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Forum Post: Why did Romney Beat Obama? Because he doesn't differ very much

Posted 7 years ago on Oct. 10, 2012, 4:06 p.m. EST by PeterKropotkin (1050) from Oakland, CA
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

By Margeret Kimberly

It is true that Barack Obama didn’t have his act together when he went up against Mitt Romney, last week. In fact, he seemed to drop his Democratic act entirely, showing his true political self: a corporate politician who is in general agreement with his corporate Republican challenger. “Obama was caught unprepared and unable to state plainly how he differs from his opponent, mostly because he doesn’t differ very much.”

The first presidential debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney proved a very simple fact about human nature. Most people will reveal their truest, most fundamental self when in the midst of a stressful situation. Both the president and his challenger did just that.

Mitt Romney is an ambitious businessman but not a very good politician. The so-called gaffes and misstatements that have characterized his campaign result from his lack of political acumen but aren’t an indication of lack of intelligence or capability. Romney’s greatest success in life was his tenure as CEO of the Bain Capital hedge fund, which is not the best experience to have when campaigning for voters whose lives have been ruined by the actions of corporate America.

Romney famously said that he liked to fire people. After all, what CEO doesn‘t? During the debate he told the moderator, Jim Lehrer, that if president, he would fire him and all of his colleagues at public broadcasting. He then made it clear that he planned to fire Barack Obama too. The aggressive Romney crammed for the test and found a sureness and confidence by behaving as the CEO in charge of the presidential campaign.

Unlike Romney, Obama is a very good politician. He excels at garnering support from voters by telling them what they want to hear while simultaneously doing things those same people wouldn’t want him to do. The public and pundits alike were surprised that the president’s performance veered between being lackadaisical and flat-footed or strangely discordant with boring anecdotes about his grandparents which didn‘t even answer the questions being asked. The president momentarily forgot the source of his popularity. He has spent so much time agreeing with Republicans in private that he forgot he was in public with more than 60 million viewers who were under the naive impression that the two parties are very different.

Obama is the king of trying to reconcile what cannot be reconciled. He calls this process consensus, but in stark political terms it is nothing but capitulation. Obama cannot even muster support for Democratic low-hanging fruit like Social Security. When the moderator asked the president if he saw a difference with his opponent on Social Security he happily replied, “You know, I suspect that on Social Security we’ve got a somewhat similar position.” Those words may have been shocking but they were true. It is Obama who appointed a deficit reduction commission which called for cuts to entitlement programs. Only intransigence from Republicans prevented him from further double dealing with the people he is supposed to be working against.

The president floundered uncharacteristically because he forgot that his audience wasn’t made up of the Republicans he is so anxious to please, but voters who dared to think they were going to hear why he should remain in the Oval Office instead of Romney. As the Democrats have moved ever more to the right and become more dependent upon corporate largesse, Obama and other Democrats have gone along with their program even as they pretend to be an opposition. Obama was caught unprepared and unable to state plainly how he differs from his opponent, mostly because he doesn’t differ very much.

It was Romney who took the supposedly populist, progressive Obama to task for bailing out the banks, calling it the “biggest kiss to New York banks I’ve ever seen.” As with other Romney rejoinders the president was silenced, furiously scribbling notes as he tried to compose himself.

Unfortunately, most Democrats still refuse to admit what happened right before their eyes. While criticizing the president’s debate performance they were not willing to admit that the Obama who stood on stage is the real Obama. Stripped of a script he was laid bare before the world, an empty suit devoid of any conviction except the desire to stay in office.

The debate allowed the previously bumbling Romney to suddenly look capable and gave many people new reason to give him serious consideration. Obama needed only to look presidential in order to live up to expectations but is now facing a serious challenge because he isn’t as slick as he thought.

It is unlikely that Barack Obama will allow himself to be bested more than once. No one with a small ego becomes president of the United States. But the question isn’t really whether or not he will turn in a better performance. Instead it is whether Democrats will believe their eyes and ears and accept that the real Barack Obama is in fact the man they saw on stage.




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[-] 4 points by beautifulworld (23231) 7 years ago

What we have to realize is that they can call Obama a leftist, a socialist, or whatever they want to call him, but really he is no such thing. If anything, he is, as this article points out, quite similar to a Republican. There is so little difference between the two that they can hardly debate each other about anything.

Also, I enjoy that website, blackagendareport.com, so thanks for that.

[-] 4 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

Gerald Celente talks about the two-headed beast of America.


