Unethical Quote Of The Week: President Barack Obama

“If I hear anybody saying their vote does not matter, that it doesn’t matter who we elect — read up on your history. It matters. We’ve got to get people to vote,” Obama said. “I will consider it a personal insult — an insult to my legacy — if this community lets down its guard and fails to activate itself in this election. You want to give me a good sendoff? Go vote.”


President Obama's argument for electing Hillary Clinton...

President Obama’s argument for electing Hillary Clinton…

—-President Barack Obama, addressing the Congressional Black Caucus gala in a speech excoriating Donald Trump and praising Hillary Clinton as the candidate of black America. Obama warned that while his name would not be on the ballot in November, all of the progress that the country has made over the last eight years was on the line. 

Observations: 

1. What progress? This is the Big Lie that has been repeated from the beginning? The greatest progress made in the last eight years has been the stock market, which is not, I assume, the progress the Congressional Black Caucus cares about. Divisions in American society have been exacerbated, and grossly so. Racial trust is at its lowest level in decades. The schools? Higher education? The debt? The nation’s leadership abroad? The Affordable Care Act, which has helped health insurance become less affordable for anyone not receiving government subsidies? Gross incompetence, malfeasance and lack of accountability in one federal department and agency after another: is that progress?  Has there been progress in dealing with the threat of terrorism? Murder rates are up after years of decline. There have been more mass shootings in this administration than in the last three combined. More Americans are on public assistance: is that progress to Obama? A majority of the public thinks the country is off the tracks; public trust in government is at its lowest point in history, far lower than after Watergate. First Amendment, Second Amendment, and Fourth Amendment rights are under assault as never before. Progress?

The question isn’t political, it’s ethical: if there isn’t progress, then Obama’s statement is a lie. By his own benchmarks when he ran for office, the major one being governing as neither white or black, liberal or conservative, but for the welfare of the entire nation, he has failed disastrously, and the signs are everywhere. No, his spinners don’t get to argue that there would have been progress if the evil Republicans in Congress hadn’t foiled Obama (in part because he hasn’t the political skills to negotiate or the political courage to compromise), because Obama said there IS progress.

2. Obama’s statement was certainly spoken like the raging narcissist he is. The election is about him, and he’ll be personally peeved if people don’t vote the way he has directed them to vote. Wow.

3. The only reason to vote or not vote, vote for Trump, Clinton, or someone else, is to ensure the Presidential candidate you support or favor gets elected, or the candidates you distrust and dislike don’t get elected. Whether your vote makes Obama feel bad is no rational at all, and it is shockingly arrogant, misleading and irresponsible for the President to suggest otherwise.

4. This is emotional blackmail, like the suffocating mother who demands that a loving son marry the woman picked out by Mama “if you really love me.” How manipulative. How insulting. How presumptuous. How disrespectful.

5. How desperate.

85 Comments

Filed under Character, Ethics Quotes, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, Leadership, Race, Rights, U.S. Society

85 responses to “Unethical Quote Of The Week: President Barack Obama

  1. Jack said, “This is emotional blackmail”

    I’m shocked, absolutely shocked that the political left would stoop to such tactics…

    …oh wait, what the heck am I saying…

    …the political left has been dangling their version of emotional propaganda (it’s their go-to tactic) for DECADES and it has worked to their advantage, with the the throngs of low information voters on the left, over and over again. Why would anyone expect a political hack like Obama to do anything different? As far as I’m concerned, Obama think’s voters are blithering idiots and he treats them as such; voters should be insulted.

    It’s been really interesting over the last year hearing the political left voice their hypocritical whines about how wrong it is for Trump to use their kind of emotional propaganda as one of his primary tactics to fire up the throngs of low information voters on the right; guess what, the tactic has worked equally well with the blithering idiots on the political right just it did on the left – Trumps plan is successful.

    • A.M. Golden

      All voters should feel insulted at the way they’ve been betrayed by both parties in this election cycle.

      However, I’m struggling to recall the name of any President who advised that he would take it as a personal affront if people who look like him don’t go out and vote. The implication, of course, being that they vote for his chosen candidate.

      • A.M. Golden said, “I’m struggling to recall the name of any President who advised that he would take it as a personal affront if people who look like him don’t go out and vote.”

        I have no interest what so ever to look for such a comparison; a cattle prod shock to the emotions is just that regardless of who or why.

        I suspect Obama’s words will be endlessly plastered and it won’t be just within black communities, it’s similar to a Remember The Alamo war cry!

    • I don’t want to deflect down a different path; but, here is a couple of related quotes…

      “I use emotion for the many and reserve reason for the few.”

      “The receptivity of the masses is very limited, their intelligence is small, but their power of forgetting is enormous. In consequence of these facts, all effective propaganda must be limited to a very few points and must harp on these in slogans until the last member of the public understands what you want him to understand by your slogan.”

      Does anyone know who those quotes are attributed to without looking it up?

      If you have to look it up, I hope you are surprised and reflect on the new knowledge as it related to the current election cycle.

      Replies not necessary or requested, all I ask is you think very critical about the quotes.

  2. Neil Dorr

    Jack,
    “How desperate.”
    Yes, you are.

  3. Wayne

    Other presidents in the past have pulled this crap in the past to demonize their opponents. For example FDR:http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=15314

  4. Chris

    There absolutely has been some progress. The uninsured rate in America is at its lowest point ever. Unemployment is way down. Marriage equality passed. The deficit has been cut, but you’re right that debt is still up.

    Ignoring these factors is just as bad as ignoring the downsides of Obama’s presidency, and is just as indicative of bias.

    • Wayne

      I suggest that you look at the real unemployment rate before spouting off with some Democratic talking points. http://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/sorry-but-the-real-unemployment-rate-is-9-8-not-5/
      Ok more people are technically insured under Obamacare but they are paying much more for insurance than promised and the deductibles are huge.

