"P. S. Although there are many anti-productive behaviors on both sides of the aisle, I think it is worthwhile mentioning one big error that has been used against the person’s party. That is where McConnell stated that his chief objective was to get Obama out of office. He failed to make his true point, which was that the attitude of Obama was counterproductive for the nation and then to state ‘why’ and how it was. He made the classic mistake in emotional intelligence which was to ‘condemn the sinner, rather than the sin.” The statement he made is no better than Obama’s calling the Republican “the enemies”. Both were divisive and harmful."
PROTECTING THE RICH
The Republicans appear to be "protecting the rich", which is not a good political position. Obama can now be the Warrior For The Middle Class. The stubborness of the Republicans on the issue of not raising taxes on the rich cannot be justified because of the plain fact that the math doesn't and can't work out without raising taxes somewhere - and it is also hard to buy the "it'll affect the economy" argument, as a 4% extra tax will not have much impact on the rich. (At some point, this will have to be resolved, though the argument is not to do it in a recession.) (Note that there are built into the health act, starting in 2013, 4.7% more in tax rates for those over $200,000 in income.)
The Republicans, however, have not made it clear enough that the reason for not allowing any more taxes goes along with the insistence on and the followthrough of holding the line on spending. They could purport that this will help draw the Democrats more in line on reducing the spending.
I do not believe that it is a good position for the Republicans to say that they would not under any conditions raise taxes on the wealthy. It is a better idea to set a cost cutting figure that is feasible and then to say that if that is reached, then they will consider raising the taxes if there is still a deficit.
TRYING TO GET RID OF THE ENTITLEMENT PROGRAMS
Image: Pushing little old ladies over the cliff.
This falsehood is so widely believed that even AARP put out an ad not recognizing that benefits for age 55 and over were preserved.
The point is not made clear that Republicans will not get rid of social security or medicare and that they are just proposing how to fix it so that it won't go broke or cause future generations to pay huge taxes. Also, the Republicans have to start making the unfunded liabilities clearer (and offer on a website a simplified explanation of what that means and the choices presented simply).
The argument for a flexible but clear Budget Balancing Amendment is, I think, a powerful argument that is hardly disputable, but must be presented in a manner that makes it clear this will save taxpayers from the arbitrary spending of Congress. To allow spending with no personal consequences and without drawing the line, is a massive mistake in policy.
Despite the great political costs and the potential to be labeled as being controlled by extremists, the Republicans have produced actual effect, actual results that are tangible and history changing, potentially stopping a huge overspending binge and debt accumulation.
Quoted from the Evaluation Of The Obama Presidency, 10/11: "He does not address the deficit matter until forced to do so. He submitted a budget recognizing none of that, as if he was in oblivion about it. It was rejected by the Senate 97-0."
RECALCITRANCE IMAGE, OPPOSITIONAL
They often say what they are against, but don't emphasize what they are for, so they are losing alot of the public, unnecessarily.
McConnell's statement of the number one priority, in the beginning quote, is an illustration of negative speak. It is better and more productive to state what the positive goal is and why.
P/R AND EXPLANATIONS ARE LACKING
A MASSIVE VICTORY - LITTLE RECOGNIZED
Obama did not capitalize on the Bowles-Simpson report at all - and he seemed to ignore it. He would not do anything about the deficits until the Republicans bargained to force him to do so.
And then he accused the Republicans of being bad guys for almost causing the government to default - which is a total exaggeration and misfacting, as it wouldn't have defaulted automatically even the next day after the 'deadline' plus John Boehner and other prominent Republicans guaranteed there would be a loan limit increase.
The "bluff" produced the result of an agreement of a $1 trillion dollar cut in the future budgets plus $1.2 trillion to be designed by November, with the sword of Damocles hanging over their head in an automatic cut of the moneys, 50% in defense and 50% of domestic spending. The latter would be unconscionable and therefore masterfully incentivizing to both sides. If results are a judgment of effectiveness and commitments in action, the Republicans show that. Though sloppy, an A for Republicans and a D for Obama.
This was history making, something unprecedented in the massiveness of the spending cuts.
But, alas, they lost the PR war.
Many of the Republicans are stuck in the ideological and in being caught up in emotional reactions based on surface information.
The gross bias of the fundamental far right is oppressive in nature and narrow-minded - and doesn't consider practicality over wishful thinking. It is unlikely that Roe Vs. Wade will be overturned and the question of whether it should or not is based on whether or not a few have the right to infringe on the many because they are "right", because their beliefs are the right beliefs. So, while you might get excited about Perry or Bachmann, such excitement will not get you what you want and you may tend to get a less effective person hired - and might even lose the election to the left.
The gay rights bias and non-acceptance is similarly about imposing one's own values on others. This is a democracy, and, as long as it isn't harmful to others, the rights of the gays and the public being for them have a majority rules aspect to it.
Making a non-reasoned decision in 2008 on the Republican candidate created the opportunity for Obama to be elected. The age of McCain, plus the lack of managerial experience, although a nice, appealing guy, caused him to not be a generally desirable candidate. Like it or not, the other moderate Republicans and independents are needed to elect a candidate.
If McCain did 8 years he would have made it to age 81, which is a gamble no matter how great the individual is. And, of course, approving of Palin killed the ticket, as no middle independent or rational Republican would want think she was capable of handling the Presidency. She is smart, clever, and appealing, but she is not a grounded, analytical decisionmaker and leader - though I must hand it to her on how great a job she is doing as a rogue celebrity, speaking mostly good stuff. I like McCain as a person and a senior senator, though he gets stuck in partisanship once in a while, but there is no way that he was qualified for President. I did very much like his authenticity and honesty.
Even I voted for Obama, out of hope for something being shaking up and returning to great values and cooperation. It was a gamble, but I figured it would work out. However, the downside was far greater than I would have thought. See Evaluation Of Obama's Presidency.
CORRECTING SOME WRONG FACTS