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Prof., the hard-drives are a dead end.

No law against Mittens and his staff doing what they did, tho the Massive-two-spits legislature had the chance. If I understand correctly.

Seems like demagoguery in light of that.

    PrincetonAl in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 5:52 pm

    Of course there is nothing illegal about. Its the appearance that is suspect. And if he can’t effectively rebut it, then he is a lousy politician and shouldn’t be running for President.

    Obama is going to ram it down his throat. If he doesn’t have a good answer, he is going to look like he is hiding something.

    I can hear the smarmy Obama quote now:

    “If Romney wants to run on his record, why is he so busy erasing all the detailed records of it? I mean, come on, what kind of guy says he wants to run on his record – all the while trying hide it? That’s not the kind of transparency you, the voters, deserve in your next President.”

    So, no its not demagoguery – its vetting his capability to handle Democratic lines of attack. And as if Romney is some angel, pure as the driven snow.

    Please, panicked Romney trolls, you can do better than that.

      Ragspierre in reply to PrincetonAl. | January 24, 2012 at 6:05 pm

      Seriously…??? You are justifying this by a pretended worry over an assault by Pres. Transparency…???

      Any-FLUCKING-body connected with security or the law will tell you that…provided it is legal…leaving a lot of crap laying around is STOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooopid.

      That would be one of the LEAST successful attacks in history.

      Plus, while you may make that kind of argument, for Newt to do it would be cheap. Objectively, it is unjustified.

    Snorkdoodle Whizbang in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    Oh, I don’t know… as a primary voter I’d like for Romney to have the opportunity to explain the rational behind destroying the hard drives when he left office. Seems like a legitimate question.

      When I was a Warrant Office Flight Trainee in the 1970s, one of my tasks was to cut used ribbons from IBM Selectric typewriters used in the training command into small pieces.

      There was NOTHING really interesting on those. But it was policy to make sure you left nothing an enemy MIGHT be able to use.

      You will see it in every corporate environment, law office, etc. around America. Why do you think there are whole businesses with specialized trucks that shred massive volumes of documents AND assure they are destroyed?

    No law against Romneycare either. Wait a minute — Romneycare is law!

      Ragspierre in reply to raven. | January 24, 2012 at 6:47 pm


      a. different, or

      b. the same

      I am a Newt supporter over Romney…though I’m disgusted with our whole selection process.

      I don’t surrender my integrity with my support.

If Gingrich is needing Professor Jacobson and the WaPo to clarify that he didn’t mean he was hired as a historian when he said “as a historian”, and he didn’t mean he would pull out of debates when it sounded like he would pull out of debates, then maybe he isn’t such a great communicator after all.

Either that, or the media is all in Romney’s back pocket. In which case I need to find my tin foil hat.

    CWLsun in reply to Ryan. | January 24, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    I listened to the Newt Gingrich interview on Fox and Friends live, and it didn’t translate to me like he was pulling out of the debate, just that he wasn’t going to accept that rule by remaining silent…he said something to the effect, “I should have said something…”. My takeaway from the interview, was that he was just laying down that marker for the audience. Fine with me.

    As far as what the “historian” morphed into, sounds to me like a good “and now you know the rest of the story” (“rest of the quote”) ad he could run in conjunction with the speech he said he was going to do on housing while in Florida.

    Romney’s team is doing him a favor by running that ad out of the Romney campaign, so Gingrich can directly counteract it as something the Romney campaign is being misleading on.

    Ragspierre in reply to Ryan. | January 24, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    I could come here for my daily dose of logical disjunctions.

    Well, and absurd binary arguments…

      Snorkdoodle Whizbang in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 6:03 pm

      Seems to me that the absurdity would be to jump to the conclusion that Gingrich would threaten to boycott a debate… any debate. The debates have been his bread and butter in this campaign.

      Honestly, when I first heard the clip my take is that he would ‘John King’ the moderator at the next debate… that certainly seems like the most plausible conclusion given the effectiveness of that tactic last time.

    janitor in reply to Ryan. | January 24, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    …or the media is all in Romney’s back pocket. In which case I need to find my tin foil hat.