      • Chris

        Wayne,

        What was the “real” unemployment rate when Obama took office?

        Your article doesn’t say. Did you notice that it doesn’t say that? Can you imagine why it doesn’t say that?

        Could it be that the “real unemployment rate” only matters when it’s being used as a cudgel against a president you oppose?

        • Wayne

          Yes, Obama has done better than Bush if you include minimum wage burger flipper and part time jobs. However, we are saddled with 20 trillion dollars in debt. Ask yourself what the national debt was under Bush. Eventually China and other countries will start calling in their loans which will leave us all in a world of hurt.

          • Chris

            No no, you don’t just get to “however” over the fact that you posted a dishonest article to support a dishonest point. If you’re going to compare the commonly cited unemployment rate to the “real” unemployment rate (which is just another equally valid way of measuring unemployment, and is also recorded by the government–you know, that thing people keep insisting is “hiding the real unemployment rate”), then you should also compare it to the “real unemployment rate” when Obama came in.

            I’m glad you admit that Obama has brought both unemployment rates down, but you’re wrong to attribute this to an increase in part time jobs; full-time job growth has far outpaced part-time job growth in this recovery.

            https://www.aei.org/publication/an-economic-rebound-for-full-time-jobs-but-part-time-jobs-are-restraining-wages/

            The part about the debt is also fairly irrelevant. Recovering from a recession costs money. A lot of it. Much of the recovery can be attributed to economic stimulus programs, which are expensive. Austerity has been a proven failure everywhere it’s been tried since the recession, so the alternative to accumulating debt wouldn’t have worked, and we’d have much greater unemployment today.

            • Wayne

              Some stimulus! Getting the country deeply in debt which it will take years to recover from is not the way to go. But you progressives don’t get that.

              • Chris

                How would you have done it, Wayne?

                • Humble Talent

                  Allowed the market to take care of itself. You have hoisted debt onto your children’s children’s children by living outside your means now in a sort of generational slavery that I think you avoid thinking of too hard, because if you thought of what it really meant, you might feel a little sick inside.

                  13 trillion dollars were overspent in the last 7 years…. Which is about $37,000 for every man woman and child in America. And what did you see for it? What did that buy you?! Explain to me again just how NECESSARY the stimulus was?

                  • Chris

                    What do you believe the unemployment rate would be now had we “allowed the market to take care of itself?” Are ther examples of places doing this after a recession and succeeding?

                    • Humble Talent

                      God… The memory of American liberals is so fleeting. Reagan! In the 80’s recession!

                    • Again, file this under the “I’m still actively ignoring the colossal misery I’ve bequeathed to the follow on generations so I can avoid having to confront a little misery now” column. Which Humble already identified is the result of the policies you claim are “progress”.

                    • Chris

                      God… The memory of American liberals is so fleeting. Reagan! In the 80’s recession!

                      Are people still pretending that Reagan didn’t practice economic stimulus? That he didn’t massively increase spending, the size of the government, and the deficit? That’s the exact opposite of “letting the market take care of itself.”

                      https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2011-06-21/ronald-reagan-s-accidental-keynesian-stimulus-echoes

                    • Chris

                      Again, file this under the “I’m still actively ignoring the colossal misery I’ve bequeathed to the follow on generations so I can avoid having to confront a little misery now” column.

                      Or, alternately, your debt hysteria is just that. Debt isn’t “slavery,” and people have been saying “the sky is falling” about the debt since shortly after the American Revolution–usually for the purpose of condemning their political rivals of fiscal irresponsibility. Somehow, the Republic has survived.

            • philk57

              The unemployment “rates” are not the important measure. Everyone should do themselves a favor and look up the labor participation rates and how they have changed over the past decade (or more).

              • Chris

                The unemployment “rates” are not the important measure. Everyone should do themselves a favor and look up the labor participation rates and how they have changed over the past decade (or more).

                This is a biased, economically illiterate comment. Of course the unemployment rates (not “rates”–rates) are important measures–they show how many people actively seeking employment aren’t able to get it. The labor participation rate is also important, as it shows how many of our citizens are working.

                Pretending that the labor participation rate is MORE important than the unemployment rate–which conservatives have now decided to do, since they wish the unemployment rate were higher under Obama, so they could criticize him for it–is nonsense for a few reasons. A low labor participation rate is only a bad thing if people aren’t participating in the workforce because they can’t find work. But that’s what the unemployment rate is for–to tell us if people can’t do that. It’s also nonsense because if you look at the reasons behind the decreasing labor participation rate, it has much more to do with an aging population than any particular government policy. You can’t blame Obama for baby boomers getting older, but it’s always fun to see you try.

                • Humble Talent

                  “This is a biased, economically illiterate comment.”

                  Said the biased, economically illiterate hack.

                  “they show how many people actively seeking employment aren’t able to get it.”

                  Not quite, but close enough. And this is only useful when you compare it to the number of people who aren’t working, “There are 17 people working out of the 17 people who are either working or looking for work” in a country of 350 million people would a DISASTROUS, but it would be a 0% unemployment rate. Great victory?

                  No, I agree that the workforce participation rate will always be more enlightening, because it will always tell you how many horses are pulling how big a cart.

                  • The day I have a minute to weigh in on a topic I love, and I see Humble Talent is in full force. Fine by me, far more eloquent and far more satisfying to read.

                    Well done. Don’t Stop. Continue swinging the logic-bat.

                    • Humble Talent

                      I just wish I took more time to post sometimes, I’ve found two egregious grammatical errors and I’ve apparently hit some combination of keys, so my keyboard types french accented letters instead of quotation or question marks. ÈèÉçèà

                    • Your punctuation appears just fine on my computer / browser. Maybe something is up with your browser settings that’s translating punctuation into it’s HTML code on your display?

