Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Mystery of Benghazi

When Willard Romney began hammering Obama over alleged confusion regarding the Benghazi attacks,  I thought this was just another campaign tactic. If the State Department had miscalculated the danger or neglected the security of a consulate in a dangerous part of the world, then of course Obama should eventually fess up and admit that mistakes were made. Meanwhile, Obama seemed correct in vowing to investigate and pushing back on Romney for distorting the tragic event for political gain.

Recently, more information has surfaced regarding the attack, in the form of bits and pieces of unsubstantiated reports and rumors. Nevertheless, bits and pieces of rumors is often all we have to work with if we don't trust corporate news media to do an accurate and thorough job of investigating. And of course, it's a given that the government would be holding back on the full truth, and various agencies within the government may not even be on the same page. Thinking people simply have to work hard connecting the dots and piecing the true picture together.

Two conflicting stories have surfaced regarding the Benghazi attack: One alleges that Obama had been planning an "October surprise" by allowing an abduction of Ambassador Christopher Stevens to be staged, followed by a "miraculous" rescue by Navy Seals. 

The other story sounds a bit more plausible, wherein Stevens was in Benghazi to direct the flow of arms to Al Qaeda fighters operating in Syria. The attack was allegedly by Iranian special forces commandos. Iran would have sufficient motive given that economic sanctions are a virtual act of war against them, and the US intervention in Syria is widely seen as a step along the path leading to all-out attack on Iran.

There are several reasons to expect that details of the attack would be shrouded in murky haze; For one, the US does not openly admit to the training and hiring of Al Qaeda terrorists, despite heavy reliance on them for toppling Gaddafi, and now employing them as a proxy army in Syria. We are still operating under the official fiction that Al Qaeda is a terrorist organization that sponsored the 9/11 attacks in the US, and that they are an enemy that justifies the costly "war on terror".

It's also clear that the US would not want a spotlight directed on the intervention in Syria; the official line is that "freedom fighters" rose up spontaneously against the Assad regime, while the reality is that the bloody mess is largely due to foreign instigation. Syria is that last major ally remaining for Iran, and is probably the primary reason that Iran has not yet been attacked by the US or Israel. Given the incessant beating of war drums against Iran, the geopolitical reasons for US intervention in Syria are clearly discernible.

Another tidbit that seems to come from multiple sources suggests that a faction of the CIA has gone rogue and is operating at odds with administration policy. One extreme version suggests that Romney's people have links with the rogue CIA faction, and that the CIA may have played a role in setting up the ambassador's murder to embarrass Obama.

I'm skeptical of the more extreme rumors, but unfortunately there are powerful forces behind concealing the truth. Recent history in Libya should also be kept in mind: The US and NATO employed Al Qaeda mercenaries to attack Libya and remove a relatively progressive and stable regime. Libya has been pushed back to the 12th century dark ages, thanks to our tax dollars at work. The nation has been split into two power centers with much instability. It's fair to ask questions about just what Ambassador Steven's assignment was in Benghazi. Word has it that he worked for the CIA for many years as specialist on Iran.

Also, it's customary for embassies to rely on the host country for security. Marines are stationed for symbolic reasons, but no one expects them to defend against a determined assault. On this point, Romney sounds particularly silly for suggesting that Obama should have rushed in reinforcements.

I seriously doubt that Romney knows anything of the dark intrigue in Benghazi, and Obama may not be so much in the loop either. For them, Benghazi was just a flash point in a nasty election campaign. The American people have good reason to ask more questions, particularly as this ties in to the prospect for expanded war in the Middle East.


Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Designated Loser...Revisited

A few weeks ago, Romney's campaign seemed to be spiraling hopelessly downward. Then came The Debate in which Obama was caught napping. Seemed as if another switch was thrown somewhere, and Romney came surging back. Despite stronger performances by Biden and Obama in subsequent debates, the race remains quite close.

Since much of what we take for reality is projected and controlled by others, it's difficult to get a grip on what's really going on. This much seems clear: the two-party partisan battle is but a ruse. If Romney wins, nothing much will change, just as very little changed from Bush to Obama. The designated loser is really the voting citizen, who is in delusion that voting actually makes a difference.

