President Clinton Holds Truth High Second Day Of Democratic Convention

America was presented with the political truth on Tuesday night in a way it has needed for many months.  Bill Clinton took the stage, and then he commandeered it.  There is no elder statesman alive today that can match the power of Clinton when he is in campaign mode.

For too long the Republicans have refused to work in any reasonable way in Washington, with their only intent to deny President Obama any policy achievement, or the American public a government that can do the nation’s business.

The GOP needed to be called out for their tactics, and lies.

People ask me all the time how we delivered four surplus budgets.  What new ideas did we bring? I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic.

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In Tampa, the Republican argument against the President’s re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn’t cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.

In order to look like an acceptable alternative to President Obama, they couldn’t say much about the ideas they have offered over the last two years.  You see they want to go back to the same old policies that got us into trouble in the first place: to cut taxes for high income Americans even more than President Bush did; to get rid of those pesky financial regulations designed to prevent another crash and prohibit future bailouts; to increase defense spending two trillion dollars more than the Pentagon has requested without saying what they’ll spend the money on; to make enormous cuts in the rest of the budget, especially programs that help the middle class and poor kids.  As another President once said – there they go again.

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The Republicans call it Obamacare and say it’s a government takeover of health care that they’ll repeal.  Are they right? Let’s look at what’s happened so far. Individuals and businesses have secured more than a billion dollars in refunds from their insurance premiums because the new law requires 80% to 85% of your premiums to be spent on health care, not profits or promotion.  Other insurance companies have lowered their rates to meet the requirement.  More than 3 million young people between 19 and 25 are insured for the first time because their parents can now carry them on family policies.  Millions of seniors are receiving preventive care including breast cancer screenings and tests for heart problems.  Soon the insurance companies, not the government, will have millions of new customers many of them middle class people with pre-existing conditions.  And for the last two years, health care spending has grown under 4%, for the first time in 50 years.

So are we all better off because President Obama fought for it and passed it? You bet we are!

It just was a joy watching Clinton perform and articulate a message.

Day two of the convention has again presented a well themed, and highly polished series of speakers.

A poll bounce for President Obama is a-coming.

Ann Romney’s Speech Written For 5th Graders, Michelle Obama For 12th Graders

This amused me.

First lady Michelle Obama’s Tuesday speech was written at a 12th grade level and was the most ‘advanced’ speech delivered recently by a presidential nominee’s spouse, an analysis finds.

The University of Minnesota’s Smart Politics blog finds, using the Flesch-Kincaid readability test, that Obama’s speech was delivered at a 12.84 grade level.

That’s in contrast with Ann Romney’s speech last week at the Republican convention, which measured at a 5th grade level.

Congressman Tom Petri Paid No State Income Taxes For Past Decade

If anyone wonders why we continually demand Mitt Romney provide his tax returns only need to read the following.

Conservative Republicans need to be continually monitored.

Wisconsin Department of Revenue records show Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Petri did not pay any state income taxes from 2002 through 2005.

The records were obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press from the liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now, which requested them from the Revenue Department.

Petri is the only one of Wisconsin’s eight congressional representatives who didn’t pay any state income taxes over the past decade. He is running for his 16th term this November against Democrat Joe Kallas.

Petri spokesman Niel Wright says losses Petri suffered as an investor in Lloyds of London following the 9/11 terrorist attacks resulted in him paying no taxes.

Kallas says it’s shocking Petri didn’t pay anything.

Do Packer Fans At Lambeau Field Complain About Teacher Salaries?

I sure hope not.

If pushed for an answer there was no way I could have responded correctly about the cost for a ticket to attend a  Green Bay Packer game at Lambeau Field.

The average ticket price to see the Packers at Lambeau Field is $260.37!

That seems like a like of money when one also factors gas for traveling, food and perhaps lodging overnight.  I would think one also needs a ticket for their sporting companion.

All of a sudden we are talking about enough money for two car payments.

There will not be any empty seats for the home games, regardless of the ticket price, and that is fine.  I have no problem with people paying for the team they follow breathlessly.

But I do not want any Packer fan who pays a high price for athletes who merely play a game for their job to then belittle teachers who ask to be treated fair at salary negotiation time.

We often have our priorities out of alignment in the nation.  When reading the news account about Packer prices it struck me there are probably a fair number of fans who would not begrudge the players of their union rights, but would have plenty to say about a teacher who wanted a larger classroom, or to be better compensated for extracurricular duties that are performed.  (I call that mandatory over-time without pay.)

While the Packers entertain, teachers prepare a future generation to enter the world as good citizens.

Hopefully every Packer fan can understand that fact.

Social Media Makes Democratic Convention A Hit

I would not know how to text if my life depended on it–others make it a matter of habit.

Perhaps this shouldn’t come as a surprise, but the DNC is out to a much stronger start than the RNC on social media.  Twitter said that Michelle Obama’s speech peaked at more tweets per minute (28,003) than Mitt Romney’s speech (14,239) by a big margin. The mayor of San Antonio, Julian Castro, drove more Twitter conversation than any GOP speaker except for Mitt Romney.

Twitter tallied the early numbers, and the first night of the DNC convention soared past 3 million mentions compared to the GOP’s final night which closed with approximately 4 million.  According to Bluefin Labs Tuesday night accounted for 1.3M social mentions compared to 503K for the first night of the GOP convention.  More women participated in the DNC conversations (56%) compared to the RNC (45%).

Why the gap?  For starters, the Obamas have a much larger social following than the Romneys, from the candidates (Barack 19.4M vs. Mitt 1M) to their wives (Michelle 1.4M vs. Ann 99K).   Both the President and the First Lady took to Twitter on Tuesday night (well, their staff did) to leverage their social advantage — retweeting each other to reinforce Michelle Obama’s speech.

Media Feedback On Michelle Obama All Positive After Last Night’s Speech

America loved Michelle Obama last night at the Democratic Convention.

So did the media covering this most impressive First Lady.

“CNN’s Wolf Blitzer: ‘The First Lady not hitting a home run, but probably a
grand slam.’ … NBC’s Chuck Todd: ‘Michelle Obama owned this convention in a
way that no speaker owned the convention in Tampa.’ … CNN analyst David
Gergen: ‘If they have two more nights like this, they can probably break this race open.’ … Fox News’s Martha McCallum: ‘Incredibly positive, incredibly
enthusiastic response from the floor.’ … Fox News’ Brit Hume: ‘Incredibly
impressive woman.’ … MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow: ‘Oh my god.’ … MSNBC’s Ed
Schultz: ‘Tonight we were reintroduced to a star.’ … CNN analyst Donna
Brazille: ‘Love is in the air.'”