Did Romney ‘Win’ the Debate?

Exclusive: The instant analysis after the first presidential debate — even on liberal-leaning MSNBC — was that Mitt Romney was the decisive “winner.” But Romney not only ducked the specifics of his plans but looked sneaky and nervous in doing so, writes Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

In the presidential debate that I watched on Wednesday night, Republican challenger Mitt Romney was shiftier than Dick Nixon in 1960 and less coherent than George W. Bush in 2000, but the TV pundits, including on MSNBC, overwhelmingly declared him the winner.

When I tried to follow Romney’s logic, I couldn’t. Somehow the federal government was supposed to rein in rising health care costs but his only idea for doing so was to let the free-market work when it is clear that – whatever the shortcomings of “Obamacare” – the old model of health insurance was broken.

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. (Photo credit: mittromney.com)

Romney also claimed that his health-insurance plan would cover people with pre-existing conditions and do other positive things that are in the Affordable Care Act, but, as President Barack Obama noted, Romney hasn’t offered a serious explanation as to how that would happen.

Romney treated any reference to his 20 percent across-the-board tax cut costing $5 trillion over  decade as a lie, likening the President to his “five boys … saying something that’s not always true but just keep on repeating it.” After all, Romney has declared that his plan would be revenue-neutral. But he continued his pattern of refusing to specify how he would make it so.

In the debate that I saw, Romney seemed to be on the defensive, in large part, due to the incoherence and incompleteness of his arguments. And that reflected itself in his body language. He shifted nervously, blinked rapidly and displayed a forced smile. It looked like he was about to tear up during his closing remarks.

I saw a man struggling at the end of his rope. By contrast, Obama looked, well, presidential. He was never flustered and mounted vigorous defenses of his policies, offering details about what he had done and what he would do. Yet, he didn’t sound overly defensive or whiny, a big risk in such a setting.

One could fault Obama for not being more aggressive with host Jim Lehrer, who curiously seemed determined to stop the President from exceeding his time limit while letting Romney ramble on. But that is more a criticism of Lehrer, who behaved like PBS types often do – they go weak in the knees when a Republican talks about slashing the subsidy for public broadcasting, as Romney pointedly did.

So, I came away from watching the 90-minute debate thinking that Romney had come as close to melting down in front of a huge national audience as anyone I have ever seen in my half century of watching presidential debates. Pundits often fall back on the cliché that “no one landed a knock-out punch,” but this was as close to having one candidate lying on the mat as I have ever seen, although it was mostly Romney doing the damage to himself.

Yet, immediately after the debate – even on liberal-leaning MSNBC – Republican commentators were given the floor and allowed to set the tone of the meeting. On MSNBC, Rachel Maddow deferred to GOP campaign strategist Steve Schmidt, who gushed over Romney’s performance. The verdict was “Romney won.”

Everyone on the set except for Al Sharpton fell in line. Ed Schultz blasted Obama for not lashing out at Romney and especially for not blasting Romney’s portrayal of 47 percent of the U.S. population as irresponsible moochers.

For the past several days, pretty much every pundit I watched had predicted that the “the 47 percent” comment would be the centerpiece of the debate, but I never thought that was likely, having watched Lehrer handle other debates. He almost never goes for the “gotcha” question, favoring bland policy discussions.

Without Lehrer introducing the remark, it would have been difficult and clumsy for Obama to shoehorn the comment in. Frankly, it would have elicited groans from many Americans as an overreach. But the pundits had decided that it had to be at the heart of the debate, so they blamed the President when it wasn’t.

What was particularly startling about the MSNBC commentary was its lack of substance – except for Sharpton, who zeroed in on the discrepancies between Romney’s months of campaign statements as a “severely conservative” ex-governor of Massachusetts and his reinvention of himself as a caring fellow on Wednesday.

Yet, even on style, it was amazing to me that the pundits were favoring Romney, who looked more ill at ease than Nixon did in his infamous 1960 debate debacle with Kennedy and goofier than Bush in 2000, who was so unserious that he elicited a famous “sigh” from Al Gore. Romney wasn’t as much on the offensive all night as he was testy. He talked fast, lacked specifics and nagged Lehrer about getting more time.

If Romney were a car salesman, he would be the one urging me to overlook the car’s lousy mileage and poor repair record and begging me to buy his vehicle so he could meet his quota and not get in trouble with the boss. On Wednesday night, I was a bit worried that he would dissolve into tears during his closing remarks.

His shaky behavior and watery eyes brought to mind Ann Romney’s comment last Thursday that her “biggest concern” about her husband getting elected president “would just be for his mental well-being.” In a TV interview in Nevada, Romney’s wife pronounced him competent and qualified but worried about “the emotional part of it” for her husband.

More on Point

Some of the newspaper commentators more closely represented the debate that I watched. Alessandra Stanley of the New York Times noted that “Mr. Romney managed, despite a dry throat and some rapid blinking, to keep a choirboy smile pasted on his face while Mr. Obama spoke.

“Mr. Obama was quicker to drop his bonhomie and adopt the look of a long-suffering headmaster enduring the excuses of a bright student he is going to expel.”

The Times also did a solid job of assessing the claims and counter-claims from the two rivals.  And the Times’ lead editorial took Romney to task for his mendacity and Obama to task for not holding the Republican accountable.

But how to explain the behavior of the TV commentators, especially those on MSNBC, whose instant “spin” on behalf of Romney surely influenced the opinions of millions of Americans in their own assessments of who won?

Though MSNBC has done a relatively good job of creating some balance in a cable TV environment that Fox News has tilted sharply to the right, its hosts are under corporate pressure to present themselves as neutral newscasters in situations like Wednesday’s debate. (Remember the trouble that Keith Olbermann encountered.)

So, aspiring careerists like Rachel Maddow can be expected to demur in a situation like Wednesday night. After all, for her there are grand career opportunities, like a regular gig on NBC’s “Meet the Press” or possibly even replacing David Gregory as the host, a big step indeed.

So she immediately turned to Steve Schmidt, who did what you would expect a Republican political operative to do in such a case. He spun the outcome for Romney and did so with such confidence that he seemed to influence the remarks of MSNBC show anchors, Chris Hayes and Chris Matthews, who promptly fell in line.

For his part, Ed Schultz sounded more like a disgruntled lefty who wanted Obama to be the perfect gladiator mercilessly chopping Romney to pieces and then asking the American TV audience, “are you not entertained?”

But that approach would have opened Obama to another line of attack, the angry black man, a balancing act that Obama instinctively senses but that white liberals don’t seem to get. The only MSNBC anchor cutting through the “Romney won” spin was Sharpton.

