Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Republican Debate: The Devil is in the details

What’s it been, two whole weeks since the last debate? How I’ve missed you, pointless debates. This one is all about the economy.

In honor of the Racist Rock of Doom, I will be referring to the esteemed governor of Texas as Ricky Poopyhead throughout. If you don’t like it, you can paint over his head. I may also have added a phrase to all of Herman Cain’s quotes.


Herman Cain started by talking about his 9-9-9 plan, and never stopped: “I have put my 9-9-9 plan on the table, and (I don’t have the facts to back this up, but) it starts with throwing out the current tax code and putting in the 9-9-9 plan.” So his plan starts with putting his plan in. Sounds like a plan!

Ricky Poopyhead wants to open up “this treasure trove that America’s sitting on”. I’ve never heard America’s ass called that before. “It’s time for another American Declaration of Independence. It’s time for energy independence.” Yes, drilling for oil is exactly like overthrowing British rule. Maybe the Teabaggers activists should stop dressing up in tricorn hats and start dressing up as the Men from Texaco (they work from Maine to... well, never mind). “But, clearly, we’re going to be focused on initially the energy industry in this country and making a America again independent, and clearly the place where domestic energy needs to be produced from.” Yes, America is the place where domestic energy needs to be produced from.

Asked what his economic plan is, Ricky Poopyhead whined that it wasn’t ready yet: “Mitt’s had six years to be working on a plan; I’ve been in this for about eight weeks.”

Bachmann says the economic collapse was not the fault of Wall Street but of federal regulation of the mortgage market and “Feddie,” er Freddie and Fannie. In fact (SPOILER ALERT), there will not be a single word of criticism of Wall Street or the bankers throughout this economy-themed debate.

Gingrich explains that the Occupyistas break down into two groups, professional left-wing agitators and “sincere middle-class people who, frankly, are very close to the tea party people in actually caring. You can tell which group is which. The people who are decent and responsible citizens pick up after themselves. The people who are just out there as activists trash the place and walk off and are proud of having trashed it. So let’s draw that distinction.” Trash the place and walk off, proud of having trashed it. Surely as apt a description of Wall Street, or indeed of Newt Gingrich’s entire career, as one could ask for. He called for firing Bernanke, which he would not have the power to do because the Fed chair serves a fixed term. He also wants to put Barney Frank and Chris Dodd in jail, because why not.

RICK SANTORUM DOESN’T WANT TO BRAG: Santorum brags: “I don’t want to brag, Governor, but Pennsylvania is the gas capital of the world right now, not Texas”. Oh, anywhere you happen to be is the gas capital of the world, Frothy.

Gingrich: “the most recent U.S. government intervention on whether or not to have prostate testing is basically going to kill people.” So Gingrich thinks you should get a prostate exam, guys. Should make for the catchiest campaign slogan since “Tippecanoe and Colonoscopies Too.”

Gingrich says Palin was unfairly attacked for the death panels thing. There are death panels and he’s against them. And for prostate exams, he can’t emphasize that enough.

Bachmann is also against death panels: “the way that ‘Obamacare’ runs, there’s a board called IPAB [Medicare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board]. It’s made up of 15 political appointees. These 15 political appointees will make all the major health care decisions for over 300 million Americans. I don’t want 15 political appointees to make a health care decision for a beautiful, fragile, 85-year-old woman who should be making her own decision.” And what does that beautiful, fragile, 85-year-old woman want? Pudding and the sweet release of death, I’m guessing. “I think that senior citizens across the country have no idea that President Obama plans for Medicare to collapse, and instead everyone will be pushed into ‘Obamacare.’”

Huntsman says he thought Cain’s 9-9-9 thing was the price of a pizza or something. Later, Bachmann says, “When you take the 9-9-9 plan and turn it upside down, I think the Devil is in the details.” You can tell which campaigns can’t afford gag writers.

What happens when you turn Michele Bachmann upside down? America wants to know. Well, I want to know.

That subtle 999 upside down reference is aimed at Herman “Mark of” Cain, because Teabaggers can’t remember which black person they’re supposed to think is the Antichrist in the same way that I got many Google Images hits from people looking for pictures of Sarah Palin eating a corn dog because they (understandably) mixed up Bachmann and Palin.

Cain explains that “(I don’t have the facts to back this up, but) 9-9-9 will pass, and it is not the price of pizza because, it has been well-studied and well-developed. ... It didn’t come off a pizza box, no.” Although oddly it does have cheese stuck on it.

WHERE MITTENS HAS SPENT HIS LIFE: Romney: “I’m not going to have to call up Timothy Geithner and say how does the economy work, because I’ve spent my life in the economy.” He also “wouldn’t keep Ben Bernanke in office. I’d choose someone of my -- of my own –” Again: fixed term; wouldn’t have the power to fire him; you can look this shit up. Twitt wouldn’t mind replacing Bernanke with Milton Friedman, except for the being dead part. “Although what Milton said to us was, he said, you know, if you took all the economists in America, and you laid them end to end, it would be a good thing.” Kinky.

By the way, the actual joke is that if all the economists were laid end to end, they still wouldn’t reach a conclusion, and it was made by Bernard Shaw.

CONCEPTUALLY: Cain evidently supported the Wall Street bailout in 2008. “Conceptually, I made that statement based upon the concept”.

