StanCollender'sCapitalGainsandGames Washington, Wall Street and Everything in Between

Olympia Snowe Loses Whatever Credibility She Had Left

19 Dec 2009
Posted by Stan Collender

Many things in American politics are silly but, assuming it's true, this has to be considered a lifetime achievement award.  

From Talking Points Memo:

After months in which the senate health care bill was held up over efforts to find some form in which she would agree to sign on to it, Sen. Snowe (R-ME) now says she will oppose it because it is being "rushed."

health care and cowardice

The tragedy of the republicans is that not one - not one- has had the courage of their convictions. Not Susan Collins not OSnowe and certainly not the biggest coward of them all- McCain. They hide behind various excuses and explain away their previous stands with not a modicum of decency or integrity.
I wonder how any one can support these profiles in cowardice

Republicans thrive on ignorance.

Republicans like Olympia Snowe, George W. Bush, and Sarah Palin thrive on people valuing superficial personality traits, the cover, not the book, and believing misconceptions.

There's good reason why Republicans try to dumb down America and get us not to believe in science. That may be the path to us no longer being a first world country, but it gets them more votes. The more ignorant people are the more likely they are to vote Republican even though it hurts them and the country greatly.

Educated Vote

Better check your facts here... surveys have consistently shown that Republican voters have a higher average level of education than Democrats. I believe that, in part, explains the long-term conservative vision that rejects the quick, sound-good, solutions that liberals want to force down our throats, and strives to actually SOLVE problems in a way that works long term.

Educated Vote

And what long term solutions to the problems facing the country have the Republicans proposed other than cutting taxes and regulations? You do have a point about education since a large part of the Democratic vote comes from the lower classes, who tend to have less education but may not vote in large numbers, of whom the Republicans have no interest: However, "surveys have consistency shown" is not a counter argument without specifying the specific break down of voter patterns in various elections!

Difference between voters and government.

Watch out, the original comment is talking about the courage of convictions between conservative and liberal politicians and you are talking about education levels between conservative and liberal voters. These are apples and oranges.

Not only that, but education level is a big determiner in income: What you are really saying is that the poor vote overwhelingly for the Democratic Party, not that Republicans are more educated. You are failing to weight your sampling (given the tax policies of the Republican Party, there is strong weight to the theory that many vote Republican because of their income. You would need to ask how two people with the same income but different level of education vote, and you wouldn’t like the answer to that.) as well as abusing your statistics (the average is dominated by the vast majority of people without income at all).

If we were to look at the most educated, in the last election, college educated people voted for Obama, and graduate-educated people voted for Obama in overwhelming numbers: .

Sorry, see the gallup survey

A May 2009 Gallup poll (at: ) shows that 52% of college graduates are Democrats or lean Democratic, while only 37% are Republican or lean Republican. And I'm quite sure of that 37% it's very strongly a wealth effect, where these are wealthier people who don't want higher taxes on the wealthy (although I think this greed just hurts them, as they and their families would be much better off with more basic cancer and other medical research research, public health and safety, global warming protection, etc., etc., then an even bigger McMansion or Mansion, and 500 horse power for their cars instead of 400 horse power, when they only use 250 and the rest is for enormous zero sum game positional/context/prestige externalities).

Few college grads majored in econ or government

I should add that just because someone is a college graduate and smart doesn't mean that they know much about economics and government, and ignorance of those things, among others, is what Republicans thrive on.

A smart engineer may easily have the misconception that a large percentage of government spending is on welfare for the able bodied and lazy, when in fact the great majority is on defense, Social Security and Medicare for our seniors, education, infrastructure, programs for the middle class, and other things.

A smart computer programmer may think that raising taxes is always bad for the economy if he's young enough to not remember the Clinton years, and if he doesn't understand the income and substitution effects, the backward bending labor supply curve, the ways aggregate demand can be increased besides tax cuts that tilt us towards even less investment and more consumption, ways like monetary stimulus and increased government investment on high social return projects of the kind the free market will grossly underprovide due to externalities, etc., and so on.

