The mind of Paul Ryan: we won on issues but lost the election because of black people

Remember, this guy is still the big-thinker, the intellectual, the “rock star” of the GOP:

“I don’t think we lost it on those budget issues, especially on Medicare, we clearly didn’t lose it on those issues. I think the surprise was some of the turnout, some of the turnout especially in urban areas, which gave President Obama the big margin to win this race.” — Paul Ryan: I Didn’t Lose Because Of The Issues, I Lost Because Of The ‘Urban’ Vote

Steve Benen breaks down Ryan’s (typically Republican) argument: “[If] his ticket had won, it’d be proof that he’s right on the issues, and even after defeat, it’s still proof he’s right on the issues.”

Let’s not forget what those budget issues were, which Ryan claims his ticket didn’t lose on: “Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) infamous budget proposal would have cut taxes on those making more than $1 million, while ending tax cuts for those with the lowest incomes…”

And the conservative entertainment apparatus churns on…

MMFADuring the November 13 edition of Fox & Friends, Fox aired a clip of Ryan discussing his feelings on election night and promising to work on important issues when he returns to Congress. On-screen text during the segment stated “Mr. Fix-It” and “Ryan Discusses How To Fix A ‘Broken America.’

Contrary to Fox’s invariably positive treatment of Ryan, economic experts have criticized Ryan’s signature proposal — his budget plan — as “grossly irresponsible,” “all smoke and mirrors,” and harmful to seniors.

So what has earned Paul Ryan the moniker “Mr. Fix-It”? What exactly has Ryan “fixed” — what important legislation has he personally sponsored and/or passed — in his 14-years of farting around in the House of Representatives? Specifically, this: he renamed a post office in Janesville and modified how arrow components were taxed. That’s it.

But according to the GOP Infomercial Channel, he’s Mr. Fix-It. 

Racism in the Republican Party? That’s mind blowing!

Buzzfeed’s Andrew Kaczynski posted a photo entitled: Man At Romney Rally Wears Mindblowingly Offensive Shirt: “The Getty Images photo was taken at a Romney/Ryan campaign event in Lancaster, Ohio on Friday. A Romney spokesperson commented that the shirt was “reprehensible and has no place in this election.””


Are their “minds blown” because the guy wore an offensive shirt or because he wore a shirt that loudly proclaims the racism that they’ve all participated in but agreed to not be so blatant about? It’s okay for Mitt to joke that “no one’s ever asked to see my birth certificate” (and to use Donald Trump and his flagrant birtherism for campaign cash), to run ads claiming President Obama is cutting welfare requirements to “shore up his base,” and to speak to a room full of wealthy people, like him, about how 47 percent of Americans won’t take personal responsibility for their own lives and that’s why they’ll vote for Obama.

That’s all supposedly quieter, just some harmless dog-whistling. But according to Team Romney, this shirt is “reprehensible and has no place in this election.” Uh huh — it has no place in this election NOW, four weeks from Election Day, when they’re trying to appeal to potential voters outside their circle of extremists.

But guess whose minds aren’t “blown” by this shirt? Everyone who’s been paying attention to the Republican Tea Party since 2008.

News from Rightwing Nutjob Birtherstan (or what craziness are those billionaires financing now?)

A shadowy super PAC called the Conservative Majority Fund has begun an ad campaign which they claim will disqualify President Obama from running for re-election, according to Think Progress:

“As the ad’s announcer reads his script, a chryon runs at the bottom asking questions such as “What is [Obama's] connection to Bill Ayers?” “What is his current relationship with Rev. Wright?” and “Who paid for his Harvard Education?” The Conservative Majority fund’s website also appears entirely devoted to promoting far right myths, including a campaign to keep the United Nations from seizing people’s guns, an attack on the Obama Administration’s supposed “deep and dirty involvement in the the Fast & Furious gun-running scandal,” and multiple pages devoted to fighting the nearly non-existent problem of voter fraud. Their birther petition calling for Congress to “investigate Barack Obama’s forged birth certificate” prominently features anti-immigrant Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

“The Conservative Majority Fund only filed its initial papers with the Federal Elections Commission a month ago, and has not yet disclosed the extent of its spending on this ad. Their spending is significant enough, however, that the ad ran simultaneously on both CNN and Fox News this morning, and it is twice the length of a normal campaign ad.”

Certainly if could be any (or all) of the few billionaires who have stated they will be shoveling money into Romney’s campaign indirectly through Super PACs. Foster Friess said he’s going to donate “undercover” so it’s “not so high profile.” Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson is throwing money around like it grows on trees (which for him, it might). Adelson has said his political contributions will be “limitless” to get Mitt Romney elected. These billionaires are simply investing in their future.