I suspect that many voters are planning to vote against either Romney or Obama rather than vote for their preferred choice. Such is the nasty scenario that the PTB have shoved in our faces - vote for Dickhead #1 or #2. Sure, we can vote for the perceived lesser evil, but it's still voting for evil. I'm tempted to vote for a minor party such as Green, as this is the only way to register a "none of the above" selection.

My concern is that the partisan ruse fuels cynicism. If Romney convinces enough voters that he has answers to the intractable problems that face the nation, this sets the table for a huge disappointment. Likewise, Obama voters are already disappointed in wake of the last election, but fear Romney will take us down a much worse path. In truth, as I said, little will change either way.

The PTB have created the problems of massive debt and imploding economy. Of course Romney's proposals are laughable, but in reality, what can be done? Debt of this magnitude can only be dealt with through massive inflation or complete collapse of the system. Either way, it will eventually become clear that massive wealth has been removed from the working class. This has been nothing short of a huge shake-down; the pump-'n'-dump tactics like the housing bubble have been used by somebody to redistribute an enormous amount of wealth. According to such luminaries as Catherine Austin Fitts, the wealth was moved offshore, into the hands of corporate barons and globalist banksters. They never plan to return it and invest in the economy, so any politician that talks about a "plan for recovery" is either lying or completely out of touch with reality.

So what will people do if they one day wake up and discover that they have been robbed? I shudder to think of the possibilities. The cynicism and divisions are already there. I do predict that at that point, tax cuts for the rich will no longer be a popular notion. Indeed, the day is approaching when it may be unsafe to be identified as part of the wealthy 1% class.

Of more immediate concern should be warmongering in Iran and Syria. It appears that the PTB are determined to attack Iran, and this could quickly spiral out of control with nuclear exchanges. Also, rumor has it that a lame-duck session of congress will pass budgetary measures that have already been secretly agreed to. The PTB fix will be in place regardless of who gets elected in November. Look for sneaky attempts to attach unrelated bills to the legislation - could be in for a nasty time!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Man who Would be President

If consuming ambition disqualifies a presidential candidate, none would be left standing. And lying is something that comes with the politician's trade. All that aside, there is still something remarkably troubling about Romney's candidacy.

Having served as governor of the state that gave us Ted Kennedy and Michael Dukakis, Romney faced a difficult challenge in reinventing himself as a true conservative. His moderate image would have served him well in the Republican party of a generation ago. In the lunatic fringe asylum that passes as the modern-day Republican party, however, moderates are an extinct species.

Somehow, he managed to secure the nomination despite the extremist's misgivings about him. It took two tries and naked manipulation by the PTB, as they paraded a series of "flavor of the month" loony tune primary candidates to divide and distract the Tea Party extremists. It also took repudiation of many positions he had once espoused.

Hearing Romney try on a tough-talking rant during the primaries, it came across as anything but authentic. Watching him attempt to transform back to moderate in the final stretch is almost nauseating. And then he makes an amazing discovery: Bold-faced lying really works!

As I've said many times, Obama is no saint, and the Democratic ticket is only marginally better than the Republicans - but the margin is large enough to easily secure my vote.

Here is my take on a few of the cliches and issues raised during the debates:

"The middle class is being crushed under Obama".  OK, Mr. Elite, what would you know about the plight of the middle class? It's been a long-term socio-economic trend that the rich become richer and the poor become poorer, while the middle class have shifted downward a notch in the strata. The trend has continued for several decades; sociologists and economists have written books about it. Obama's numbers didn't get helped by the worst recession in modern history. And you're going to reverse this

"Obama believes in trickle-down government"  Oh, give it a rest, would you? You think jacking the phrase that Dems used against Reagan's tax cut philosophy will get you somewhere? And if Obama is to be faulted for not bringing down unemployment enough, then how is Romney going to change anything except through the same means - being in charge of the government?

"I will create 12 million new jobs"  The president has very little control over the economy and employment. Romney's centerpiece proposal is to cut taxes, something that has not worked well in the past. If unemployment had dropped under 6%, Obama would be a national hero, despite the fact that he simply would have been lucky. Romney's empty promise could become his legacy if the economy downturns again.

"I will balance the budget" The math just doesn't add up. Cut taxes 20%, and then make it up by eliminating deductions? Gee, good luck with that. Every time congress tries to simplify the tax code by eliminating deductions, the affected interest groups push back. Last year Republicans killed every attempt to curtail deductions that favor the rich, insisting that it violated their sacred Grover Norquist no-tax pledge. Even so, the math still doesn't work unless middle-class deductions are included. And all that just to get back the 20% in additional tax cuts - Romney doesn't mention how to get additional revenue to close the current deficit. Oh, did I mention that he also wants to increase defense spending by a couple of trillion?