[-] 4 points by beautifulworld (23231) 7 years ago

So many truths in what he says. Thanks. I can only wonder why so many Americans refuse to wake up.

[-] 4 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

Many small steps.

I've been talking about these issues for a decade or more. It's only just lately that people have stopped calling me a tinfoil hat wearer, or minisculist. (tiny brainer)

[-] 3 points by beautifulworld (23231) 7 years ago

Too funny. People think anyone who is not a lemming is a loon. We need to change this! It's the other way around!!!

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Correct lemmings - closely related to loons - Darwin had not much hope for either. Time is proving his lack of confidence.

[-] 2 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

I spent a lot of time exposing the former admin's corrupt dealings, and I felt justified when "hope and change" got elected. I took a couple of years off the internet, and went gypsying around the country, fishing and sightseeing.

Seems like nothing has really changed, though I know that congress has blocked most of the expected changes, there's more to any situation than meets the eye.

[-] 6 points by beautifulworld (23231) 7 years ago

Congress is part of it, true, but you are right that there is more to it. The ongoing wars, lack of criminalization of the banksters, the last debate, etc., all tell us so.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Don't take it personal - if you have been talking like this for decades - then - You Have Been Talking SENSE. But SENSE is not flashy - nor does it leave possibilities for mischief open.

[-] 2 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

More about the red peril you mentioned earlier, and Japanese and Chinese propping up your economy, and the inherent danger thereof. Pre GFC, and even today, Americans assume that having the largest consumer base in the world means that debts amounting to more than GDP are meaningless.

A layman could never have predicted the results of deregulation of the banking industry, when it was kept so quiet. The collusion between the ratings agencies, the insurers, and the banksters, is still with us.

Robot waves arms "Warning, Will Robinson..." We are Lost in Space.

People are just waking up to this fact.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Danger - DANGER

How can anyone coast on a program of perpetual growing debt? People who try to emulate that with their credit cards get their stuff taken and are either tossed in jail or onto the street or both - jail being 1st.

But hell - if you are a government - You can do anything - Right?

Hmmm - past instances of crashes and hyper inflation - hmmm.

[-] 1 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

Our Australian federal gov was raked over the coals for having a 2% defecit, when they were elected on the platform of bringing us back into a surplus (no debt, money to spend). This, during the GFC, and while our treasurer was voted the best in the western world for his financial policies.

Apart from having such a massive consumer base, it's difficult to believe that hyper-inflation hasn't destroyed the value of the greenback, when there is no need to even notify the government when more trillions get printed and distributed.

It does explain, in part, why any country that decides to trade oil for other currencies are immediately targetted for regime change, or worse.

Oil is your currency. Gold is for the 1% to hoard.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Hence - we are speedily heading to the end of this system of things. No choice in direction as things are - it has got to crash crumble slag - because it is in no way supportable to continue as we have been.

[-] 2 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

I see the figures for what waging perpetual war costs the US, but I'd like to know what percentage of that cost is for fuel. I know some of the warships are nuclear powered, but every other mode of transport takes oil products.

Must be an astronomical figure. We were talking about waste in the Speedway circuits. Pales in comparison here.

[-] 4 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

War is waste from start to finish - every aspect.

[-] 1 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

And hugely profitable for some.

[-] 5 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Sure the weapons makers and equipment and food suppliers love war. They are insane - blind with greed - more money could be made manufacturing and exporting products of peace.

[-] 5 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

Yes. All that manufacturing ability and infrastructure geared to produce destruction. I've mentioned several times on this board that allowing congress to play the stock market with insider trading, just about guarantees perpetual war.

[-] 5 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Money out of politics - this includes financial conflicts of interest. How can people not understand this?

[-] 1 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

It's really not sustainable, is it?

[-] 3 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 7 years ago

No it isn't. Nor is the rest of our fossil fuel economy.

[-] 2 points by Karlin (350) from Nelson, BC 7 years ago

The US Military is the single biggest industrial consumer of oil worldwide!!

They also happen to be using some of the most advanced Electric Vehicle technology, finding it much more efficient to have a diesel generator producing electricity to charge batteries that drives the wheels, like a Chevy Volt. When efficiency is a life or death matter, it is put into place, otherwise the oil companies prefer waste because it increases demand.

[-] 1 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

Can you link me to some descriptions of these EMV's, Karlin?

Gotta get off the teat of mineral oils.

