning up his messes and fixing the contracts and getting the deals done properly that their boss was too incompetent to do himself. I just assumed that once he got into the White House weíd find these people would just come in and run things. I was shocked that that wasnít the case. There was nobody.

If someone were to ask you why Trumpís voters backed him, how would you answer?
Thatís the $64,000 question. Certainly a big part of it was voter fatigue. As far as the Democrats are concerned it has been true since at least the post-World War II era that each party gets eight years -- and only eight years. There is only one exception to that rule and it was George H.W. Bush. It was probably in the cards that whoever got the Republican nomination was in a much better position to win than was generally assumed. Of course, Hillary Clinton turned out to be a historically poor candidate not just in a general way but also technically. From what Iíve read about her campaign, Hillary didnít do statewide polling in the last couple of weeks before the election and really had no idea what was going on in critical battleground states.

The Comey letter [to Congress in late October] was horribly timed of course. I think thereís been this idea in American politics for a very long time that outsiders have some kind of special gift as compared to professional politicians. Moreover, Republicans just love the idea of bringing in a businessman to run the government. What they donít realize is what you end up with is somebody who has absolutely no training for the job. The most successful presidents in recent memory were men with massive amounts of skill, namely [Lyndon B.] Johnson and Nixon. They had been in government their whole lives.
How did todayís Republican Party, in your estimation, become the way it is? Can it be saved?
The Republican Party needs to die. Itís already a zombie. Itís brain dead.
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Old 11-25-2017, 04:15 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by New World Order View Post
Perhaps the greatest jobs/gdp president of all time?
So tell me again what he did to achieve that?
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Old 11-25-2017, 04:30 AM   #62
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So tell me again what he did to achieve that?
Less regulations on businesses/ the promise to slash corporate tax rates to the low 20's

It's why unemployment and GDP are doing so well.

This is a pretty good article:

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/09/the-...-tax-plan.html
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Old 11-25-2017, 05:36 AM   #63
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So tell me again what he did to achieve that?
His $250 billion dollars in trade deals during the Asia visit is a good example of what Trump has managed to do. We didn't see that kind of activity during the Obama era. Of course, why would we? Obama's presidency was about giving the Insurance industries a bailout, calling it "Health Care" and then addicting the nation to opium prescriptions.
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Old 11-25-2017, 07:09 AM   #64
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Perhaps the greatest jobs/gdp president of all time?
There can be no debate because, in order for you to hold to your position, you must ignore history. History further shows that the FDR big government liberal policies from FDR to Carter worked remarkably.

Examine US economic history. Examine GDP from the Civil War to 1932. Compare that free market era with the market under FDR style big government liberalism.

This is GDP during the free market era. Note the instability, the frequent bubbles and crashes. Imagine, if you can, the human suffering caused by this instability.

http://www.usgovernmentspen...


Here is GDP during the time the federal government instituted heavy federal regulation. Note the stability and the steadily expanding economy.

http://www.usgovernmentspen...
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Old 11-25-2017, 07:33 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by New World Order View Post
Less regulations on businesses/ the promise to slash corporate tax rates to the low 20's

It's why unemployment and GDP are doing so well.

This is a pretty good article:

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/09/the-...-tax-plan.html
Of course the United States has a high GDP. GDP includes debt as well as wealth, and the amount of debt in the US is 300 times higher than the total amount of its held wealth.

Thats why no serious economist actually uses GDP as a measure of wealth or economic health anymore.

Look at Germany's exports compared to ours. They are a producer country--we are a consumer country. Consumers do not innovate. Consumers are no entrepreneurs. Consumers are cattle, needy children. They cannot achieve greatness.
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Old 11-25-2017, 07:49 AM   #66
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Originally Posted by New World Order View Post
Less regulations on businesses/ the promise to slash corporate tax rates to the low 20's

It's why unemployment and GDP are doing so well.

This is a pretty good article:

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/09/the-...-tax-plan.html
The policy so far completely ignores corporations contribution to our current mess. Lack of financial regulation on financial speculation led to our massive mortgage crisis a few years back. Corporations have abused crony capitalist incentives, they will continue to invest in rapid urbanization and automation. Meanwhile, Amazon will continue to grow into a behemoth while the retail environment will turn into blockbuster times 100 (if you haven't paid attention, hedge funders are already loading these companies up with debt and a massive layoff of retail is coming... Fast).

