Democracy Soup

Making sense out of the world of politics

RNC 2012: Speeches of love, respect, lies, and still no jobs plan

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For Sarah Palin in 2008, the VP nomination acceptance speech was the high point of her run. If Paul Ryan’s speech turns out to be his high point, the GOP is in more serious trouble than we ever would have considered.

Ryan’s speech was filled with lies, distortions, criticism of Obama for the same thing he proposed (cuts in Medicare). We can’t wrap this up in a cute little “bridge to nowhere” synopsis, but delusion was the theme of both speeches.

Both speeches were eaten up by the base, but will likely prove to be an overall negative by everyone else.

Ryan was sold as being the intellectual part of the GOP. This is a party that does not believe in climate change and thinks women can protect themselves from rape sperm. His budget plan is spend on defense and very little else. This plan isn’t so much intellectual but a version of what Republicans want that sounds smart.

Few outside political circles know of Ryan, and in their eyes, starting out with lies hurt the VP candidate in 2008 and won’t help the VP candidate in 2012.

“Mitt Romney and I know the difference between protecting a program and raiding it (Medicare),” said Ryan in a truthful note. The problem is that Ryan thinks he’s protecting Medicare and the rest of us know he is raiding it.

Heck, Paul Ryan was more than a hour off when he said he ran a marathon under 3 hours. If you can easily lie about something that has nothing to do with politics and is easily verifiable, this feels like Sarah Palin, part deux.

Ann Romney gave us a speech about love. Chris Christie told us this was about respect, not love (thanks to the Colbert Report for noticing that theme). The speeches ran back to back in the same night. If we were to judge a party based on the convention was run, the GOP would lose in a landslide.

When the networks came into the 10 pm Eastern time slot, Clint Eastwood was on stage with an empty chair. The Mitt Romney video had already aired. Given that about 22% fewer people saw Romney’s speech than John McCain in 2008, Romney lost a huge opportunity to show who he is now.

The fact that more people were talking about Eastwood than Romney on Friday morning is either an embarassment or genius, if you wanted to hide how well Romney gave his speech.

Romney violated the cardinal rule of giving a speech on TV; the people in the audience aren’t your target, the people at home need your attention. And Romney fell short of that way too often.

Chris Christie was running for president in his keynote speech. His speech had a nasty tone, one that wouldn’t seem presidential but more egotistical. Christie hit on the GOP theme that Romney started about being “scaring and dividing.” Has Christie met Karl Rove or heard of Lee Atwater.

In one of the few times Christie mentioned someone other than himself, he said Mitt Romney will “end the debacle of putting the world’s greatest healthcare system in the hands of federal bureaucrats and putting those bureaucrats between an American citizen and her doctor.” As we’ve learned in the last two years, Republicans think that’s the government’s job. Forced invasive transvaginal ultrasounds. Christie ought to meet Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and Texas Governor Rick Perry.

Watching Ryan bash Obamacare as something that “has no place in a free country,” the Republicans don’t seem to get that they are bashing something created by their presidential nominee. Even if Republicans outside of Andrea Saul aren’t allowed to mention that Romneycare was the inspiration for Obamacare.

Mitt Romney pointed out that after 2008, “Americans always come together after an election.” The Republicans didn’t. As Jon Stewart noted, “Bull-F*cking-Sh*t.”

Ryan noted that with the stimulus “he (Obama) got everything he wanted under one-party rule.” Except for the tax cuts in the first stimulus, or how the country needed a second stimulus.

The Daily Show, which did another outstanding job in Tampa, coined its coverage of the Road to Jeb Bush 2016. Still can’t quite seeing that happen, but if Romney loses, the GOP has a lot of directions to go in to find a contender. The formula of a moderate turned conservative picking a much younger, lying running mate isn’t a winning formula for the GOP.

“Unlike the president, I have a plan to create 12 million new jobs.” — Mitt Romney’s speech

Finally, Romney will tell you how he plans to create these jobs, this magical plan that he hasn’t felt like disclosing until now.

1) by 2020, North America will be energy-independent (including nuclear)
2) “the skills they need for the jobs of today and the careers of tomorrow” by vouchers for private or charter schools
3) new trade agreements “when nations cheat, there will be unmistakable consequences”
4) job creators investments — “cut the deficit and put America on track to a balanced budget”
5) champion small businesses — reducing taxes, simplifying modernizing regulations that hurt small business the most, reign in health care costs by repealing Obamacare.

1) Doesn’t Obama have a similar plan? Obama’s job plan calls for alternative energy jobs, including solar and wind. Romney seems to think that the Keystone XL pipeline will account for several million jobs. Canada will lose jobs in the deal, but even the plus effect still isn’t much. And Obama will support the pipeline once TransCanada comes up with a better plan for Nebraska.

2) Vouchers for charter schools or private schools has nothing to do with skills or job gains.

3) Obama has chartered new trade agreements, but these agreements haven’t helped job growth in the United States going back to the U.S.-Canada Free Trade Agreement in 1989. More agreements won’t help.

4) Cutting the deficit and debt would help job growth. Starving everything but defense won’t help job growth.

5) Obama has reduced taxes, and simplified regulations. Republicans forget that responsible capitalism helped job growth from post World War II until Ronald Reagan took over. Besides, we tried this under George W. Bush and the job growth in that time was horrible.

If you are a Republican or you like Romney, you might like his 5-step program. But don’t think this would lead to any job growth much less 12 million jobs. Realize that to get to 12 million jobs, you have to average 250,000 jobs per month every month. Those are Clintonesque numbers. That won’t happen in 2013 regardless of who is in office. Even if Romney got all his rich corporation friends that are sitting on their money to use that dough to hire people, you still won’t get close to 12 million.

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