[-] 3 points by Karlin (350) from Nelson, BC 7 years ago

And something else about EVs in the USA: Quote: "There are already vehicles on the road that get better than 70 miles to a gallon of diesel fuel. Only, you can't buy one here in the United States."


  • 3 more links at the bottom of the article!
[-] 1 points by Karlin (350) from Nelson, BC 7 years ago

Now that I read more, it was about saving money - getting gasoline to the battlefield costs a lot {"$400/gallon by the time it reaches troops in Afghanistan"}

I will look for that EV info, meanwhile, here is something to read:


[-] 2 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

$400/gallon?? It's crazy isn't it?

When Iraq was invaded, fuel was 11 cents a litre/60 cents a gallon.

$400 could house and feed a family back home, and it's what the gov is willing to spend on a gallon of fuel in another country. Outrageous.

[-] 2 points by Karlin (350) from Nelson, BC 7 years ago

Ya those wars are hugely expensive, but they were not just about helping the oil industry, it is also one way that govt. funnels money to corporate interests, to the Elites.

Off topic, but if gasoline were at least $10/gal. in the US [which is what most of the rest of the world pays] then alternative energy and EVs would look better to consumers. Gasoline would be $30/gal if "polluter pay" was a reality.

[-] 2 points by NVPHIL (664) 7 years ago

So very true. It annoys me that so many americans believe his act.

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 7 years ago

Harsh maybe - but true !!! Thanx for another great post 'PK' !! Solidarity !

e tenebris, lux ...

[-] 1 points by Shule (2638) 7 years ago

I not so sure Romney beat Obama in the debate. That is just something that the pundits are saying. What I saw was Romney behaving way too lit. I think he was on something. I'm thinking they should give political candidates piss tests before they go into a debate.

[-] 1 points by Builder (4202) 7 years ago

Good point.

We get drug tested because it's not safe to operate a truck under the influence of "performance enhancing" drugs.

What is fair about one half of a presidential debate being on drugs when the other half isn't? Put the piss test on both of them.

And while you're at it, piss test the rest of the candidates, and invite them to the debate.

There's always more than two potential leaders in a country of 333 million.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 7 years ago

I love a good honest debate. Truth and justice have plenty of room to differ. But BS, especially this GOP campaign tactic of False Equivalencies (and terminal disappointment) need a spread eagle exposure to sun light! It's preposterous to even have to say this, but Romney is no Obama, and they are in no way politically/ideologically the same. Neither are the two parties, one big dif: Dems don't hold the country hostage for political gain.

Forum Post: GOP Ads: Disillusioned '08 Obama Supporters: Sound Familiar?

Posted 1 week ago on Oct. 1, 2012, 5:03 a.m. EST by WSmith (571) | edit | delete

The GOP Strategy to Beat Obama is to Appeal to Disillusioned '08 Supporters, Buyers Remorse.

"I believed Obama would change the status quo, but he didn't..."

Why that sounds just like our Peter Pan Obama haters on this board. Chicken or egg? Did GOP strategy come first, or did "disillusioned" Obama bashers?

BILL MOYERS & Company: Kathleen Hall Jamieson on Political Debates and Deceptions

September 28, 2012

Master media decoder Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg Public Policy Center and founder of FactCheck.org, joins Bill to discuss a recent Annenberg Center report that reveals widespread ignorance of the presidential candidates’ major policy positions.

The two also view and assess the veracity of Obama and Romney’s recent TV ads, and talk about the potential impact of upcoming presidential and vice presidential debates.


Why GOP ads assert the odd notion that rejecting Obama is just like breaking up with your lousy boyfriend.

Greg Sargent returned to one of his ongoing concerns yesterday, framing the issue as follows:

The Republican National Committee released a new ad today starring a former supporter of Obama who is in the process of breaking up with a cardboard cutout version of the President. Here's what the woman says, more in sorrow than in anger:

Listen: This just isn't working. It's been four years. You've changed. You're spending is out of control. You're constantly on the golf course. And you're always out with Hollywood celebrities....your jobs council says you haven't even showed up in six months. You're just not the person I thought you were. It's not me. It's you. I think we should just be friends.

.... The ad's tagline: "Tell us why you're breaking up with President Obama, at BreakUpWithObama.com." Americans for Prosperity is also running an ad featuring former Obama supporters saying (again more in sorrow than in anger) that they feel duped by Obama's promise of hope and change.