He has plenty of time to address these things. But let's not do cartwheels about corporate tax breaks just yet. The way this is shaping up, the small towns that elected Trump should be terrified about what's coming. You can't keep putting bandaids on leaking pipes like his attempts to save carrier and coal mining jobs. Small business tax breaks are fine, but not if you live in a small town where your infrastructure is getting swallowed up by urban cores.
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Old 11-25-2017, 08:19 AM   #67
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Currently speaking how do you think history will look back on trump and his base ?


As defined by who? Liberal media or the facts?

JFC you're a ****ing dumb, ****ing idiot. While you liberal asswipes cry about fake bullshit over bathrooms, and things like Black Lives Matter, even though black lives don't seem to matter to black people, statistics show, being offended by everything anyone says to you and constantly finding a reason to cry because you didn't get your way.....most of the country will be voting with their pocket books, as usual.

So if the economy keeps trucking along, people are getting jobs and raises and if we get an infrastructure bill passed then Trump will be looked upon as follows:

1. Put North Korea in their place
2. Cut down illegal immigration exponetially
3. Had the highest GDP in recent history
4. Had the highest job creation in recent history
5. Slashed corporate taxes (if it passes)
6. Cut taxes for middle class
7. Removes a ton of bullshit regulations
8. And did it all while the Dems pushed some fake, Russian bullshit reason as to why they lost

Now run along, I think you're late for your Antifa meeting and Don Lemon won't stand for tardiness.....you don't want Don to cry
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All kinds of people vote. Not enough of those people think highly enough of Trump to make him President but all kinds of people vote.
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So, if they were polling better than Trump and the primary goal was to prevent Hillary from becoming POTUS, perhaps it would have been a better strategic decision to nominate someone who actually had a chance of beating her and preventing that than nominating Donald Trump.
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Old 11-25-2017, 08:21 AM   #68
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Conservatives never forget, they never forgive, and..they never learn. No matter how many revolutionaries overthrow them.
And I thought OH was the idiot in this thread....
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Originally Posted by |Zach| View Post
All kinds of people vote. Not enough of those people think highly enough of Trump to make him President but all kinds of people vote.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Donger View Post
So, if they were polling better than Trump and the primary goal was to prevent Hillary from becoming POTUS, perhaps it would have been a better strategic decision to nominate someone who actually had a chance of beating her and preventing that than nominating Donald Trump.
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Old 11-25-2017, 09:03 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by RunKC View Post
If you truly believe this, then please do name countries that you think are better than the United States.
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Originally Posted by oaklandhater View Post
Happiest.

Norway (7.53)
Denmark (7.52)
Iceland (7.50)
Switzerland (7.49)
Finland (7.46)
Netherlands (7.37)
Canada (7.31)
New Zealand (7.31)

Take a pick.
Oh Oakland, dammit I kinda like you but damn man

Let me help you here, I bolded the word better in RunKC's post. You answered him with a list of the happiest countries in the world.

Happiness is a state of mind. If I work real hard and convince myself I'm happy, I can be happy in a Japanese prison while getting bamboo splinters drove under my fingernails listening to rap music. Happiness has very little to with which country is "better". I will admit, better is subjective and means different things to different people. But I can't imagine the best argument for better countries is happiness

In my mind, you would take the man from the youtube link, list his specific points against America being the greatest nation, and find a single country that does well enough in each category listed to prove his point ( not a list of this country is better here and this country is better there). Everybody and their dog knows America ain't perfect, but I bet you can't find a single country that fits the bill Just speculation on my part.
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Few things Democrats profess to love more than a failed Republican.

From Ford and Papa Bush down through Dole and Kemp, McCain and Romney, they universally exclaim 'why can't more be like THEM!!'
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Old 11-25-2017, 09:22 AM   #70
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As defined by who? Liberal media or the facts?

JFC you're a ****ing dumb, ****ing idiot. While you liberal asswipes cry about fake bullshit over bathrooms, and things like Black Lives Matter, even though black lives don't seem to matter to black people, statistics show, being offended by everything anyone says to you and constantly finding a reason to cry because you didn't get your way.....most of the country will be voting with their pocket books, as usual.