While it’s true that Obama could have been tougher in demanding more time from Lehrer and in going after his rival, the President did resist Lehrer’s curious eagerness to impose time limits on Obama but not Romney.

Obama also made the key point about how Romney and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, keep evading specifics on their various plans. Indeed, that was my primary takeaway from the debate, that a shifty and shifting Romney won’t tell the American people what he actually intends to do.

Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press and Newsweek. His latest book, Neck Deep: The Disastrous Presidency of George W. Bush, was written with two of his sons, Sam and Nat, and can be ordered at neckdeepbook.com. His two previous books, Secrecy & Privilege: The Rise of the Bush Dynasty from Watergate to Iraq and Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & ‘Project Truth’ are also available there.

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88 comments on “Did Romney ‘Win’ the Debate?

  1. Thanks for writing one of the few articles about the debate that refused to laud Romney for a job well done when he reversed all of his positions and lied through his teeth. You were right about the MSNBC crew. The only one that had it right was Al Sharpton. I was disappointed in the rest of them.

    • If you are so deluded as to think that MSNBC went into the tank for ROMNEY, you need your head examined. They are as liberal as it gets. What did Romney “lie” about? I’ll bet you can’t point to anything, because there isn’t anything to point to. I know the Romneys. I grew up with Ann. They are very fine people. Obama stood on that stage and completely distorted Romney’s tax plan. Three times. Your aim is off.

      Romney was PLENTY specific. He did NOT reverse all of his positions; he reversed none of them. He has been very consistent throughout the campaign. Your extreme all-or-nothing comments show how uninformed and irrational you really are. When people don’t agree with you, you call them liars. Typical liberal.

      • lisa…

        During a GOP debate in Arizona in February of 2012, Mitt Romney said, “We’re going to cut taxes on everyone across the country by 20 percent, including the top 1 percent.” His words.

        Mitt Romney at the debate with President Obama on 10-3-2012:

        “So — so if — if the tax plan he described were a tax plan I was asked to support, I’d say absolutely not. I’m not looking for a $5 trillion tax cut. What I’ve said is I won’t put in place a tax cut that adds to the deficit. That’s part one. So there’s no economist can say Mitt Romney’s tax plan adds $5 trillion if I say I will not add to the deficit with my tax plan.
        Number two, I will not reduce the share paid by high-income individuals. … I will not reduce the taxes paid by high-income Americans.
        And number three, I will not, under any circumstances, raise taxes on middle-income families. I will lower taxes on middle-income families.” His words.

        Which one is the truth?

        (I have quite a few more, if you’d like.)

      • F. G. Sanford on said:

        Lisa, I know Barack Obama. I was there when he was born on Hawaii. He didn’t distort anything. Tell Ann I said “Hi”, and I’ll return that casserole dish the next time I stop over. By the way, how’s that thing with your therapist going? See? anybody can make up anything.

      • Thomas on said:

        My gosh, what is WITH you people? Romney didn’t lie during his debate with Obama??? Take a read around the web a bit. You are incredible:
        -”Romney was PLENTY specific”
        -”He did NOT reverse all of his positions; he reversed none of them”
        -Obama stood on that stage and completely distorted Romney’s tax plan
        -Your extreme all-or-nothing comments show how uninformed and irrational** you really are. When people don’t agree with you, you call them liars***.

        It’s exasperating to deal with such hypocrisy –always turning the tables around**, — and reveling in a deliberate blindness***. I could tell you, “The sky is blue”, and you’d respond, “Well, that’s YOUR opinion. You must be a ‘liberal’ “.

        Because of the likes of you, we’ll soon need to change “God Bless America” to “God SAVE America … from so-called God-abiding citizens”.

        I have no pretentions of trying to change your mind by my little post, here. If you didn’t vote for Obama when his slogan was, “Hope”, it was probably –I’m sorry to say– because you are obviously hopeless.

      • Catherine Stewart on said:

        Yes, I agree MSNBC went into the tank for Romney! And the Republican guest was leading the way!!

        • Catherine..I very much agree with you..
          I am very upset with Chris M.. he led the brigade too!
          They should have held Romney’s toes to the fire..for both his arrogance and his falsehoods..!
          I think Obama did a fine job, he spoke the facts and he had dignity!
          Why does arrogance win the day, and not the TRUTH!

      • cj kirk on said:

        You are an idiot

      • President Obama saved the American Auto Industry and Romney, whose father was President of American Motors, would have let it die.

        Should America be run like a business, where the bottom line is profit, and you’re totally on your own if you don’t make it? Herbert Hoover was a business leader, and look what happened. Coming from that background is not necessarily a criteria that makes a President. Our long history of Presidents Republican and Democrat, have utilized a collective spirit of all Americans working together to solve big problems; for example, WW2, Great Depression, etc. You need a combination of the Govt. and private industry working together.

        The first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln used the power of the Federal Govt. to establish the Veterans Administration to take care of the widows, families, and injured resulting from the Civil War (600K dead), and the Freemens Bureau,which enabled the completed devastated South to start to rebuild and become a viable part of the US, and thus create a fertile environment for private industry growth. Sometimes the Federal Govt. can do what private enterprise cannot.

        The quasi “aristocratic” class that Romney is a part of, talks about, and whines over a little more tax on their millions, while their tax brackets are the same as the average middle class person. Although Romney came on tough and aggressive as a debater, his slight of hand slogans and
        360 degree turnarounds from his established agenda, show him to be just focused on becoming President.

        The average American should cringe with worry. The Fox is guarding the henhouse. Social Security and Medicare are in danger of being privatized as a voucher system, where you’d be at the mercy of the insurance companies. Last night showed Romney who he really is: an arrogant disdainful wealthy guy who said that 47% of us are moochers. No mention of the millions his company Bain Capital made off of the misery of fired and outsourced workers.

        President Obama has inherited the biggest meltdown since the Great Depression, and after 3 Republican Administrations that allowed deregulation w/out oversight, laissez faire financial practices under the guise of free enterprise, and 2 wars which have contributed to the great economic meltdown, not to mention the 4000+ American lives lost, and the countless wounded that w/need lifetime care.

        You can’t write off half of the country; after all we are the UNITED States of America, not 50 independent little states; but interdependent for the common good.

      • dean franklin on said:

        specific you are a fool

  2. Mr. Parry relies too heavily on the actual events. Most voters listen with half an ear and so what they pick up is style rather than substance.

