Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Romney v Obama Round 2

The hardcore basis of both sides of the aisle claim their guy won. That is usually how it is, and most reported surveys indicate the same percentages claiming each won. Nearly 1/3 of the people polled, however, claimed the debate a tie. It was a split decision, in the 15th round, and is still under contention. However, I have to give the edge, by half a point, to Mitt Romney.

Both candidates came out swinging. Obama turned in a much better performance than the previous debate, where he was clearly out-classed. Then again, he is more at-home in the town-hall style of debate. He hit Romney on his record in the private sector and as a governor. Overall, his performance was much better.

Romney remained aggressive while professional. He did, on national television, things that the lap-dog media has failed to do, such as confront Obama on his role and the purpose behind the illegal and unethical "Operation Fast and Furious".

Here is where they differed. Romney either addressed  Obama's attacks or attempted to though cut off by the moderator. Obama, on the other hand, sidestepped each confrontation and attempted to run on his failing record.

It will take a lot of fact-checking to determine the overall winner. Even with that fact-checking, there are still people who won't accept the truth if it contradicts their illusory perception of reality.

The debate did identify a few things to those who actually paid attention.

1. Obama does not understand economics at all.

2. Obama needs to look up the words "fair" and "equitable".

3. The mainstream media is not objective. Candy Crowley even openly lied to protect Obama during the debate.

Before I deliver the blow-by-blow of this great bout, I will address the third point.

Romney confronted Obama on his statement the day after the assassination of Ambassador Stephens. Obama claimed he called it a "terrorist attack" at that time. Romney claimed it took Obama two weeks to publicly acknowledge that fact, choosing instead to blame the attack on a video. Candy told Romney to check the transcript because Obama did call it a terrorist attack. However, Candy is flat-out wrong. If you read through the transcription, nowhere did Obama state that the attack on the Embassy and the assassination of the Ambassador was a terrorist attack. 

The closest Obama came was a general statement about terrorist acts: "No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for". Those words are not an acknowledgement of the fact it was a terrorist attack. In addition, Obama did apologize to the UN, et al, for a video created by a private US citizen.

Not only did Obama lie, Candy Crowley lied to cover-up Obama's gaffe. That is unethical.

 The fact is a fact. One side can claim that Obama meant that it was a terrorist attack. That begs the question on why "the smartest president ever" didn't communicate such in a clear and concise manner. Maybe he really isn't that smart, after all. Either that or he didn't want to call it a terrorist attack. "Leaving it up to interpretation" is not the same as making a statement. That is the fact.

Let's use a similar type of statement. Let's say a woman you work with shows up with a shiner. You ask if somebody hit her, which is obvious from the shape and location of the bruise. She says "yes, my husband. Now let me make this perfectly clear -- I do not tolerate spousal abuse and if he abused me, he'd be in jail or worse". That leaves it open to interpretation. She did no deny abuse nor confirm it. So, you could interpret that to mean she called the cops or retaliated. It could also mean that the two are taking a martial arts class together and, while sparring, he caught her with an unintended hard blow. Now, if two weeks later she comes into work with a picture of she and her husband receiving their orange belts and telling the tale of the sparring match, well then the truth is finally out. However, for two weeks, your own mind could have taken it either way. The fact is she made no statement either way, at the time. See how that works?

Now the blow-by-blow.

A college student asked about assurances for employment upon graduation.

Romney talked about recent graduates taking on two to three part-time jobs just to make ends meet and not being able to find employment in their fields that could even begin to pay enough to allow them to repay student loans, etc. He stated that the government needs to do things that will allow businesses the stability and capital needed to create jobs. He highlighted his 5-point plan of things the government can actually do that will enable businesses to do so.

In addition, Romney said that the government needs to set policies that will enable universities, private and state-supported, to lower tuition and fees without degrading the services they provide. He then stated that the next step is to set conditions to enable job growth. He then stated Obama's record, that a historic high of 50% or so college graduates cannot find employment.

Given recent trends of businesses such as Darden Restaurants, Inc. to cut their number of full-time positions and replace them with part-time because of the new taxes, fees, and regulations imposed by the PPACA; it's obvious that Obama and his cronies don't care about growing full-time employment opportunities.

Obama talked about increasing government investments in higher education in order to take over such institutions, naming specifically community colleges, in order to dictate curricula and pricing structures. He then touted increasing blue-collar jobs in manufacturing, most of which do not require a college degree. He also discussed government intervention and control of private industry in order to force them to create more jobs. there is a word for this type of economic system:  Fascism. Obama also claimed that building more roads and repairing those already in use would create more jobs for college students.