So if the economy keeps trucking along, people are getting jobs and raises and if we get an infrastructure bill passed then Trump will be looked upon as follows:

1. Put North Korea in their place
2. Cut down illegal immigration exponetially
3. Had the highest GDP in recent history
4. Had the highest job creation in recent history
5. Slashed corporate taxes (if it passes)
6. Cut taxes for middle class
7. Removes a ton of bullshit regulations
8. And did it all while the Dems pushed some fake, Russian bullshit reason as to why they lost

Now run along, I think you're late for your Antifa meeting and Don Lemon won't stand for tardiness.....you don't want Don to cry
And each of those are ticking time bombs.

First, the tax bill as is is not friendly to the middle class but you can blame congress for that. Second, let's play a few of these scenarios out. Here's the tide that's coming... Businesses are concentrating more and more investment on urbanization and automation, and we will accelerate that through neutering unions, deregulation, and giving corporations tons of capital through crony capitalism and tax breaks that will be invested no doubt on automation and urbanization. Amazon will force businesses to urbanize - only way to compete with them is to have urban distribution centers close to the densest cores with same day logistical turnaround. Retail and transportation jobs are going to disappear en masse, low skill manufacturing will be automated away, and we will have minimal alternatives for where these people can go. Small towns will realize how much government investment went into keeping small hospitals and transportation infrastructure afloat.

What I'm hearing is the solution is stimulus and massive expansion of government. Deficit spending by adding trillions in new government spend while cutting taxes across the board. Meanwhile not having any real solution to alternatives for the millions that will have jobs automated or urbanized away. Opening ourselves up for increased of financial speculators raiding the economy again, failing to learn from lessons in the past. This is not a Trump problem. This is a bipartisan problem. But what if anything have we done to prepare ourselves for this very quickly coming reality?
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Old 11-25-2017, 09:24 AM   #71
petegz28 petegz28 is offline
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And each of those are ticking time bombs.

First, the tax bill as is is not friendly to the middle class but you can blame congress for that. Second, let's play a few of these scenarios out. Here's the tide that's coming... Businesses are concentrating more and more investment on urbanization and automation, and we will accelerate that. Amazon will force businesses to urbanize - only way to compete with them is to have urban distribution centers close to the densest cores with same day logistical turnaround. Retail and transportation jobs are going to disappear en masse, low skill manufacturing will be automated away, and we will have minimal alternatives for where these people can go. Small towns will realize how much government investment went into keeping small hospitals and transportation infrastructure afloat.

What I'm hearing is the solution is stimulus and massive expansion of government. Deficit spending by adding trillions in new government spend while cutting taxes across the board. Meanwhile not having any real solution to alternatives for the millions that will have jobs automated or urbanized away. Opening ourselves up for increased of financial speculators raiding the economy again, failing to learn from lessons in the past. This is not a Trump problem. This is a bipartisan problem. But what if anything have we done to prepare ourselves for this very quickly coming reality?
And suddenly liberals care about the deficit. Amazing how the party out of power always cares about the things they don't care about when they are in power......
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So, if they were polling better than Trump and the primary goal was to prevent Hillary from becoming POTUS, perhaps it would have been a better strategic decision to nominate someone who actually had a chance of beating her and preventing that than nominating Donald Trump.
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Old 11-25-2017, 12:19 PM   #72
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Currently speaking how do you think history will look back on trump and his base ?
They will be celebrated for saving this country from the 8 years of destruction that was the Obama era. Which would have been 12 had Hilary, aka pantsuit Obama, won the presidency.

You should get down on your knees and thank him every night for that.
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Old 11-25-2017, 03:03 PM   #73
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And suddenly liberals care about the deficit. Amazing how the party out of power always cares about the things they don't care about when they are in power......
And suddenly Republicans care about massive stimulus spending and tens of billions in government expansion. What's your point? Like I said, both parties need to die.
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Old 11-25-2017, 07:22 PM   #74
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Perhaps the greatest jobs/gdp president of all time?
http://www.businessinsider.com/the-g...eserve-2017-11

please tell me when all those corporate tax cuts are gonna start trickling down

trickle down economics

Flat out don't work so what does the GOP do try again...
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Old 11-25-2017, 08:30 PM   #75
mlyonsd mlyonsd is online now
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Originally Posted by oaklandhater View Post
http://www.businessinsider.com/the-g...eserve-2017-11

please tell me when all those corporate tax cuts are gonna start trickling down

trickle down economics

Flat out don't work so what does the GOP do try again...
Just to be clear, your party has no answers to anything.

The liberal political game of spending will eventually come to a screeching halt and your party will be even more clueless than it is now.
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