Seems to me that if anyone involved with the Conservative Majority Fund actually believed in any of the ridiculous conspiracies and far-right myths they’re putting out on President Obama, they wouldn’t be hiding in the shadows. But that’s the point: they don’t believe a word of it. That’s why you can’t find out who’s actually funding and creating this thing. It’s simply racist dog whistling disguised as ‘very serious’ campaign information, paid for by the wealthiest one percenters who want more tax cuts.

And that’s your modern Republican Party. When poor and working class racists and the wealthy elite have one thing in common: the enemy of their enemy is their friend.

Romney adviser to Britain: Obama’s black. Romney’s white. What else do you need to know?

“We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and [Mitt Romney] feels that special relationship is special. The White House didn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have.”

an unnamed adviser to Mitt Romney, speaking to The Daily Telegraph yesterday, ahead of Romney’s overseas tour of Britain, Israel and Poland on Wednesday.

Romney’s doing a bus tour: name Mitt’s bus!

Taegan Goddard reports on a bus tour that Romney’s planning:

The Washington Post reports Mitt Romney “is trying to seize momentum with a five-day bus tour through small towns across six battleground states.”

And how excited is Mark Halperin? THIS EXCITED:

[...] Mark Halperin: “Interesting thing about Romney’s just-announced battleground state bus trip: (1) It includes Michigan; if Romney can put his father’s home state in play, it is an Electoral College game changer; (2) all of these states have small towns and rural areas that are not the President’s electoral strength and where Romney can gain an advantage if he runs up the kinds of margins George W. Bush did in 2004; and (3) watch to see if this trip draws network correspondents and/or big-foot print reporters, who, on most every day for the last several months, have been absent from the Romney roadshow. (4) notice what family members and surrogates join the journey and what roles they are assigned.”

I have my own list of things I wonder about this bus tour:

  1. Will Romney be allowed to interact, one on one, with people who don’t make millions of dollars? That usually doesn’t go well.
  2. If he is allowed to interact, unsupervised, will reporters be barred from filming it?
  3. Halperin is excited about Romney’s potential in small towns and rural communities — in other words, does that mean we should expect some low level dog-whistling and talk of Kenyan births?
  4. What new way can Mitt screw up the presentation of pastries? He’s already embarrassed himself with cookies and donuts.
  5. Will there be a dog be strapped to the roof of this bus?
  6. Will local teachers, firefighters and cops turn out to cheer Romney’s plans for them?
  7. Will Mitt will share his Mormon-based religious beliefs with the base? (KIDDING! Of course he won’t)
  8. Will Mitt and Marie Antoinette fly to each small town ahead of the tour bus, a la Palin? If not, will the underpaid housekeepers on staff be expected to ride along as well?
  9. What uber-patriotic, gun and Jesus loving, semi-fascist name will the tour bus be given?

We should name Romney’s bus. There was the hilarious “Country First” on McCain’s bus. And Palin, in her typically FU Haterz! fashion, named hers “One Nation” (I don’t think anyone ever found out the purpose of that tour). So maybe Romney’s could be “Let poor people buy their own money” or “Apocalypse Now.”

Morning Bunker Report: Sunday 4.22.2012


ROMNEY CAN DOG-WHISTLE WITH THE BEST OF THEM. Romney appeared on stage in front of this official campaign banner: See, there’s a very racist stereotype about black people being “lazy and shiftless,” and another one that has to do with “welfare queens” who don’t want to work. So when you create a disgusting slogan like this one, it serves as a dog-whistle, stoking white racist anger while also offending every black person in the country. Yeah, it was probably intentional. The Republican Party’s use of the Southern Strategy is well-documented and verified by actual Republican leaders. [Racist Romney Campaign Banner | Bob Cesca]

OBAMA DERANGEMENT SYNDROME: A REPUBLICAN congressional candidate in Iowa told a TEA PARTY audience yesterday that PRESIDENT OBAMA does not love his country because he supports raising taxes on millionaires. [...] After distorting how much revenue the proposed Buffett Rule, which raises taxes on millionaires, would bring in, Dan Dolan used the president’s support for the measure as evidence that he is unpatriotic. “I have a hard time thinking that he loves this country if he’s willing to turn them against themselves for his own advancement…” [...] a new CNN poll this week found that 72 percent of Americans — including 53 percent of Republicans — support the Buffett Rule. We called Dolan’s campaign to inquire whether he also believes that the three out of every four Americans, and a majority of those in his own party, don’t love their country. We will post their response if one is provided. [Iowa GOP candidate doubts that Obama 'loves this country' because of Buffett Rule] — which reminded me of this:

Bill Maher: Save our children (if you won’t save our richest one percent, who will?)