    No. Just your tin foil sun visor.

so we are not allowed to like money, otherwise we are “Greedy” or “Heartless”

We can’t say “welfare” or “cut spending” or “Obama sucks”, otherwise we are “Racists”.

we are not allowed to say “smaller Government” or slogans like “don’t tread on me”, otherwise we are “Extremists”

we cant say “default” or “medicare is broke” without being called “Fear-monger”

we cant say “Alinsky” or “Soros” or “Socialist/Communist” because that means we are a “Conspiracy-Nut”

if we don’t like “occupy”, we are “the 1%” or “Brainwashed” or whatever those lunatics label us

we aren’t allowed to vote for who we want, otherwise we are “Rednecks” and “Hicks”

and now you are telling me we cant say “questionable business deals” or even the name “Bain” without being tabbed as “Anti-Capitalist”?

*sigh* …I really hate elites!

    Ragspierre in reply to Darkstar58. | January 24, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    we cant say “questionable business deals” or even the name “Bain” without being tabbed as “Anti-Capitalist”

    Sure you can. You just be able to justify any populist BS you spout, just like anybody else who propagates Collectivist lies. (No to say you did or would.)

    Otherwise, you will get opposition. No issue there, right?

      I R A Darth Aggie in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 6:57 pm

      You mean like demonizing someone for working with Freddie Mac?

      I’m just saying, unless Mittens wants to make the claim that Newt did something nefarious or illegal by taking that gig, or got the gig in a dishonest manner. Which I don’t think Mittens has.

      So, it’s wrong for two parties to contract a certain fee for certain work to be produced? and that’s pro-capitalism how?

        Oh, AGREE, dude. I am also one who understands that the NRA is a lobbyist outfit, as is Cato, as is Heritage.

        “Lobby” is not only NOT a dirty word, it is essential to the 1st Amendment.

      Darkstar58 in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 8:40 pm

      so can we be exempt from the name-calling if we have a response and attempt to provide a response, yet see the media just refuse to allow said response be heard?

      Because Newt and Perry and Prof and plenty of others instantly get called “Anti-Capitalist” everywhere you turn as soon as they open their mouth on the issue, with no one on the Right Side of the aisle bothering to listen to what they actually have to say.

      BTW, Vulture Capitalism (which is arguably what Bain did in a at least a couple situations) disgusts me. Now, does that mean I want it done away with? Of course not, I know its necessary to some extent. Does mean I will cautious when asked to support such a person in an election though…

      And that’s the real issue here and why it needs to be talked about before an election – Romney is apparently unable to explain himself confidently on Bain without
      – lying/blurring details (on the books after 2001, claims he wasn’t, others say he was, etc or the all-over-the-place “jobs created” claim)
      – name calling (the whole “attack from the left” and anti-capitalist thing which brought up the conversation)
      – pointing to borderline-Communism (saying what he did is no different then what Obama did with GM)
      in an effort to defend himself. Just doesn’t result in confidence, ya know…

vbmoneyspender | January 24, 2012 at 5:41 pm

On Bain Capital, I keep waiting for someone to explain why a company that is supposed to be at the tip of capitalism’s spear donates overwhelmingly to the Democrats:

Shouldn’t being a top donor to the DNC, the DCCC and Al Franken raise a red flag as to the freemarket bona fides of Bain Capital?

    Ragspierre in reply to vbmoneyspender. | January 24, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    That is really easy. Companies do not have ideologies as a rule. CEOs are NOT ideologues. They are kind of the opposite, either by their role or nature. They are consensus-builders, team-builders, and negotiators. They are not field generals, visionaries, or unnecessary risk-takers. They know that political positions are an extravagance their stockholders would sack them for taking…and quite rightly.

    A company is not a political instrument. It is there to earn a return on the capital risked in it. (See the period?)

    I know it is frustrating, but it is true.

      vbmoneyspender in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 7:11 pm

      I have a simpler explanation for why big companies like Bain Capital donate overwhelmingly to Democrats. Big companies don’t like competition. They’re on top and they want to stay on top. So the more they are able to hinder competitors, the better off they are going to be. And if there is one thing Democrats are into, it is handcuffing the free market.

      All of which is to say that while CEO’s of big companies may be great CEO’s of big companies, they aren’t typically someone I look to for a staunch defense of free market capitalism, much less for a defense individual liberty.

      More to the point, a successful business leader whose ideology boils down to “I’m alright Jack” is about the last person in the world I want to be President.

        Ragspierre in reply to vbmoneyspender. | January 24, 2012 at 7:16 pm

        Exactly as Adam Smith said over two-hundred years ago.

        Incumbent merchents would always TEND to seek a monopoly position from government intervention in the market.

        See Eletric, General.

It’s worth supporting Gingrich just to see all the get-along-go-along heads explode. Popcorn, please!

