Sing it, SpongeBob

We chuckled at the latest campaign effort by Mike Meister — the campaign song.

You may remember Ben Nelson’s attempt at singing in “I’m from a Western town”. Well, Meister did not take that tact, instead getting some Irish folk singer (please tell us it’s not the Douglas County Public Defender) to bastardize a classic ballad.

You can hear it here, via Meister’s campaign page.

But the thing is, Meister didn’t’ need to break out the mandolins and tin whistles.

He could have just linked to his theme song right here:

You’re welcome.

***

We are having a nice time experiencing the 2012 Senate campaign right in front of us, on a near daily basis, via the competing comments of Governor Dave Heineman and Senator Ben Nelson.

Every time Governor Dave takes a position, Nelson comes out and attacks him in full, all out, campaign mode. First it was Heineman’s position on education funding.

Now it is the Heineman letter to the state education groups and Nelson’s subsequent response.

Now you can all feel free to argue about the merits of Heineman pointing out basic math to the Ed groups. But we crack up that Nelson IMMEDIATELY jumped on it and chose to take on Heineman in tit-for-tat comments.

Nelson has a notoriously thin political skin, and can’t resist commenting on everything. It’s interesting to see how he keeps trying to sell his position on the Health Care law — which fewer and fewer people like.

What will Nelson do next?

Would anyone really be surprised to see an ad by Nelson during the Western Kentucky game? (Of course, paid for by the DSCC.)

***
And on the Omaha front, there was word last week that another local politician would be interested in the Mayor’s job, should Jim Suttle be recalled.

Today, the OWH focused on said pol, this time discussing a City of Omaha/Douglas County merger.

The guy? State Senator Brad Ashford.

**Update 9/2/10**

When asked by Joe Jordan if he’d run, Ashford coyly responded, “I don’t know what I’d do.

(Discuss amongst yerselves.)

101 comments

  1. GeosUser says:

    Why would Omaha want to trade-in one tax & spend liberal for another? Brad Ashford isn't even conservative enough to qualify as a RINO. He's a democrat in disguise and always has been.

  2. Anonymous says:

    It gets old listening to you republicans complain none stop 24 hours a day, 52 weeks a year, 365 days a year. The party of no has no answers to any problems.Plus they don't like the song. GROW UP.

  3. Street Sweeper says:

    Wait a minute, who doesn't like what song?

    The original song, with original music and words?

    Or the one that's ripped off from the Irish?

    (And shame on you for not embracing what Mike told you to embrace.)

    -Ed.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I wonder what combining the city with county would do with the city's standing as a City of the Metropolitan Class?

    If this standing is in question wouldn't that put much of their "Taxing Authority" in jeopardy?

    Sure would make a mess of things between the zoning jurisdiction too I would think.

    Would you be allowed to cut most of the County Government too?

    How would State Aid work?

  5. Right Wing Professor says:

    Why does Meister need a new theme song, when the Who's 'Substitute' is ready-made for him?

    I'm a substitute for another guy
    They nominated me when they found his lie.
    Raising contributions is too complicated
    Just make sure your checks are all post-dated, yeah.

  6. Anonymous says:

    For a guy with notoriously thin political skin, Nelson certainly has a lot of it.

    Assume Meister is part Irish.

    If Nelson is also part Irish, maybe he can get in on that Irish thing with O'Meister and O'bama.

  7. Anonymous says:

    So the AFL-CIO Union organization is coming out swinging this weekend against 70 Republican congressional candidates according to their leader Mr. Trumka.

    How will this play with all the firemen out on the corners this weekend?

    Let's see how well it plays in Omaha with all the love for Unions these days.

    I don't think the workforce makes up more than 16% of the workforce. The non-union majority needs to remind the minority of this!

  8. Macdaddy says:

    The song reminds me of "Brave Sir Robin."

    Does nobody learn from old campaigns? How'd that turkey song work out for Ricketts? It's OK to have a theme song (Clinton's was pretty good) but to make people think you live at a Renaissance fair is just mind-boggling. I realize that they are trying to grab some attention on the cheap, but good grief, folks. I'm speechless. I am without speech.

    Is Ashton Kutcher going to show up soon? Is NEbraska being Punk'd?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Anonymous 9:14: Wonder if the International Association of Firefighters and their beloved local will come out in strong support for their boy Lee Terry.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Did I mention that Right Wing Professor Gerard Harbison is not a registered voter in the state of Nebraska and there's no record of him ever voting?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Brad, you are already talking to people about running for mayor if Suttle is recalled. You know you have no support for this bill. Quit grandstanding!

