Patterico's Pontifications


Are You Better Off Today Than You Were Four Years Ago?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 1:48 pm

I linked this in an update to the last post, but it probably deserves its own post. If Obama did anything in the last four years, then why he is saying all the same stuff in 2012 that he said in 2008?

BONUS HILARITY: You know, if it weren’t so hot, I’d explain why you’re better off.

UPDATE: Paul Ryan:

“We’re gonna hear a lot of words from Charlotte this week. But here’s the kind of words we’re not gonna hear We’re not gonna hear evidence and facts about how people are better off,” Ryan told a crowd of over 2,000 people at East Carolina University. “You see, the president cannot run on this record. He’s run out of ideas. And so that is why he’s going to be running a campaign based on envy and division, based on frustration and anger.”

. . . .

“Let me quote President Obama four years ago, ‘If you don’t have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from.’ Ladies and gentleman, that is exactly what Barack Obama is doing today,” Ryan said.

Yup. Watch what they do this week and you’ll see he’s right.

What Should We Think About on Labor Day?

Filed under: 2012 Election,Economics,General,Obama — Patterico @ 1:38 pm

Michael Hiltzik of the L.A. Times says we should remember the value of unions. Wilma Liebman, writing in the L.A. Times, takes a slightly different perspective, and says we should remember the value of unions.

Actually, I guess that’s the exact same perspective.

Maybe I can offer a truly different perspective: remember the value of labor. Of the opportunity to work. Which many Americans lack under this president.

Ed Morrissey has an amusing interview by Chris Wallace of David Axelrod, in which Axelrod attempts to dance around the following uncomfortable comparisons between when Obama took office (“then”) and now:

  • Unemployment: 7.8% then, 8.3% now
  • Median income: $54,983 then, $50,964 now
  • Gas prices: $1.85 per gallon then, $3.78 now
  • National debt: $10.6 trillion then, $15.9 trillion now

You know the drill by now: it’s Bush’s fault!!!

But it’s worse than that. The real number (which everyone puts in quotes despite the fact that it really is the real number) is more like the number named by that supposed doddering old fool Clint Eastwood:

The “real” number of unemployed Americans is 23.5 million. These are people that are unemployed (12.8 million), want work but have stopped searching for a job (2.5 million), or are working part-time because they can’t find full-time employment (8.2 million).

As the Maryland governor showed, it’s impossible to honestly answer that Americans are better off today than they were four years ago. If you need to work full-time, but are only working part-time, you are not doing well. If you have given up on looking for a job, you are not doing well. 8.3% doesn’t begin to paint the picture.

Every one of those 23.5 million people needs to understand that we are worse off today than we were four years ago. Not better.

That’s what I’m thinking about on this Labor Day.

UPDATE: Elect me and this time it will be different!!!

Hollywood Reporter: Fringe Leftists Threaten Makers of Occupy Unmasked

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:47 am

I’m overdue linking this Hollywood Reporter article from last week about threats to Lee Stranahan and Brandon Darby:

Another documentary is drawing controversy at the Republican National Convention — the filmmakers of Occupy Unmasked, starring the late Andrew Breitbart, say they’ve received dozens of threats of physical violence in advance of Thursday’s screening of the critical look at the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Some of the messages target Brandon Darby and Lee Stranahan, two former leftists who appear in the film, according to a spokesperson for Citizens United Prods, the company behind the film.

“We’ll be legitimately raping Brandon Darby and Lee Stranahan for the next several days while they are tied up with the movie premier at the RNC,” reads an email from The email includes Darby’s and Stranahan’s cell phone numbers.

One tweet reads, “While @Shanahan is in Tampa this week, should Texas rapists be told where to find his wife since he supports the rape of everyone else?”

You know who these threats are from, of course, and it’s nothing new. It’s the same group who has been issuing similar threats to many of us for months and months. But it’s nice to have the Hollywood Reporter take note.

You may well wonder what has these people so worried. Here is the trailer:

Don’t be fooled by the “this spring” language at the end. That’s left over from a while back. It’s going to be released in three weeks, on September 25.

I have already pre-ordered my copy from Amazon. If you’re interested, you can buy it by clicking below:

Rahm Sends Chicago Cops to Democrat Convention in Charlotte, N.C. — In the Middle of a Chicago Crime Wave

Filed under: 2012 Election,General,Obama — Patterico @ 11:26 am

It’s good to have friends with access to cops:

Only days after Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel asked for federal agents and U.S. Marshals to help combat the city’s wave of violence, about 50 Chicago police officers have arrived in Charlotte to work perimeter security details for a week at the Democratic National Convention.

The Chicago officers, in their distinctive uniforms and checkerboard-brimmed hats, said they had been instructed not to talk with reporters about their out-of-town assignment.

. . . .

Last Friday, Mayor Emanuel and Chicago police superintendent Garry McCarthy publicly asked for federal help in targeting neighborhoods that have been hit hardest by the city’s wave of violence.

“The help comes in the form of additional agents to target guns, gangs and drugs,” Superintendent McCarthy said at a news conference.

Chicago’s homicide rate is about 31 percent higher than last year, with 346 reported killings as of August 19, according to figures provided by the Chicago police.

Local activists and police union heads are dumbfounded.

Me? I’m not surprised at all. Are you?

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