    Romney gained in stature simply by virtue of being on the same stage as the president. The president deferred to Romney, ingratiated himself to Romney, and otherwise behaved as though Romney deserved respect.

    Most voters are not able to evaluate the accuracy of statements like Romney’s claim that his health insurance “plan” covers pre-existing conditions or whether Romney’s budget “plan” adds 5 Trillion to the deficit. They hear about dueling “studies,” some of which are produced by right-wing propaganda mills and others of which are produced by centrist economists, and so they don’t know who to believe. And Obama equivocated on Social Security, meaning even his supporters don’t know which candidate would be worse for the program.

    The one person I hoped and believed we had elected in 2008 was a community organizer: someone who could give people a clear vision of where the country was headed, so that even if we got lost along the way, we would know where to meet up.

    So, sure, the electronic media ignored Romney’s lies. They always do. But this is like complaining about the weather. Obama needed to do better, to point the way through the storm.

    • Brian Mulllins on said:

      Lies? Hey… isn’t Guantanamo still open?…. is the deficit half of what it was in 2008?… is social security protected?… are my health care premiums reduced?… has Iran been deterred from proceeding with nuclear armament?… can I buy imported prescription drugs?… how about that govt. transparency?… can I get a free Obama phone?… etc. etc. etc. So many lies… oops, wait… looks like I can get an Obama phone though! :)
      So, come on folks… we gave The One a chance and he burned us big time… surely we can give Romney a chance too? Now, let’s be fair… we know Obama is all about being fair… so it is the right thing to do.

      • Kenny Powell on said:

        What George W Bush did to this country during his eight year reign as King, could never have been cleaned up in four short years.By ANYONE. Obama however, has done a much better job than any of Bush’s war monger,hypocrite republican cronies would have done. What a damn shame that the only prerequisite to being a republican supporter involves being a moron.

  3. Diane Duston on said:

    Thank you for your solid assessment of last night’s debate. I was flabbergasted at the MSNBC response. The pundits had to have known that Romney was prevaricating. They should have been put in separate rooms to watch the debate alone. Some wierd group-think led by Steve Schmidt seemed to have occurred. Luckily Al Sharpton was there to break through it, but I was truly amazed by the rest.

    • Gary Houston on said:

      The MSNBC pundits more than knew Romney “prevaricated”–they said he did. Their criticism was that Obama did not counterpunch. And people who have wanted to lower expectations of Obama as a debater, either before or after the event, don’t seem to remember that against Hillary he was an excellent counterpuncher. A couple of things: John Kerry was not a good fit as a practice partner for Obama. Kerry’s being from Romney’s state (or one of them) is superfluous, nor was his surprisingly robust convention speech decisive in mimicking Romney, because that kind of mimicry is not crucially one of manner or matter but one of anticipating what a chameleon would do. Also, closer to your point, Romney was such an asbergerish geyser last night how can you blame Obama for adopting the strategy of letting the opponent spew his top off? OK, Obama didn’t correct Romney every time a lie was repeated, but can’t we all be so smart that once is enough?

      • Matt Palmer on said:

        “Asbergerish geyser”? D’you mean Asperger? Geezer? I will not accept Romney as an Asperger. Liar, yes, Asperger, never. One of the defining characteristics of Asperger/Autism Specrtum Disorder is one of requiring truth, disdaining equivocation. Great hair for a geezer though.
        Also, I would say Kerry “won” his “debates” with w.bush. Fat lot of good that did the world; we’re lying in a puddle of our own sick.

  4. Obama needs to leave the patiently waiting Chicago Law school posture at home or he is going HOME there very quickly to write his memoirs. Don’t know how you will take this, and I really did love your post debate column, but Obama has been playing second in the Jackie Robinson story too long. Bob mentioned the angry black man thing. Sure Jackie had to play that out during every game he played while things were thrown at him, or shouted at him. However, Obama is the president, Rommy is a weakling running for the last six yrs in the arena and on the sidelines both. When will we someone stick up for US for a change? Wasn’t that Obama’s slogan? We need a fighter too not just lukewarm tepid professorial crap over and over again. That’s why this race is still neck and neck. Too much posturing not enough performing. With nearly 20% unemployment you’re damn right they should of forced a massive jobs bill first then healtcare mandate that is identical to Romnuts’ plan in MA. Finally MA is not number one in schools anymore and he hasn’t served there since 2006 another lie Obama couldn’t and wouldn’t challenge along with ER comment on 60mins. Obama is weak and it showed.

  5. But of course Bob you’re totally right that Rumnuts is a known idiot, weakling, and was tottering on disaster the whole time.

  6. Very good non pundit view of the real Romney, an arrogant pseudo aristocrat who is lusting for the title of President, without offering specifics while spouting slogans, and being the excellent bully which he has always been. When you’ve seen the “47%” video, and last night’s debate, the real Romney emerges; one to be feared by the average American if he becomes President. For once, Robert Parry et al, focuses on a tangible event

  7. Hillary on said:

    This is what we have to offer ?

    George Carlin Elections, Politicians and American People

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOCLf7YrbMI

  8. Looks like I stumbled into the Kool Aid Room. Drink-up my friends, drink-up.

  9. Add my thanks, Robert Parry, for putting the debate into a proper perspective, especially given the bloodlust among our fellow citizens. I watched the debate with 5 leftists all of whom were as explosive as the MSNBC crew about what a runaway Romney had made.

    Well, they didn’t say “runaway” but I will. They wanted to see a knockdown with loads of Romney blood on the mat.

    Your comparing Romney to a new car salesman is exactly the metaphor that I have been using, all teeth in a smarmy smile and no content. He said perhaps as many as five things all night, and kept repeating them. All his words about his so-called “plan” were completely without truth or merit, as Obama pointed out more than once without actually using the very impolite word “liar” which would have been out of place in such a setting.

    What one SHOULD expect from a president is calm and truth, which Obama supplied in abundance. He did a good job of putting into the record his accomplishments (without doing himself the political damage of adding “in the face of a Congress who openly wanted me to fail”).

    My own metaphor for the truly miraculous job Obama has done in these four years since inheriting not only a free-fall economy but also an entire society of cranky, disgruntled, fearful citizens after 8 years of cronyism is the Titanic. Yes, Obama took over the captainship from carefree GWB right after GWB steered it at full speed into the iceberg. Obama not only kept us afloat and heading toward harbor, but he accomplished a whole lot of bailing and repair in the face of mutiny from the Republican half of the crew, so that now, in sight of safe harbor, the damn short-sighted citizens (so many still Republicans, good heavens, why?????) might seriously consider returning the captainship to a man without any navigational charts or plans who wants to turn our precious Ship of State back out to the wide ocean, abandoning regulations, abandoning care, and pouring champagne for the mutinous members of the crew.