  12. GeosUser says:

    It's probably in theory a good idea to merge Douglas county government and city of Omaha government. The nagging concern is what happens to county-wide elected offices like sheriff, assessor, etc.? The county board recently asked them to trim their budgets by X percent. They refused. The county board then immediately approved a property tax increase to cover the uncut
    budget. In the past, these same county-wide elective officers have successfully sued the county board to keep them from touching their budgets. So Senator Ashford, how do you plan to address this government structural problem that is likely defined in the state constitution???

  13. Anonymous says:

    Brad Ashford? Are you serious? Why would Omaha trade one liberal for another? If this is the best the Omaha Republican party can provide than they deserve Suttle – and Ashford.

  14. Street Sweeper says:

    Nope.
    Ashford is the ONLY person who will take the job.
    After that it's RJ Brown's, if he wants it.

    (Or read past posts where we mention, Daub, Vokal, Nabity, Festersen, Stothert…among others.)

  15. Need a real mayor says:

    Brad Ashford is a huge believer in big government welfare programs. Look at the learning community's waste of funds sending kids who cant read to Lauritzen Gardens for $17,000. If you can't learn to read in a clasroom, I guess you can read with the tulips.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Clarification of Anon 11:50: There is no one with the legal name of Gerard Harbison that is a registered voter in the state of Nebraska and there's no record of a person with this name ever voting. Look it up.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Brad Ashford supported the million dollar increase in Suttle's budget for truancy programs. This guy will spend more than Suttle ever dreamed of spending.

  18. Shoe Salesman says:

    Hilarious Sweeper.

    Though the Nelson-Heinie spat is unseemly it is hardly Nelson to blame for it. If you look at what is happening (I mean actually read the stuff) there is a dispute over federal policy. Nelson has criticized Heinie on the policy (right or wrong) and Heine has used political and personal attacks in response. The campaign has started -actually started the day Heinie double crossed Nelson on health care funding back in December and deicded to play politics insead of do what is right for Nebraska. Have you considered that Nelson is reacting to the nearly year long attacks from Heinie and is finally pushing back? NO of course not, that would detract from your fantasy narrative.

    Its why I love reading this blog – good laughs all around. Heinie has proven nothing other than that he is still a political hack – unfit for his current office and unworthy of future support from Nebraskans unless they LIKE record state budget deficits, politicking over governing, failed government services for the poor and sick, and general scumminess.

    Nelson has an obligation to point out the governor is playing games – asking for health care money they rejecting it, asking for stimulus money then criticzing it (but STILL SPENDING IT!!!, asking for state education aid then threatening children with it, packing the Baord or Regents with political hacks then using it to score political points while the U faces budget crises, higher tuition and brain drain. This is someone Nebraskans should respect? Puhleeze.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Shoe Salesman so let's replace Governor Heineman with the Goober and the most corrupt Dem pol in the last 50+ years in NE??? Stick to the Birkenstocks and leave the rest to others.

  20. Right Wing Professor says:

    Shoey:

    How does the Governor manage to pack the Board of Regents, when its voting members are all directly elected?

    You're losing what little you ever had.

  21. Right Wing Professor says:

    This is a notice to those continuing to post false information about my voting record. Nebraska Statute 32-330 states, with respect to voter registers:

    "Lists shall be used solely for purposes related to elections, political activities, voter registration, law enforcement, or jury selection."

    This clearly does not include online personal attacks. I have been advised by the Secretary of State's office to contact law enforcement if this continues.

    FYI, the statute defines violations of this provision as 'election falsification', a Class IV felony.

  22. Right Wing Professor says:

    Anonymous coward @ 11:14; you are not the elections division of the SoS office. You are the liar, not they.

    I strongly recommend you read Neb. Stat. 32-330.

  23. Anonymous says:

    As a parent, I can assure you that the last thing a parent needs when caring for a sick child is the threat of the county attorney and social services.

    Shame on the Nebraska Legislature for failing to distinguish between a sick child and an uncontrollable juvenile delinquent when passing legislation.

    Did Tom White vote for this legislation, and if so, does he already have his next Civil Rights lawsuit against a government agency filed. Was this just all about lining his lawyer pockets again? If it was really about the kids, he would be more willing to associate with them.

    Brad Ashford should be ashamed of himself for not cleaning up this Bill before shoving it down parents throats!

    Really, the freaking' County Attorney!

  24. TexasAnnie says:

    Well your Democratic candidate for Governor went to the State Board of Education this morning and evidently persuaded that body to reject Heineman's call for repeal of federal health care reform. The state board instead adopted a resolution expressing general disdain for unfunded federal mandates, while designating public education as the state's number one funding priority!

    Good! Heineman's threat to public education was misguided and not in keeping with constitutional intent. (Art. VII, Sec. 1, Neb. Const.) Thus his surrender to the board's position, taken together with his application for federal health care grant funds yesterday, are sure signs of his willingness to compromise…

    So I guess all you Leavenworth Street commenters better write in soon with your agreement! If you don't (in keeping with the example set by your Governor) everyone reading these words may appropriately assume your silence signals your agreement anyway!