Midwest Rhino | January 24, 2012 at 5:48 pm

Good article on Mitt’s role at Staples. He is still claiming credit for 100,000+ jobs created, yet 89,000 of those are from Staples. About the only real role he had there was as CEO of Bain, they invested maybe a 10% part in Staples. The concept and development and follow through were all by other people.

We don’t credit the jobs created by McDonald’s, Home Depot, and Apple to the money men. We credit them to Ray Kroc, Bernard Marcus, Arthur Blank, Steve Jobs, and Steve Wozniak. Because those men had the ideas, ran the operations, and assumed most of the risk. It’s unclear why we should regard Romney’s role with Staples any differently.

But Mitt claimed he started that company. Other investors introduced Mitt to the duo that started Staples … Bain invested some money. That’s it. Another strike on Romney’s integrity.

    Ragspierre in reply to Midwest Rhino. | January 24, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    Your argument is like saying only inventors working alone who create new products.

    You don’t really have a grasp of how markets work, or innovation is fostered by market economics.

    It is reasonable to examine the claims made by Romney of the numbers of jobs created. Those kinds of numbers are REALLY hard to determine. But, if you examine the Ray Kroc story…as a fer instance…you’ll see how close he came several times to going onto the ash-heap of “creative destruction”. He NEVER acted alone.

    Bankers make money because they provide a utility we need in the market. Learn it. Love it. Live it.

      Midwest Rhino in reply to Ragspierre. | January 24, 2012 at 6:35 pm

      Rags’ said: “Your argument is like saying only inventors working alone who create new products.

      You don’t really have a grasp of how markets work, or innovation is fostered by market economics.”

      My argument is nothing like that … and you really have no grasp of what I have a grasp on. lol

      Maybe you should read the article first. What was Romney’s real contribution? They were a small contributor, that probably could have been replaced. Maybe Romney offered something, but for him to claim he created all those jobs is just a lie, plain and simple. Even to claim he started the company is apparently a lie.

        Ragspierre in reply to Midwest Rhino. | January 24, 2012 at 6:40 pm

        “They were a small contributor, that probably could have been replaced. Maybe Romney offered something, but for him to claim he created all those jobs is just a lie, plain and simple.”

        Well, that’s a lie, plain and simple. See? Easy to do.

        BUT, if you THINK about it, Staples WAS HUNGRY for that “small contributor”. I know how that feels.

        “Probably could have been replaced”…like saying D-Day could have been fine in July. A stupid, unsupportable thing to say. Who the hell knows, OR COULD? Sure; money is fungible. Who says anybody was coming with what Stapled needed (which was MORE than money)?

Jim Geraghty is griping that Mitt and Newt have high unfavorable numbers. Really? I wonder who contributed to that?

Sugar (sugar cane) is controlled in Florida by one large entity and one huge entity. That money also influences a lot of Florida politics. The industry is labor intensive, has been rife with labor abuse scandals, has caused environmental issues in the Everglades, demands and gets government subsidies, and basically has been kind of a problem in a number of ways. But it’s got a noose around the neck of Florida politics and economics.

The Fanjul brothers of Palm Beach, anti-Castro Cuban industrialists, own Florida Crystals. U.S. Sugar, another private company, owns the rest. Nevertheless, about half of the sugar in the U.S. is beet sugar, grown by multiple farmers in other states. (The U.S. uses more sugar than it produces, so it’s not an export crop, but it’s theoretically possible — by boosting beet sugar production.)

The Fanjuls are major Romney supporters. Romney won’t criticize them. The other candidates can’t otherwise comfortably criticize the industry during a Florida primary, or indicate support to increase competition from beet sugar from other states.

    Ragspierre in reply to janitor. | January 24, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    All supported by a tariff on sugar imports! One of the MOST distorted markets in agriculture.

    Part of the reason America uses SO much corn sweetener, AND a big reason once profitable American candy producers are dying off. Sugar prices are artificially high.

As I posted on twitter and facebook, all I can say is Good Grief (yeah, it’s an actual Charlie Brown moment in real life)! Is Lucy holding the football yet?

1) was Romney smart to erase all the records? If he were strictly in business – yes. But he was in government, which has a different set of rules regarding transparency. And if he was planning to run for office, it was not a smart move. Unless he really was covering up stuff he didn’t want found later. So – as the old question goes: “do you plead stupid or guilty?” This is like a CEO who does all travel transactions in cash – not illegal, or unethical, but it certainly is unusual. And people will raise questions.