                • Humble Talent

                  “A low labor participation rate is only a bad thing if people aren’t participating in the workforce because they can’t find work. But that’s what the unemployment rate is for–to tell us if people can’t do that. It’s also nonsense because if you look at the reasons behind the decreasing labor participation rate, it has much more to do with an aging population than any particular government policy.“

                  Has anyone ever heard the term “welfare math“ before? It describes the math that someone hears in coffee shops, where a group of people sit drinking coffee at 10AM and say things like:

                  “Right now I have two kids and I get x dollars from the government, oncee Billy turns Y I’ll get a little less, but that’s OK because by then I’ll have another kid and I,ll get Z more.“ or

                  “Currently, I get in welfare, I refuse to work for less than $12 an hour, because once I get finished paying taxes, I’ll be less well off than I am now.“

                  Poor people aren’t necessarily stupid. The unemployment rate will by it’s nature not capture the people who have no incentive to work, because their government benefits are too good for their relatively limited skill set to out-earn. If kids don’t get in the habit of working while they’re young, and build up their value to out-earn government subsidies, the welfare trap catches them and they are less likely to escape it in every consecutive year.

                  Also: ‘it has much more to do with an aging population than any particular government policy.’

                  Is particularily stupid. Not is aging irrelevant because older people have been working longer because they cannot afford retirement, but the unemployment rate does not include people under 18 or over 65, in it’s definition of ‘workforce’.

                  • And to be clear…. ‘it has much more to do with an aging population than any particular government policy.’ isn’t stupid because you’re wrong, no… to be fair you’re right… The labour participation rate does include the boomers, and children!

                    It’s stupid because you seem to think those people don’t factor in to an economy, like they don’t consume or produce anything. In 1956, there were 51 people working for every person on disability, in 2001 is was 26 to 1, and as for January 2015 it was 13 to 1. There are more people in the cart and less pulling it and eventually the damn cart is going to break. It might not be Obama’s fault that these things are true, but he’s at the wheel and it’s his job to deal with it. God knows there’s precious little influence that presidents directly have over economies, but if you’re going to assign him credit on things he has no control over, you don’t get to bitch when those same things go badly and people attribute the failure to him.

                • Chris Marschner

                  Chris I have a MBA and an undergrad degree in Labor / International Economics and what you said is incorrect. From the BLS “Although the unemployment rate fell to 5.0 percent in November 2015, wage growth after the recession has been minimal. Employment levels for long-term unemployed workers, marginally attached workers, and those working part time for economic reasons are improving, but remain below prerecession levels.”

                  Any statistic taken in isolation is subject to distortion. For example prior to 1980 the military were not considered part of the labor force thus they were neither employed nor unemployed because they were considered institutionalized members of the population – similar to students, convicts, people housed in asylums etc. When Reagan included them in the labor force the UE rate dropped precipitously because they were all employed. The LFPR rose because the labor force grew by the number in the in the military and when the employment rate (# employment /LF) changed it caused the unemployment rate to drop. The UE rate + the employment rate must equal one. What specific Reagan policy actually increased the number of real people employed doing this – not one. It did however, begin to shift the mood of the nation and when coupled with drastically reduced interest rates that fell because Paul Volcker choked off new money creation in 1981 driving inflation way down private investment began to rise causing real economic growth without a great deal of government spending.

                  The current problem today is that we have too few jobs being created in industries that create lasting value for consumers – autos and other durable goods. Most of the jobs created fall at the high and low and of the spectrum meaning that the job is in retail or high tech (IT, government, and healthcare). This is what drives income inequality. So long as government is propping up wages at the low end to such a degree that workers are merely satisfied – i.e. average minimum reservation wage is met- meaning that they can have a bare bones existence there is little consumer demand. Moreover when we extend unemployment insurance or make disability claims easier more people opt out of work in favor of collecting enough to live on.

                  Currently what is promoted is the U3 measure while the U6 measure is considered to be a better method to evaluate labor utilization rates in the US. Below is a source for that info.

                  http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t15.htm

                  Currently, the adjusted U6 rate is about 9.5%. in 2000 at the beginning of Bush 2 the rate was averaging about 7% but by 2004 the rate was averaging 9.5%. The question should not be what is the UE rate or the LFPR or the population/employment ratio it should be are we creating policies that create incentives for labor to work and capital to be employed or disincentives to both that will require ongoing government expenditures to maintain desired employment levels.

                  Taking credit for job creation is probably the biggest lie a politician can tell unless the politician is only considering public sector workers. Private sector job creation is most often only indirectly related to government policy. I suppose you can tease out the workers that were hired when government expended funds to buy products but you can argue that the government used available debt capacity that could have gone to private buyers of goods and services which means that those jobs might have been created had the dollars been made available for use by the private sector.

                  Having worked in the profession that required that I estimate “direct and indirect” job creation the estimates were guided by formulas that did not take into account what the private sector would do if the tax incentives did not exist. Is an incentive needed when the employer would do it anyway? Often we just asked an employer how many jobs were created by the new investment of their money – not tax dollar investments. Then we used a simple multiplier to project indirect jobs. Not very scientific but politicians made it clear they wanted these numbers. Moreover, it can be argued that new regulations reduced the level of real gross private domestic investment that stymied private growth. Thus, it can be said that the private sector created jobs in spite of the barriers erected by government.