  25. Right Wing Professor says:

    Anonymous coward @ 12:20; I doubt there's very much you can elevate, without using a plastic rod of appropriate length.

  26. Right Wing Professor says:

    Well your Democratic candidate for Governor went to the State Board of Education this morning and evidently persuaded that body to reject Heineman's call for repeal of federal health care reform.

    Really? Could you point out where the resolution says that? I thought they rejected unfunded federal mandates, which certainly includes HCR?

  27. Anonymous says:

    anyone can go to the official secretary of state web site and look up a voter. 32-330 refers to voter lists. i'm not going to take the time cause have to check by county but anyone can check if someones a registered voter.

  28. Anonymous says:

    And this thrills you how? If education is this State's number one priority, then doesn't that mean that medicaid and the people on it are not?

    What'll it be Annie? Education or Medicaid, 'cuz it sure as Hell can't be both!

  29. Anonymous says:

    Simple minds here. What'll it be Annie? Education or Medicaid, 'cuz it sure as Hell can't be both! While big, these aren't the only 2 items affecting the budget. Taxes can be raised, or we can quit giving such large corporate tax breaks under Nebraska Advantage.

  30. Anonymous says:

    yup raise taxes and ask for more out of corporations. What a winning proposition that is. Mr. Suttle don't you have a city to ruin? Last thing the state needs is a lunkhead like you mucking around.

    Hmmm a simple review of the facts may be in order. One of the lowest unemployment rates in the Country. A nearly a balanced budget. New businesses moving in the state here and there.

    Yup great idea, raise taxes and make companies pay more, that way we can drive up unemployment! Don't want to have people working and paying the already high taxes. Nope can't have that. It would be so much better to grow the unemployment roles, have more foreclosures, people on the street, and even more children suffering.

    It's amazing how that platform just doesn't seem to resonate with the MAJORITY of Nebraskans. Who can figure it out?

  31. annie is an idiot says:

    "Well your Democratic candidate for Governor went to the State Board of Education this morning and evidently persuaded that body to reject Heineman's call for repeal of federal health care reform."

    Meister had nothing to do with it. Bob Evnen and Mark Quandahl yesterday stated the resolution was going to address all unfunded mandates. Many on the State Board of Ed don't even know Meister is a candidate…..lol

  32. Anonymous says:

    Anon 1:40- now that thar was funny. But sad at the same time as it is playing out on the National level right before our eyes.

  33. Anonymous says:

    ANON 1:40 thank President Obama and the democrats for the fact that Nebraska has a balanced budgetwith the stimlus money that Heinman got. He would not have been able to do it on his own. I mean the guy is just not that bright. He needs help.

  34. Right Wing Professor says:

    anyone can go to the official secretary of state web site and look up a voter.

    Indeed. But one can also, for $500, get a list of all registered voters in all counties, which includes information about past elections in which they voted.
    So if one wants to find out if Tom Osborne, for example, did his duty as a citizen in the 2008 primaries, one can buy the list and look him up. Personally, I think this is a bit excessive; clearly it helps the parties, but at the expense of the privacy of the individual voter.

    When one buys that list, one has to sign a pledge not to copy it, and not to use it for other than statutorily permitted purposes. The identity of the person or organization that buys the list is also a matter of public record; nine groups did so in the last year. And the Secretary of State's office is perfectly happy to divulge their names. For example, oh, just selecting one at random, the Nebraska Democratic Party is one of the organizations that purchased a copy.

    So if someone claims to know who voted in Nebraska in recent elections, the only way they could have that knowledge is to have access to one of the list copies.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Sweeper, I write a humorous haiku predicting Tom White will drown his sorrows in a bottle after an election-night loss, and that post vanishes.

    But we've got some a-hole around here who continues to insinuate something about Adrien Smith's sexual orientation, and that post remains.

    What gives? Is it OK to imply something about one guy's manhood (and mean it) but not OK to jokingly suggest that another will drown his sorrows after an election loss? I don't get it.

  36. Anonymous says:

    Anon 2:16

    Are you really that dense? Obama has NOTHING to do with balancing the budget her in Nebraska. Stop drinking the Kool-Aid and just let it go.

    See there is this thing called the State Constitution, which requires a balanced budget. Gee get a clue or move to a state that understands your way of thinking, say California.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I heard tommy white was a bit juiced at the Air Show this past weekend. Also got his handler in a twisted situation with the base to boot.

    Way to go tommy, only the best behavior from the privileged Supreme Court Justice.