    Obama, yes, was treading carefully among all these crazy cranks in the nation last night (I hadn’t thought about the “angry black man” angle, but I believe you’re right) and the best thing we folks on the left can do to help him is to admit simply that Romney was smoother than we thought he would be as he told his five impossible lies, but Obama was cool and calm and polite in the face of it, understanding that the truth will out in the coming days and weeks.

    The MSNBC crew, full of moderators like Chris Matthews of Hardball (who never lets his guests finish their thoughts before interrupting them, and therefore understandably angry at Jim Lehrer’s failure to moderate) were as shortsighted as anyone, completely overlooking the content of Obama and declaring “the win” for the empty “style” of Romney. Oog.

    So let’s be truthful. Do you want a new car salesman (with a lemon to sell) or do we want a president?

    Thanks!

    Bob Locke

  10. F. G. Sanford on said:

    The President ended up speaking for about four more minutes than Mr. Romney. So, I’m not sure where the Lehrer bias idea comes from. Sure, Romney was lying through his teeth, telling half-truths or ignoring the issues entirely. But in a country that goes bonkers over the mere mention of the word “socialism”, Mr. Romney appeared the consummate free market capitalist inspired by God, Family Values and brimming with love of country. The right, having voted away the protections and the jobs that made single-earner family income feasible, has self-immolated its central tenet. Nobody can afford to live that lifestyle anymore, and single adults now make up the largest portion of the potential child-bearing population. This economic trend, courtesy of right wing decimation of the middle class, has also spurred on their other pet peeve: illegal immigrants. Yet here is Mitt, poster child for these policies, spewing the economic fallacies that will ultimately make families, let alone family values, a historical curiosity. But the right, aided by the likes of Reverend Hagee, will cling to the idea that “socialism” is at the heart of all our woes. They’ll vote for this guy who has himself been a prime mover in the destruction of household income.

    James Carville, certainly no conservative pundit, said it best. “The president looked like he didn’t want to be there”. I couldn’t help but watch the debates and remember an American Literature reading we were assigned in high-school. It was about a talented prize-fighter with a no-contest advantage over the champ. He has just met a wonderful girl and has before him the prospect of a beautiful life, if he doesn’t continue to get his brains beat out. He gets a shot at the title, trains hard for the benefit of his reputation with the bookies, and makes his plan. He takes his life savings and places a bet. The night before the fight, he drinks a fifth of bourbon and sleeps like a baby.

    I personally think President Obama’s facial expressions spoke volumes. I think he has concluded that facts and reason are useless. I suspect that giving the lunatic fringe in America what it wants is what it will take to turn around the mess we’re in. It will take utter collapse. We need an updated version of FDR’s “New Deal”, but it is an impossible sell right now. After all, it’s “socialism”. I think economists like Richard Wolff and historians like Michael Parenti might agree with me. Me? I agree with James Carville. I think The President didn’t want to be there.

  11. nora king on said:

    Great article. Felt like a really sleazy salesman left his aftershave and sweat in my house. But seriously, Big Bird won the debate. Mean Romney wants to fire Big Bird, godfather or the successful public/private partnership, and take down the moderatior of the debate with the same stroke of a pen. Chris Hitchens was not afraid of taking a whiz on Mother Teresa or Kissinger, but he had the sense not to piss on Big Bird and Jim Lehrer. Education needed the spotlight, now it has a yellow glow.

    Whoopi Goldberg fired back, great pix of the Sesame Street Muppets sitting on the steps labeled ROMNEY’S 47 per cent.
    Thousands of twitter communities sprang up, one hashtag garnering 12,000 followers before morning. My favorite tweet:

    Hey Romney, Sesame Street was brought to you by the letters F and U.

    • My favorite tweet: Obama looked like a waitress who was called into work on a Friday night and had to cancel a hot date to do it. He didn’t want to be there. He got HAMMERED.

  12. Robert Wagner on said:

    The MSNBC staff’ response, other than that of the Rev Al Sharpton, was superficial and totally devoid of Chutzpah. They wallowed in Romney’s attacks, knowing that they were prevarications. They should admit that their opinions as to who had “won” were based heavily on Romney’s projections of a (false)image of what Romney would do … and what he had been able to do in a Democratically controlled legislature; implying that Obama failed because of Obama’s inability to “work with” the opposition. The MSNBC “careerists” failed dismally when they had opportunity to highlight and focus on Obama’s
    Presidential demeanor; maintaining a calm in the face of Romney’s “pre-programed baiting tactics”. I too felt that Romney “came on stronger” but this was supposed to be a civil debate; not a blood seeking gladiatorial
    encounter.

  13. Andrew on said:

    I was entertained that Chris Matthews was encouraging Obama to watch cable news, especially MSNBC. You don’t become a news anchor on a major network without shameless self promotion.

  14. Who one the debate? I think it all depends whose lies you like to digest. Both Obama and Romney has the same destinatio; the approval of the Zionist state of Israel.

    “Billions of dollars have been spent on political propaganda, but not a single important issue has been addressed. The closest the campaign has come to a political issue is which candidate can grovel the lowest at the feet of Israeli prime minister Netanyahu. Romney won that contest. But for the rest, well, it is like two elementary school children sticking their tongues out at one another,” wrote Paul Craig Roberts on October 2, 2012.

    http://rehmat1.com/2012/10/04/paul-roberts-president-like-cynthia-mckinney/

  15. Morton Kurzweil on said:

    There is an old observation that a fascist is someone who says one thing and means another. It holds true when applied to any cult, fraternity, the Mafia, or any group, political or religious, that swears allegiance to an ideology that uses code words and secrecy and denies the rights of any who oppose it.
    Romney is not accountable to ant audience beyond his religion and the ambition to gain authority over others. He does not lie. His beliefs exempt him from truths which interfere with his purpose of subjection ad control.

    • David Kaiser is a respected historian whose published works have covered a broad range of topics, from European Warfare to American League Baseball. Born in 1947, the son of a diplomat, Kaiser spent his childhood in three capital cities: Washington D.C. , Albany , New York , and Dakar , Senegal . He attended Harvard University , graduating there in 1969 with a B.A. in history. He then spent several years more at Harvard, gaining a PhD in history, which he obtained in 1976.. He served in the Army Reserve from 1970 to 1976.