                  Another major claim is that the stock market doubled because of Obama policies. Stock market values rise based on the difference between expected appreciation rates of the underlying security and the cost of capital needed to acquire the security. If the cost to acquire the security is less than the expected appreciated value then people will continue to bid up the price of the underlying security until the cost and expected benefit are equal. Given that the cost to a bank for a loan from the FED has ben virtually 0 for the last 8 years and that trillions of dollars in cash flowed into the financial sector you would think that we should be further ahead. It’s like trading dimes for nickels – I’ll keep exchanging my nickels for your dimes for as long as you want to play the game. All of this growth in stock prices is ethereal. If the FED increases interest rates you will begin to see a major selloff and the market will collapse. Moreover the cost to Taxpayers will rise because the cost to support the increased debt will rise exponentially. When this happens, the government will need to demand more in taxes to support the new level of spending which will force consumption and investment spending down. Consumers will look to lower cost foreign substitutes and drive Aggregate Demand down even more. Price levels will collapse, profits shrink, and layoffs ensue until we bottom out. I believe we have used up any available borrowing capacity to allow government to temper the next downward spiral.

                  The question we will then face is who will be blamed when our entire population which has become so accustomed to immediate gratification, demands more so they don’t have to work hard to maintain a given lifestyle.

        • Humble Talent

          Economics! Whoo!

          What they’re doing to make up the “real” unemployment is they’re comparing several variables: 1) What we usually refer to as the unemployment rate, 2) The workforce participation rate, and 3) People who accepted underemployment. They compare these things by measuring the difference in the variables compared to a baseline point, and at the point that baseline started, the “real” unemployment rate WAS the unemployment rate, because the effect of the variables against the baseline measurement was 1.

          The fact of the matter is that the unemployment rate has ceased to be a useful measurement. The unemployment rate measures the num ber of people over 18, under 65, who are currently unemployed but are actively looking for work. So many things about the current job market have changed so drastically that comparing this rate to the same criteria even ten years ago is like comparing a car to a pogo stick. Obama is THE food stamp president, welfare has ballooned, discouraged workers are on the incline, the workplace participation rate hasn’t been this low since the 70’s, and the very nature of work has changed.

          You’re saying the number of full time job growth exceeded part time job growth in America? Sure…. If you look at it from the deepest crater in history since the 30’s. But look at your graph again…. full time job numbers JUST matched where they were ten years ago, there are significantly more part time jobs, but the workforce participation rate is lower! How on Earth could that be? Well, one of two ways: The population growth of America could have outpaced job created (it didn’t, but it will contribute), or a significant number of people could be working multiple jobs.

          So let’s recap:

          -Fewer people are working as a proportion to the national population. Period.

          -But more than that, we are approaching workforce participation levels that hearken back to a time where women were just beginning to enter the workforce en masse.

          -Social program dependence is at an all time high.

          -Part time workers have stayed relatively static, as part time jobs have increased about 10%.

          -Which means that in order to survive, a large chunk of part time workers have taken on a second job.

          -The number of workers who have given up looking for work, has reached such a large proportion of the workforce that it is actually skewing the unemployment rate lower.

          -But that means the unemployment rate IS lower!

          Take a bow, Obama!

          • Chris

            discouraged workers are on the incline

            What is your evidence for this claim?

            I was unable to quickly find more recent information on the number of discouraged workers, but I did find this article from 2014 saying the number of discouraged workers was decreasing. I’m unaware of any factors that would have caused an increase in discouraged workers since then, but let me know what you find.

            http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2014-10-03/drop-in-u-s-labor-force-difficult-to-pin-on-discouraged-workers

            • Humble Talent

              That whole comment and THAT’S what you respond you. Fuck off and try again.

              • Chris

                That point was crucial to your argument. If the number of discouraged workers is not increasing, that pretty much shoots to hell your central claim that unemployment is only low because of the number of discouraged workers.

                So I’ll ask again, because it’s relevant: do you have evidence that the number of discouraged workers is increasing?

                • Chris Marschner

                  Chris. If you take June 2008 U6 value (10.1) and subtract the U3 value (5.6) you arrive at 4.5% of all unemployed labor was discouraged or working part-time as a necessity. In June 2016 the values were 9.6 and 4.9 respectively which is exactly 4.5%. Now in fairness to you all unemployment values were declining since 2010. That is to be expected given the high rate of unemployment that came about in late 2008.

                  Because there is no specific unaggregated measure of discouraged workers journalists try to disaggregate values according to the editorial slant they want to put on them. Bloomberg news leans left so it will cast reductions in U6 as declines in discouraged workers. However they conveniently dismiss the LFPR falling to 1970’s levels. How does that reconcile with the notion that many undocumented immigrants have arrived and are working hard to make a good life for themselves. If more than one adult in each immigrant family unit seeks employment then the LFPR must rise. If it does not then another group is dropping out of the labor force. What jobs will our new refugees take? Or should I say whose?

                  It should come as no surprise that many males over 50 have great difficulty securing gainful reemployment when their job of 30 years goes to Mexico or Tennessee. This is especially true in males that did not have a college degree or certified technical skill such as ASE mechanic, electrician, plumber etc. The H1 B visa program also increases the number of potential employees in the US. The expansion of H1 B at the request of Google, EBAY and others has created a large pool of well educated programmers that are doing freelance work where they can find it. We lose specialization gains from trade when our labor force must spend time looking for work and then doing the work. It does bid down the price of skilled labor. I guess Bezos, Gates, et al need and extra billion or two. And we only think the Wall Streeters are bad

                  Many of the available opportunities, because of increased regulations relating to which employees must be provided health insurance by the employer, are part -time. This suggests that many people who are not treated as unemployed because they worked at least one hour during the survey period may not be counted as discouraged workers but they are not fully employed as the U3 measure suggests They will be caught up in another category of labor (U4 or U5) which we don’t talk about. Some may simply have decided to retire and not seek work because it is not worth the effort. Another uncounted group are those on SSDI which is merely a form of welfare for those that worked many years.

                  Politicians always take credit for numbers that advance their cause. Obama today at the UN claimed that his administration reduced the rate of poverty by the largest amount in 50 years. He did not mention that the census changed the methodology used to calculate the number.