  38. Street Sweeper says:

    Kids,
    By "juiced" I'll assume you meant that he spilled some OJ on himself.
    Otherwise, comments accusing someone of intoxication, generally will be deleted.
    -Ed.

  39. Anonymous says:

    Name the lobbyist, name the date. Pretty simple.

    If you can't do that, then we'll assume that it was apple juice (made right here in dear old Nebraska City) and that all appropriate spouses were in attendance.

  40. TexasAnnie says:

    RWP @12:41 —
    "The Nebraska State Board of Education decided Thursday not to single out parts of the new federal health care law for repeal…[as proposed by Evnen]Instead,…" (OWH: 9-2-10).

    Anonymous @12:55 —
    No thrill was implied! Medicaid IS NOT a mandated expense according to the Nebraska Constitution. For a better understanding on your part, see the comment following your's @ 1:04.

    1st Anonymous @1:40 —
    You forgot to review these facts: 1)Accompanying low unemployment, Nebraskans enjoy low wages; 2)Accompanying the current balanced budget was the special session last November and the Governor's proposed cuts to education next session; 3)And accompanying new businesses are the tax subsidies, infrastructure costs, and in some cases, outright general funds expenditures! One thing you did get right, Anonymous, the MAJORITY of Nebraskans have accepted these policies over a very long, long time. But I've got it 'figured out,' and I'm here to help…

    Anonymous @1:44 —
    "The week before Evnen introduced his resolution, Gov. Dave Heineman sent a letter to education leaders urging them to support repeal of the health care law or risk cuts in education. Meister urged the board 'not to make the same mistake' Heineman did when he abused his political power by writing the letter." (LJS: 9-2-10). Appears Meister got his way with the board, 'eh?

    I know none of your will admit defeat, ever. It's not fun being wrong! But Heineman DID threaten public education and he DID apply for federal grant money to begin implementing the new, nearly universal national health care policy. I'm saying Heineman deserves credit for back-tracking. It would have been better if he had been on the right track before, but, "better late than never," as they say.

    Now if only Heineman could be persuaded to provide for the developmentally disabled… Oops, that would take political muscle such as the State Board of Education weighs. Sadly, not enough Nebraskans and particularly the heavily Catholic demographic have not defended the interests {or lives for that matter} of Nebraska's developmentally disabled…

  41. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Harbison, I'm just a random person who reads Leavenworthstreet. After reading other people's comments I went to the Secretary of State's Voter Check homepage. I didn't sign anything from the Secretary of State, I just googled "Nebraska Votercheck."

    I thought it was supposed to be liberals who were crybabies and attempted to block free speech with petty intimidation. If you truly talked to John Gale or his staff "go to the authorities" was probably code for "don't bother us with this nonsense." If a political blog isn't political activity, I'm not sure what is.

    If there ever was someone who could dish it out but sure couldn't take it, that is Gerard Harbison.

  42. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Harbison, I'm just a random person who reads Leavenworthstreet. After reading other people's comments I went to the Secretary of State's Voter Check homepage. I didn't sign anything from the Secretary of State, I just googled "Nebraska Votercheck."

    I thought it was supposed to be liberals who were crybabies and attempted to block free speech with petty intimidation. If you truly talked to John Gale or his staff "go to the authorities" was probably code for "don't bother us with this nonsense." If a political blog isn't political activity, I'm not sure what is.

    If there ever was someone who could dish it out but sure couldn't take it, that is Gerard Harbison.

  43. Right Wing Professor says:

    Anonymous coward @5:49. This blog sure doesn't need another anonymous idiot commenter, but it appears we have one. Anyone can check for free if he/she (or anyone else) is registered to vote in Nebraska, if you know the voter's legal name and county. What you get for $500 is a list of the past elections the person has voted in. So your local Democrat or Republican chair not only knowns you are registered to vote, but when you voted.

    Whether of not someone too chicken$hit to sign his name believes me is a matter of no consequence to me.

  44. Anonymous says:

    AnOn 3:33 Yes Nebraska is a balanced budget state. Where did you think Nebraska got the money to do so the last 2 years? They got it with the stimlus money. Who gave them the stimlus money? Obama and the democratic congress. You and others will soon find out just how important that is when you see our Republican Governor and our Republican state legislature try to balance the budget with out it. If it was not going to hurt so much. I would laugh at you.

  45. Anonymous says:

    RWP for a man who does not care. You sure do complain a lot. But then you are a republican. That is something that republicans are very good at. You would get an A+ in my book

  46. Right Wing Professor says:

    Who gave them the stimlus money? Obama and the democratic congress.

    Who gave Obama and the Democratic Congress the money? The Chinese. Who will pay the Chinese back? Your children and grandchildren.

    Democrats seem to believe there's a magical Federal money fairy that brings billions of dollars to good little kids. There isn't. Even if you just print the money, somebody eventually pays.

