Monday, September 03, 2012

Short Attention Span Musing

...Just a few things to think about on this, Labor Day 2012...

...Thank you unions for all the hard work, sweat, and sacrifice needed to get things like bans on child labor, overtime, sick time, vacations, holidays, safe working conditions, and more made a standard part of American culture.

While I've summed up their contributions in a single sentence, that's because there just aren't enough words in the English language to pay proper homage to those that truly deserve the title of "hero".

...During the Republican primary, Mitt Romney famously declared that he "likes firing people". 

Well, my guess is that he is going to particularly enjoy firing the political consultants who stage-managed last week's Republican convention in Tampa, whoever they might be.

Not because his acceptance speech hasn't been well-received, nor has he received the traditional post-convention "bounce" in public opinion polls.

Nope.  The managers of the show called the Republican National Convention (and yes, the Democratic Convention will be just as tightly-plotted and controlled) allowed their boss to be upstaged by an old guy talking to a chair.

On national television.

On the biggest night of his political life.

Probably not the sort of epic failure that any political operative wants on his/her resume.

...One of the big media memes today was the question "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?" 

First made famous more than three decades ago by Republican Ronald Reagan while he was campaigning for president against Democrat Jimmy Carter, the Republicans have started trotting it out against President Obama.  Mostly in hopes that the American people have forgotten who actually presided over the cratering of America's economy.  They haven't.

The Republicans reacted with glee, however, when MD Governor Martin O'Malley and a couple of other Obama surrogates fumbled when faced with that question.

Well, let me be unequivocal -

I, and we, are better off today than four years ago.

While the economy is far from perfect, four years ago, the reality was poor and the outlook worse, with no end (recovery) in sight.  An Arizona-focused report on the economy, courtesy the Joint Legislative Budget Committee (JLBC) is here

Today, the recovery is ongoing, even if stunted somewhat by Republican obstructionism in DC and elsewhere. 

The best chart in support of that is this one, courtesy The Maddow Blog -

...Maybe America's unemployed and underemployed should follow the lead of one of the Republican Party's standard-bearers and just "massage" their resumes. 

From the Seattle Post-Intelligencer -

Republican Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan has been described as dazzling, but several fact checkers say his words aren’t exactly that.
After his convention speech Thursday, a Fox News writer described it as deceiving and distracting. A Mitt Romney pollster, Neil Newhouse, told “we’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.”
In a radio interview last week with conservative talk show host Hugh Hewitt, Ryan said his personal best time for 26.2 miles was “Under three [hours], high twos. I had a two hour and fifty-something.”
Turns out Ryan didn’t come anywhere close to the 3-hour mark in his only marathon, according to Runner’s World, who looked into his bogus claim.

Based on Ryan's habitual lying and his continued veneration by the R establishment, I should be able to claim that I was there taking pictures when the late Neil Armstong walked on the moon in 1969, and be able to do so without repercussion, right?

I mean, I was all of three years old when Armstrong made his historic walk, but that just means that I was a prodigy, right?*

Armstrong on the moon.  Pic courtesy NASA.

* In case you couldn't tell, I did NOT take pictures on the moon, in 1969 or any other year.  Us writer-types have an arrow in our literary quiver called "hyperbole."  I used it here.

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