60 thoughts on “Tim Pawlenty: Seeking Sweet Schadenfreude.

  1. Becky says:

    The blog needs a “like” button similar to Facebook. Today it needs an über-like button. Bravo.

  2. Mike Kennedy says:

    I was wondering when you were going to exhale, again. Another enjoyable whirlwind of a verbal tornado.

    I agree with you on Tim P.’s chances — not much. There are some real lurkers for the mantle of chief in the Republican Party — Marco Rubio, Paul Ryan, John Thune and others. Romney is a drip, too.

    Here are some stats, but I confess they aren’t from Sean Hannity. They are just the historical record.

    *Across-the-board tax rate reductions in the 1920s reduced the top rate from 71 percent to 24 percent. The economy grew by 59 percent between 1921 and 1929.

    *In 1930, Herbert Hoover raised tax rates from 25 percent to a maximum of 63 percent. Roosevelt boosted them to 79 percent. Then there was Fed policy. I think the evidence points to the 1930s as generally sucking to put it mildly.

    * Across-the-board tax rate cuts by JFK reduced the top rate from 91 percent to 70 percent. These lower rates, along with substantially lower taxes on savings and investment, are associated with a boon in the mid 60s.

    * The LBJ taxes in 1968 — along with infamous guns and butter spending policy led to — well the early 70s were no picnic, with inflation and the dreaded bracket creep (subjecting taxpayers to higher rates even though their real incomes had not changed). The whole decade was represented by stagflation and a misery index.

    * Reagan’s across-the-board tax cuts helped create 20 million new jobs and sensible Fed policies strangled inflation in its bed.

    Yes, Clinton did raise taxes, but not by a whole lot, not nearly to the Draconian levels they had been in some periods. And he raised them at the start of an economic boom, while monetary policy was properly manged. He certainly didn’t do it with nearly 10 percent unemployment.

    Mr. Spitzer should stick to law.

    1. You missed a beat, namely, the year 1929.

      The 1930s didn’t suck because Hoover increased taxes in the 1930s. They sucked because the economy crashed in 1929, revealing the growth you find so exciting that took place between 1921 and 1928 to have been nothing more than a bubble.

      One other historical fact: The economy grew 58% from 1932 to 1940, only unlike the “growth” that took place in the 1920s, it didn’t lead to an implosion afterward.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:

        Well, you have a point that the 1930s didn’t suck ONLY because of tax increases. There were a variety of reasons including the idiotic Smoot-Hawley tariff and mismanagement of the money supply.

        Real per capita GDP was near zero from 1929 to 1939. In fact, GDP growth was 1.0 per annum, while population growth was .7 percent per annum.

        Besides, record high home foreclosures, record high unemployment, record fall in the stock market and record bank closings — I’d say there wasn’t much good about the 1930s.

        We disagree on the 1920s. As Richard Vedder and Lowell Gallaway wrote of the 1920s, “Virtually all the measures of economic well being suggested the economy had reached new heights in terms of prosperity and the achievement of improvements in human welfare. Real gross national product increased each year, consumer prices were stable, real wages rose as a consequence of productivity advances, stock prices tripled……………”

      2. A reply to Mike’s post:

        I presume your deception is deliberate. Otherwise you’d have chosen a period other than 1929 to 1939 to buttress your claims. Yes, of course – the economy plummeted from 1929 through 1932. From that point on it grew substantially every year except one (the year the deficit hawks gained control, interestingly enough).

        BTW: In your utopian 1920s, 71% of all families lived below the poverty line.

      3. Mike Kennedy says:

        Bob:

        No, unlike you, I’m not cherry picking. I’m using data from an entire decade, no matter who was president. I’m saying both parties f…..up and so did the Fed. You seem to be arguing that FDR saved the country because GDP grew.

        Well, GDP growth is only good if people actually have jobs and can buy things, which they didn’t in the 1930s. Again, record business failures, homes lost and unemployment. But hey, GDP grew; so the policies must have worked.

      4. Mike Kennedy says:

        Oh, and Bob. A measurement for the poverty rate didn’t exist at the time but using unofficial measurements poverty was regularly over 50 percent for most of the late 19th century and early into the 20th century.

        The poverty that existed in the 1920s existed mainly in rural areas, where electrification hadn’t taken hold, as it had in the cities. Appliances, automobiles and mobility all made life easier and richer (no, not for everyone, but that is never the case –yes, there was inequality).