    When you understand that, you grow up and stop voting democrat.

  47. Right Wing Professor says:

    Anonymous coward at 6:33. This is not. A sentence.

    See, now I'm complaining you can't seem to write in sentences. I wonder how many thousand of dollars in taxes were wasted not teaching you English grammar?

    And hi to Angela!

  48. Anonymous says:

    professor you can stop the posts (and keep your blood pressure down) by answering one simple question that a professor paid by a public university and our tax money should be required to answer. is your legal name Gerard Harbison. if not you've got a lot of gall haranguing "anonymous cowards"

  49. curb says:

    RWP, ease up on your illiterate leftwing critic. He says you get an A+ in his book. See, he has a book. I am sure he stays within the lines.

  50. GoobersAnonymous says:

    Is it better to be called an "Anonymous Coward" or to invite people to call you "Goober"?

    Call me whatever you want. I'm not running for office. For that perspective, you need to talk to your Goober.

  51. Right Wing Professor says:

    Well, anonymous coward @ 7:01, I've looked in my appointment letter, and 'giving out personal information to anonymous cowards on the internet' isn't one of my duties. Nor is 'taunting morons online' but I do that anyway. It's just my gift to you for being so gosh darn wunnerful.

    Besides, I'm not sure what name I'm using this year..lessee, I was Boris Badonov for a while, and then I became Jason Bourne, and then Austin Powers, and then Natasha Kinski…no, that was my wife… and then I'm not sure. It's just so hard to keep track, when you're an International Man of Mystery.

    I'm pretty sure, though, that my favorite one-celled organism is Prochlorococcus marinus. Maybe that's also now my legal name? I was thinking of changing it to that, but I dunno if I got around to it.

  52. Anonymous says:

    I'll bite. Anon 632, yes, it was balanced by handouts from the Democrat Congress and the Democrat President. If those handouts had not come, it would have been balanced by cutting the handouts to folks like you.

    I bet Tom White is grateful to the handouts of Nancy Pelosi and President Obama. I bet he is also grateful that he will be living on easy street collecting fees for civil rights lawsuits against the local governments next year instead of needing to cut programs that the Nebraska Legislature got a kitchen pass on cutting for the last 4 years.

    Tom White refused to cut spending in the Nebraska Legislature, he would refuse to cut spending in the US Congress. Fortunately, he won't be going to Washington in January o spend more of China's money that your grandkids will have to pay back just so local governments can keep getting handouts for their social programs.

  53. Anonymous says:

    ok for the slightly dim individuals around the blog. Whether Obama provided the stimulus money or not the Legislature is OBLIGATED to pass a balanced budget. So IF there had been NO stimulus money the budget would have been balanced. If there had been 5 BILLION provided there would have been a balanced budget. IF all Federal dollars were taken away there would be a balanced budget. If all forms of outside money were made unavailable there would be a balanced budget. Try to imagine a world where you actually understand the concept of the constitutional requirement to pass a balanced budget, and how that it doesn't say how we have to balance it. Then maybe you would have a bit more time on your hands to go out and figure out how the budget can be balanced with State aid to schools on autopilot and almost a billion dollars? Oh and the near billion dollars is for nearly the same number of students as the state had in the 70's!!! Oh and provide nearly $80M in funding to give 2600 children services in the metro area, by the way it takes a little of 500 state employees to do so. Oh provide the hundreds and hundreds of millions for the University, and hundreds of millions for Medicaid.

    Oh did you get the memo there are only 1.8 million residents to pay for all of that, the thousands of miles of roads and myriad of other services? That at least 300,000 Nebraskans don't pay into the system? So less than 1.5 million to pay the bills. By the way Buffet whines about how he doesn't pay enough in taxes, but he could write a check. Oh and he leaves out how he only pays himself $100000, and the rest is capital gains. Soooooo if he took it as regular wages he too could pay more in taxes.

    But lets get back to the world where you have a clue.

    You want all the services for all the people, do you have a clue where those who have jobs and pay taxes work? I suspect a fair number of them work for private companies. So now you want to raise taxes on both the people and the companies. Hmmm what happens when taxes are increased…..you can do it. Think about it/////

    Yep the businesses cut back on employees….more unemployed people. Then companies move away….more unemployed people. Now back to the original point, there would be fewer people to pay the increased taxes……

    Forget it you are clueless you won't ever understand.

  54. Anonymous says:

    I can honestly say that this is the worst campaign song ever made. As a Democrat, i apologies for this crap. I thought Put me in Coach by Dan Fogerty would have been fine, but to have someone write a song this stupid is beyond anything I have ever seen. What a, pardon my french, "douche". Who the hell does he think he is. What the hell will this song accomplish? Nothing. He is nothing and this song proves it.