2) Regarding Bain giving to Dems: I recall reading that the highest ROI a company can find is donations to politicians – a study done by Harvard Bus School, I think. This would especially go for Bain – they’re being good capitalists by investing their money where it will earn the highest ROI. Lenin said that the last Capitalist would be hung with the rope he sold the Communists – nothing says Capitalists are smart about the long-term. This really just says that the Dems are more bribable than Republicans (or had more power at the time that was for sale).

“Cane sugar hides behind beet sugar.”

The sugar tariffs in the US are complex and anti-free market, and a big issue in Florida. I can only guess that Newt is referring to the greater subsidy given to beet sugar and the quotas then set on foreign producers, which help drive the production of cane sugar but at a lower subsidy level (“behind?”) [ and I use lower subsidy loosely, you need to read how the program works … ].

The Fanjul brothers, said to be billionaires, own Flo-Sun and are the dominant growers and they now also own Domino Sugar, place the game of political influence hard. One is a professed Repub, one a professed Dem, and they donate big to both parties to keep those policies in place.

The Fanjul family lost everything under Castro and came to the US and had to rebuild the family fortune here … … their story is interesting and been documented other places (usually negatively).

However, they are also excellent businessmen in their own right, very sharp.

So, while they do practice lobbying to protect their business unfairly, they also operate arguably some of the most efficient sugar operations (not necessarily the lowest cost because of some higher costs in the US) and have hurt the others (Tate & Lyle used to own Domino Sugar but sold it to the Fanjuls and exited the market) … One might speculate that having lost everything to the government power in the past, they are determined not to lose it again. Although I think they would figure something to do given their business acumen, but Florida would lose growing and production jobs in true free market.

The net result is that some industries, such as candy manufacturing, have steadily been leaving the US because of higher sugar costs, estimated at double the rest of the world. US consumers and businesses absolutely lose out at a result. Cato and others have documented this.

However, in Florida, where you can drive by fields of sugar cane in south central Florida from Okeechobee down to the Glades, you aren’t going to win votes easily by taking on the industry. But it is not at the same level of public visibility, I don’t think, as the ethanol industry.

FYI, the net result, of subsidies is largely not positive unlike what Judy Sanchez says in this article:

Despicable quotes:

Judy Sanchez, a spokeswoman for U.S. Sugar Corp., the nation’s largest cane sugar grower, said the policies in place keep American companies from going out of business. She said sugar policy has “zero cost” to taxpayers. [ Note: taxpayers do pay, but not higher taxes ]

“Face it: Sugar is given away for free in restaurants, where they charge you for water, they charge you for an extra slice of cheese on your hamburger,” Sanchez said. “The sugar is so affordable that it’s given away for free. That’s because American sugar policy works.” [ Note: It would be even cheaper without the current policy, so that’s not a “sign” of policy working ]

    Midwest Rhino in reply to PrincetonAl. | January 24, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    thanks for that … I know little about all this. But here is one quote that makes some sense to me:

    Conrad said most members of Congress who have educated themselves on the sugar program have reached the same conclusion as past lawmakers — “this sugar program works well for the United States.”

    Without it, he said, the nation would be “swamped” with foreign sugar that is subsidized by foreign governments. Conrad said all nations with a strong sugar industry have a sugar program.

    “We have one too, but we have one that doesn’t cost the taxpayers a dime,” he said.

    We could get at least temporarily get cheaper sugar, but what would be the cost in lost industry? We have some hard choices on how far we really want to go with globalization.

    I think even Greenspan testified that he had miscalculated. We fight flooding of markets when it is computer chips. But overall we clearly have a huge trade imbalance, largely with enemies. I question how this all works out if we continue to support our enemies with one sided trade, but decry any “protectionism”.

      Ragspierre in reply to Midwest Rhino. | January 24, 2012 at 7:21 pm

      So, you like BIG GOVERNMENT…??? That is how you “protect” market-players. The ONLY way.

      There is ALWAYS a rationale for market distortions…always a special pleading.

      It is virtually ALWAYS a lie.

Joan Of Argghh | January 24, 2012 at 6:23 pm

Scott Walker raised 12 million in one state and Newt is happy to raise 2 million for Florida efforts. The Las Vegas mogul just dumped another 5 big ones on the WOF PAC for the ad campaigns in FL. Newt needs more money. It’s a long way to October.

1) So…guilt by innuendo (supported by utter BULLSH!T).

2) Capitalist bad (supported by Lenin quote).


I R A Darth Aggie | January 24, 2012 at 6:50 pm

“What I want to see released is all of these wiped hard drives,” Hammond said. “Has anyone ever physically wiped a hard drive? It’s not easy to do,” he quipped to reporters, citing Wikipedia as a source.