        Some economists estimate the poverty rate was one third in the 1920s and it makes a difference whether it is relative poverty or absolute. Are you arguing that increased production, better mobility with roads and automobiles and the use of electricity and appliances, along with the nation’s first small shopping malls were all part of a bubble?

      5. Why do I let myself get sucked into these things …

        You don’t cherry pick, I do, and your evidence is that you construct a decade lasting from 1929 to 1939. The only possible reason I can imagine for your doing so is that particular range of years conveniently masks the key fact: GDP growth resumed in 1933 after falling for three consecutive years.

        Part of a bubble, you ask? I figure that when all of the GDP gains of the 1920s vanished following the crash, it isn’t unreasonable to conclude they were, at least in part, based on imaginary wealth.

      6. Mike Kennedy says:

        OK. Let me attempt to simplify this. My point was that the policies failed from 1929 to 1939. I picked 1929 because that’s when it is widely considered the Great Depression started.

        Google the Great Depression of 1929. Funny how it often crops up as 1929-1939. Get it now? It’s a point of reference used by many.

        The only point I think you make about a bubble that’s valid is that the level of the stock market may have been a bubble, and most economists would be hard pressed to argue that a bubble bursting in the stock market caused the greatest depression in the history of the country.

        Growth in the 1920s hardly was the cause of the Great Depression but if that’s your view, good for you.

  3. 108 says:

    That’s good. Adults who seek schadenfreude look stupid. When you desired show trials, that was stupid. When you desired a Ukrainian like impoverishment that would give the populace a reality check…that was stupid.

    And you’re right. Pawlenty will not suffer, but probably will not be President. I very much expect he’ll be a cabinet member of the next administration though.

    I like what I see as an empathetic tone in this column, and I think most of what you said was worth saying. But…

    For a scribe who plays the sardonic, cynical misanthrope well, your Pollyanna attitudes about government and Democrats is very undermining.

    I think your narrative on corporations and the Wall Street casino is accurate and compelling. The thing is most of us are not out here trying to determine what’s the best conspiracy theory to embrace. Contemporary government is a patronage scheme, and it’s almost completely capricious in its actions. The problems we encounter in the mercantile do not make government look better by comparison.

    1. I do remember writing about “show trials” — I believe in the context of the importance of a final reckoning on the multiple Cheney-Bush malfeasances … like for example excessive-to-gross coziness with the oil industry and lax-to-non-existent oversight of safety procedures, (to cite only one of hundreds). Some network should stage such a “trial”. Invite in — and pay the best legal experts from either side and have at it. It may not topple “The Biggest Loser” as a ratings juggernaut, but it’d be damned good TV.

      i don’t however remember encouraging the idea of “Ukrainian-like impoverishment.” You’ll remind me, I’m sure.

      Next, this may shock you, but I don’t regard myself as a “cynical misanthrope”. I’m virulently opposed to cynicism. What I am is a skeptic, often about public players who accuse others of cynicism to deflect attention from their mercenary, self-serving scams.

      Finally, I’m always dismayed by someone’s treadworn assertion that they are not into “conspiracy theories”. By which I assume they mean to suggest that they are far too rational to imagine one group of people organizing in an effort to destroy or diminish another group of people, as though Eliot Spitzer’s fantastically well-heeled Wall St. enemies “guiding” investigators to his hooker problem is as preposterous a fantasy as Elvis returning in a UFO.

      The line “I’m not into conspiracy theories”, is a uniquely American view, I think. Part of our sense of exceptionalism. Conspiracies have raged through every culture since the beginning of recorded time. But here, hell, there are still “tough-minded: people who believe John Wilkes Booth acted alone.

  4. 108 says:

    Eliot Spitzer is not credible, and he’s wrong. He’s wrong because….he’s writing about lack of support for progressive taxation in a country where progressive taxation is the law.

    Now you’re going to say, but CEOs and hedge fund managers pay less in taxes than secretaries…

    This is a phenomena caused by carried interest / capital gains taxes and the cap on social security taxes. The purpose of the federal income tax is not to ameliorate statistical distortions caused by other taxes. We have a highly progressive income tax. It’s so progressive that a plurality of the population doesn’t even pay it.