    As SS posted and pondered, this is not Tom Riley. I am a fan of the Turfman, and this is not his voice at all, and I could never see him doing anything like this. EVER.

    Thanks for this post, guess since I don't vote Republican, I can just write myself in as Governor for this election.

  55. Anonymous says:

    Moronymous at 6:32 wrote:

    Where did you think Nebraska got the money to do so the last 2 years? They got it with the stimlus money. Who gave them the stimlus money? Obama and the democratic congress.
    Oh, well isn't that nice of Obama and the dems. Now, where exactly did they get the money to give to us in the stimulus package? I'd like to know so I can write our anonyous benefactor a thank-you note.

  56. Anonymous says:

    Oh, I feel so silly. I know where Obama and the dems got the money to give to us in the stimulus package. Why, they took it. From … us.

    So, I'm writing myself a thank-you note now, thanking myself for providing the Federal Gov't the money to give me money through the stimulus. Except they didn't really give ME any of the money (although they most certainly did TAKE money from me.)

    All kidding aside, man you dems are stupid people if you can't figure out that the Fed Gov't didn't just find spare cash in between the cushions of the couches in the Oval Office to finance the stimulus. They got the money from taxpayers. From ME. So, don't expect ME to act all thankful that the Obama admin sent Nebraska taxpayers back some of the money they took from them. (And will necessarily have to continue to take from them in order to pay off the huge debt that the stimulus represents.)

  57. Anonymous says:

    Correction, Obama, Pelosi and Reid did not get the cash to pay for the Stimuli from the taxpayers of this Country. Obama, Pelosi and Reid got the money from China. The taxpayers of this Country are currently too busy paying the Chinese and a very few other sources loan payments, but at least we are paying our debt.

    The thank you note should be put into a time capsule and left for your grand children and great grandchildren. They are who will be paying for all the Democrats reckless spending of the last three and three quarter years.

  58. Oh mander says:

    It's really sad how much influence Brunning has on you folks. He makes one stupid sub-sophmoric joke that isn't even clever, and you all let that shape your perception of Meister. There are plenty of issues of substance that you could raise, but instead you all keep retreating to the "Goober" label. It's getting old.

  59. TedK says:

    All of you folks carping about the deficit were silent when Bush doubled our national debt through war and tax cuts. Not a peep. First time we had a war and didn't raise taxes to pay for it. Instead we got tax cuts! That made sense. Where were your voices then? Now that the economy is tanked and govt stimulus is the only thing preventing Great Depression II (not according to me, according to Nobel prize winning economists who are experts in the field), our debt to China will increase. I'm not happy about this, and we need to start paying it back when our economy ever recovers, but now is not the time to suddenly get religion about running deficits. What are your solutions? All I hear is griping. Should we immediately start cutting govt spending and/or raise taxes to rein in deficits. This strategy's working great in Ireland (sarcasm).

  60. Anonymous says:

    I have no problem with the tax cuts or the spending on the war.

    One gave me money to spend on the economy as I see fit and give to the charities that I believe to be doing the most good in my community.

    The other made me feel as safe and secure as one can in the world we live in these days.

    What I don't like, is money being foolishly spent to block the development of industry. Such things as funding the Air Force program to use coal as an eventual jet fuel, proving it to be usable and then "green" banning the technology from being used in any military of government agency.

    And that's just one example.

    I will pay more taxes when said taxes are EQUALLY matched with cuts in every department of government except Defense.

  61. TedK says:

    11:29, you want to cut taxes everywhere but defense? In 2009 the U.S. had 46.5% of all the world's military spending. The next country was China at 6.6% You chicken-little types have a over-heightened level of fear that is out of whack with reality. Even Eisenhower, a good Republican president, warned of an out of control military industrial complex back in the '50s.

  62. Anonymous says:

    TedK, those Nobel laureate economists who say that the stimulus has prevented GD II, are those the same economists who assured us that if we passed the stimulus, it would stop unemployment from going over 8% and would start lowering unemployment by June 2009? The same ones who warned that without the stimulus, unemployment would climb alll the way to 9% before going back down on it's own by June 2010?

    They obviously didn't know what they were talking about then so why should we believe them now?

    BTW, Nobel doesn't carry a lot of weight when they nominate Obama for the peace prize within two weeks of him taking office, before he'd done anything but campaign.

  63. Anonymous says:

    TedK, you are basically a stooge. A quick google search revealed dozens and dozens of highly respected economists who so adamantly believed Obama's stimulus would fail that they signed their names to a statement that was published in papers across the country befor the thing was passed.