So there can easily be ignorance of economics, government, and even science among college graduates, as most don't major in these areas. And Republicans thrive on this ignorance.

Republican voters have a higher average level of education??

Surveys used to show that. Not any more. The 2008 election had college-educated voters going Democratic by a 53-48% margin.

This may be an anomoly, but if I was a betting man I would have my money on the Democrats.

The party of Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann and a bunch of temper tantrum Tea Baggers are going to have a very hard time connecting to the average middle class, college educated voter.

My question to you politicaljunkie, is who exactly is articulating your "long-term conservative vision that rejects the quick, sound-good, solutions that liberals want to force down our throats, and strives to actually SOLVE problems in a way that works long term."??? I don't think those Republicans exist anymore.

Who's credibility?

Remember when Obama solemnly promised the nation (as quoted by the NY Times):

health care reform would be achieved "not by negotiating behind closed doors" but rather by "broadcasting those negotiations on C-SPAN."...

he elaborated that his C-SPAN commitment would ensure that "the public will be part of the conversation ... so if a member of Congress is carrying water for the drug companies" by opposing price negotiations, they will be "shamed" into abandoning those industry-beholden positions...
How's that working out so far? And who ran out and made that secret deal with the drug companaies very first thing? (... cough ...).

And remember Obama's promise that the text of all legislation would be publicly posted on the Internet for for public review before being enacted?

How's that promise working out?

Just what was in those $2 trillion worth of White House deals with Big Pharma, doctors, hospitals, insurers etc., that are such a vital part of this whole plan? Why it seems nobody knows. Not even Congress!

Nevertheless, we are wasting time by having the Senate debate this 2,000 page bill for 17 whole days -- only to have that bill pulled and be replaced with a new manager's amendment (God knows what's in it, but none of us do) that must be passed by Christmas Eve!

Why are we wasting so much time re-shaping one-sixth of the entire economy!

In contrast, look at, say, General Motors. Congress is fully responsible for it now, having put $70 billion of taxpayer money into buying it.

So say Congress and the White House use these exact same procedures to have politicians and their staffs personally re-design GM's entire product line, all its vehicles, and its marketing strategy for them.

Surely these politicians would do a great job, improving GM's vehicles and their sales to turn around GM from the disaster it's been.

And, of course, because re-designing just one car company's product line and marketing is vastly simpler than re-working one-sixth of the entire economy, not only could politicians do it, but they'd do it just as fast -- faster!

If the politicians can personally redesign one-sixth of the entire economy by Christmas, then they ought to be able to do the much easier job of designing just one company in, what? two or three weeks tops. Right?

Well, some nay-saying people I've met think politicians personally couldn't redesign a line of automobiles for sale in a competitive market at all, without ruining them and the business that sells them, no matter how much time they took.

Yet many of those very same people think politicians can redesign one-sixth of the entire economy by Christmas -- and is wasting time in taking so long.

Cognitive dissonance?

Yes, yes, delay, taking more time, not being in this rush, only increases the chances that the bill will be defeated. Because as people actually get a chance to read it, and learn about the secret deals with Big Pharma, the insurers, and all the rest, and with the bill already poll-wise in negative numbers with the public, and Obama's approval rating regarding it negative and sinking, we expect that a better informed electorate would become even more negative about the bill given more time to consider it.

And with elections approaching in 2010 the politicians could be forced to not enact it simply because of the base political reason that the voters they represent don't want them to. And how democratic, er, Democratic would that be?So no more delay can be indulged, yes, we all understand that.

But it's interesting what affects a poltician's credibility, is it not?

One politician wants to spend more than a few weeks considering how to re-work one-sixth of the entire economy, and her credibility is savaged.

Another politician promises that the re-working will be negotiated in public with the "utmost transparency", "not behind closed doors", but on C-SPAN, with no hidden deals, and with the result posted on the Internet for public inspection before enactment -- then he acts in the 180 degree opposite manner to each promise all the way through (would it be rude to say he "lied" in each case?) ... and he emerges a hero, the esteemed model of political leadership, his result applauded, his credibility proven.

Ain't politics funny?

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