    Spitzer’s references are bad. The 50’s -70’s were a high rate, high deduction environment. You are beholden to a widely accepted but ignorant assertion about the Reagan tax reforms. The fact is the code was far better after the reforms. The reforms took down the rates and took away superfluous deductions, which is an idea Obama has endorsed (FWIW).

    Conservatives are always for a good tax cut, sure, but I don’t have any sense people really expect to get one. The rhetoric for a cut isn’t very strong. The focus is to merely rebuff any increases. Opposition to tax increases is completely rationale in a world where the value of money is fictionalized, don’t you think?

    1. The middle class has received a tax cut, although many chose not to acknowledge it. The high end bracket is currently operating at one of its lowest rates in history while the amount of wealth controlled by that group has only rarely been more disproportionate. So how’s that “progressive thing working out for you?

      More to my point, when and why would you — someone is not a billionaire, I’m assuming — become so resistant to the idea of looking to the most wealthy to mitigate budget crises that stand to significantly diminish the quality of your life?

      Also, let’s not kid ourselves than any of the top tier actually pay anything close to their full share, even at current levels. That’s what the best tax accountants and the Cayman Islands are for.

  5. Bambi says:

    Eliot – give me a call darling. Let’s play cowboy and Indian again. xo xo xo, Bambi

  6. PM says:

    Brian:

    i have to take issue with one (minor) point, where you seem about to verge into some conspiracy theory la-la land: “Spitzer, a very smart guy, (other than his thing for hookers), who I strongly suspect was targeted by his very influential enemies,…”

    Come on! Every successful politician has influential enemies, and all of those enemies will always target those successful politicians. That is what politics is all about, and every politician goes into that line of work voluntarily, knowing that.

    Spitzer is disgraced because of the things that he did, not because some people went looking for stupid things that he might do. If there was a conspiracy, then we should applaud that conspiracy–because we know that Spitzer was not set up, not lured into a compromising situation, etc. This was all long term voluntary behavior on his part.

    And it was a good thing that he was caught, and it was an even better thing that a person with habits like his did not get into even higher office. Sure, embarrassment is bad, but blackmail is even worse, and someone with such poor judgment that he is willing to prosecute people for crimes that he is also committing should not be in political office anywhere.

    Yeah, he is intelligent, but he is not wise. Smart? I don’t think so.

    1. AndyG says:

      Spitzer is disgraced because of the things that he did, not because some people went looking for stupid things that he might do.

      Not exactly.

      He had a target on his back ever since he was AG in NY.

      1. Governor Spitzer did indeed have a target on his back, one he taped there himself. From the earliest days of his public career, he made a name for himself by holding people accountable to a higher standard than it turns out he was capable of achieving. The schadenfreude surrounding his downfall was palpable among those he had warred against over the years.

        – Austin

    2. Like Bill Clinton, Spitzer gave his worst enemies the reddest of meat with which to attack him. It was both reckless and stupid. All I’m saying is that I seriously doubt he went down via a routine prostitution sting.

      Having said that, Spitzer is still smart — very smart — about how Wall St. works. Good god, he clearly understood it better than Alan Greenspan, who was a media guru for years, right up to the moment he conceded he had no clue what a CDO was.

      Post-Hookergate, (now immunized from that blackmail), Spitzer should be wheeled back into the Justice dept. somewhere and put to work unwinding the casino.

      1. Mike Thomas says:

        How about wheel him into prison, like where he wanted all his enemies (any capitalist) to go. Some laws we should enforce and some laws we should not?

      2. Mike Thomas: Are you suggesting that “a thing for hookers” is somehow equivalent to financial piracy on the vast scale we’ve been seeing in the past couple years (and that Spitzer had been prosecuting prior to that?

        Which of those crimes most deserves prison time?

      3. Mike Thomas says:

        I am not saying that “hooking” deserves more prison than illegal financial crime, however I am thinking we can find someone “smarter” than New York’s former top attorney and temporary head of state who was involved in interstate prostitution.

  7. Tim Pawlenty has been as irresponsible and reckless in his own way as George W. Bush was during his two terms. The symptoms differed, the disease was the same: myopic rigidity.

    In the case of Mr. Bush, he subordinated everything to the “war on terrorism”. Mr. Pawlenty has done the same thing with his “no taxes” vow.