Next, the candidates were asked about the 40% of those who are unemployed being in the category of "long-term unemployed" who need jobs now.

Romney clearly stated that Obama's record proves that his policies evidently do not work. If you look at the past four years, that point is more than obvious. Romney correctly used the evidence of systemic high unemployment from a government-stagnated economy, the lowest Workforce Participation Rate (WPR) in decades (since the 70s), and a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of less than 2%. GDP should be well above 4% if Obama's policies worked or had never been implemented. Romney rings true here -- Obama has, indeed, failed. Romney stated that he would set conditions for businesses to expand and create job, perhaps as many as 12 Million in the next 4 years, with, most likely, higher wages.

Romney also addressed the auto industry. He correctly stated the purpose of proper bankruptcy procedures. They would allow companies to restructure their organizations and get a handle on their debts so they could be paid back. Proper bankruptcy procedures are, in fact, a necessary part of an economy's cyclical nature. Unfortunately, too many people do not understand the way bankruptcy really works.

Obama demonstrated that he doesn't understand business law or how bankruptcy works. He claimed Romney was lying. He claimed that if GM were allowed to go through proper bankruptcy proceedings that they would have had no place to go or a plan to put into effect. The reality is that Obama wanted to give more power to the United Auto Workers (UAW) union. He did not save GM. He bailed-out the unions. Here Obama lauded the (look up what the term really means) fascist policy of government directing how a private business should operate.

The next question concerned Chu and the Department of Energy's policies and how they affect gas prices.

Obama lauded the necessity for government to interfere and control energy production by private companies. That is a form of socialism called fascism. Again, look up the true definition of the term, not the slang rhetoric. Obama claimed  that domestic oil production is up. It is when compared to the first two years of his administration. Obama also claimed that coal and natural gas production is higher due to his policies. However, he and the EPA continue to look for ways to restrict or outlaw "fracking", which is responsible for this production, and is mostly on private lands. Obama also stated that government policies need to force people to rely more on "green energy" and not on fossil fuels because he knows what is best for people. Obama then stated that the US needs to be like Communist China.

Romney correctly stated that Obama's policies cut drilling leases on public lands and that production on private lands has increased despite Obama's attempts to slow them. Romney also correctly highlighted the EPA closing coal mines and blocking new ones from opening, regulating other companies out of business. He also brought up Obama's record of bringing suits against "fracking" companies in attempts to block, halt, or outlaw their production. Romney then addresses Obama's blocking of the Keystone Pipeline.

Obama's main retort was "Romney is a liar". Obama then states that the government will invest only in "clean coal" not in "dirty coal". He believes it is the role of government to invest in anything. When it invests and directs private industry, then we no longer have a capitalist economy but a command-economy such as national socialism or fascism. Obama lauds this policy. Obama also lauds that because of the ridiculous regulations that automobile companies are designing and building better vehicles, such as the Chevy Volt, which has a tendency to burst into flames. However, many of those vehicles were prototypes 10 years ago, well before these policies went into effect.

Romney then brings up Obama's failed record. He asks Obama why he didn't do the things he is promising during the past 4 years.

Obama retorts by, basically, calling oil, gas, and coal companies "bad". He stated that he needed to cut leases for drilling on public lands because they weren't yet being used. He failed to take into account that surveys need to be done as well as testing, etc. to determine the best places to drill with the least damage to the environment. However, because the companies were doing  that instead of actively drilling, he cancelled the leases and licenses.

Romney stated  that the proof of these policies is evident at the gas pumps where the supply and demand have settled on market prices near $4 for most of the Obama administration versus a national average near $1.86 the day Obama took office. The costs of electricity per household is up exponentially (mostly due  to coal production). Obama has opposed off-shore drilling because he failed to properly manage the BP oil spill. Obama has opposed fracking, which is the wave of the future. (If you read  Atlas Shrugged, government control and restriction of fracking plays a role in that book, written so long ago!)

Obama claims that the prices are up due to the recession. In truth, if the recession had that much of an impact, it would have been from an increase in demand. Well, if fewer people are working, then fewer people are buying gas to get to work. The demand is lower. Lower demand causes a drop in prices, not an increase. Here Obama demonstrates the fact he failed basic economics.

About the Keystone Pipeline, Obama says "we have enough pipelines and don't need anymore". Obama then claims that supply-side economics don't work, only government control of private industry works.

Then he says that people need to use windmills instead of driving their cars. He claims that the state of Iowa wants higher tax breaks for windmill companies.