      He is a professor in the Strategy and Policy Department of the United States Naval War College. He has previously taught at Carnegie Mellon, Williams College and Harvard University . Kaiser’s latest book, The Road to Dallas, about the Kennedy assassination, was just published by Harvard University Press.

      Dr. David Kaiser

      History Unfolding. I am a student of history. Professionally, I have written 15 books on history that have been published in six languages, and I have studied history all my life. I have come to think there is something monumentally large afoot, and I do not believe it is simply a banking crisis, or a mortgage crisis, or a credit crisis. Yes these exist, but they are merely single facets on a very large gemstone that is only now coming into a sharper focus..

      Something of historic proportions is happening. I can sense it because I know how it feels, smells, what it looks like, and how people react to it. Yes, a perfect storm may be brewing, but there is something happening within our country that has been evolving for about ten to fifteen years. The pace has dramatically quickened in the past two.

      We demand and then codify into law the requirement that our banks make massive loans to people we know they can never pay back? Why?

      We learned just days ago that the Federal Reserve, which has little or no real oversight by anyone, has “loaned” two trillion dollars (that is $2,000,000,000,000) over the past few months, but will not tell us to whom or why or disclose the terms. That is our money. Yours and mine. And that is three times the $700 billion we all argued about so strenuously just this past September. Who has this money? Why do they have it? Why are the terms unavailable to us? Who asked for it? Who authorized it? I thought this was a government of “we the people,” who loaned our powers to our elected leaders. Apparently not.

      We have spent two or more decades intentionally de-industrializing our economy… Why?

      We have intentionally dumbed down our schools, ignored our history, and no longer teach our founding documents, why we are exceptional, and why we are worth preserving. Students by and large cannot write, think critically, read, or articulate. Parents are not revolting, teachers are not picketing, school boards continue to back mediocrity. Why?

      We have now established the precedent of protesting every close election (violently in California over a proposition that is so controversial that it simply wants marriage to remain defined as between one man and one woman. Did you ever think such a thing possible just a decade ago?) We have corrupted our sacred political process by allowing unelected judges to write laws that radically change our way of life, and then mainstream Marxist groups like ACORN and others to turn our voting system into a banana republic. To what purpose?

      Now our mortgage industry is collapsing, housing prices are in free fall, major industries are failing, our banking system is on the verge of collapse, social security is nearly bankrupt, as is Medicare and our entire government. Our education system is worse than a joke (I teach college and I know precisely what I am talking about) – the list is staggering in its length, breadth, and depth.. It is potentially 1929 x ten…And we are at war with an enemy we cannot even name for fear of offending people of the same religion, who, in turn, cannot wait to slit the throats of your children if they have the opportunity to do so.

      And finally, we have elected a man that no one really knows anything about, who has never run so much as a Dairy Queen, let alone a town as big as Wasilla, Alaska .. All of his associations and alliances are with real radicals in their chosen fields of employment, and everything we learn about him, drip by drip, is unsettling if not downright scary (Surely you have heard him speak about his idea to create and fund a mandatory civilian defense force stronger than our military for use inside our borders?
      No? Oh, of course. The media would never play that for you over and over and then demand he answer it. Sarah Palin’s pregnant daughter and $150,000 wardrobe are more important.)

      Mr. Obama’s winning platform can be boiled down to one word: Change. Why?

      I have never been so afraid for my country and for my children as I am now.

      This man campaigned on bringing people together, something he has never, ever done in his professional life. In my assessment, Obama will divide us along philosophical lines, push us apart, and then try to realign the pieces into a new and different power structure. Change is indeed coming. And when it comes, you will never see the same nation again.

      And that is only the beginning..

      As a serious student of history, I thought I would never come to experience what the ordinary, moral German must have felt in the mid-1930s In those times, the “savior” was a former smooth-talking rabble-rouser from the streets, about whom the average German knew next to nothing. What they should have known was that he was associated with groups that shouted, shoved, and pushed around people with whom they disagreed; he edged his way onto the political stage through great oratory. Conservative
      “losers” read it right now.

      And there were the promises. Economic times were tough, people were losing jobs, and he was a great speaker. And he smiled and frowned and waved a lot. And people, even newspapers, were afraid to speak out for fear that his “brown shirts” would bully and beat them into submission. Which they did – regularly. And then, he was duly elected to office, while a full-throttled economic crisis bloomed at hand – the Great Depression. Slowly, but surely he seized the controls of government power, person by person, department by department, bureaucracy by bureaucracy. The children of German citizens were at first, encouraged to join a Youth Movement in his name where they were taught exactly what to think. Later, they were required to do so. No Jews of course,

      How did he get people on his side? He did it by promising jobs to the jobless, money to the money-less, and rewards for the military-industrial complex. He did it by indoctrinating the children, advocating gun control, health care for all, better wages, better jobs, and promising to re-instill pride once again in the country, across Europe , and across the world. He did it with a compliant media – did you know that? And he did this all in the name of justice and …. . … change. And the people surely got what they voted for.

      If you think I am exaggerating, look it up. It’s all there in the history books.

      So read your history books. Many people of conscience objected in 1933 and were shouted down, called names, laughed at, and ridiculed. When Winston Churchill pointed out the obvious in the late 1930s while seated in the House of Lords in England (he was not yet Prime Minister), he was booed into his seat and called a crazy troublemaker. He was right, though. And the world came to regret that he was not listened to.

      Do not forget that Germany was the most educated, the most cultured country in Europe . It was full of music, art, museums, hospitals, laboratories, and universities. And yet, in less than six years (a shorter time span than just two terms of the U. S. presidency) it was rounding up its own citizens, killing others, abrogating its laws, turning children against parents, and neighbors against neighbors.. All with the best of intentions, of course.. The road to Hell is paved with them.

      As a practical thinker, one not overly prone to emotional decisions, I have a choice: I can either believe what the objective pieces of evidence tell me (even if they make me cringe with disgust); I can believe what history is shouting to me from across the chasm of seven decades; or I can hope I am wrong by closing my eyes, having another latte, and ignoring what is transpiring around me..

      I choose to believe the evidence. No doubt some people will scoff at me, others laugh, or think I am foolish, naive, or both. To some degree, perhaps I am. But I have never been afraid to look people in the eye and tell them exactly what I believe-and why I believe it.

      I pray I am wrong. I do not think I am. Perhaps the only hope is our vote in the next elections.