    Any politician who takes the “no new taxes” pledge, the “never cut benefits” pledge or any other simplistic litmus test championed by single-issue whack-jobs is self-evidently unfit for office because they have demonstrated they don’t understand its duties and responsibilities. The jobs are already nearly impossible without cutting off a limb or two.

    Yes, this covers the litmus tests on the right and the left. Our crazies are as bad as their crazies.

    – Austin

      1. OK, Glenn Beck is maybe the king crazy. That said, listening to Keith Olbermann is often quite painful. And, for the record, I thought pretty much everything on Air America – including our current junior senator – was awful as well.

        But, my real point was not so much about the bloviators of the media – the right has nearly cornered the market in that crop – as much as the special interests of the left and the right that judge every issue and candidate through the prism of their single issue. The “no taxes” crowd brays in much the same way that the immigration reformers barks, the gun nuts are as bad as the no-religion-anywhere-ever-in-any-context nuts, etc.

        Single-issue politics drive me crazy. We live in too complex, diverse, heterogeneous a society to allow politics to be reduced to a “solve for one variable” equation.

        200 years from now, when historians are combing through the wreckage of this era, I submit they’ll mark the passage of Proposition 13 in California as the beginning of the fall.

        – Austin

      2. Olbermann’s rhetoric over reaches a couple times every show. It is now his shtick, for better and for worse. Still, if we’re comparing batshit to batshit, we should factor in his interactions with his show’s regular contributors — people like Howard Fineman, Ezra Klein, Gene Robinson, etc.

        But hail to Herr Austin — for tapping into something I am in whole-hearted agreement with — namely that the “success” of Proposition 13 in California — Howard Jarvis’s brain child — is a signal moment for the anti-government hysterics.

        I doubt and Tea Partier will ever concede how much worse off that state is in the aftermath of that “I got mine” boondoggle.

  8. “But even then, how do you get to the point where government is the only immense, mercenary presence, and private industry, from privacy-invading credit card companies, currency-gaming hedge funds, commodities-jacking giant banks are not?”

    Simply put, it’s not that government is the *only* monstrosity on earth. It’s that I can’t choose to not do business with the government.

    1. Really? Are you in regular contact with VISA, “choosing” who they sell your private information to? Are you, by choice, immune to the manipulations of Goldman, Sachs? Or the effects of J.P. Morgan’s commodities trading? Who do I call to exempt myself from that stuff?

      1. Touche.

        But you know what? The point is, I *can* tell Visa to not sell my information to anyone, or I can choose to not do business with Visa. And for bit of harm caused by, say, a “burst bubble” in the housing market, there’s an opportunity for a buyer. For every dip in a stock price, there’s an opportunity for profit. For every struggling Company X, there’s a Company Y gearing up to fill the void.

      2. Well, my experience is that it’s difficulty to get the VISAs of the world to do much of anything I’d like them to do, and even more difficult to find out what they’ve done without any knowledge on my part. I may not have a choice of dealing with the government, but the profit incentive of private commerce pretty well trumps any incentive instilled in govt. bureaucrats.

      3. Other than perhaps the political or bureaucratic instinct for survival. Win the campaign at seemingly any cost. Legislate or regulate yourself to a secure job. Etc.

      4. PM says:

        Yes, do remember that we are talking about the careers and jobs of politicians when we refer to elections…

      5. If we’re talking the corrupt administration of policies we’re talking the faceless grey bureaucrats who are the equivalents of their corporate cubicle farm workers.

    2. Mike Kennedy says:

      Mike:

      I find it interesting that all my friends I went to journalism school with back in the early 1980s were influenced, in a big way, by Woodstein and Watergate.

      But along the way, they developed a grade school crush on government that grew to full blown, weak-in-the-knee puppy love.

      They particularly swoon over big, liberal government, as an answer for most of the country’s “ills.” No, I have no love for big, corporate America, either. Both are far too removed from the day to day life of the average person, and both are full of waste, often abuse their power and line their own pockets.

      1. I’m not following the “crush” argument. If I accuse private industry of scheming and scamming, and believe they should be held legally accountable, do I have a silly, school girl “crush” on big government, because it’s their job to make and enforce laws? You’re (regularly) making the leap that because I’m mystified by the pass corporate America gets on financial fraud, privacy invasion, etc. I somehow believe the government should confiscate and operate. I don’t remember ever saying anything of the sort, although I get the idea of making countering arguments look simplistic and silly.