    You don't have all economists on your side. You don't even have all the Nobel winners. Here's a partial list of those opposed:

    Gary Becker, Nobel winner
    James Buchanan, Nobel winner
    Vernon Smith, Nobel winner
    Henry Butler, Northwestern
    Bryan Caplan, Geo. Mason
    Gian Luca Clementi, NYU
    John Cogan, Hoover Inst at Stanford
    Arthur Diamond, UNO
    Dan Feenburg, Nat'l Bureau of Econ Research
    Rick Geddes, Cornell
    Aaron Gellman, Northwestern
    Michael Gibbs, u of Chicago
    Ernie Goss, Creighton
    David Henderson, Hoover Inst at Stanford
    Gailen Hite, Columbia
    Barry Keating, Notre Dame
    Allan Meltzer, Carnegie Mellon
    Andrea Moro, Vanderbilt
    Michael Munger, Duke

    and dozens and dozens of others.

    And, of course, time and history have proved them right and your friend Mr. Krugman wrong. And since his projections about the stimulus have proved so wildly wrong, why should we believe him if he says it would have been even worse without it.

  64. Right Wing Professor says:

    Yep. 'Molesting public records' is a Class IV felony, unless it's first degree molestation.

    Well, both Heineman and Lakers may end up housed next year at the Nebraska taxpayer's expense.

  65. TedK says:

    1:54, read further. They have said the stimulus wasn't big enough. I'm not necessarily a disciple of Keynesian economics, but in certain cases it is applicable. I try to learn from history. There are a lot of parallels with the Great Depression. FDR started a recovery with stimulus, then in 1937 got cold feet over increasing debt. Government cutbacks resulted in a recession. It wasn't until WWII, effectively a huge stimulus program, that our economy finally recovered and remained strong for several decades. And with a top tax rate of 90%! One difference is that we didn't start with so much debt. Bush and his republican buddies may have totally screwed us by doubling our debt which may be a factor in diminishing the stimulus effect. There was no raison d'etre for running a deficit, R's just wanted to give tax cuts, heavily directed to those who made so much money that they wouldn't need it or spend it, and didn't want to pay for two wars (off budget). History also shows that Republicans are completely irresponsible budget-wise when they are in charge. Democrats have to clean up the messes.

  66. Anonymous says:

    TedK, nice try but wrong.

    Compared to Bush, Obama has been spending like a drunken sailor.

    You complain about Bush doubling our debt but what has Obama done to it? Here's a hint: He's saddled us with more debt in a-year-and-a-half than Bush did in 8 years.

    And you can't seem to figure out whether debt is a good thing or not. You say Roosevelt made a mistake in 1937 by worrying that we had too much debt and so he stopped spending. Then you turn around and complain about Bush's debt. So, which is it? Is debt something we have to worry about or not?

    And how does debt already incurred by government affect the health of the economy now? You're complaining about Bush's debt vis-a-vis our economic health today. Why don't you explain how those two things are connected, especially when you continually accuse Republicans of not lowering gov't spending even while they're cutting taxes.

  67. Anonymous says:

    and the wars Bush started cost how much money for no weapons of mass destruction?

    Less in 7 years than one massive, abject failure of an Obama stimulus plan in 1 year.

    And we weren't looking for WMDs. In case you missed world history, several conditions were imposed on Iraq as a result of their surrender in the 1st Gulf War. They were chronically in violation of those terms during the entire Clinton Administration, which did nothing to enforce the peace agreement. The justification for the most recent gulf war was to enforce UN Resolutions relating to the ending of the hostilities at the end of the first war.

  68. TedK says:

    4:48, when Bush came into office, the economy was relatively healthy. We had been running a surplus. Bush's prescription for recovering from a small recession was tax cuts. Democrats went along. Then in 2003 he pushes for more tax cuts which can only be passed through reconciliation (which is why they are expiring). Without a commensurate reduction in spending. There was no reason for these tax cuts other than to "starve the government" as Grover Norquist has said. They inordinately went to those who did not need it, and did not spend it. Did I forget to mention that we were also fighting 2 wars? There was NO economic reason for these tax cuts. In fact they were one of the primary causes of the real estate bubble, along with keeping interest rates artificially low. Anyone who did not follow the herd could see that we were headed for a disaster. I even bought some gold in 2005 as a hedge. Now, at the end of Bush's term, the economy starting crashing. Bush started the TARP spending and bailouts, which was the correct thing to do. Obama continued this course. Why he should get the blame for not fixing a problem in 2 years, that developed over the previous 8 years, is simply politics. I shouldn't have to explicitly state this, but Bush incurred unnecessary debt when the economy did not need help. Obama is incurring debt because the private sector and public are unwilling or unable to spend, forcing the govt to be the spender of last resort. History, economics and common sense tell us that without this spending, the economy spirals downward. If you don't get it, pick up an economics book instead of buying tired Republican talking points.