      David Kaiser
      Jamestown , Rhode Island

      • F. G. Sanford on said:

        Lisa, please try and keep in mind, Hitler was a right wing conservative. Marxist groups like ACORN were the ones who opposed him. His brown-shirts were beating up socialists and communists. No Harvard educated historian would draw such moronic conclusions or write such a stilted analysis of history. Right wing “Christians” are the ones in our society who parallel the ideological fanaticism described in this apocryphal piece of nonsense. Try reading Christopher Hedges if you don’t believe me. You are either a shill for the right wing using the same fear-mongering tactics Hitler used, or you are just too shallowly educated to recognize this piece of writing as the work of someone with phony credentials. Nobody believes Obama is Hitler or that he was born in Kenya. That is unless they forgot to take their medication. Call your therapist. He’s worried about you.

      • Nice going, ‘lisa’, you just destroyed any credibility you thought you had. If you go to David Kaiser’s website, on May 2, 2009, you’ll find the following statement:
        “…The email circulating widely attributed to me comparing President Obama to Adolf Hitler is a forgery: see snopes.com/politics/soapbox/proportions.asp.” and “….let me say at once that I did not write it, do not agree with it, and would appreciate you hitting “reply all” to the email that you received and letting everyone know this.”

        I found this in 60 seconds of Googling (because I wasn’t in a hurry!)… pity you’re not even concerned enough to spend a couple of minutes verifying something as questionable as this…

        • mickey gee on said:

          Righto, Eddie! David Kaiser has been trying to straighten out this bogus post for years. Apparently it’s still alive and well though the efforts of people like ‘lisa’ who have no regard for Prof Kaiser’s rep, or the truth, as long as it promotes their delusional view of the world. As Rev. Al sez, “Nice try, lisa. But we gotcha!” NeoCons are scum! Peace

        • Recently I received a similar authoritative-type e-mail message that a neighbor of mine had sent out to a list of people. Having checked it out, I did click on “Reply All” and sent out a link to every recipient listed the corrected information. I do think this is a good way, probably the only way, to combat such trash mail.

          The Lisa “person” is very obviously commenting, over and over, here for a purpose other than to converse or even sway opinion. It is method used by “trolls,” who whether for themselves or others, intend primarily to disrupt the flow of the conversation and sucker people into “like” responses. My advice is to henceforth ignore it.

      • Chares Craig on said:

        Good Grief, Lisa! This is a fake attribution. there is a David Kaiser, but he says that this is not his work, after the first two sentences. It has been passed around and around and finally is traced to an anonymous contributor to a blog. What truth can you expect from someone who begins by stealing someone else’s identity?

  16. “Hey Romney, Sesame Street was brought to you by the letters F and U.”

    Once again the left goes Potty Mouth. Like the with the Samuel Jackson ad. They just can’t help themselves.

  17. nora king on said:

    Obama did not anticipate the altitude difference between the Hoover Dam and the mountains and did not leave time to aclimate. Years ago I took my slideshow on the coup in Chile to any town that would have me and went from my beloved Hoover Dam to a gig in Colorado. It was my flattest performance ever. Could it be that simple?

    Blogger-in-cheif for Obama in 08 Sam Felsen energized youth with a brilliant online grassroots genius. Sam wrote a great Times Op ed noting all of Obama’s waknesses from a progressive perspective before election season kicked in. We know Obama and his weaknesses. This is one of those not tweedle dee moments, and who better to fire up the base than Big Bird? Sam, come back, come back and defend Big Bird!

  18. Romney, debate winner? Seriously?? Mitt came across as a desperate used car salesman amped up on crystal meth trying to sell a genuine clunker to a gullible and clueless American public, while frantically disavowing vast parts of his previously well-promoted tax/economic plan and pretty much anything else he said or believed yesterday or the day before or ….

    Apparently, being president is on Mitt’s “bucket list” and he’s going to whine and complain like a spoiled brat (and perhaps hold his breath until his face turns blue) until at least Election Day.

  19. McMillan on said:

    Great analysis Robert. I watched the debates last night and I was surprised by the pundits reaction. Ed Schultz and Chris Mathews were both upset, but I thought Romney came across as desperate, trying to make a sale based on “trust me”. If President Obama had gone after Romney, the President would have been viewed as “an angry Black man”. Romney did little to sell his vision, because we still don’t know what his vision is. The pundits wanted raw meat rather than a thoughful discussion. It will be interesting when Paul Ryan and Biden debate, I think we will all see just how bankrupt the Republicans vision for America really is.

    • Jon Anthony on said:

      @McMillan, that exactly the problem with Roberts article , all Robert did was over analyze the facts instead of focusing on the perceptions most Americans felt last night.

      • Diana Marsh on said:

        Most Americans felt Romney was lying through his teeth as usual. He is the most disgusting candidate for President I have ever seen, he will say whatever he thinks it will take to win an then tell the truth behind your back. Don’t forget the 47% speech to his rich donors, or his lack of tax returns because there is something in them worst than not releasing them, or his lack of details on any of his plans for the economy or health insurance or anything because if he tells us what he really wants to do, he knows he will not get elected, his own words.

  20. McMike on said:

    Well, that’s because you are using an antiquated standard for “winning.” In that naive world, wining means making good arguments, backing up your assertions, and above all demonstrating intellectual consistency.

    Good luck with that.

    The winner in upside-down media-world is based on who makes the most convincing double-dog dare and backs it up with a credible “I know you are but what am I.”

    nyah nyah nyah, I win!

  21. Mr.Parry’s observations of the demeanour of Mr. Romney during the first presidenetial debate were so incorrect that I felt that I needed to rescue him before he fell any harder on his leftward leaning face. It was very clear that Mr. Romney was accurate and energetic during the entire 90 minutes of debate ; this in contrast to the very dejected looking and slowly articulating Obama .On many occasions Obama was seen knodding his head ( a terrible mistake) in total agreement as Romney spouted off fact after fact.Obama face showed complete dejection and capitulation when Romney hammered him about the 90 billion dollar rescue plan he gave to the failing green companies he decided to give aid to. To say that Romney was nervous and shifty eyed is simply a wish that got away from the unastute Parry .Wear your trifocals , buck up and then watch the next debate with at least some degree of observational clarity. Obama wisely decided to avoid mentioning Romney’s 47 % issue because Romney would have pulled out any of many arrrows from his quiver -inlcluding the flip flop tape on Reverend Wright .
    You would have to be an observational klutz not to see that Romney trounced what appeard to be an ill prepared and very dejected looking Obama.

    • Louis Wellberg on said:

      “It was very clear that Mr. Romney was accurate and energetic…”
      Your powers of observation need to be developed. Why do so many people feel that Romney is nothing but a used car salesman?
      He is a phony and the “accuracy” of his statements can easily be challenged.

