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FDR vs. Reagan

Saturday, November 01, 2008

The final stretch of the Presidential race has become an ideological proxy war between Ronald Reagan and Franklin Roosevelt.

By David Sirota
AlterNet

So it has all come down to this.

After two years and a quarter-billion dollars worth of ads, the pulverizing election has become a steel-cage match pitting rivals against each other -- and not Immigrants versus Natives, Americans versus Foreigners or Whites versus Blacks.

No, John McCain and Barack Obama have made the race's final weeks an ideological proxy war between two presidential icons who still loom larger than them: Ronald Reagan and Franklin Roosevelt.

McCain promises to "follow in [Reagan's] tradition and in his footsteps" while vilifying Obama as a 1930s-era "socialist" looking to "redistribute wealth." Obama counters by invoking Roosevelt's speeches and depicting the financial meltdown as "the final verdict" on McCain's "failed philosophy" (i.e., Reaganism).

Mind you, neither personifies these predecessors. Obama's moderate record is not FDR's quasi-socialism, and McCain has renounced some of his Reagan-inspired dogma.

Both also ignore inconsistencies. Obama criticizes the "failed philosophy" of Reagan conservatism while infusing some of his own prescriptions with such conservatism. McCain attacks Obama's "socialism" after voting for the bank bailout bill -- the most aggressive stroke of socialism in contemporary American history....(Click for remainder).

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President Obama

By George Mitrovich
Huffington Post

On November 4, 2008, Barack Obama and Joe Biden will be elected president and vice president of the United States. On Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009, Senator Obama will become the nation's 44th president. The victory of Senators Obama and Biden will also see the Democratic Party win decisive margins in both the House and Senate.

Normally I don't believe unitary government is healthy for a republic, but given the extraordinary challenges confronting America after eight years of the Bush Administration, an unwavering and resolute political effort will be essential to fix the staggering problems we face -- and even then there's no certainty of success.

The nation is in crisis and it happened on George W. Bush's watch. Even in a country of the casually observant, people know something is terribly amiss.

Is it wholly George W's and the Republican's fault? No, the Democrats are not blameless, but the greatest blame lies with this president and his party on Capitol Hill, the party that controlled Congress six of the past eight-years.

From Iraq to Afghanistan, from Katrina to America's crumbling infrastructure, from the fall of Wall Street to the collapse of capitalism as we know it, and other failures beyond counting, George W. Bush will go home to Crawford, Texas (or maybe Dallas, but do we care?)....(Click for remainder).

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Voter turnout expected to be highest in decades

By Seth Borenstein
Associate Press

WASHINGTON — Voter turnout will be the highest in decades, dwarfing recent presidential elections, experts predict. The only question dividing experts is how huge will it be. Will it be the largest since 1968, largest since 1960 or even, as one expert predicts, the largest in a century? Soaring early voting levels hint at a big turnout, but that could just be the same voters casting ballots earlier instead of more voters hitting the polls. Weather should generally be favorable, according to forecasts.

What early voting numbers mean and how much of the youth and Hispanic votes turn out are the big factors political scientists look at when trying to predict how many eligible Americans will vote.

Michael McDonald of George Mason University is so optimistic he's predicting the highest level in a century.

"We're going to definitely beat the turnout rate in 2004, the question is by how much," McDonald said. "We have a chance to beat the 1960 turnout rate."

"It's not just an election of a generation, it's an election of generations with an 's'," McDonald said Friday.

He's not alone. The dean of voting turnout predictions, Curtis Gans, director of the nonpartisan Committee for the Study of the American Electorate at American University, this week amped up his turnout forecast. Initially he said it would be around 2004 levels, but now he is looking at a turnout that would be the highest since 1960....(Click for remainder).

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Making It Official: I Endorse Barack Obama

By Ron Reagan
Huffington Post & Air America Radio

(Full Post here)

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Obama Will Let Your Baby Get Run Over By a Train

By Kyle
RightWingWatch.com

At least that seems to be the message of this mailer, posted by Jonathan Martin, being sent out by the Susan B. Anthony List:

So a word of warning to all of those intending to abandon their babies on the railroad tracks with the expectation that Barack Obama will come along and save it: don't do that.

A valuable parenting tip from the good folks at SBA.

[You can see the PDF of the mailer here.]

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Real American Newspapers Reject McCain

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Obama's winning argument

The U.S. economy has prospered under Democratic policies, and the candidate knows it. But the real battle begins once Obama takes the White House.

By Joe Conason
Salon.com

Nov. 1, 2008 | As Barack Obama delivers his closing argument, stumping across the battleground states, he seems increasingly confident in contrasting the success of Democratic policy with the failure of Republican ideology. During his Florida appearance with former President Bill Clinton as well as in other recent speeches, he has pointed to the bankruptcy of the conservative economic theories that he promises to discard. And he is utterly unfazed by the McCain camp's shrill cries of "socialism," perhaps because he knows the old red-baiting rhetoric has lost much of its power to bamboozle.

If Obama wins this election by a substantial margin -- the bigger the better -- then perhaps his presidency will mark the advent of a new progressive era in America. But the ideologues of the right won't simply disappear because their dogma is discredited. They will tell us, as McCain has repeatedly warned in his speeches, that "spreading the money around" is a bad idea that has been tried, as he put it, by the "far-left liberals." They will whine and moan about "tax and spend" and offer predictions of doom at every percentage increase in marginal rates on the very rich.

Unless Americans understand how the economy has worked -- and how this country was built in the past century -- it is entirely possible that those false prophets will once again block changes that the nation has needed for decades. That understanding should include a review of some very recent history, too....(Click for remainder).

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Obama Ad: Desperate

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