  69. Anonymous says:

    Ted, that's an impressive amount of verbiage to avoid answering the question.

    The question was how "debt" incurred in the past affects our economy today, a claim that you made.

    Debt is just a word. The existence of debt, by itself, isn't bad. The bad thing is what debt can make us do, the way it influences our behavior, which is to pay it off by taking money from somewhere else (higher taxes or reduced spending) that we otherwise wouldn't.

    However, you have long claimed that Bush not only lowered taxes but also increased spending (thereby incurring this debt) and, therefore, debt didn't influence behavior. As a result, Bush's debt is just a concept sitting out there in Theoreticalville. Having a National Debt is like having a National Archives unless and until that debt forces our hand in some way, which you've clearly stated it didn't.

    In fact, the Keynesian in you should be thrilled that Bush continued to spend. And the supply- siders should appreciate that he lowered taxes. That should have given the economy a double shot in the arm, right?

    Now, next question: How the hell did Bush's tax cuts in 2003 cause the housing bubble to burst (in 2008.)

  70. TedK says:

    The question was how "debt" incurred in the past affects our economy today, a claim that you made. Simple. The more debt incurred, the higher the interest payments. Currently the govt pays out over $1 billion a day. It also limits our ability to borrow more if necessary and/or start new programs, and crowds out private borrowers from the credit markets (though most corporations don't need to borrow for investments as they are instead becoming more profitable by forcing existing employees to be more productive). If/when the economy improves, an increase in debt will also push interest rates, and interest expense, higher. So instead of the people deciding which programs the govt should provide, high debt eventually limits govt options. Well played Republicans! Instead of letting the people decide, you force the decision to limit government by doubling our national debt during Bush's term when it wasn't necessary. (First time tax cuts, not increases, occurred during a war.) As to the tax cuts having a part in forming the housing bubble, these cuts put a lot of money into the economy that was invested in real estate speculation, not productive industries. Artificially low interest rates added gasoline to the fire. Keynesian economics works if the the money is invested in infrastructure, as much of Obama's stimulus is directed toward. Giving tax cuts to provide gambling money doesn't.

  71. Anonymous says:

    Ted, blaming Bush's tax cuts for the bursting of the housing bubble is unmitigated sophistry. Your connection of the two things is so tenuous as to be non-existent.

    What caused the housing bubble to burst is what created the housing bubble to begin with. And that wasn't rich people investing in real estate; it was the government forcing banks to loan money to folks who were not worthy credit risks. No matter that they were unemployed or had high debt-to-income ratios. The government said, "you MUST!"

    This was goverment artificially creating demand, which drove the price of real estate up across the real estate spectrum. When all those bad credit risks started defaulting and just walking away from mortgages they couldn't afford (when the fixed rate converted into an ARM), suddenly tons of real estate was dumped on the market. And the bubble that had been created as an unintended consequence of ill-conceived, albeit perhaps well-intentioned government policies, popped.

    When the bubble burst, it left all these banks holding the bag with assets that were essentially worthless, a/k/a "toxic assets." Without TARP, the banks themselves would have been doomed and no one would have been able to obtain financing for any sort of economically beneficial activity.

    You're the first Democrat I've encountered who seems to realize there's a difference between TARP and the Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Stimulus). But TARP was intended to bail the banks out of TOXIC ASSETS — the worthless pieces of property left behind by the defaulted beneficiaries of Barney Frank's and Chris Dodd's goal of extending home ownership to those who couldn't afford it. It had nothing to do with wealthy people speculating in real estate.

    Remember Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were at the center of the implosion of the housing market. And they didn't exactly cater to wealthy real estate speculators. So, sorry, but blamiing Bush tax cuts for bursting the housing bubble can only be described as an epic fail.

  72. TedK says:

    10:01, you said: What caused the housing bubble to burst is what created the housing bubble to begin with. And that wasn't rich people investing in real estate; it was the government forcing banks to loan money to folks who were not worthy credit risks. Your credibility score dropped into the negative range based on this statement. I'm sure that you are referring to the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 passed under the Carter administration. It required banks to make loans in areas that they take deposits, including low income areas. Note that it doesn't require that they change standards for loans. They just can't redline off an entire area. Now in Rush's and the Faux News universe, this is somehow passed off as a major cause of the housing bubble. But if one looks closer, you'll find this charge ludicrous. First, most subprime loans were made by firms not subject to CRA. And Fannie and Freddie were under intense Congressional pressure during the mid 2000s when housing inflation was at its max, so their share of loans had been declining. Despite popular assumptions, studies have shown that more defaults occur with those with higher incomes, especially if one looks at value, not number. I have some nice graphs that I'd like to link to, but you know the rules. So instead of blindly accepting Republican talking points, please use the Google to review more credible sources. It's really quite easy these days.

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