                  Over that 50 year period of time, the poverty level across all persons was 13.5%. By 2015 the rate had peaked to 15.3%. The census reported this week that poverty had dropped 1.2% from last year and described the methodology change in a footnote. The new method measures income that includes subsidies to households but the household income/size level remain the same. This means that poverty rates shrank because government transfers were now included in income levels. Even then we are still above the average poverty level. When politicians claim big percentage rate reductions you have to ask what were the values before. I wonder how many Pinocchios he will get for that claim to the UN?

                • It was so crucial to my argument that it was only mentioned once in the middle of the second paragraph, and not mentioned in my summary. I’d argue that welfare reliance was a much more crucial to my argument, but I bet you won’t touch that with a ten foot stick.

                  Do I have any evidence that the number is increasing? Given how long a time frame? 2010 was a high point, it went down a couple of points by 2014 and it’s basically been flat since then at a rate twice what it was before the recession.

                  http://www.bls.gov/webapps/legacy/cpsatab16.htm (click on discouraged workers and retrieve to get historical data…. And I have to tell you, finding information from more than 18 months ago is HARD.)

    • JutGory

      What do you mean Shen you say tha Marriage Equality “passed”. I know it did in my state, but I have no idea what you mean, as the Supreme Court of the United States “passes” nothing.

      What do you mean?

      -Jut

      • Chris

        I misspoke. Since we are both familiar with the SC ruling, you know what I mean.

        • So if it’s the result of the Supreme Court ruling, it’s somewhat inaccurate to drop it under the column “progress made by this administration” wouldn’t you think?

          • Chris

            No, because the argument isn’t that Obama is responsible for all the progress we’ve made, it’s that Trump will reverse that progress. If Trump nominated incompetent justices–and if enough Trump-enabling Republicans were elected to the House and Senate to confirm such justices–this ruling could hypothetically be overturned. I don’t think any of this is likely–starting with the idea of Trump winning the presidency–but it’s still a perfectly valid argument for getting out and voting against Trump.

    • “The uninsured rate in America is at its lowest point ever.”

      I’m not sure compulsory participation in the market on pain of increasingly painful fines taxes fines taxes which leads to everyone devoting an increasingly LARGER percentage of their spendable income on a product and therefore reducing their freedom elsewhere in the market counts as “progress”.

      But spin it as you wish.

  5. Spartan

    Doesn’t every sitting President campaign for the nominee from his own party? Has he done it in an objective way, or has it always been, “If you liked the last eight years, you should also vote for my successor?”

    Further, what are the Right’s talking points this cycle? “Unless you WANT 4-8 more years of Obama, vote for Trump.” And, for the record, this doesn’t offend me at all.

    Here’s some quotes:

    “He’s not gonna change when it comes to taking on the enemy,” Bush said of the senator from Arizona.

    “You cannot look at the record the American people have established in the last seven years … and make a serious case that we’d be better off if we were growing more divided by walking away from one of the tools that has helped to bring us together as a nation,” Clinton said (speaking of Gore).

    I got bored and stopped, although I did find that Reagan virtually snubbed George H.W. during his tepid endorsement. But, everything I’ve read is that they hated each other so that makes sense.

    • Humble Talent

      But how many presidents said their fee-fees would be huwt if the black people didn’t vote for their successor?

      • Humble Talent

        And by the way: If white America showcased the kind of conformity of thought that Obama expects from black America, democrats would never hold office again anywhere. Chew on that for a second.

        • Depends though doesn’t it on which direction that “conformity of thought” would go…

          You’re assuming white america conforming around conservative or libertarian or originalist ideals…

          But that’s just it, the diversity of thought found in “white” America precludes guessing what “conformity” looks like… unlike the predictable conformity that can be found in traditional vote-plantations cultivated by the Left.

          • Chris

            “Vote-plantations” is a racist term. It implies that minorities are so stupid that they have sold themselves into a form of voluntary slavery. The truth is that minorities simply recognize that liberals represent their interests better than conservatives.

            Trump has about a 0% approval rating among African-Americans. If you ask me, that’s evidence that this demographic is actually a lot smarter than many give them credit for.

            • Chris said, “Trump has about a 0% approval rating among African-Americans. If you ask me, that’s evidence that this demographic is actually a lot smarter than many give them credit for.”

              That’s nonsense logic. It could also mean that they are blatantly racist or more gullible than you’d like to admit.

              The point is that correlation does not equal causation.

              • Chris

                That’s nonsense logic. It could also mean that they are blatantly racist or more gullible than you’d like to admit.

                What? How? Racist against who? All the major candidates running this year are white. How could a 0% approval rating of Trump among African-Americans indicate racism on their part?

            • A lot packed into THAT comment..

              1. I agree that “Vote-plantations” is needlessly inflamatory—it’s not “racist.” The argument on the metaphor is that Democrats keep African Americans tied to the party without actually providing them with anything in return.

              2. Democrats treat minorities as if they are stupid. Where was the criticism and uproar when Biden told an A-A- audience, “They’re [that is, Republicans] going to put y’all back in chains”? How degrading.

              3. “Trump has about a 0% approval rating among African-Americans. If you ask me, that’s evidence that this demographic is actually a lot smarter than many give them credit for.” Since the approval rating for decent, competent Republicans like Mitte Romeny was only a few points better, I’d say that this is a hard argument to make.

              4. There is no question that African Americans would have more power and political influence if Democrats felt they actually had to do something (other than accuse Republicans of being racists) to improve black education, employment, self-esteem and crime rates and didn’t regard black support as automatic, and Republicans didn’t feel that the community was inherently and intractable hostile to the party no matter what it did.

              • Trump is actually outpolling Romney with African Americans. Even given Trump’s relative unpopularity with African Americans the zero percent approval number is wrong to the point of being facially absurd.