      2. Mike Kennedy says:

        Actually, I don’t recall mentioning your name. Did I miss something and sit in Benidt’s and Mrja’s and Gaterud’s J school classes with you in 80-83?

        What I was referring to, although I obviously hit a nerve with you for you to come storming out and defend yourself, is that the J school trained people (trust no one) that I used to associate with evolved into people who only trusted government.

        I found much the same at the four daily papers where I worked (for the most part). My second point is that I find it less disappointing to trust no big institution — government or corporate America.

      3. PM says:

        Mike–could it be that their experience leads them to trust government and not trust business? Clearly it isn’t anything in the school experience that determines thier level of trust–after all, you shared that with them. So, it is either something that preceded that, of something that followed it.

      4. Mike Kennedy says:

        PM:

        You could be on to something. I think we primarily develop our outlook on who to trust by two things — family and personal experience. A vast majority of people I have met reflect their parents political views. The other influencing effect seems to come with experience.

        That being said, I think journalism attracts more socially liberal people. I’m not saying that is good or bad. It’s just what I believe having been around quite a few.

      5. Journalism attracts more socially liberal people. I generally agree — at the reporting/writing level — which is barely above custodial activities at most modern news organizations. The ideological pendulum swings back toward conservative as you move up through the editing ranks, the editorial board and to management — which in my experience has a lot more control over WHAT DOES NOT GO IN THE PAPER/NEWSCAST — than anything a reporter might seize on.

  9. Joe Loveland says:

    Re: “I think we all know how this enormously counter-productive attitude (that opposing all government is necessary) swelled and settled in.”

    I’m not sure I know, and it’s one of the great questions of our times. Enlighten me.

    1. Although, in my direct, personal experience, the mainstream media prefers to ignore and/or resist the obvious, the lifting of the Fairness Doctrine and the almost immediately swell of so-called “conservative media”, (which fundamentally requires a complete exclusion of liberal counterpoints), has injected the most octane into a belief system of gross misinformation, thinly-veiled racism and the kind of bizarre class warfare. A conflict where ill-informed blue collar citizens, (many directly dependent on government subsidy in one way or another), rage against that government and thereby bolster the interests of the economic elite who treat them with a disdain bordering on contempt. The kind of contempt you always have for chumps.

      1. The Fairness Doctrine should never have happened. The FCC should provide broadcast licenses — the broadcast-technology equivalent of directing traffic — and pretty much leave it at that. If a broadcaster is a private organization — and most are — it should be left alone to do what it sees fit with those airways. They’re publicly “sorted” through licensing, but they’re not truly public.

        You know, just like I think it’s criminal that the state can tell bar owners they can’t let patrons smoke inside. These places are open to the public, not *public*.

      2. The only flaw in your logic, Mike, is that unlike liquor licenses, broadcasters use limited spectrum on public airwaves FREE OF CHARGE. I don’t care what you want to say or do via HD radio, internet or satellite. But in an unremunerated finite commodity market I actually believe “gummint” should require broadcasters to provide editorial balance, if not demonstrable factual accuracy. That’s not asking too much.

      3. PM says:

        So, Brian, are you edging into the “epistemic closure” debate here? And is the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine a necessary condition for epistemic closure on the Right?

      4. Mike Thomas says:

        The problem with a 2010 fairness doctrine is that it assumes that there are only two sides of any story (right and left), which is far from true in most stories or commentary. If there is a left response to every hour of “conservative” talk radio, then do we bring on an hour of liberal, socialist, constiutionalist, independent, independence, and so on….Also does this mean that every hour of Bill Moyers on PBS is followed by an hour of George Will?
        Also, have you not been complaining for years that newspapers and TV try to “balance” out editorial and opinion too often by brining other sides of an argument in – yet if the argument is dominated by the right then we need balance?
        True the radio (and TV waves) are public airwaves but how much is the public paying for them? Let’s start with the fairness doctrine on MPR and PBS, the stations that are funded through taxes and the government, and then move onto the private industry. I have a hunch that if radio was a left leaning medium this crowd would not be rallying for the fairness doctrine.

