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Forum Post: Closer Than You Think: Top 15 Things Romney and Obama Agree On

Posted 11 years ago on Aug. 29, 2012, 9:03 p.m. EST by PeterKropotkin (1050) from Oakland, CA
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Too much agreement between Republicans and Democrats has always been bad news for those at the bottom of America's class and racial totem poles.

Back in 1875, Frederick Douglass observed that it took a war among the whites to free his people from slavery. What then, he wondered, would an era of peace among the whites bring us? He already knew the answer. Louisiana had its Colfax Massacre two years earlier. A wave of thousands upon thousands of terroristic bombings, shootings, mutilations, murders and threats had driven African Americans from courthouses, city halls, legislatures, from their own farms, businesses and private properties and from the voting rolls across the South. They didn't get the vote back for 80 years, and they never did get the land back. But none of that mattered because on the broad and important questions of those days there was at last peace between white Republicans and white Democrats --- squabbles around the edges about who'd get elected, but wide agreement on the rules of the game.

Like Douglass, the shallow talking heads who cover the 2012 presidential campaign on corporate media have noticed out loud the remarkable absence of disagreement between Republican and Democratic candidates on many matters. They usually mention what the establishment likes to call “foreign policy.” But the list of things Republicans and Democrat presidential candidates agree on, from coddling Wall Street speculators, protecting mortgage fraudsters and corporate wrongdoers to preventing Medicare For All to so-called “foreign policy,” “free trade,” “the deficit” “clean coal and safe nuclear power” and “entitlement reform,” is clearly longer and more important than the few points of mostly race and style, upon which they disagree.


Although unemployment is the highest it's been since the Great Depression, the federal government should NOT enact any sort of WPA-style program to put millions of people back to work. Under Democrat Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s, Depression-era unemployment was tackled head on by direct federal hiring to dig subways, build roads, schools, parks, sewers, recreational facilities and public buildings. Oblivious of this history, Democrat Barack Obama maintains that only the private sector can or should create jobs.


Medicare, Medicaid and social security are “entitlements” that need to be cut to relieve what they call “the deficit.” Republicans have been on record for this since forever, though they claim not to want to mess with the Medicare people already over 65 are getting. One of the first acts of the Obama presidency was to appoint a bipartisan panel stacked with “deficit hawks” like Republican Allan Simpson and Democrat Erskine Bowles to recommend raising retirement ages and cutting back Medicaid, Medicare and social security, and pass a law directing Congress to have an up or down no-amendments vote on its recommendations. Fortunately the “cat food commission”, as it was called, was deadlocked and offered none. But Obama and top Democrats, most recently House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi continue to express their readiness for some kind of “grand compromise” with Republicans on this issue.


Climate change treaties and negotiations that might lead to them should be avoided at all costs. The differences between them are only style. Democrats admit that climate change exists and is man-made, Republicans say it's a myth. But both ignored the Kyoto protocol and Obama like Bush before him, has worked tirelessly to delay, derail and boycott any actual talks that might lead to constructive international climate change agreements.


NAFTA was such a great thing it really should be extended to Central and South America and the entire Pacific rim. Again, there are differences in style. On the 2008 campaign trail, Obama sometimes mumbled about renegotiating parts of NAFTA, and such. But even before the primaries were done, press reports had him assuring the Canadian government this was only campaign rhetoric, raw meat for the rubes. In four years he has pushed NAFTA-like “free trade” corporate rights agreements with South Korea, most of Central America and is now secretly hammering out something called the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.


Banksters and Wall Street speculators deserve their bailouts and protection from criminal liability, but underwater and foreclosed homeowners deserve nothing. Well, maybe not exactly nothing. Republicans think underwater homeowners deserve blame for forcing banksters to offer millions of fraudulent high-interest loans were then re-sold to investors around the world. Democrats think underwater homeowners deserve empty promises of help that never quite arrives for most of the foreclosed, the about-to-be foreclosed, their families and communities. But both agree on free money for banksters and speculators but no moratorium on foreclosures and no criminal investigations of mortgage and securities fraud.


