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Why I Think Obama Is A Poor Politician

Thursday, August 26, 2010
Alan Simpson, former Senator and co-chair of the deficit commission, said that Social Security was "a milk cow with 310 million tits." When criticized, Simpson apologies for the tone. By the way, he's been a critic of Social Security for decades.

What Obama does: accept his apology. Which ticks off his base, will raise fears that Obama will go along with Social Security cuts, and limit Democrats' opportunity to use social security as an issue in the fall.

What I would have done: fire Simpson, vigorously defend Social Security, and claim that the budget will not be balanced on the backs of seniors who have been paying their social security taxes for decades. Have my allies in Congress introduce bills strengthening social security by lifting the cap on high incomes and dare the Republicans to vote against it.

Why the difference in approach? I like winning. Obama likes making David Broder happy.
Posted by Arbitrista @ 9:04 AM

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I Object

Monday, August 23, 2010
I was burned out on politics after 2008. I had invested so much emotional energy into ending the Bush era that I longed for a quieter period of competent stewardship. I expected Obama to give me that, and in my fairer moments I suspect that he has done his best to do so. For a year and a half public affairs have been in the corner of my eye - I was aware of what was happening, but not really engaged in it. I carped at the pusillanimity of the Democratic Party, I made snide remarks about one false political move after another, I grunted at the developing corruption of our public dialogue, and I watched warily the evolving madness of the Teabaggers. I'm a student of history, and most especially of the making and breaking of republics. I know what counter-revolutionaries look like.

I'd kept away from the debate over the so-called "ground zero mosque." I thought it absurd, fundamentally hostile to our political traditions and our national interest. Build it, I say, and you silence our critics and reaffirm what is best about us. Who could be so stupid to oppose it, who so irresponsible as to fan the flames of religious discord? Well now I know.

I think it's time to set aside my weariness, my disgust with my own purported leaders, and my any other stupid meaningless crap. First the Arizona law, and now this. They've gone entirely too far.
Posted by Arbitrista @ 6:39 PM

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A Very Quick Note While I Take A Work Break

Hi everybody. I'm clearly a very bad blogger, but unlike my better half I don't have any immediate plans to retire my blog. Lately we've been rushing around getting ready for our move. The last time we moved to another state we were living in a one-bedroom apartment, and now we're in a 3-bedroom house, so you can imagine how much more stuff we have. Next time I'm definitely going to look into having the moving company pack for me!

Do you know how when you've given your notice at a job things gradually tail off so that you're sitting around with nothing to do? Well I don't. If anything my workload has gotten heavier, which on top of the move and looking for a job has made my life crazy busy.

I should really get back to working on this paper, but let me leave you with this link, which I think highlights very accurately the problems with an anti-gay marriage position (here).
Posted by Arbitrista @ 2:00 PM

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Not Dead Yet

Monday, August 02, 2010
Just very busy. You may have heard that BH got a Dream Job, which means we are moving. Which means we have to pack. And that I have to find a new job. But despite the minor difficulties, I'm still thrilled. It's impossible to be prouder of a person than I am of my wife.

And on a lighter note, there is now some evidence to her contention that drinking makes you smarter.
Posted by Arbitrista @ 6:27 PM

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