REPUBLICAN JESUS IS ALSO INFECTED WITH ODS: First up is a look at Bishop Daniel R. Jenky of the Roman Catholic diocese of Peoria, Illinois, who caused quite a stir with a homily last weekend, when he compared President Obama to Hitler. And while that proved to be the part of Jenky’s hysterical tirade that generated the most attention, there’s a little more… [...] Jenky not only likened the president to Hitler and Stalin — a line that was not appreciated by the Anti-Defamation League — he went on to compare those who support the administration’s policy on contraception access to Judas Iscariot. But don’t miss the bishop’s conclusion: “This fall, every practicing Catholic must vote, and must vote their Catholic consciences, or by the following fall our Catholic schools, our Catholic hospitals, our Catholic Newman Centers, all our public ministries — only excepting our church buildings — could easily be shut down.” Now, the notion that contraception access might lead the government to shut down Catholic institutions is obviously ridiculous — someone might want to remind Mr. Jenky that there’s a commandment about bearing false witness — but in context, when the bishop concluded his harangue about his hatred for the president by giving the congregation voting instructions, that raises a separate legal question… [This Week in God]

SAY QUESTIONABLE SHIT ABOUT THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF, PASS ON ENTERTAINING HIS TROOPS. Fort Knox’s June 23rd concert was originally scheduled to have Nugent as the headliner. On Tuesday, Nugent said that he would be “dead or in jail by this time next year” if President Barack Obama is re-elected.” Forty-eight hours later, changes to the concert lineup were in the works. “After learning of opening act Ted Nugent’s recent public comments about the president of the United States, Fort Knox leadership decided to cancel his performance on the installation,” said a post on the official Fort Knox, KY Facebook page Thursday. [...] Nugent met with the Secret Service on Thursday, calling the get-together “a good, solid, professional meeting.” The agency added that any potential issues had been resolved. Outside his Secret Service comments, Nugent’s rough week included a guilty plea in an Alaska black bear killing case. .. [Anti-Obama Comments Lead To End Of Rockstar's Appearance]

CHARLES P. PIERCE COMMENTS ON Princess Dumbass of the Northwoods and the weirdo Secret Service agent — And then, with the shrewd self-awareness that’s marked her entire career, she continues… “The president, the CEO of this operation called our federal government, has got to start cracking down on these agencies. He is the head of the administrative branch and all of these different departments in the administration that now people are seeing things that are so amiss within these departments. The buck stops with the president. And he’s really got to start cracking down and seeing some heads roll. He has to get rid of these people at the head of these agencies where so many things, obviously, are amiss.” So sayeth the woman who found being the CEO of this operation called the state of Alaska too demanding to finish out her single term at the job. Historians are going to look back at this era of our politics and wonder why we all decided to start eating paint chips. Was there a famine or something? [Esquire]

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS—————————————————————-

DESPITE WHAT YOU MAY HEAR FROM REPUBLICANS, LISTEN TO DEMOCRATS ON SOCIAL SECURITY — Get ready for the pro-Paul Ryan austerity headlines that will predict an imminent demise of Social Security. On April 23, the Social Security Trustees Report for 2012 is expected to be released – and you can expect that the shills for the one percent will be blaring that seniors may need to live on cat food if the US is going to be saved from financial ruin. But an advance analysis of the report on the financial status of the program, posted on NiemanWatchdog, argues that “last year’s report projected that at the end of 2011, Social Security would have an accumulated surplus of around $2.7 trillion, which it now has. This year’s report will show that it will be even higher at the end of 2012.” That’s right, the current $2.7 trillion surplus of Social Security funds is expected to rise by the end of this year. [Forget the Scary Headlines: Social Security Has More Than a $2.7 Trillion Surplus]

HOW MAINTAINING TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY LEADS TO AUSTERITY FOR THE REST OF US (what the Democrats are fighting): The state budget gaps of the last five years led to $290 billion in cuts to public services and $100 billion in tax and fee increases. Those actions lengthened the recession and delayed the recovery. Because spending reductions were dominant, hundreds of thousands of jobs were lost; undermining education, health care and other state priorities, which likely will cause future economic harm to states. Federal aid mitigated the harmful effects of the spending cuts in the early years of the budget crunch, but its expiration last year had a catastrophic effect, making 2012 the worst year since the downturn began for cuts in funding for services. More federal aid and a more balanced response, with an equal reliance on revenues and on service cuts, could have mitigated these effects. These are the findings of a new analysis of state budget data and trends over the last five years. While the broad outlines of this story have been well-known, this is the first attempt to quantify how states collectively balanced their budgets in the face of the worst fiscal problems in at least 70 years. Since 2008, states have enacted almost $3 in spending cuts for every $1 in new revenues… [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities]