Palestinians should be occupied, dispossessed and ignored. Iran should be starved and threatened from all sides. Cuba should be embargoed, and Americans prohibited from going there to see what its people have done in a half century free of Yankee rule. Black and brown babies and their parents, relatives and neighbors should be bombed with drones in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and similar places. The politicians and corporate commentators have a misleading name for this. They call it “foreign policy.” The realistic term for it is global empire.


Africa should be militarized, destabilized, plundered and where necessary, invaded by proxy armies like those of Rwanda, Ethiopia, Burundi or Kenya, or directly by Western air and ground forces, as in Libya. President Georgia Bush announced the formation of AFRICOM, the US military command for the continent which has officially swallowed all US civilian diplomatic presence. But only a black US president, even under the cover of “humanitarian war” could have invaded an African nation and openly dispatched special forces to Central Africa.


US Presidents can kidnap citizens of their own or any nation on earth from anyplace on the planet for torture, indefinite imprisonment without trial or murder them and neighboring family and bystanders at will. To be perfectly fair, there are distinctions between Republicans and Democrats here that don't amount to differences. Republicans Cheney and Bush got their lawyers to say these things were OK and did them. Democrat Obama got Congress to enact “laws” giving these acts a veneer of fake legality, something a Republican probably could not have done.


Oil and energy companies, and other mega-polluters must be freed to drill offshore almost everywhere, and permitted to poison land and watersheds with fracking to achieve “energy independence”. The Republicans say “drill baby drill” but it seems only Democrats can chill out enough supposed “environmentalists” to make this happen. Obama campaigned on restricting offshore drilling four years ago, and reversed himself just before the BP oil disaster in the Gulf. The White House cooperated with BP in lying to the public about the extent of the disaster and has shielded BO from paying anything like the value of actual damages incurred to livelihoods, human lives and the environment.

Read the rest at the link below




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[-] 7 points by 1971 (154) 11 years ago

Of course Romney and Obama have similar policies. They are both puppets.

Anyone who thinks our politicians are free to decide policy, may as well believe in the tooth fairy. They are only puppets. Before any money goes to a candidate they are vetted for loyalty to their puppet masters.

50% of the policy is forbidden to be decided by the puppets(our govt). Such as: Free trade, the Military industrial complex, the FED, Globalization, Wall st/banking, Corporatism, one world govt, etc. These policies never change, no matter who in President or in Congress.

The remaining 50%, less important topics, the puppets(our govt) are allowed to decide.In fact a Big Show is made of these less important, distraction topics. God, Guns, Gay topics incite debate and distract the population from important topics. Of course the MSM that is owned by the puppet masters, works hand in glove elevating these distraction topics into the headline news.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 11 years ago

they are puppets as long as the agree to be

they need to have an ego

[-] 2 points by 1971 (154) 11 years ago

I've come to the conclusion that people don't realize just how sophisticated and productive "the System" is. They have been able to seize total control of our political system. Between the D/R duopoly, they win 99+% of big elections. I believe any party member must go through an extensive vetting process before any support is given.

It appears a much higher stakes game is being pursued, and the upper echelon of govt is used to facilitate it. All roads lead to one world govt. Every core policy in the last few decades support the dissolution of our sovereign nation into world govt. From our perspective, Clinton, Bush's and Obama are traitors to our nation. In their eyes, they are soldiers doing their part in history to one day rule the world. Unfortunately their pursuits are evil and they know it. If there is any doubt of their evil, you only need to look at how the world's govts are turning against their own populations. The World's people dream of a One World utopia, but under today's leaders it will be closer to tyranny.

[-] 2 points by gnomunny (6819) from St Louis, MO 11 years ago

It's a guarantee politicians are vetted before ever getting to DC. You pretty much hit the nail on the head with your other comments as well. Including the whore comment below. ;-)

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 11 years ago

banks finance world nations or not

[-] 1 points by LetsGetReal (1420) from Grants, NM 11 years ago

I don't think they are puppets so much as they are whores.

They made the choice to sell out, and they can change their minds at any time.

[-] 2 points by 1971 (154) 11 years ago

I think you are being too harsh on whores. I bet most whores are FAR more trustworthy than today's politicians. Seriously.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 11 years ago

the president should call a cease fire on US military aggressions

[-] 1 points by jk1234 (257) 11 years ago

Good post - agree.