  22. nora king on said:

    Technology changes how we experience things. This was the social media debate, where the TV may not be the center of visual attention, but rather the scrolling tweets. The cloud was a barely known concept four years ago. Young people and technogeeks experienced something different from the widescreen tv crowd. We were watching everything imaginable try game on the internet, and lota incompatiblity, lotta crashes. Listen to radio while rebooting and tweeting? Nixon might have gotten off the hook, who knows.

  23. Jon Anthony on said:

    Mr. Parry, the President lost the debate last night. I am a supporter of the President but last night perception won over substance. Your focused on the facts and real world analysis and thats not what plays on national T.V. He did not bring his A game or offense to the game. Your article trys to place a nice face or spin on the real outcome of the debate. However please put down the kool aid and have a water cleanse soon since its hurting your credibility as a writer and reporter.

  24. clarence swinney on said:

    I wanted blood got smiles

    OBAMA BLEW IT
    He could have destroyed Romney with facts and attacks on predecessor
    I have E-mailed data to the White House many times. Ignored?

    SPENDING–BIG GOVERNMENT
    Bush last budget spent $3510B.
    Obama last budget(2013) projects $3800B
    That is 8.6% increase in spending or lowest in history

    DEFICIT—Bush last budget ended 9-30-09 with a $1400B Deficit
    Obama last budget(2013) ends 9-30-13 projects $901B deficit.
    A 35% cut (he promised 50%)

    TAXES—Bush gave biggest tax cut in history. We borrowed $6100 B much of which
    was because the rich kept their money and were not taxed enough. Romney promises more of Bush tax cuts which cuts revenue and increases debt.
    Obama cut taxes for 96% of workers to stimulate the Great Recession economy. His Executive order Efficient Spending in Government was designed to offset some of the lost revenue from the payroll tax cut.
    Today, We rank just below Mexico and Chile As Least Taxed nation.
    Obama 2013 budget projects tax revenue of $2900B or 20% of our national income and 21% of our gdp. Our National Tax Rate is 20%. It “Must” go up to pay off debt.

    Obama should have attacked his predecessor but he will never do it en mass.
    Let Obama ratings fall watch out. He may get mean which is not his nature.

    He inherited a hell on earth why not use it.?clarence swinney

    • “He inherited ”

      No, he *ran* for it in the ’08 campaign and *won* it as his prize for victory.

      • Ummm Obama hasn’t had a budget in 3-1/2 years

        • Right you are.

          Not sure if I made myself clear: When you hear Obama say “We inherited” you can freely substitute “We ran for and won as out prize for victory in the ’08 campaign”.

          It’s all his now.

  25. mark phelan on said:

    did you really make it through the whole thing without a break from start to finish? seems impossible to me.. maybe watch a recording after with a list of the pbs buffoon’s questions, just catching the candidates responses.. or somehow speeding it up… 90 minutes of those voices and your head spinning with the images of all those murdered kids in their wars.. it’s unbearable

    • nora king on said:

      As a mom who taught art to the generation fighting this war, I know soldiers who stuffed Elmo or Big Bird or Oscar in their backpack as they headed off to war. I know college students who ate top ramen with miss piggy on the fridge and go to every ant-war activity. Public tv is part of the America they fight for, what they want for their own kids.

      We stand no chance of getting Bradley Manning out under Romney. A lame duck Obama is our best hope. Thanks for reminding everyone that once chubby little legs are now barely grown and in harms way.

      • Robert Schwartz on said:

        You will get no relief for Bradley Manning from this president, nor for any other whistle blowers, of whom this president has gone after as no other president in history. Obama specifically condoned the barbaric treatment Bradley Manning was receiving at Quantico (P.J. Crowley lost his job for comments about that.) and proclaimed him guilty prior to trial.

        No, more likely it will be that supporters of Bradley Manning, Julian Assange or WikiLeaks will be classified as being in material support of enemies of the United States, as declassified Air Force document revealed via a FOIA request from an Australian Newspaper both Assange and WikiLeaks have been deemed to be “enemies.”

  26. elmerfudzie on said:

    This debate reminds me of one, two headed monster, talking to itself.

  27. Next debate should get the time-keepers from the Oscars to just turn off the mics when the candidate goes over their allotted time.

  28. gregorylkruse on said:

    I didn’t watch the debate or the MSNBC afterglow, and I’m glad I didn’t. Much of what was said today in much of the media was aimed at shilling for the second debate. It’s all about promotion. Parry’s point about the needs of the corporation at MSNBC reminds me of the time when Bill Moyers suggested that Maddow wasn’t free to say whatever she wanted to, and Maddow denied that. She is like Obama in a way. She is talented and ambitious, and I’m sure that Gregory’s spot on Meet the Press is very attractive to her, but she will have to learn how to balance reality with the needs of the various corporate bosses as well as Gregory does, and his predecessor did.

  29. Kenny Fowler on said:

    So Mittens answer to the partisan gridlock in Washington is coffee clatch Mondays and the Democrats can come too. Huh? What? That was just plain silly. He sounds like he’s giving a pitch to a bunch of shareholders at a corporate board meeting. Oh wait, that was his job at Bain. No wonder.

  30. nora king on said:

    The corporate reshuffle at MSNBC made confusion for viewers online as Microsoft, Comcast and cash forced MSNBC.com searchers to another site. Billions changed hands. Did this have an effect on the post game show?

  31. incontinent reader on said:

    I think the pundits have made the mistake they always make when they fail to look at or listen to the substance of what is said. If the Obama team zeros in on it, and also matches it against the mindless certainty with which Romney said it, so that the voters can understand Romney’s lack of judgment and the serious damage his proposals would cause, it should be able to make mince meat of Romney’s candidacy and policies.

    • incontinent reader on said:

      This also means zeroing in on the bald inconsistencies of his statements in the first debate, vs. what he has been saying all along (including any of the inconsistencies along the way)- Lisa and Ann notwithstanding. My sense is that Obama can do a surgical on him, like the following plagiarized joke, but only if the public is not too dense to pick up on it.

      “There once was a powerful emperor who needed a new chief Samurai. So he put up posters throughout the land saying he was searching for a new chief Samurai. But after 2 months, only 3 Samurai applied for the job, a Japanese, a Chinese, and Morris. So he interviewed all three.

      The emperor first asked the Japanese to demonstrate why he should be his chief Samurai. The Japanese opened a little silver box and out flew a little fly. Whoosh went his sword and the fly dropped dead in two pieces. The emperor was impressed.

