A Philosopher's Blog

Will the Republicans Hand Obama the Win?

Posted in Philosophy, Politics by Michael LaBossiere on October 12, 2011
Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...

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As has often been pointed out, most voters would prefer a Republican to Obama. However, most voters would prefer Obama over any of the current Republican candidates. Perhaps because of this, the Republicans have been eagerly trying to recruit more candidates. For example, there seems to have been a desperate attempt to get Chris Christie to run (an attempt the media seemed intent on supporting by willfully disregarding his litany of “no”).

In the case of Christie, I think he was wise not to run. As he noted, he wants to get more experience. Also, while his conservative credentials are excellent in regards to financial matters, he lacks the extremism in other areas that seem so essential to appealing to the base Republicans. I think Christie would have done well with the main stream voters, but I think he was well aware that he would not have gotten through the nomination process. Christie also seems like a very sensible person and hence probably wants to avoid the hostility and extremism of the current process. However, I think we can expect to see him running at a future point-hopefully when politics is a bit less deranged.

Getting back to the main focus, I suspect that the Republicans might end up handing Obama the win by making him seem the lesser of two evils. First, the Republican candidates have been somewhat unusually harsh with each other, thus doing some of Obama’s work for him. When the campaign gets going, Obama’s supporters will probably have plenty of ammunition against the Republican-ammunition forged by the other Republicans. Second, the Republican candidates have been pandering to the more extreme elements of their base and their supporters. While this is necessary to get the nomination, it also tends to scare and alienate moderates and independents. For example, I suspect that most moderates think that the EPA could use some fine tuning, but that it is probably a good idea to have an agency that protects the environment. Third, the Republican candidates seem rather good at lowering their appeal to mainstream voters and also losing the votes of certain blocks. For example, I suspect that if Cain gets the nod, many folks who are unemployed will not be voting for him. Fourth, more people are beginning to realize that the Republicans are mainly devoted to the corporations and not to the general population and this will cost them a few voters. While people do think the same of Democrats, the Democrats do seem more concerned about the people.

Interestingly, Obama’s best hope of getting re-elected lies with the Republicans snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. Given the economy, the election is currently theirs to lose. However, if they cannot convince enough voters that they can do a better job for them than Obama, then he will get his second term. Ironically, the Republicans would beat Obama, if it were not for their actual candidates.

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12 Responses

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  1. william wallace said, on October 12, 2011 at 7:20 am

    It will be a landslide victory for the democrats. Republicans have
    long since left the world of reality / they entered the twilight zone.

    They got over involved with religion / which started control policy
    they came under the control of religious organizations / needing
    the religious vote they needed deliver /a christian policy agenda.

    Such resulting in a invasion of the middle east / the ever growing
    expansion of Israel / in the process many hundreds of thousands
    of muslims killed / the destruction /the suffering beyond measure.

    The lethal mixture of extreme religious beliefs / ideas / combined
    with political policy having brought the american peope’s to their
    knees in financial ruin. The nations economy lost / in illegal wars
    the unjust invasions of other nations where the human slaughter
    committed having brought the USA isolation // as nations look on
    a human tragedy of inhumanity / where the cruelity beyond belief.

    The problem for democrats /is BARACK best leading the party ?
    or should such fall to HILLARY. For 45% of americans / BARACK
    55%of americans its HILLARY.Thus its the $million question / will
    BARACK see sense / or be he lost as blinded by political power?.

    At present in BARACK accepting what best for the nation stands
    50 / 50. The future in unfolding will be a testing time for BARACK
    as for all americans in standing united / getting the train on track.

  2. T. J. Babson said, on October 12, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Niall Ferguson:

    Yet if I were a young American today, occupying Wall St. would not be my objective. Just reflect for a minute on the unbridled economic mayhem that would ensue if the protesters actually succeeded. The headline “Goldman Sachs Under Control of Hip Teenage Revolutionaries” would be the last straw for an already fragile economic recovery.

    Now ask yourself what the financial crisis really means for today’s 15- to 24-year-olds. Not only has it raised the probability that they will be unemployed after graduation. More seriously, it has massively increased the debt that they will have to service when they do get jobs.

    Never in the history of intergenerational transfers has one generation left such a mountain of IOUs to another as the baby boomers are leaving to their grandchildren.

    When you do the math, there is only one logical political home for today’s teens and 20-somethings … and that is the Tea Party. For who else is promising to slash Medicare and Social Security and keep the tax burden at its historical average?

    Let’s just remind ourselves of the report of the Trustees of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds back in 2007, which projected a rise in the cost of these two programs from 7.3 percent of gross domestic product to 17.5 percent by 2030. The trustees warned that to achieve actuarial balance—in other words, solvency—for these two programs would require (for Social Security) an increase of 16 percent in payroll tax revenues or an immediate reduction in benefits of 13 percent. For Medicare we are talking a 122 percent increase in payroll taxes or a 51 percent cut in spending.