One should be careful when citing Wikipedia. You can look…foolish doing so.

As part of my duties, I am required to wipe hard drives before sending computers to surplus property. And I work for a government entity with a strong open records requirement. This ought to be a standard proceedure. I’m a fan of Darik’s Boot and Nuke bootable CD.

I recommend it to everyone who has an old computer they want to trash/give away. Nuke the drive first, then proceed from a blank slate. It’s the only way to be sure you’re not passing along your files and data.

    Right. I have a computer I NEED to send to a service person overseas, BUT I have to ASSURE the drives are clean, since I have client confidences to protect.

    In the past, I’ve sometimes just removed the drives and kept them.

    You should also do the same to the drive in a copier. Each document that is scanned, faxed and copied remains on a hard drive in the copier. Most people are not aware of this.

Sugar and shredding and tin foil hats, oh my!

Has any of you who watched the ad noticed that Mittens could have a new career starring in a movie as Count Dracula? 🙂

Newt Gingrich’s 156 reviews on Amazon.

Question: How many other politicians have 156 reviews on Amazon?

[…] William Jacobson asks: “If criticising Bain is attacking capitalism, is criticising Romneycare attacking health care?” […]

“In “The People Themselves,” Stanford Law School Dean Larry Kramer explains one of the great mysteries of modern America – why, for 40 years, have the freest people in the world been powerless to stop courts of appointed lawyers from eroding their freedoms?

This phenomenon – a relentless drive by a liberal establishment toward a secular, multicultural, values-neutral and historically ignorant country at odds with the values of the vast majority of Americans – is powerfully captured in Samuel Huntington’s recent work, “Who Are We?” But Huntington does not present a solution to the problem.

Kramer’s book explains what we can do about it. By chronicling the history of constitutional interpretation, Kramer makes clear that the Founding Fathers decisively rejected judicial supremacy.

He explains how Jeffersonians learned to distrust English judges when they represented the King’s tyranny, and later learned to distrust district judges when the Federalists passed the Alien and Sedition Acts and locked up Jeffersonian activists.

When the Federalists lost the election of 1800, they more than doubled the number of Federal circuit judges, appointing 18 Federalists during the lame-duck Congress of 1801. In response, Jefferson simply eliminated the 18 judgeships that the Federalists had created.

Kramer makes the case that Marbury v. Madison, which established the principle of judicial review, must be read within the context of this presidential-legislative assault on the judiciary. Jefferson often repudiated the notion of judicial supremacy, claiming it would create “an oligarchy.” Kramer convincingly argues that Justice John Marshall was careful not to assert judicial supremacy in the 1803 decision so as to avoid a conflict with the president and the Congress he knew he could not win. But today, Kramer continues, law schools explicitly misread that event and use it to create lawyers who arrogate to themselves far more power than the Constitution provides.

Kramer blames the recent rise of judicial supremacy theory on the Warren Court. He notes that the Warren Court judges actually signed an ad asserting judicial supremacy and profoundly misrepresented Marbury v. Madison.

The book’s strength is its combination of historic detail with Kramer’s clear distinction between interpreting the meaning of the Constitution and interpreting the meaning of ordinary law. He makes clear that the Founding Fathers felt that it was the people who would decide the interpretation of the Constitution through their elected officials, not appointed lawyers through their decisions.

Kramer notes that the Dred Scott decision, far from proving judicial supremacy, led to a Civil War in which the American people decisively repudiated the Court’s position. He argues that FDR won the fight with the Supreme Court in 1937 because the judges shifted their opinions to avoid having the Court packed. And Kramer asserts it was the Warren Court which unilaterally ended this balance of power established in 1937 and sought to make the Supreme Court preeminent over the Legislative and Executive branches.

Kramer’s book provides ammunition for those tired of appointed lawyers on benches rewriting the Constitution.

A president and Congress who represent the will of 91 percent of the people (the number who favor keeping “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance) could eliminate those judges on the Ninth Circuit who were so out of touch with America that they ruled it unconstitutional.

Furthermore, the Congress and the president can combine to block the courts from even considering cases on the Pledge, school prayer, marriage and other topics the American people overwhelmingly favor.”

Newt Gingrich’s review of “The People Themselves: Popular Constitutionalism and Judicial Review” by Larry Kramer found on Relevant to recent discussions of Newt Gingrich and the courts.

    Ragspierre in reply to Viator. | January 24, 2012 at 8:02 pm

    And Newt was right about a lot of what he said WRT the courts lately.