"I will repeal Obamacare" This one really puzzles me. How can Romney run away from his own health care model in Massachusetts? What would his replacement for Obamacare look like? Since the same health care lobbyists that wrote Obamacare would still be around to write a RomneyCare bill, chances are only cosmetic changes would result. Unless his elitist impulses win out, in which case he might simply say "If you can't afford insurance, too bad. You're part of the 47% useless eaters".

One of the biggest problems with Romney, in my opinion, is that we just don't know what he really believes in. Candidates all make promises and then evolve as conditions warrant once they are in office. Perhaps by then none have any scruples left, so then it becomes a question of who controls them. Sometimes following the money trail sheds light on that, so you at least have some idea of what to expect.

Who controls Romney? The mystical elders in the Mormon church? He's not a typical political insider, although he's surrounded himself with requisite Neocons and certainly kissed enough insider ass. All we know about him are his intense ambition and his ability to change colors like a chameleon. What we don't know is what kind of deal he made with the devil or who that devil might be. If he gets elected, we are sure to find out eventually.

Granted, a similar question could be raised as to who controls Obama. For a community organizer to rise to junior senator and then president in such short order, powerful forces must be at work behind the scene. Which devil is Obama dealing with?

Here's the real irony: What if Romney's and Obama's devil are one and the same? What if they both work for the same boss? Whoever the boss is, he must be laughing at the pretend drama in the campaign and debates. Bwahahahaha!


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Choosing The Lesser of Evils

It's been fascinating to observe that many Christians are lining up solidly behind Romney for president. Given the fact that he's a Mormon is not easy to overlook, since many Christians still regard this as a heretical "cult". Then there's the fact that Romney has adopted lying as a primary campaign tactic. Oops, what does the Good Book have to say about that? Do the ends justify the means if lying gets him elected and then works to outlaw abortion? Hmmm...

Of course, evaluating candidates on moral issues is aways a tricky affair. Much hinges upon a person's prevailing worldview. For some, abortion is the ultimate evil, and they will automatically pivot toward anyone that identifies with the "Pro-Life" label.

Other Christians may recall that the only time Jesus really lost his cool was when he drove the evil Banksters out from the temple. No similar scene is recorded of him castigating homosexuals, or condemning socialist economic policies. In fact, some of his pronouncements regarding the poor could be construed as socialist-leaning.

The Christian spectrum spans from Neo-Nazi to Liberation Theology, so that takes in a lot of political territory. Thus it's understandable that both candidates get demonized by one side of the spectrum or the other.

I have bad news for anyone that thinks their candidate is "good" and the other one is "evil": Both parties are corrupt and irretrievably evil. Our entire political system is evil, and has been taken over and dominated by an evil force for some time. Perhaps it has been that way since the founding of the Republic. This is simply the way things are in the world.

Here's how it works: We go through the motions of an electoral process to choose our leaders. This way we can remain attached to the delusion that we are a self-governing democracy. However, the Powers-That-Be (PTB) control both major parties. They don't care if you hate the Republican Bum and vote instead for the Democratic Bum. The PTB controls journalists and corporate media, and even the judiciary. Any candidate that decides to speak truthfully and independently is not given a chance.

The conspiracy is very subtle. Journalists can only rise to key positions in corporate media if they subscribe to the prevailing worldview of the PTB. Stories that stray into undesirable areas get killed with a phone call to an editor. I have seen many examples that document and illustrate this. This is why the mainstream media never reports on controversial subjects like who owns the Federal Reserve, what government agency is behind spraying Chemtrails, or the fascinating proliferation of crop circles. These subjects are strictly verboten except in the fringe or alternative media. The alternatives can print what they want, but the PTB deals with them in a different manner.

Since the corporate media cannot even acknowledge that certain issues exist, politicians certainly cannot address them. It's widely known and understood that you must adopt the expected official line or else you cannot participate in the political system. It's thoroughly accepted that some unknown power center guides these things.