Romney states that we need people who have jobs in the "green energy" field. He also correctly states that green energy is not yet capable of producing what we need to operate, but fossil fuels can. We need to produce oil, coal, and natural gas and people need to be able to work in those jobs, too.

Next came questions about the candidate's tax plans.

Romney clearly states that the federal government needs to start paying attention to the Laffer Curve again. We need to increase the number of people working and paying taxes (broaden the base). In order to do that, we need to reduce individual tax burdens on employers, workers, etc. This will be an incentive to work, to earn, to hire, to employ, to pay taxes, since the burden per capita is much lower.

Romney then states that the middle-income-earners need  the greatest overall marginal effective  tax rate reduction. High taxes mean higher prices. Lower taxes mean lower prices meaning more money spent overall, and greater overall revenue.

Ok, let me explain this. Let's say you own a toll bridge. Right now, 20 people a day cross it. You charge $10 each. You earn gross $200 a day. Now, if you lower your price to $5, it's more affordable. Now 50 people use the bridge each day. Now you have a gross income of $250. So you lower that to $2. Now you get 200 people a day and are at near maximum capacity. You are earning $400 a day. If you lower it any more, you won't make more. However, if you raise the rate, your customers will go back to using the ferry. It's basic economics.

Obama does not understand the Laffer Curve.

Romney also demonstrates that lowering the rates will not reduce overall revenue because certain deductions and credits and loopholes will be eliminated. He shows that others will be limited, such as deductions for charities. That means that more affluent people will be capped on what they can deduct. Proportionately, the deduction will remain higher for lower and middle income bracket earners.

Romney then presented the studies that show that Obama's policies along with the PPACA will cost middle-income-earners up to $4k more per family in taxes and regulatory fees.

Obama stated, again, that he wants to lower taxes on lower and middle classes. Again, he uses the "class" meme, falsely claiming that there are classes in the USA. There are not. He wants to raise taxes on the top 2-5% of wage earners and cut defense spending. He claims that raising a small demographic's rate is somehow "fair". Unfortunately, Obama doesn't know the meaning of that word. "Fair" would be a flat-rate tax with no deductions, credits, breaks or loopholes for anybody. That would be fair. Fair is not oppressing a minority group.

Romney then restates the purpose behind paying attention to the Laffer Curve. Next he presents the facts and evidence of Obama's record. 3.5 million more women are now living in poverty. More people are on food stamps.

Here I need to educate people a little. Obama wants more people dependent upon government instead of self-reliant.  The American Dream is about self-sufficiency and reliance, not dependency. Obama cares less about the American Dream. If you think that sitting on your butt waiting for people to do things for you is the American Dream, you need to go back and repeat 6th-11th grades. Our country's very foundation is on opportunities for self-sufficiency and success, not living off of the work of others.

Romney then brings up his own records in both  the public and private sectors of establishing environments that generated jobs, growth, and prosperity. He also brings up his record of balancing budgets.

Obama retorted with the claim, that has been proven false by studies within his own administration, that Romney will increase the deficit by an aggregate of $7-8 trillion. He then claims that Romney paid only 14% in taxes. Obama then makes statements that proved he ignores and denies the Laffer Curve. again.

Romney was asked if he would adjust his  figures if they didn't fit what he intended  to do.

Romney said that, should that be the case, he would consider doing so. He then asserted that he has run the numbers and his plan will work. He brings into evidence his record of having done it already in the past in both the private sector as well as with the Olympics and in Massachusetts. He then correctly stated that Obama has never accomplished any of the above.

The candidates were asked about rectifying perceived inequalities in the workplace.

Obama brought up the Lily Leadbedder act. He then wants special grants and special projects for a special collective, only for women, and excluding men. Here he demonstrates his divisive, collectivist ideology that is meant to instill a tyrannic oligarchy. He also lauded the national socialistic policy of having the government be responsible for all lending, taking banks out of the business of loaning money.

Both candidates agreed that any form of discrimination is bad. However, Only Romney was willing to speak the truth that if individual rights are supported, discrimination has less room to operate. Collectivism grants incentives for discrimination.

Romney stated his record in both private and public office of seeking out the best candidates for jobs and not restricting those positions or their salaries on the basis of sex, race, or sexual orientation. Romney then, again, addresses Obama's record, which Obama made no attempt to justify. 3.5 million more women living in poverty. Current unemployment at 7.8% with a lower WPR and GDP. Unemployment over 8% for most of the past 4 years. 50% of college graduates unemployed.