    But he was wrong, too, about some of it.

    He is unique, I think, in some of his reflections on judicial power, and where he is wrong, it would not be hard to find advisers to act as a sea-anchor.

    Hope Change in reply to Viator. | January 24, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Thank you, viator, for that review.

    I have seen Newt’s Amazon reviews.

    It is awesome to think that a busy man would go out of his way to share his knowledge that way.

    I’m starting to appreciate Newt the way I grew to appreciate Reagan. Newt is always trying to give back, to make things better. I would love to see him elected president.

    The President nominates and appoints ONLY with the “advice [advise?] and consent” of the Senate. That is the other part of the problem. We have elected Presidents and Senators who work hand in glove to stay in power.

Wiping hard drives is easy. The question is, did Romney break any laws by destroying government records? Many governments have strict laws governing records retention. Is this the case in Massachusetts? If not, no big deal. If it was, did Romney knowingly violate such laws?

I believe there are strict federal regulations governing this…

    Ragspierre in reply to WarEagle82. | January 24, 2012 at 8:09 pm

    Hey, War! From everything I’ve read, no laws were broken in the least.

    Different states have very different approaches to this issue.

    See Palin, Sarah for a different treatment in laws.

“Question of the Day: If criticising Bain is attacking capitalism, is criticising Romneycare attacking health care?”

Nah, kinda a different thing. Romneycare doesn’t have to be part of Healthcare; but a company like Bain is kinda essential to Capitalism

However, attacking Newt for “Lobbying” on behalf of FreedieMac is attacking both the Free Market and the Constitution if we follow the “questioning Bain = Anti-Capitalism” blueprint they have provided for us.

By the way, Romney meets Alinksy:

Sure its daddy, but we can easily see Saul’s tactics showing up in many of Mittens “attacks” (for lack of a better term for whatever it was he was trying to do in yesterdays debate)

Saul Alinsky was a pretty good guy.

So was Al Capone correct C-Trib?

Starting to believe that when Alphonse ran things in that neck of the woods, it was the cleanest it has ever been..

Professor, I believe you misread the McCall’s column on Santorum, et al.

“Santorum and Watkins would require individuals to buy health insurance rather than forcing employers to pay for employee benefits.”

In 1994, there was no talk about forcing citizens to buy health insurance. Although poorly written, this sentence only says that we would no longer belong to employer-sponsored group insurance plans and that those who choose to do so would buy insurance as individuals or families.

    WarEagle82 in reply to gad-fly. | January 24, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    Santorum and Watkins would require individuals to buy health insurance rather than forcing employers to pay for employee benefits.

    What part of “require” doesn’t mean “forcing citizens” to do something?

    I’m lean toward Santorum but this is clearly something that needs to be evaluated and vetted in the primary…

      Even the lefties, outside of ThinkProgress, agree with me about the meaning of Santorum’s position. This quote from Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-Pa) on (eek) AlterNet:

      “We have been here before. There was the Harris Wofford [election in which he] won the special election to replace Senator John Heinz in Pennsylvania. [Wofford] won on a health care mandate. Clinton won and then the following year, [working with] a nationwide health care reform mandate, they tried to move a [health care] bill. One of the first causalities [of that battle] was Harris Wofford. We lost his seat in Pennsylvania [to Republican Rick Santorum], and we had a 16- year setback in health care reform.”

NC Mountain Girl | January 25, 2012 at 12:53 am

Here is what I think Newt meant about cane sugar hiding behind beet.

The program helps all sugar producers by artificially driving up the price of all products that contain sugar. The actual government subsidies, however, go to the producers of sugar beets because it costs more to produce sugar from beets than from cane. There are only two states with significant cane sugar cultivation, Florida and Louisiana. At least eight states with cool climates and short growing seasons produce sugar beets and the farmers in those states are the ones who receive the government subsidies-Minnesota, North Dakota, Wyoming, Idaho, Nebraska, Colorado, California, Oregon, and Michigan.

A list of recipients of sugar subsidies 1995-2010 is here:

Cane sugar producers still benefit in the form of the higher prices caused by the limit on imports but the political clout behind keeping the program going is based on all those votes in the Senate from the states whose farmers get the sugar beet subsidies.

As fate would have it, box 4Zd559 in the University of Texas at Austin, Guide to IAF (The organization Saul Alinsky created) records includes records related to Hilary Rodham (1969-1971) and George Romney (1961-1970) with only Rolling Stone (1971) in between.