This is why John Kerry could not accuse President Bush of lying about the 9/11 attacks. Think about it...if the evidence could have been presented by the president's opponent in 2004, that the 9/11 attacks were contrived to get the nation lined up behind invading Iraq and Afghanistan, not only would Bush not have stood a chance of being reelected, but he and Cheney would likely still be serving time in prison. But this does not happen, and cannot happen. If Kerry had tried such a brash move, he would have been swiftly dealt with. An "accident", or perhaps sudden "psychiatric illness" would have quickly taken him out of operation. The facts are all problem with that. But facts don't matter if they conflict with the prevailing implausible myth concerning 19 hapless Arabs.

Or conversely, when the Obama administration claimed to have killed Bin Laden, and basked in the glory of it, Romney could have presented convincing evidence that Bin Laden had been killed years earlier, or had died in a cave of kidney failure (There were actually multiple Bin Ladens). The available facts would have backed him up, but no such chance that would happen.

So the result is, we get lied to and everyone on the inside accepts this. Politicians are only allowed to attack each other on marginal issues. Even when they promise they will change things, nothing changes. This is the most damning piece of evidence for this thesis, that so little changes between administrations. It's clear that someone is in control; we just don't know who it is. It wasn't Bush, and certainly not Obama, since very little changed despite vast rhetorical differences.

Before making serious runs for the presidency, Ron Paul was sympathetic to the 9/11 Truth movement. Presumably he was made to understand that this would not be tolerated in a national forum, because he dropped mention of it. What he had to say in the 2012 Republican debates was radical enough, with his questioning of military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was the only candidate in either party to take an anti-war position, but the corporate media ensured that Paul's message was ignored or ridiculed.

So what choices do the voters have in the 2012 election? Vote for more war, or vote for more war. Vote for more debt, or vote for more debt. Whether there is a robust economic recovery or another recession is probably out of the hands of the next White House occupant. Romney claims "the middle class is being crushed" but the decision to do this was not made in the White House, nor by any elected official, and no president can do anything about it.

I choose to vote for Obama because (a) Romney's lying is blatant and disgusting, going beyond the "normal" level of deceit by a politician, and (b) because the Democratic party tends to take marginally better care of the poor and working class. The Republicans will attempt to gut labor unions with "right to work" legislation and roll back help for the poor. I'm under no illusions that Obama will ever do anything meaningful to challenge the power of Wall Street and the Bankster cartel, but the rhetoric of standing firm against further tax breaks for the rich at least feels better.

For anyone that feels convinced that Romney would truly make a difference for the better, I pity that. Disappointment is sure to follow. Likewise Obama supporters had best not harbor hopes that their guy will improve things. Maybe stave off disaster a bit longer than Romney; that's my hope.

On the other hand, we are all victims of a corrupt system that limits our choices. What ardent Christian conservative would not rather have Rick Santorum or even the faux-pious Rick Perry on the ballot in November? What progressive wouldn't wish to see their side represented by the likes of Bernie Sanders or Dennis Kucinich?

For this reason, I offer a bit of empathy and respect to my right-wing Christian friends. The way the system is rigged, we are all so screwed. We are all in this together.


Friday, October 12, 2012

Pants on Fire!

It's a given that all politicians lie. They really have no choice, given the corrupt nature of the system. There are lies within lies, and lies based on entire premises and frameworks being false.

For example, some commonly accepted lies are de rigueur for any public figure, such as the pervasive myth that 19 hapless Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks. Within that false framework, Joe Biden was telling the "truth" during Thursday night's debate when mentioning that "Obama got Bin Laden". Paul Ryan didn't dispute that point - but could have, and would have been correct to do so. The implausibility of the claim that Bin Laden was captured and killed is enormous, given the many reports of his death years earlier. Dumping the body at sea, and taking no steps to prove identity almost begs a challenge. But, this sort of truthful thinking is strictly forbidden for any candidate above the level of county dog catcher. No point in even going there.

So if the entire framework in which the two VP candidates squared off is based on lies and deception, why even bother to pick particularly on Ryan's whopper list?

It's because Romney & Ryan have raised falsehood to a new level, and appear to have designed their campaign strategy around it. This is cynicism that must have Karl Rove smiling in admiration. And the worst part about it is that it seems to be working.