TAX REFORM: THE GOP REFUSES TO RAISE TAXES ON THE WEALTHIEST ONE PERCENT (i.e. restoring the American value of fairness): Republicans work from a baseline that includes a full extension of the Bush tax cuts. The Democrats’ baseline assumes the expiration of the tax cuts for families earning more than $250,000. The Congressional Budget Office uses yet another baseline, one that assumes that all of the Bush tax cuts will expire, because that’s what current law says will happen at the end of 2012. The difference in revenue between the Republican and the current-law scenario exceeds $4 trillion over 10 years. So before we can even discuss what a new tax code should look like, we somehow need to resolve the most polarizing question in American politics: Should taxes be higher or lower? [...] The Tax Policy Center estimates that if the Bush tax cuts expire, the average America will face a $1,749 tax increase in 2013. That’s not something you want in a fragile economy after a decade that’s been terrible for the middle class. But it may be something we need if we’re going to get real revenue-raising tax reform. The two parties would still have to settle on a final revenue number, but at least they could agree on one that would cut taxes on almost all Americans. No one would have to vote for a “tax increase.” That’s not the case in the current world of baseline confusion. It’s sad to think that the only way to save the tax code might be to let it collapse at the end of the year. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t true. [Ezra Klein]


Dog whistling past the facts (of food stamps)

From Five Things You Probably Don’t Know About Food Stamps | Off The Charts Blog from

  1. A large and growing share of SNAP households are working households (see chart). In 2010, more than three times as many SNAP households worked as relied solely on welfare benefits for their income.The share of SNAP households with earnings has continued growing in the past few years — albeit at a slower pace — despite the large increase in unemployment.One reason why SNAP is serving more working families is that, for a growing share of the nation’s workers, having a job has not been enough to keep them out of poverty.

SNAP Working Households Have Risen

Read all…

Recall that Rick Santorum said this on Jan. 2:

“I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money. I want to give them the opportunity to go out and earn the money and provide for themselves and their families.”

Before he, very bravely, claimed to have said ‘blah’ people instead of ‘black’ people. THEN! came this gem from Professor Gingrich on Jan. 5:

Newt Gingrich said at a Plymouth, NH town hall that he plans to “go to the NAACP convention and tell the African-American community why they should demand paychecks instead of food stamps.”

Turns out, according to reality, more people are choosing BOTH to survive.  But facts and reality don’t play well in places like South Carolina.

And as far as telling blah people or the NAACP, specifically, that they should choose a paycheck over foods stamps? See the demographics of ‘food stamps’ after the cut:  Continue reading

Gingrich and Santorum might be trying to steal all the racist voters from Ron Paul

Can Newt and Santorum just get their facts straight and quit dog-whistling to the most racist, disgusting segments of their unsavory voting base?

Today in New Hampshire:

[According to a tweet from Slate writer Dave Weigel, Newt Gingrich said at a Plymouth, NH town hall] that he plans to “go to the NAACP convention and tell the African-American community why they should demand paychecks instead of food stamps.”

Yeah, okay. Go for it, tough guy.

The old ‘black people are takin’ all the hard werkin’ peeples monies!’ argument. Except that if you’re going to go by facts, such as those provided by the socialist US Census Bureau, over 15% of the U.S. population is currently living in poverty — AND HALF OF THOSE IN POVERTY ARE WHITE. From Wikipedia:

Poverty and race — The US Census declared that in 2010 15.1% of the general population lived in poverty:[29]

    • 9.9% of all non-Hispanic white persons
    • 12.1% of all Asian persons
    • 26.6% of all Hispanic persons (of any nationality)
    • 27.4% of all black persons.

About half of those living in poverty are non-Hispanic white (19.6 million in 2010),[29] but poverty rates are much higher for blacks and Hispanics. Non-Hispanic white children comprised 57% of all poor rural children.[30]

Here’s something else completely weird that happened today: Santorum says that on Monday, when he said this:

“I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money. I want to give them the opportunity to go out and earn the money and provide for themselves and their families.”

…he claims he didn’t say “black people.” He said “BLAH people.” Blah people. He doesn’t want to give blah people other people’s money.

I. Shit. You. Not.

I’m sure Santorum doesn’t include the wealthy and corporations in those blah people taking other people’s money though — more tax cuts for them.