Sargent then notes:

I've probably suggested this too many times now, but each time an ad like this appears, it's worth reiterating. The GOP theory of the race seems grounded in the assumption that many Obama voters are reluctant to part ways with him for purely emotional and symbolic reasons. They personally like him; they understand he inherited an unthinkably difficult situation; and they don't want this historic and transformative presidency to end in rejection. These voters believe Obama's performance merits replacing him, or are close to believing this, but they hesitate to boot him from office because it will make them feel guilty. So the ad tells these voters that they can feel okay about breaking up with Obama because, ultimately, he is the one who created sky high expectations for himself; it's not your fault he let you down. "It's not me. It's you."

But the thinking underlying these ads may neglect another possibility: What if the Obama supporters the Romney camp is trying to woo (but apparently has yet to win in the numbers he need) are reluctant to part ways with him for substantive reasons? ...Perhaps these targeted voters are taking a more nuanced view of the economy and the Obama presidency, and are in the process of choosing between Obama's ideas, priorities, values and vision and those of Romney. ...

Sargent notes that, based on his conversations with Obama's polling and media strategists, he suspects that the Obama team believes that this may be what is really going on.

But, if one pursues Sargent's line of thought, there is actually an interesting psychological reason why the Republicans are quite literally incapable of seriously considering the particular possibility he proposes. There is, in fact, a kind of mental axiom among conservatives that all truly "normal," "real American" people absolutely must perceive Obama in exactly the same way that they do. Oh, sure, lazy welfare spongers, social and cultural deviates of various kinds, silly, irresponsible students and corrupt union thugs may support Obama for "rational" reasons, but all "real Americans" must, and I mean simply must, see him in the way that Fox News presents him.

This is a necessary psychological deduction that follows from what is a core psychological premise among conservatives: that there is not - and in fact, simply cannot be - such a thing as millions of sincere, reasonable and honest liberals, progressives and moderates living alongside them in "real," mainstream America. For conservatives, the world is rigidly divided into the real American "us" - who all see the world in a fundamentally conservative way -- and the culturally and ideologically foreign "them" who see the world in some messy Islamic/Kenyan/Greenwich Village/Harvard/ Ghetto/Beverly Hills/East L.A./Woodstock way. For conservatives, there is simply no such thing as a pro-Obama or Obama-leaning "real American."

The result of this inflexible mind set is that when conservatives try to imagine the reasoning process of the "persuadable" voters who the polling data demonstrate are indeed "out there" somewhere in the real America and who have not rejected Obama, conservatives find themselves forced to fall back on notions like gullibility, celebrity worship and media induced hypnotism to explain why these voters don't see Obama in exactly the same way that they themselves do. The fact that the polling data show that Obama remains personally more popular than many of his policies seems to validate the gullibility/hypnotism hypothesis.

This explains why the GOP commercials this year so insistently present the case for voting against Obama in a way that appears to most Democrats and progressives as very weird and indeed hallucinated - as being something comparable to deciding to break up with a boyfriend who turns out to be a total jerk or becoming disillusioned with a hippy "love and peace" guru who turns out to be a fraud.

As it happens, Democrats should probably not be too unhappy about this conservative blind-spot. It is reasonable to suspect that for many weak Democrats and persuadable voters - even those who are in fact genuinely disappointed and disillusioned this year - the underlying subtext of the GOP ads actually comes across as extremely condescending and insulting.

Listen carefully to the "voice" that is speaking behind the message - the voice that is saying "Don't worry, dear, it's OK to break up with that lousy, no-good boyfriend you picked" or "Thank goodness darling, we're so glad you finally left that weirdo cult you were in." When you listen carefully, this voice suddenly becomes recognizable as the voice of pompous, gloating, self-righteous parents telling their wayward but now chastened son or daughter "We told you so from the beginning, you silly gullible idiot, why don't you ever just listen to us."

As anyone who has ever been a parent --or a child for that matter -- will quickly recognize, this kind of sanctimonious parental lecture is, to put it mildly, rarely received by the son or daughter with vast, unbridled gratitude and joyful re-submission to firm parental control. I tend to suspect that on some subconscious level the Republican message may be received with an equal lack of appreciation by the persuadable voters to whom these GOP ads are directed.

Posted by James Vega on September 7, 2012 10:14 AM

Includes great FDR clip: http://occupywallst.org/forum/jon-stewart-revives-fdr-to-take-down-wizard-romney/

Big differences here: Forum Post: Frontline - choice 2012 - it's being talked about - have you seen it? Posted 9 hours ago on Oct. 10, 2012, 12:27 p.m. EST by DKAtoday (19151) from Coon Rapids, MN


I am still in the process of watching this myself - 10/10/2012 at 11:15AM central. I like how they opened with Mittens Bordeaux being schooled by Ted Chappaquiddick. Watch this section and look at mittens - the times have changed mittens has not - still running on promises with no substance. Funny.