Prior to the first presidential debate, pundits were talking about the Republican ticket sinking into the mud, and Romney's managers were said to be in panic. Romney went into the first debate with a strategy of lying blatantly, repeatedly and overwhelmingly. The lies were so thick that it apparently caught Obama off guard, and he struggled. Viewers thought Romney looked "presidential" as he confidently spun through one yarn after another. Result: Overwhelming perception that Romney struck a knockout blow. Overnight, the polling trends reversed and now it's said that Obama's campaign is in panic mode.

We still have more debates on the schedule, and one would think that Obama will make adjustments in his game plan to counter the lying blitz.

Perhaps the lying campaign strategy will backfire at some point, because hopefully voters aren't completely brain dead and don't really wish to be lied to so openly.

However, if Romney succeeds by abusing the truth, and ultimately takes office, it raises some interesting questions about this country. Does it mean voters are saying "lie to me as long as it feels good"? Do we wish to believe in generous tax cuts for all leading to a balanced budget? That tax cuts for the rich will create jobs? That Obama is a failure at job creation despite the Republicans stonewalling nearly every measure that he proposed? That Obamacare sucks, even though Romney invented the model in Massachusetts?

The price of Romney's possible victory in this manner could be steep. Overloaded with cynicism, the American people will not cut the new administration any slack. When the economy tips in recession once again, and any of a number of pending crises explode, an enormous rage could ignite. Unemployment will rise, and debt will balloon once again. Of course, this could happen with either party in power, but Romney's promised actions threaten to bring us to the brink that much sooner.

Then again, Romney could return to the pragmatic moderate he once appeared to be. The only rage to be heard would then be coming from the Tea Party extremists and right-wing lunatics that took over the Republican party. Business leaders and economists would sigh with relief, and life would go on without much change from the Obama years.

There is a sense of a wild card in the air. Could be an "October Surprise" in the works. Could be Romney's flip-flops will catch up, as Biden put it in the debate, "I'm not sure what Romney's position is at the moment, he changes it so frequently". I had thought Romney was the designated loser, and this could still be the case. Is the lying simply an experiment by the PTB in how gullible the populace is?

The way this election plays out will be fascinating to watch. If the voters choose to buy snake oil from Romney, it's a sad day, but perhaps another sign that the corrupt system is collapsing in on itself. Obama is open for legitimate criticism on many issues, but most economists credit the stimulus plan with staving off complete economic collapse. One truth very few seem to recognize is that the president really doesn't have much control over unemployment.

One more thing: It's rumored that plans are being laid for a lame-duck session of Congress to meet in December and pass a massive tax and spending measure to head off the "fiscal cliff" due to hit in January. Could be that the basics are already negotiated and agreed to, meaning that the entire election-season debate on these issues has been meaningless. Rendered particularly meaningless will be which party wins the presidential election. Oh well. The fix is in.


Friday, October 5, 2012

And Winner of the First Round is....

The first debate: I can't add much to the verbiage already written on how Romney came ready to shed blood while Obama looked like he wished the NBA season would soon start. Clearly Obama had the most to lose and Romney capitalized on his underdog status.

I would be thoroughly surprised if Obama doesn't recover and really go for the jugular in the next debate. It's no secret that he has mastered NLP techniques and can be a truly eloquent and convincing speaker. Romney has exposed himself to counterattack on several key issues, and if Obama doesn't pick at the ripe fruit dangling in front of him then he doesn't deserve another term.

If Romney were elected, it wouldn't be the end of the world (that particular event is scheduled for a later date regardless of who is president). In the many ways that it has been difficult to distinguish Obama's policies from Bush's, the same would hold true if we flip back to a Republican regime. Given his obvious attempt in the debate to migrate back to the moderate Republican that he once was, this is a clear signal that very little would change under a Romney presidency.

Romney's bigger problem is the rage and betrayal that the Republican right wing would feel if he were elected. It's all good to blame Obama for every problem now, but when the same problems and same policies persist under a Romney regime, who will be the target of angst?

Obama should press the Mittster to fill in some of the blanks on his deficit cutting plan. How to maintain military spending and cut taxes without gutting programs that many depend on? Oh sure, now he says the tax cuts will be "revenue neutral"; let's spell out in advance just which tax deductions and perks will be eliminated. In the past, this sort of approach has never flown in congress. Powerful interests stand ready to defend their specific tax perks. Also, recall how just a few months ago, the Republican congressional leadership refused to sign on to elimination of deductions for corporate jets - they called it a "tax increase". Mr. Romney, it's time to 'splain just how you would do this.