                • Chris

                  It depends what poll you looked at. Some polls showed Romney getting 0% from African-Americans; some showed higher. You may be right.

                  Anyway, my point was mainly that “vote-plantations” implies that black voters are stupid. I think their reaction to both Romney and Trump is perfectly rational.

              • Chris

                I agree that “Vote-plantations” is needlessly inflamatory—it’s not “racist.”

                It is, but you define the term “racist” differently from most people, so I doubt I’ll convince you of this.

                “The argument on the metaphor is that Democrats keep African Americans tied to the party without actually providing them with anything in return.”

                The fact that this metaphor is almost always used to refer to blacks specifically–rather than, say, women, whom conservatives also believe do not benefit from Democratic policies–makes it racist.

                Democrats treat minorities as if they are stupid. Where was the criticism and uproar when Biden told an A-A- audience, “They’re [that is, Republicans] going to put y’all back in chains”? How degrading.

                I can’t and won’t defend that. It’s no better than telling black Democrats that they are already on a “plantation.” Both are emotional blackmail. Both come from whites telling blacks that there is only one proper way to be an African-American voter.

                “Trump has about a 0% approval rating among African-Americans. If you ask me, that’s evidence that this demographic is actually a lot smarter than many give them credit for.” Since the approval rating for decent, competent Republicans like Mitte Romeny was only a few points better, I’d say that this is a hard argument to make.

                The argument is that they know what’s in their best interest.

                There is no question that African Americans would have more power and political influence if Democrats felt they actually had to do something (other than accuse Republicans of being racists) to improve black education, employment, self-esteem and crime rates and didn’t regard black support as automatic,

                Well, the assumption here is that Democrats don’t do anything about these issues. They do. A heck of a lot more than Republicans do, that’s for sure. Perhaps they would do more if they felt like they didn’t automatically have the black vote locked down. But Republicans offer no plausible alternative for black voters, so I’m not sure what the incentive is there.

                and Republicans didn’t feel that the community was inherently and intractable hostile to the party no matter what it did.

                Republicans might feel that way, but the truth is the community is hostile to the partybecause of what they do. There has been an active and intentional campaign to weaken the black vote over the past few years; you can’t have missed it. Unsurprisingly, black voters don’t like to vote for a party that doesn’t want them to vote at all.

                • 1. The fact that most people use racism incorrectly and over-broadly does not change what the word means.

                  2. “The fact that this metaphor is almost always used to refer to blacks specifically–rather than, say, women, whom conservatives also believe do not benefit from Democratic policies–makes it racist.”

                  What? referring to women with that phase would make no sense and be incoherent. The phrase “Vote-Brothels” would make the point about Democrats exploiting women, and would not be sexist.

                  3. “Democrats treat minorities as if they are stupid. Where was the criticism and uproar when Biden told an A-A- audience, “They’re [that is, Republicans] going to put y’all back in chains”? How degrading.”

                  I can’t and won’t defend that. It’s no better than telling black Democrats that they are already on a “plantation.” Both are emotional blackmail. Both come from whites telling blacks that there is only one proper way to be an African-American voter.

                  Exactly. And I thought that would be your response, being fair and perceptive.

                  “Trump has about a 0% approval rating among African-Americans. If you ask me, that’s evidence that this demographic is actually a lot smarter than many give them credit for.” Since the approval rating for decent, competent Republicans like Mitt Romeny was only a few points better, I’d say that this is a hard argument to make.

                  The argument is that they know what’s in their best interest.

                  What would convince them otherwise?

                  “There is no question that African Americans would have more power and political influence if Democrats felt they actually had to do something (other than accuse Republicans of being racists) to improve black education, employment, self-esteem and crime rates and didn’t regard black support as automatic,”

                  Well, the assumption here is that Democrats don’t do anything about these issues. They do. A heck of a lot more than Republicans do, that’s for sure. Perhaps they would do more if they felt like they didn’t automatically have the black vote locked down. But Republicans offer no plausible alternative for black voters, so I’m not sure what the incentive is there.

                  and Republicans didn’t feel that the community was inherently and intractable hostile to the party no matter what it did.

                  Republicans might feel that way, but the truth is the community is hostile to the partybecause of what they do. There has been an active and intentional campaign to weaken the black vote over the past few years; you can’t have missed it. Unsurprisingly, black voters don’t like to vote for a party that doesn’t want them to vote at all.

                  Affirmative action was turned into a national policy during the Nixon administration. Do current day African-Americans even know that?

                  • Chris

                    1. The fact that most people use racism incorrectly and over-broadly does not change what the word means.

                    You use the word incorrectly. You do. Words are descriptive; they mean what a culture says they mean. Most English speakers recognize insulting an entire race in racial terms as racist. “Democrat plantation” implies that blacks as a group are so stupid that they’ve signed on for willful slavery. That is racist.

                    What? referring to women with that phase would make no sense and be incoherent.

                    Why? The answer, of course, is that women weren’t put on plantations; black people were. The insult makes no sense unless it is targeted directly toward blacks as a race.

                    Racially based insults are racist. This is obvious. What’s next? Is the “n” word not racist either?

                    The phrase “Vote-Brothels” would make the point about Democrats exploiting women, and would not be sexist.

                    Of course it would be! It would be an explicitly gendered insult. That is sexist, by definition. Your definitions of these terms are unusual, nonsensical, and useless.

                    What would convince them otherwise?

                    Perhaps if Republicans took their concerns seriously? If they didn’t try to stop them from voting? If they favored policies that benefitted African-Americans? If Republican politicians would stop talking about them like they’re a problem to be solved? If they listened to their concerns? If they didn’t immediately dismiss charges of police brutality?

                    Affirmative action was turned into a national policy during the Nixon administration. Do current day African-Americans even know that?