    As Laurence Kotlikoff and Scott Burns pointed out in The Coming Generational Storm, by 2030 there will be twice as many retirees as there are today but only 18 percent more workers. Unless there is really radical reform of entitlement programs—especially Medicare—the next generation of American workers will be paying roughly double the taxes their parents and grandparents paid. This is what Kotlikoff and Burns mean by “fiscal child abuse.”


    Who is looking out for the young people? Paul Ryan and the Tea Party, that’s who.

    • Michael LaBossiere said, on October 13, 2011 at 1:17 pm

      The protestors do not seem intent on taking over the businesses. Their main purpose seems to be that of protesting what they regard as a broken system.

      I don’t think that Paul Ryan and his associated Tea Party folks have the best interest of the youth in mind. For example, our local Tea Party governor is busily attacking education. While the entitlements do need an overhaul, the kids will be old one day (well, unless the EPA is eliminated and they all perish in the pollution…) and hence will probably be wanting those entitlements.

  3. T. J. Babson said, on October 12, 2011 at 10:11 pm

    Paul Ryan:

  4. dhammett said, on October 12, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    Back in the ol’ days lots of kids would take in their aged, mentally or physically incapacitated parents and other family members. Back in the ol’ days kids lived next door, around the corner, down the road, “a hop, skip, and a jump” away from the house they grew up in. Not so much any more. Nowadays adult offspring live across the state, across the country, around the world. Just saw a piece on national news about Americans seeking employment in China because they can’t find it here. Businesses are moving their production facilities. Workers are exporting themselves, looking for the jobs they can’t find here. Is an “absentee kid” going to return home to take care of his parents? Is the child going to undertake, at his personal expense, moving his parents who, perhaps, sacrificed everything to make sure he received a college education, to live with him or to live in a house across the street , or into a health care facility nearby? Is he going to pay the costs for that health care that Medicare and Social Security currently provide?.

    Kotlikoff and Burns are concerned about “fiscal child abuse”. They should also be concerned that one of the possible consequences of drastic slashes in Medicare and Social Security and the safety net in general would be real life mental and physical parent abuse.

    I’ve written my opinion before and I’ll do so again: Allow a Social Security opt out provision and the fund will dry up and disappear. Whatever SS changes are made have to be sensible and gradual and designed to truly preserve the system. Failure to do so will result in consequences that those who prefer not to think of possible consequences will be personally harmed by.

  5. A J MacDonald Jr said, on October 13, 2011 at 2:22 am

    Republicans have been gaining momentum since 1995 and would win if there were a 2012 election, which is one reason for why we must stop politics as usual. Both parties are corrupt, which is why we must change Washington for good. Let’s get serious please. America has gone to hell in a hand-basket, 6 wars and counting, and all you guys can do is argue about how many politicians can dance on the head of a pin, which is pathetic.

  6. magus71 said, on October 13, 2011 at 4:18 am

    Mitt Romney is extreme? How so? He’s the Republican front runner.

    • T. J. Babson said, on October 13, 2011 at 4:47 am

      There is far more diversity of thought in the Republican part than in the Democratic party.

      • dhammett said, on October 13, 2011 at 8:09 am

        1/ In a political campaign year diversity of thought often looks like confusion.
        2/ Is diversity of thought what leads to those 242-0 House Republican votes or those 43-0 Republican votes in the Senate? Or do we call that blazing hot focus on one thought?

        • william wallace said, on October 13, 2011 at 10:49 am

          dhammett / diversity of thought will in time bring the understanding
          that the solution not looking without but rather in one looking within.

          The solution is firsly one knowing ones true needs / in knowing self.

          On pc search put ( words of peace ) on site a selection of videos in
          which Prem Rawat talks explains of meditation turning ones senses
          inward / in bringing a unfolding of the spiritual self. Not of ideas / as
          beliefs // of an heaven beyond the clouds // but giving one practical
          spiritual experiences / granted the clarity that answers all questions.

          Such the purpose of creation / that it sustain the human form. The
          purpose of the human form /that via meditation one in knowing the
          power of creation where via practial spiritual experience / growth in
          ones enlightenment / where in having clarity / clear understanding.

          At present times humanity in spiritual development is at the darkest
          hours before the dawn which makes life a struggle. Yet the reality it
          be humanity has travelled an long road / in reaching present stage.

          The ultimate stage being that of meditation / in one bringing a union
          with creator /thus the mystery / miseries / as joys life having brought
          in making sense /where one but bows in humility before the Almighty.

      • Michael LaBossiere said, on October 13, 2011 at 1:20 pm

        The Republicans seem less diverse these days, at least in terms of the candidates. There are, of course, various Republicans (such as the Log Cabin folks) that hold different views-but they seem to have been drowned out recently. The Republicans do need diversity-going hardline Tea Party might not play well in the general election.

    • Michael LaBossiere said, on October 13, 2011 at 1:18 pm

      Mitt was a rather moderate fellow (even a bit liberal) back in the Massachusetts days. He is trying to swing right to get the Tea Party support, but they seem somewhat less than enthusiastic about his Tea Party cred.

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