Obama then states that Romney allegedly wants insurance companies to dictate health care. That isn't true. He just doesn't want the government to dictate it. if your insurance company's policies seem to dictate your healthcare, in a free market capitalist economy, you fire them and take your business elsewhere. You can't do that with the government dictating it. Obama then claims that the government should pick and choose to support, with our tax money, select NPOs like Planned Parenthood. That is actually unconstitutional. Obama then states that there should be special (again, that unfair collectivist and divisive ideology) for single-mothers. He also advocated forcing people to work instead of allowing them the choice.

The candidates were then asked how they are different from Bush.

Romney illustrated several differences. For one, Bush was not a huge supporter of fracking. Romney highlighted that he has a better energy policy to include reforms of the EPA, which Bush didn't really attempt. Romney highlighted his business background and how he can promote international trade that will benefit US businesses. Bush did not work very hard towards such trade agreements. Bush didn't really look at the health industry and did not have the PPACA to contend with. Romney stated that he will champion reform of the industry while working to repeal the PPACA with its damaging and liberty-stealing policies.

Obama claims that Romney is not like Bush because Romney is more extreme.

Obama was asked what he has done to earn a second vote, by somebody who voted for him in '08 but is disillusioned, now, and sees Obama as a liar and a failure.

Obama claims he has kept all of his campaign promises. We know this is false. Unemployment was over 8% and did not drop to below 6% by this time, as promised. Obama did not reduce the deficit, instead increasing the national debt by an exponential amount, accumulating more debt than Washington through the first term of Bush-43 combined. Obama did say one truth here. He stated that he will give us four more years of the same, or worse.

Romney then highlighted each of Obama's broken promises and failures.

Then came questions about illegal immigration.

Romney wants to increase and streamline legal immigration while deterring illegal immigration. He wants policies that will make illegal immigration less attractive such as making it nearly impossible to gain employment as an illegal immigrant. Romney then upheld a better pathway for naturalization to include faithful military service.

Obama then attempted to make Romney and the state of Arizona look bad because of AZ-SB1070. he falsely stated that SB1070 would have allowed law enforcement officers to stop people under suspicion of looking like an illegal alien. If anybody read the bill, they would know that is false. The checks have to be in conjunction with a proper stop or arrest due to a warrant or justifiable probable cause of having committed or being in the act of committing a crime other than illegal immigration. Obama then made the same promises he made in '08 but failed to keep.

Romney asked Obama why he failed to keep that promise. Obama responded by saying Arizona is evil, Jan Brewer and the author of SB1070 are the devil, and the borders need to be open.

The next question concerned the terrorist attack in Libya.

I addressed much of this interchange at the beginning of  this article. Obama admitted ultimate responsibility but failed to really grant a sincere acceptance of his failure. He had no answer for why he failed to provide increased security in Libya. His answer was that Ambassadors know the risks of the position. He then stated  that he called it a terrorist act during his statement the next day. He also stated that Clinton took responsibility, but that she works for him.

Romney reminded people that Obama apologized, he didn't act to prevent and he didn't respond. In the transcript, Obama did scold those Americans who are critical of the religion of Islam, however. He went on, later, to apologize to the people who conducted the demonstrations and the terrorist attacks for Americans who exercise their first amendment rights.

Next came the issue of the second amendment. Here is where Obama demonstrated that he has no respect for the US Constitution. Obama called for increased regulations on weapons and restrictions on who can own or carry. Those policies are infringements of the Second Amendment.

On the contrary, Romney addressed  the "culture of violence". He addressed putting parents back in charge of raising children. He addressed that greater opportunities for prosperity through legal and peaceful means will reduce the propensity for violence and crime.

Romney then confronted Obama on Operation Fast and Furious. Of course, Obama refused to respond to this blight upon his record and his criminal friend who is the current US AG.

Readers, this is where I my notebook ran out and I was engrossed in the finale.

One thing Romney stated that people need to wake-up and realize:  GOVERNMENT DOES NOT CREATE JOBS! It doesn't. It can deter, restrict, and create incentives against job creation and economic growth. Only in limiting its involvement (and taxation) of regulations, restrictions, and attempted take-overs of private industry can government enable job creation. The only other area that enables is through diplomatic means on the international level, through trade agreements and managing import tariffs.

In their final statements, Obama had to, incorrectly, state Romney's 47% "gaffe". He pushed the false perception of what Romney actually said.

As stated, this was a close debate, objectively. The fact-checking will end up determining a victor, and will take days to complete. However, due to his inability to justify his record or really present any real incriminating evidence against Romney's record, Obama did not win. I give the edge to Romney for addressing things such as Fast and Furious as well as standing up to the biased moderator who falsely stated that Romney was incorrect.