Romney's Lies: http://occupywallst.org/forum/at-last-nights-debate-romney-told-27-mythslies-in-/

Finally, it's politics: http://occupywallst.org/forum/nation-in-crisis-decisions-to-make-time-to-get-rea/

Don't be duped by lies, the truth is there if you look for it.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Ummm not really sure what significance of your including my post in this comment means?

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 7 years ago

Just convenience.

[-] 1 points by PeterKropotkin (1050) from Oakland, CA 7 years ago

I'm actually toying with the idea of voting for Obama, adding one more vote to ensure he's re-elected so that WHEN he cuts entitlements during the Lame Duck Session to avoid the US falling off the "fiscal cliff" I can be entertained immensely by the swiftness and crudeness with which he breaks the rest of his groupies little hearts. The dejection and teeth gnashing will be priceless-- but perhaps the wake-up call desperately needed.

[-] 1 points by Buttercup (1067) 7 years ago

There is a very real difference between the ratio of 2.5:1 spending cuts to tax increases (which is roughly the same as the Simpson Bowles proposal) v. very very deep Draconian inhumane cuts to the social safety net, affecting the most needy, disadvantaged and underpriveleged in our society:0 tax increases. Wait wait. It's not zero tax increases. It's negative tax increases. It's $265k tax cuts for millionaires. It's government assistance for the wealthy. Who are already paying the lowest tax rates in 100 years since the Gilded Age.

Every serious minded person knows there will be pain involved with balancing the budget. The question is - do you want a majority who are diobolically opposed to any and all tax increases. Especially for the wealthy. And wants to start with giving them tax cuts. Increase military spending. And pay for all this, plus reduce the debt, on the backs of the poor and working poor.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 7 years ago

How sweet.

Just remember, none of the Con administrations ever fulfilled their campaign promises to cut entitlements or Roe v Wade.

[-] 2 points by Buttercup (1067) 7 years ago

They're geared up to do this with glee now. It's taken a little while. But the batshit crazy are driving the bus now.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 7 years ago

Better safe than sorry!

Get out the FUCKING VOTE!!


[-] 0 points by WeThePeop (-259) 7 years ago

Yes and the Obama admin is getting dragged behind the bus

[-] 2 points by Buttercup (1067) 7 years ago

It's people like you who are a giant shit stain across the entire country.

Paranoid, schizophrenic, sociopathic morons.

Ooooooooo scary!! It's socialism! It's socialism!! The free market is being deeeeestroooooyed!!!

If you had two brain cells to rub together....


Get yourself checked. There's help for people like you.



[-] 0 points by WeThePeop (-259) 7 years ago

Wow Michelle you are on a roll today, now go take another Valium

[-] 1 points by Buttercup (1067) 7 years ago

Seriously I think you're mentally ill. Please consider getting help. Rather than vote based on your paranoid delusional sociopathic mental illnesses.

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

It took me about a year to realize it, Im not sure what is taking everyone else so damn long.

He isnt a liberal, and he isnt a conservative, he's a corporatist, intent on selling out the entire country to multinationals, protecting them at all costs, and overall destroying the country with it.

[-] -1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 7 years ago

The debate was a sad reminder of how we've been leaning to the right for a long time except on some social issues. Even with an Obama loss it will be almost impossible to break the stranglehold the DLC has on the left. My only solution is not to re-elect ANYONE. Romney can do his 4 years and then I'll vote for Hillary. After 4 years I'd like to see her gone.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 7 years ago

Showing up to vote will help a lot. When we are NO-SHOWS Big$ gladly steps in.

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 7 years ago

I'm no fan of Hillary but if she wants the 2016 nomination who can beat her?

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 7 years ago

That may be the case. I hope the country can do better.

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 7 years ago

Another trade ageement. The TPP is the big one.

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 7 years ago

Yes the TPP is the big one but what I was getting at is that Hillary is as much a sell out as the the majority in office.

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 7 years ago

If it's going to be Hill in 2016 I guess dems will need to cut out the old people jokes.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 7 years ago

Yeah, she may be able to recycle that old Reagan line, " I'm not going exploit for political purposes, my opponents youth and inexperience......"