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

Read It and Weep & here's the rest :


The FCC should not and must not regulate telecoms to ensure that poor and rural communities have access to internet, or to guarantee network neutrality. Republicans have always been in favor of digital redlining, against network neutrality. Barack Obama claimed on the campaign trail he'd take a back seat to nobody in guaranteeing network neutrality. But he appointed as FCC chair a man who helped write the infamous Telecommunications Act of 1995, which gave away the government-built internet backbone to a handful of immensely powerful telecoms like AT&T and Comcast, and flatly reversed himself on network neutrality. The Department of Justice was forced to stop the ATT-T-Mobile merger by a storm of public outrage, but approved the Comcast-NBC deal.


Of course there really ARE such things as “clean coal” and “safe nuclear energy”. Again these are things Republicans have always pretended to believe. At the 2008 Democratic convention Democrat Barack Obama joined them, declaring he intended to be the president of “clean coal and safe nuclear energy.” Obama is building a wave of 33 nuclear plants across the country, the first two in mostly black and poor communities of Georgia and South Carolina where leaky existing nukes are causing cancer epidemics. The people know these things are myths. But Republican and Democratic candidates for office, all the way down to state and county officials seem not to.


Immigrants must be jailed and deported in record numbers. To be really fair, one should note that on this issue Republicans talk a mean game about sending them all back and jailing tens or hundreds of thousands along the way. But only President Obama has walked the walk, deporting over a million immigrants in his term in office, often with little or no due process and after housing many for months in atrocious privatized immigration prisons.


No Medicare For All. Forget about it eliminating the Medicare age requirement so that all Americans would qualify.. Republicans never wanted Medicare even for seniors, let alone everybody. Six or seven years ago Illinois State Senator Obama was telling audiences that if they elected Democrats to Congress, the Senate and the White House, they'd get single payer health care. But once in office he excluded Medicare for All from the proposals on the table, and enacted a national version of Massachusetts RomneyCare, requiring everybody to purchase private health insurance or be penalized.


No minimum wage increases for you, no right to form a union, no right to negotiate or strike if you already have a union, and no enforcement or reform of existing labor laws. Again, Republicans have always opposed minimum wage laws. Obama promised to boost the minimum wage his first two years in office, while he still had majorities in the House and Senate. But he didn't do this, or pass legislation beefing up the right to organize unions, which has been eroded under Democrat and Republican administrations alike.


The 40 year war on drugs must continue, and even mention of the prison state is unthinkable. There are 2.3 million people in US prisons and jails today, a per capita total that beats the world. Politicians of both parties wag their fingers in multiple directions. But as Michelle Alexander points out, if the US prison population were rolled back to say, only 1 million, the level it was about 1980, this would mean one million jobs, as contractors, sheriffs, cops, bailiffs, judges and functionaries of all kinds would have to go out and find real jobs.


Good Post 'PK'.

e tenebris ...

[-] 2 points by OWSEVERYWHERE (9) 11 years ago

Thanks for adding the missing ones.

[-] 2 points by OWSEVERYWHERE (9) 11 years ago

Thanks for adding the missing ones.

[-] 1 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

"Crises of Capitalism" : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3lPQRzu30A & you're welcome.

pax et lux ...

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago

Nice, Shadz. Thanks for adding more info to this great post. Americans need to face the truth, as hard as that is.

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

You're welcome & it was your very first comment on this thread that gave me a heads up here, so thanx and re. "Americans need to face the truth, as hard as that is." :

fiat lux ...

[-] 3 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago

Get money out of politics!

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

... & Stop Turkeys Voting 4 Thanxgiving 2 !!!

veritas vos liberabit ...

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago

Very true!

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

Vraiment, n'est ce pas ?

pax, amor et lux ...

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago


[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

Hp u & yrs r well & hppy. Stay well & kp yr 'bw' ~*~

nunc et semper ...

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago

Merci beaucoup.

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

D'accord et bonne nuit.

vale ...

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago

: )

[-] 1 points by ogoj11 (263) 11 years ago

Thanks for helping in Raleigh shadz. It makes a difference. You can see what I'm dealing with.

[-] 1 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

Yes, lolol !!! You forgive my introductory faux pas now I hope, lol !! Solidarity !

dum spiro, spero ...