WHY AMERICANS ARE SO UNTRUSTWORTHY: Rick Poopyhead: “One of the reasons that I think Americans are so untrustworthy of what’s going on is because they never see a cut in spending.”

Gingrich on the debt ceiling/supercommittee bill: “And the bill basically says: We’re either going to shoot ourselves in the head, or cut off our right leg. And we’ll come in and -- around Thanksgiving, and we’ll show you how we’re going to cut off the right leg. And the alternative will be shooting ourselves in the head.” I’m not sure what he’s talking about but I suspect you really don’t want to go to Newt’s house for Thanksgiving.

NOT JUST A VOICE IN THE WILDERNESS OF WASHINGTON, BUT A LEADING VOICE IN THE WILDERNESS OF WASHINGTON. Bachmann: “Charlie, last summer I was a leading voice in the wilderness of Washington, and a lone voice as a matter of fact, saying: Do not increase the debt ceiling.” She says that one day tax rates will be 75%. “I’m a federal tax lawyer; that’s what I do for a living.” Someone check her for head trauma, she seems to have forgotten the last 18 years of her life. She says that we have to cut spending and balance the budget and cut taxes. I’m sure it all adds up: she’s a federal tax lawyer, that’s what she does for a living, after all.

Charlie Rose helpfully points out that under Cain’s 9-9-9 plan, Americans would pay 9% more for pizza and beer.

Cain says that he doesn’t have the facts to back this up, but Americans would “have the flexibility to decide on how much they want to spend it on new goods, how much they want to spend it on used goods, because there is no tax on used goods.” So we’ll all have to buy our pizzas used, I guess.

Romney makes a joke about Chinese drivers, I’m guessing: “If you’re not willing to stand up to China, you’ll get run over by China. And that’s what’s happened for 20 years.” Sounds messy.

Ricky Poopyhead: “We’re missing this so much. What we need to be focused on in this country today is not whether or not we’re going to have this policy or that policy. What we need to be focused on is how we get America working again. That’s where we need to be focused.” As Yoda said, there is no policy, there is only do. Evidently if we just start drilling on “this absolute treasure trove of energy” we’re sitting on, manufacturing will come back from China. “You free up this country’s entrepreneurs where they know that they can risk their capital and have a chance to have a return on investment and all of this conversation that we’re having today becomes substantially less impactful.” Oh, I don’t think your conversation could possibly become less impactful, Governor Poopyhead.

Santorum says he wants to go to war with China.

THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WANT HEALTH CARE TO WORK LIKE A WHAT NOW? Romney says everyone else has to have a plan with which to replace Obamacare because “the American people are not satisfied with the status quo. They want us to solve the problem of health care, to get it to work like a market, and that’s what has to happen.”

After the break, the candidates were allowed to question each other.

Bachmann asks Ricky Poopyhead, You used to be a Democrat; why do you hate Ronald Reagan?

Cain asks Romney if he can name all 59 points in his plan, because he can tell you what all three 9’s in his plan are. The RomneyBot can, and starts to do just that.

Gingrich asks Romney why he proposes cutting capital-gains taxes only on people with income below $200,000 and not on the rich. Why are you fighting a class war against the rich, Mittens? Romney says the rich are doing fine and the very poor have a safety net (which he wants to destroy).

Romney asks Bachmann how she’d get people back to work. She begins by mentioning being “a mother of 28 children”, so I guess she’d get people back to work running baby farms. Also, she’d eliminate all government regulation. And Obamacare.

Santorum asks Cain how he’d stop Congress from increasing the the 9’s in the 9-9-9 plan. Cain says he would include a provision saying that future Congresses could only raise the taxes by a 2/3 majority. Such a provision would, of course, be unconstitutional.

Cain says he has two candidates to replace Bernanke, but “I cannot give their names”. I guess he didn’t have the names to back this up.

Cain says when he said that people shouldn’t blame Wall Street if they didn’t have a job, he didn’t mean people who don’t have jobs, he meant the protesters. So that’s okay then.

Romney is given a chance to say that he opposes Congressional Republicans letting the payroll tax rise, but he doesn’t, muttering something about little Band-Aids.

Ricky Poopyhead says the reason there’s poverty in America is because of Obama. Santorum says it’s because of the breakdown of the American family: “the word ‘home’ in Greek is the basis of the word ‘economy,’” he said as if he’d just proven something profound.

The candidates were asked how they could recognize the pain Americans are feeling. Bachmann says she and Marcus “have broken hearts for at-risk kids, Charlie. That’s why we took 23 foster children into our home.” I won’t even touch that one. Cain says he “was po’ before I was poor.” Which I guess means they couldn’t even afford an r and an extra o. Gingrich says he has unemployed relatives, and he occasionally thinks of them when shopping at Tiffany’s; “We have, I think, a pretty good sense of the pain level.” The empathy just flows off him, doesn’t it? Ron Paul says he believes in liberty. Huntsman says “And when I saw on the faces of people who had the dignity of a job, you knew what it meant to moms and dads and entire families.” So he, like, saw faces. Ricky Poopyhead and Twitt Romney ignored the question and said whatever they felt like saying.

I promise that I have now retired the “Ricky Poopyhead” thing forever.

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