      5. i don’t think a straight “quid pro quo” arrangement is feasible, much less ever likely to be pressed. But I will continue to suggest that broadcasters making pretty good money off the limited spectrum of the public airwaves be required to broadcast accurate information. If that’s too bland a format for them to make their current healthy profits from, move to the internet or satellite.

        (Obviously most of the biggest broadcast companies are financial disasters at the moment, reeling toward or out of bankruptcy. But that has more to do with them getting caught up in the leveraged money casino than failures in their programming.)

      6. Mike Thomas says:

        Brian –

        In your fairness doctrine world who is going to judge what is accurate information?

        An FCC dominated by whatever party is in power? Do you want a Michael Powell FCC deciding what is accurate and not?

  10. Joe Loveland says:

    These were the top two things on TeaPaw’s political (is there any other kind with him?) wish list:

    1. Government shut-down, with national cameras consequently focused on him heroically holding firm against taxes
    2. Getting the entire budget he wanted (cuts, shifts, delays, smoke, mirrors and with no changes in taxes).

    Governor Pawlenty got a lot out of this End Game, but he didn’t get what he REALLY wanted, a shut-down circus.

    1. I could be wrong — usually am — but I doubt even Pawlenty wanted to risk the high stakes drama of a shut down, even though a recession-weary electorate would most likely prefer his “slide this all to tomorrow” approach over actually paying the bill now and staunching the red ink.

      1. Joe Loveland says:

        In normal times, I’d agree with you. Shutdowns are bad for getting general election swing votes. But right now the presidential seeds Pawlenty has painstakingly planted are in danger of rotting in the darkness of flyover country. Among national conservative activists, few know him, and few are impressed with what they see. They think he’s meek and uninteresting. That has to have him on edge.

        Given the nature of this political moment in time, and the relentless political ambition of this guy, I think TeaPaw would have loved to have been on Fox TV as Tank Man standing in front of the Democrats’ tax tank in Tiananmen Square. The glory of it all! Sure it’s a bad scene for swing voters, which Pawlenty cares about during normal times. But Pawlenty knows that the conservative activists would have eaten up the made for Fox TV Tank Man scene. And that’s all that matters to him right now.

        If the DFL would have insisted on with “we’ll accept 85% of your cuts, but you have to accept a small income tax element,” I think Pawlenty would have played Father Knows Best. He would have done a partial shut down and gleefully filled up his calendar with national media appearances. He knows that he needs an iconic Tea Bagger moment or he will remain a tree falling in the forest nationally.

  11. Mike Kennedy says:

    Well, not to put too fine a point on it, but what does it say about politicians? Public service is noble. What passes for public servants in the way of politicians is not.

    Now this morning I read that a republican congressman who preached abstinence for teenagers has been banging a part time staffer and is resigning.

    And a democrat running for senate lied about serving in Vietnam (hopefully, he will do something honorable and drop out).

  12. Joe Loveland says:

    While I love to self-righteously scold politicians as much as the next person, the fact is we get precisely what we ask for from our politicians.

    Citizens oppose every tax increase that affects them, oppose every budget cut that affects them, demand their leaders do as they say, and then complain about politicians’ inability to agree on a package of tax increases and/or budget cuts to balance the budget.

    We aren’t being under-represented. We’re being over-represented. Our every selfish wish is being pandered to. Elected representatives are uncompromising because the people they represent are uncompromising.

    So, yes, the elected representatives deserve blame for gridlock. But so do the represented.

    1. Joe Loveland says:

      Yes, of course, “we the the people” aren’t the problem. It’s the “special interest groups,” THEY’RE the problem!

      Of course, “special Interest groups” would have no influence if it weren’t for thousands of common folks behind them. Ask any member of a union, chamber of commerce, NRA chapter, gun control group, anti-tax group, and progressive political group…groups labeled “special interest groups.” They all think they’re leading a grassroots uprising with masses of common people behind them, and in some sense they are right.

      The point: One person’s “special interest” is another person’s “grassroots uprising.” In analyzing the problem with our democracy, you can’t leave out the selfishness of the “demo-.” As long as we all keep defending our narrow self-interests and rejecting any compromise as an unpricipled sellout, our “-cracy” is going to be messed up.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:

        I’m all for compromise and everyone giving something up. Let’s just make sure that what we do actually works. I think Mrja’s right. We need politicians with guts who piss everyone off instead of trying to please everyone.

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