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2012 Presidential Election

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OVER AT POWERLINE, Paul Mirengoff is quoting Pat Sajak. Oh, how far the once Grand Old Party has fallen. From citing William F. Buckley to quoting a game show host, though that he’s from the “Wheel of Fortune” is kind of perfect. There are no Republican thinkers anymore. Everyone today is a quipster.

It’s as if President Obama climbed into a tank, put on his helmet, talked about how his foray into Cambodia was seared in his memory, looked at his watch, misspelled “potato” and pardoned Richard Nixon all in the same day. – Pat Sajak

Conservatives continue to jump all over Pres. Obama, who borrowed Elizabeth Warren’s speech themes that amount to saying we’re all in this together. That without roads, the business you build can’t get goods to market. That police and fireman protect our society and make it safe for us all to thrive. It goes on from there, all of you likely remember hearing Elizabeth Warren’s living room rant. The right is calling it a “defining moment” that could cost Pres. Obama the election.

“I think Obama has made the gaffe of the year when he said if you created a business, you didn’t build it. That phrase, ‘you didn’t build it’ should be hung around Obama until the end of his presidency.” – Charles Krauthammer

Somebody needs to tell these guys that the election will be decided by a sliver of people in battleground states like the one I’m living in. Places where there are so many negative ads it will be a miracle if it doesn’t depress the vote to a trickle; single women abhor negative ads, so who knows how many will come out this year. If we’d ditch the Electoral College we’d all be sharing in the negativity equally, so all of America could see the impact of Citizens United and the slush fund that’s become our political system.

However, this isn’t 1988. There certainly won’t be a “defining moment” in the hot summer months before the convention and prior to the debates. But it does reveal how revved up the right is over beating Pres. Obama, that they are grasping at any little straw of hope, which revolves around Obama blowing it, not Mitt Romney winning it.

In fact, the economy could kill it for Pres. Obama, which has been the one constant theme running through every political analysts writings and commentaries, myself included. But no one imagines Mitt Romney winning it on his own merit.

Maybe you think Pres. Obama saying being an American success story means your efforts are tied to others is crazy. You know, that it takes a village to raise a child, but to also make her or him successful it takes a connected network of people stretching across all areas to take her where she wants to go.

Romney and the Republicans believe in ego, ownership and long laces on bootstraps. They believe in family values, they’re just not too crazy about community where things can get messy when capitalism gets super sized and people get marginalized for profit, which they see is good above all.

I’m not crazy about Pres. Obama parroting Elizabeth Warren, because he doesn’t believe it like she does. If he did the stimulus would have been larger, and Obamacare wouldn’t have been a private insurance, Big Pharma gift. If he did he wouldn’t be negotiating a new trade deal in secret. If he did, he would have shown up in Wisconsin just to give Democrats support against Scott Walker.

It’s stupid to say “you didn’t build that” in today’s political, multi-media climate and not think you won’t get hung out to dry. So, taking the heart of what someone else believes and trying it on when it doesn’t fit in the first place and getting caught in their sound bite is almost fitting.

But a defining moment for Obama? I don’t know about that, but it’s got the ring of “I voted for it, before I voted against it” and we all know how that turned out, because no one gets to explain a quip after it’s out, though Obama is trying. However, that the right is reaching to Pat Sajak for pearls of wisdom, when they used to have icons like William F. Buckley says a whole lot more to me.

But then again, I do believe it takes a village, a union, a community, and a properly funded federal government with dedicated public servants who put the people above party and ideology to make a well functioning modern society. The day a majority of Americans stop believing in that premise our chance of coming back to what we once were ceases to be possible.