[-] 3 points by ogoj11 (263) 11 years ago

ubi sub ubi

[-] 1 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

(-: & spilt milk off a duck's back, all under the bridge now, y'mean ? Thanx ! ;-)

Thanx for your good grace & again sorry for thinking that you were TrashyTroll !!

minima maxima sunt ...

[-] 1 points by PeterKropotkin (1050) from Oakland, CA 11 years ago


[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

"The Mirage of Our Lives", by Chris Hedges :

"The lie of globalization, a lie that impoverishes us all to increase corporate profits."

And ...

"The Conservative Psyche : How Ordinary People Come to Embrace Paul Ryan's Cruelty",by Joshua Holland :

"Scientific research into the way we think explains the reasons decent people wind up supporting horrific policies."

Thanx for your post 'PK' & Solidarity !

per aspera ad astra ...

[-] 0 points by insupportofOdin (-25) 11 years ago

Does that mean VQkag2 is wrong to think Obama is our savior?

[-] 0 points by shadz66 (19985) 11 years ago

Yawn, zzzzzz zzz zz z ... .. .

[-] -2 points by insupportofOdin (-25) 11 years ago

Dude, grab some coffee. I don't want you to fall asleep. You're one of the gentile folks around here who bumps my postings the most.

[-] 3 points by beautifulworld (23771) 11 years ago

This is a great post. Everyone should read it. Hard truths there.

[-] 2 points by Area51 (31) from Alamo, NV 11 years ago

This is a really great post.

[-] 2 points by obombya (11) 11 years ago

Good information. Thanks.

[-] 2 points by gnomunny (6819) from St Louis, MO 11 years ago

Good post. However, scanning through the responses, I find a noticeable absence that I can't quite put my finger on.

[-] 1 points by frogmanofborneo (602) from New York, NY 11 years ago

The 99 percent must have its own political party. This party should both be a party that runs candidates and a party that more importantly is activist. I hope that Occupy forms the spine of this development. Without it we are lost, in fact it already may be too late.

[-] 1 points by Shule (2638) 11 years ago

My only question is what are we minions going to do about it?

[-] 1 points by funkytown (-374) 11 years ago

How does any individual who has occupied the Senate rather innocuously for but a mere three years, emerge just three weeks into his term to embark on a worldwide tour as an international politician in an effort to restore confidence and thereby attract investment?

Obama's confidence tour was evidence of a rather intense indoctrination on the level of mutual interest that surpasses the focus of the party which is merely to retain power.

Occasionally, the alternate ego emerges... but only on matters of no concern.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 11 years ago

Now - would you have the courage to post 15 differences?

I'll start with just three

willard stands for cutting taxes on the rich. Obama does not
willard will appoint racist corporatists to the Supreme Court. Obama wont
willard will ban abortions. Obama wont

in more graphic terms- raw cow meat & raw cow pies are similar [ they "agree" ] are there any differences? any?

[-] 1 points by werone (-37) 11 years ago

Mitt the twit, takes his orders from the maniacal 1% who own the Republican Party, and they won't tell him to "ban" abortion, it's a far too important recruiting and rabble-rousing tool. But they'll make it more difficult to sate their fevered embryo fanatics. I also heard from reliable sources that both Twit and Obama like mashed potatoes! And as soon as Obama gets enough money, he's going to stash it in tax havens in the Cayman Islands and Switzerland, too. So... they're exactly the same!

Can you say "RW Stooges"?

[-] 0 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 11 years ago

neither of them have pushed to support the current "Catching Up To 1968 Act of 2012"... the legislation to increase minimum wage to 10 dollars an hour

Both agree a military option is on the table for Syria's chemical weapons.

They also agree on a possible military option against Iran for their alleged "WMDs".

Both are financed by Goldman Sachs and will have Goldman Sachs in their administration at key levels.

Romney agrees with the war powers that the president has gained under this administration. Romney was actually quite happy about it when asked about it in an interview.

Yeah they differ here and there in a lot of places. But the shit they agree on or do in a similar fashion is criminal to the point I not only denounce them but publicly protest.

[-] 0 points by VQkag2 (16478) 11 years ago

So I guess voting for Romney is no worse.

Thanks Romney it is!

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 11 years ago

Jill Stein

Rocky Anderson