Normally, I would not be so open in my bias toward the Dems. However, given the foam-at-the-mouth extreme rightwing lunacy that has overtaken the Republican party, it's frightening to imagine how the landscape could change without a Democrat in the White House to block their draconian impulses. For the first time in many decades, a serious attempt is being made to pass a national "right to work" bill that would gut the labor movement. Elimination of unemployment and food stamps would be next. An entire generation's progress on many humanitarian issues could be rolled back. If this happened to coincide with another economic downturn, serious civil unrest would result.

If all this political fighting is turning you off, here is an alternative to take your mind off it. All the blood and guts, and none of the boring pedantic politics!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Designated Loser

I'm sure the awareness has not caught up with him yet, but it's becoming painfully obvious that Romney has been set up as the designated loser in the 2012 election. Playing from the same script that resurrected John McCain from certain death in the polls during the 2008 primaries and propelled him into the nomination, Romney appears to be treading the same path.

McCain's choice of Sara Palin helped seal his demise, but was this simply an ill-considered, hastily conceived gaffe? A story surfaced at the time that a web site name had been reserved several months previously that incorporated "McCain/Palin", long before McCain's nomination had been secured. This suggests a high level of guidance for these events from unknown hands.

Whatever motivated McCain's quest, Romney appears to be driven by strictly personal ambition. To succeed in his quest for the nomination, he had to abandon whatever shards of principle he might have once possessed. He managed to sufficiently overcome his image as a moderate to placate the misgivings of the rightwing extremists in his party. Conspiracy theorists were skeptical that the PTB would ever accept a candidate such as Romney, who might not have the necessary moral weaknesses that allow complete control over other politicians. Now it appears that he has what it takes to pose as the Designated Loser.

The theory, of course, is that the PTB have perfected total control over our erstwhile democratic process, while still permitting the illusion that leaders are chosen by the voters. For whatever reason, Obama is their guy at the moment. He was handled from an early age in preparation for his rise to power. His rapid ascension from community organizer to first-term junior senator to President took place in just a few short years, a very implausible feat without help from powerful sources.

The PTB have decreed that Obama serve a second term, but he needs a credible yet defeatable opponent. The nation is deeply but evenly divided along partisan lines, so a charismatic Republican candidate could conceivably turn the tide and defeat the incumbent. To ensure this did not happen, the PTB carefully manipulated the Republican primary process by promoting a succession of looney-tunes candidates such as Michelle Bachmann, Herman Cain, Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich. This tactic successfully distracted and divided Tea Party extremists and kept the field in play long enough for Romney to slog through to the finish.

Interestingly, no Republican of notable stature and credibility stepped forward into the obvious vacuum. That fact alone would argue convincingly in favor of conspiratorial explanations.

Once he had secured the nomination, Romney began spinning into gaffe after gaffe. His choice of Paul Ryan as running mate looks like a boneheaded move that may not even manage to carry Wisconsin. Many Republicans now speak as if the cause has already been lost.

Is Romney really such a bonehead? It doesn't seem likely, given his past accomplishments. He probably is every bit the heartless aristocrat as he is being portrayed, but smart politicians spin a smooth image that has public appeal. Why that hasn't been done in this case is the open question. The "secret video" of Romney's callous remarks during an elite fundraiser may not have been an accident, and it seems hard to believe such a thing could surface with perfect timing without powerful help.

As often stated in this blog, it makes little difference which party is in power because the real power is behind the scenes. Every president is assigned a handler and is briefed regularly on what is expected of them. They learn how to follow orders...or else. Romney has surrounded himself with Trilateralists, CFR members and Bilderberger attendees. Although he's an outsider, he apparently realizes how insiders run things and is willing to cut his deal with the Devil.

Nevertheless, the men behind the curtain appear to have decided that Obama is their preferred puppet, so that seems the likely result. The faux partisan debate is meaningless, since the real problems cannot be openly discussed. Republicans call Obama a socialist and claim his policies are bent on "destroying America", but that horse left the barn a long time ago - and probably under a Republican administration.

As meaningless as it might be, my bias favors Democratic party positions on issues that affect the working class. I'll probably enjoy the presidential debates, as Obama the skilled orator takes on the gaffe-prone Romney. Would be entertaining to see a knife get stuck into the premise that the values of a wealthy elitist could possibly be in the interest of the working class. Just remember that at the end of the day, none of it really matters.