                    Certainly some do. But who cares? Is that supposed to influence blacks’ opinion of Republicans today? Why would it. Republicans no longer support affirmative action, while many Democrats do. You’re doing that thing where Republicans pretend history ended in the mid-70s. “Democrats started the Klan!” “Lincoln was a Republican!” “Robert Byrd!” Maybe blacks do know this, but also know that the Southern Realignment was a thing that happened, which is more than I can say for many Republicans.

                    • You really have swallowed the silly hyper-offense sensitivity of language as practiced by the left whole, Chris. Referencing race isn’t racist, even if it is refereneced in a negative contest or assertion, unless it is asserting individual inferiority based on race or group inferiority based on race. That phrase does neither. It refers to a particular treatment of black voters by the Democratic Party. If its a bloc, and Democrats sure think it is, then it can be characterized.

                      Nor is “vote Brothel” would be an insult to women. Women are the occupants of brothels. Democrats are the object of the insult for treating women as their whores. (I am not proposing the phrase, I assume you know.) This is more of the left’s strategy of incrimentally making expression more difficult, especially expression critical of the left, by calling as much as possible “racism”, “sexism.”

                      You know, like Hillary in her “basket” speech…

                    • The Southern Realignment has been discussed ad nauseum on here before. Summary:

                      1) It didn’t last long given how many of those politicians switched back or were simply out of politics pretty soon after.
                      2) Racism as a core tenet of politics was on its way out, as were the vast majority of the politicians who “realigned”.
                      3) It involved about 1/5 of the entire nation.
                      4) The Realignment was about many more issues and ideas than just Southern Democrat loyalties to so-called “white causes” that somehow the National level Republicans would somehow champion and more about the bloc’s decreasing value to the National level Democrats and Democrats on average finally getting with the picture that racism wouldn’t fly. If you’d bother to do a little homework, you’d know that American politics has gone through over a half-dozen major political realignments and many many more minor ones all MULTI-FACETED.

                      I think as your hero puts it, in the grand scheme of things it was a real “nothing burger”. But the spin meisters have made much more hay than they ought to have with it. But then again, I wouldn’t expect anything less from the party that controls the media.

                    • Chris

                      I think you’re underestimating the effects of the Realignment. It is Republicans, not Democrats, who now get reliable votes from the South. It is the Republicans, not Democrats, who defend flying the Confederate flag. It is Republicans, not Democrats, who oppose affirmative action. It is Republicans, not Democrats, who push voter ID laws that intentionally disenfranchise black voters. It is the Republicans, not Democrats, currently putting forth a candidate favored by the Klan.

                      Absolutely none of these are coincidences.

                  • “1. You use the word incorrectly. You do. Words are descriptive; they mean what a culture says they mean. Most English speakers recognize insulting an entire race in racial terms as racist. “Democrat plantation” implies that blacks as a group are so stupid that they’ve signed on for willful slavery. That is racist.”

                    I hate progressives. Their use of logic is so…. illogical.

                    “The dictionary definition of feminism is a movement for equality, anything else is noise.”

                    “Ok, well the dictionary definition of racism is a belief that certain groups of people are separated into racial groups, and those races are inherently different. Anything else might have racial connotations, but is not actually racist.”

                    “But that’s not how CULTURE uses it.”

                    “Well CULTURE doesn’t think feminism is an equality movement.”

                    “SHUT UP SHITLORD.”

                    Wonderful.

                    • Chris

                      Have you ever seen me use the dictionary argument for feminism, Humble? You’re accusing me of hypocrisy over things other people have said.

                      (I’ve also never seen a feminist say “shitlord.” You’re literally the only person I have ever seen use that term.)

                    • There’s no doubt in my mind that there will come a time when you either try to fall back on the dictionary definition at the expense of common usage, or conveniently ignore common usage in favour of some college level pseudo-intellectualism. Feminism isn’t really your roadhouse, but I’ll file this away for future use.

                      As to shitlord… It’s not COMMON… But it’s certainly a thing.

                      http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/shitlord

            • Oh just stop, you’re embarrassing yourself. This and the rest of your comments are probably the lamest attempt I’ve seen to spin a perfect allusion. You either need to stop being willfully obtuse or brush up on Analogies 101.

              No one looks at a slave plantation and thinks “Man, those slaves sure are stupid for being slaves.”

              No, they look at the plantation and say “Man, those slaves are poor victims of a criminally abused power imbalance. Those slave owners are evil manipulative bastards. But wow! Those slave owners sure have taught the slaves that this is their role in life and have even convinced some of the slaves to be task masters over the rest! Boy they sure know how to punish the bejeezus out of any one of them that breaks ranks and tries to live free. Both phenomenal and Evil.”

              Now that your weak spin has been duly called out, go back and re-read the metaphor.

              • Chris

                No one looks at a slave plantation and thinks “Man, those slaves sure are stupid for being slaves.”

                Since your analogy posits that present-day blacks are “slaves” to Democrats, your analogy literally doesn’t make sense unless you believe the majority of blacks are stupid enough to willfully become slaves.

                • The analogy works fine without assuming blacks are dumb (which you’ll note you are the one who made this solely about black people).

                  You think I assume blacks are dumb. You really fail to realize you are underestimating my view of the perfidy and malfeasance of the Left. You also fail to realize the power of generations worth of manipulated acculturation.

                  But by all means, keep trying.

  6. “I will consider it a personal insult — an insult to my legacy ”

    This is a petulant, entitled, and arrogant statement. It’s not so much the content of the statement as it is the character it reveals by the wording and the tone.

  7. zoebrain

    Trump has already stated that if he gets in, he’ll appoint SCOTUS judges so conservative they’ll overturn not just Obergefell but Roe vs Wade. Pence has gone further, stating that Lawrence vs Texas and the various decisions permitting the sale of contraceptives will also go.

    Those are facts.