      The emperor then asked the Chinese to demonstrate why he should be his chief Samurai. The Chinese opened a small pearl box and out flew a smaller fly. Whoosh, whoosh went his sword and the fly dropped dead in four pieces. The emperor was very impressed.

      Then the emperor asked Morris to demonstrate why he should be his chief Samurai. Morris opened a small gold box and out flew a wasp. Whoooooossshhh, whoooooossshhh, whooooooossshhh, whoooooossshhh, whoooooossshhh went Morris’s sword, but the wasp was still alive and buzzing around the emperor.

      The emperor was very disappointed and asked Morris, “After all your sword play, why is the wasp not dead?”
      Morris replied, “A circumcision is never intended to kill.”

  32. clarence swinney on said:

    “My first act will be to defund Planned Parenthood”
    PP prevents more abortions than any unit in America
    It provides preventative health care for millions of the poorest of poor women.

    Shows character selfish-self centered-greedy–unamerican unlike Chriost

  33. It embarrasses me that the President of the U.S. seems to have had to go to ABC and do that reality show. I’d put it on a par with the one about trading spouses — not nearly as good as the one about eating worms.

  34. Chares Craig on said:

    I support Obama and dislike and distrust Romney. But I am angry at the president. My wife and I live in a state very hostile to him, but we have faithfully gone every week to man a phone bank on his behalf. He did not do as well as Romney in the debate, by far! And, barring illness, he could have. He just looked unprepared and listless. Look at the man you are debating, for God’s sake! Be as energetic as you are on the stump! When the debate was over my wife and I were very quiet. We did not take our cue from MSNBC, which we did not watch. It was our own disappointed opinion. We will get over it and keep working for Obama, but he has lost valuable points. Another performance like this and he is done for.

  35. dreamweaver43 on said:

    I think you need to read this:

    UPDATED: Really, Democrats, have you learned so little about Barack Obama in five years?

    http://www.eclectablog.com/2012/10/really-democrats-have-you-learned-so-little-about-barack-obama-in-five-years.html

  36. I’m glad somebody woke up and realized that the media has developed a right wing pro republican bias. This change in network news broadcasting should be discussed in the media and corrected. The other networks have been very influenced by FOX broadcasting company and they are obviously copying their style and their slanted reporting.

  37. Chief Rufus Davis on said:

    Listening to Chris Hayes MSNBC I think Chris is a very fair and good reporter that does his homework and know his business.

    Romney won the debate by out Blabbing Obama and the moderator and

    In hindsight I think Obama had the correct strategy of letting Romney talk and take over the conversation with him and he also took over the moderator, and shows he could not follow instructions,and it seems obvious that he was a born business owner and have not had to negotiate his ideas for a workable solution,and just put his ideas in place whether they work or not. It has been said give a man enough rope and he will hang himself, and other terms are give him a microphone and put him on the stand and let him sing, in this case by self identifying who he is and confirm his thinking. by Obama allowing him to stay out in the open unprotected, in football terms this is called out running your blockers

    By letting Mitt Romney talk he confirmed that his plan was incomplete by fact check and therefore it is true what Obama has been saying he proved he does not have a plan

    By fact check blabbing Mitt has contradicted himself in every direction or his plans were termed to be incomplete and were not telling the truth again Obama was correct Mitt Romney does not have a plan

    We are much better off than we were four years ago jobs are up, housing market is up, the stock market is up, proves things are getting better every day proves Obama has a plan

    The media has over analyzed Obama’s strategy of letting Mitt talk and over evaluated this by thinking negative instead of positive and determining as Obama being flat, non-responsive, non-interested and not into the debate but yet proven by fact check that Mitts statements are contradictory, incorrect and his statements are flip flopping.
    The media is now repeating what the opposition party is saying that the job rate has been fixed by the Democrats, now how many times are they going to get it wrong

    • This is exactly how I saw the debate too. “If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bulls*#t

  38. rufusbuck on said:

    I am a Canadian. I find it amusing to read American comments about their politics and media that include any distinction about the ideology of the candidates. Currently Canada has the most right-wing government in it’s history, and still the policies in this country related to the role of the state in the economy could never be suggested by an American presidential candidate. Perhaps the Kleptocrats vs. the Cryptofascists would be a more accurate description of the dynamic in the U S A.

  39. Dorothy on said:

    I am so glad I found your article. You describe exactly what I saw and heard in this debate. I was shocked at the pundits. I watched on CSPAN which showed a close up of the debaters on split screen for the entire debate, never showing the moderator. I thought maybe that’s why I came away with a different opinion that the pundits. Romney never looked into the camera while the President did often. Romney glared at the President with that creepy sneer and sweat on his upper lip while the President was speaking (that’s why he needed the handkerchief. The President stated his case extremely well. I totally agree with your assessment and thank you for validating my view as well.

  40. clarence swinney on said:

    off subject but oh so important

    JOBS–ONE OF BEST
    THE BETRAYAL OF AMERICA’S MIDDLE CLASS WAS A CHOICE, NOT AN ACCIDENT
    BARTLETT-STEELE TRUTH-OUT.ORG
    These two have been writing it since 1992 Book–”America-What went Wrong”
    How have things changed since then for the middle class? They say “straight downhill-
    Thanks to the few ruling class which is having its way.”
    Wages stagnating and going down, benefits jeopardized or disappearing, and our country being divided into a nation of have-mores and have-lesses. Public policy gave incentive to corporations to outsource. They say high wages excuse is malarkey. They say main reason is incentives provided by foreign governments and, then, when companies bring their product back there is essentially no tariff on it. Trade deficits=lost jobs. The ones remaining should be saying”Look, we are really working for the best interest of American workers here and we need some help”.
    “The problem is, you have the mindset in Washington, in Congress and basically with every administration, that trade should be unrestricted.”
    Recent Example: Hanesbrands—biggest hosiery -men’ underwear—Winston Salem NC-
    In 2010, Chinese government built them huge modern plant. All US plants closed.
    Check the current retail price look for much lower price. Ha Ha Ha
    The four page article tells us so much about what happened and tough choices to recapture/keep our jobs. Bartlett-Steele are Icons on Jobs. Bless them.
    Tariff on imports.

  41. C weston on said:

    Mr. Perry I wonder if you’re collecting the presidents sweat soaked handkerchiefs, or maybe he offered you a position as his next household pet? You’re obviously punch drunk and enamered with this guy. He could have puked on the moderator and you would still be singing his praises.