    It’s not implausible that we could go back to before Loving vs Virginia, though that depends on how conservative the judges appointed by Trump for the next 30 years will be. Right now, nothing is beyond the realm of possibility, we’re in new territory.

    It’s not just the last 8 years, more like the last 50.

  8. Wayne

    Some statistics about US National Debt and how it will affect us all: http://www.justfacts.com/nationaldebt.asp

  9. carcarwhite

    i’ve never liked politics. i’ve often wondered what would happen if a truly honest person with integrity and intelligence and a conscience that was clear was elected. (have we ever had one?)

    i wonder if someone so clear and wise and smart ran, someone genuine and forthright, someone who didn’t care to impress anyone and was truly running to serve. i wonder if we’d not be so attracted to such a leader that people would RUN to vote? i’m not even sure how a person like that would look in “politics.”

    i think i know what he or she would NOT look like. and mr. obama is one of them. HOWEVER, in his hardly publicized town hall meeting a few months ago regarding the shootings, i got a glimpse of him being non political and the real leader that he is capable of. he offended the left, as he didn’t buy into the cliches and other crap. i was blown away by him actually.

    i sometimes wonder if politics ruins the goodness in the people that go into the system.

    anyway, a long way to say, i agree with your article and i think what he did is wrong and embarrassing. the good part is, it gives me an example of what not to do.

    thanks jack for all you do. truly.

  10. Other Bill

    “They don’t get scared,” he said. “That’s the kind of strength that makes me so proud to be an American. And, that’s the kind of strength that is going to be absolutely critical, not just in the days to come, but in the years to come.” -President Obama

    This kind of defeatist talk is worse than the petulance quoted in this post. “There’s nothing we can do about. Just live with it.” Great leadership. Again, as I said in 2007, Obama will make Jimmy Carter look like Winston Churchill. Brilliant.

    • Chris

      “They don’t get scared,” he said. “That’s the kind of strength that makes me so proud to be an American. And, that’s the kind of strength that is going to be absolutely critical, not just in the days to come, but in the years to come.” -President Obama

      This kind of defeatist talk is worse than the petulance quoted in this post. “There’s nothing we can do about. Just live with it.” Great leadership. Again, as I said in 2007, Obama will make Jimmy Carter look like Winston Churchill. Brilliant.

      I’m confused. I read the actual quote you provided from Obama, then I read your paraphrase, and I can see absolutely no connection between the two. Where in that quote does he imply “there is nothing we can do?”

      • Other Bill

        I can’t help you, Chris. Sorry.

        • Other Bill

          Let’s try the old “compare and contrast:”

          “We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”

          Ring a bell?

          • Chris

            “We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”

            And of course, Obama has never said anything like this in any of his speeches.

            Oh, wait, he did. In the same exact speech that you just quoted:

            “We will continue to lead the global coalition on the fight to destroy [ISIS], which is instigating a lot of people over the internet to carry out attacks. We are going to continue to go after them. We’re going to take out their leaders. We’re going to take out their infrastructure. They are continuing to lose ground in Iraq and in Syria, and later today I’ll be meeting with Prime Minister [Haider al-]Abadi of Iraq to discuss the need to sustain that momentum.”

            Help yourself, Wayne.

            • Other Bill

              Oh, I guess it was Winston Churchill who foolishly took the U.S. troops out of Iraq so the place could implode and allow IS to flourish.

              • Other Bill

                I can’t find the full text of that speech. The article I found about it said “Obama noted that there is no connection between these two attacks and the Minnesota mall stabbing which also occurred over the weekend, leaving nine people injured.”

                How can he say that? Didn’t he say Islamists are inspiring people? Why did he even say that?

              • Chris

                You’re all over the place. You started by falsely claiming that Obama said “There’s nothing we can do” to stop terror, which was neither said nor implied in his speech, and was in fact directly contradicted when he flat-out said what we are doing. Now you’re critiquing him for pulling out of Iraq, which has absolutely nothing to do with your original false claim.

                I’m not sure why you expect anyone to take your arguments seriously when you make false claims and then instead of retracting them when you’re proven wrong, move to completely different claims as if that was your argument all along.

                • Other Bill

                  As citizens we are supposed to be content with our leader saying we are supposed to sit on our hands and tolerate murderous jihadists for “years to come?” I say get better leadership that’s willing to address a serious problem rather than inure the populous to its effects. My reading of his words is not a false claim. I’m putting them in context. No Drama Obama thinks people should just chill. More people die in their bath tubs from slipping and falling than die at the hands of jihadists. The guy is delusional and a narcissist and what we need is competent leadership in a a time of crisis.

                  I don’t expect you to take my arguments seriously. You still haven’t answered my question about whether you are a paid operative of the Clinton campaign or the Obama Administration or the DNC or some other Ministry of Information.

                  • Chris

                    As citizens we are supposed to be content with our leader saying we are supposed to sit on our hands and tolerate murderous jihadists for “years to come?”

                    He did not say that, and your claim that he said that is not merely a “reading,” it is a lie. There is simply no rational reading of his words that means anything close to that.

                    You still haven’t answered my question about whether you are a paid operative of the Clinton campaign or the Obama Administration or the DNC or some other Ministry of Information.

                    I’m sorry, I didn’t realize that question was serious, rather than a desperate rhetorical move usually found in the comments sections of the world’s dumbest websites. You actually expected me to answer that? What would be the point? Wouldn’t a paid operative say “no?”

  11. “You may have heard Hillary’s opponent in this election say that there’s never been a worse time to be a black person. I mean, he missed that whole civics lesson about slavery or Jim Crow,”

    Apparently, so did all of those race baiters.

  12. Isaac

    There are going to be a whole lot of glowing retrospectives about Obama’s legacy in the coming years. And a whole lot of politically knowledgable people feeling like they’re taking crazy pills watching them.

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