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In Milwaukee Buzz Commentary

Two months to go. Hold on, the ride is going to be bumpy. (PHOTO: David Bernacchi )

Political battles promise a bumpy ride


The political conventions for the two major parties have occupied wall-to-wall coverage on the news channels and the number of talking heads who have nothing to say rivals the number of delegates at each convention.

I don't know exactly what's wrong with me, but I watched an awful lot of the
coverage and came away with a bunch of impressions.

Consider diversity, for example. The Republicans put women and minorities on the stage for speeches. But who are they trying to fool? The crowd on the floor was almost exclusively white. Lots of men. Some women. The Democrats, on the other hand, had diversity on the dais and diversity on the floor.

There is a wonderful battle brewing between our own Paul Ryan and Paul
Krugman, an economist and columnist for The New York Times. Krugman has a distinguished and lengthy history as an economist of significant standing. He won a Nobel prize for his work. Ryan grew up in Janesville and once ran a marathon faster than guys who have been in the Olympics. Or so he says. Here's what Krugman, maybe the most influential economic columnist in the country, has to say about Ryan:

"What Ryan is good at is exploiting the willful gullibility of the Beltway media, using a soft-focus style to play into their desire to have a conservative wonk they can say nice things about. And apparently the trick still works."

Everybody seems to be saying that Wisconsin is "in play" which means that the election is going to be very, very, very close in our state. I don't like going against the polls, but for the life of me I can't see how anyone can vote for Mitt Romney over Barack Obama. Just on a humanity basis it seems like it should be no contest.

The Republicans are riding Ryan's coattails and have adopted the mantra that he is a "very serious" candidate. "He's serious, he's serious, he's serious." Two things wrong with this message. One is that the implication is that the other guys are just in this for fun. The other is that when people keep telling me how serious they are it reminds me of the guy who says to me, "I am going to be perfectly honest with you." What was he before? Lying?

I saw Michael Dukakis being interviewed and once again realized that Democrats can make mistakes almost as big as putting Sarah Palin on a ticket.

Speaking of Palin, do you remember when she wrote out answers on her hand? Well, they have now gone her one better. Someone named Amy Kremer has been appointed spokesperson for the Tea Party. She wrote out her answers on a crumpled up bar napkin. Here's a link to her appearance on CNN. If it weren't so sad, you might laugh like crazy and feel sorry for her. You might. But probably not.

Political conventions used to be a blood sport. It was Mixed Martial Arts before there was Mixed Martial Arts. People actually fought to see who got to run for president. Now it's like watching American Idol with only one singer.

I love Tammy Baldwin. I really do. But I don't thinks he has much of a chance to beat Tommy Thompson. Nothing has ever stuck to Tommy and that's still true. And I hope this is not misconstrued, but I don't see Wisconsin electing a lesbian to the United States Senate. This is, after all, Wisconsin. I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think so.

I like Ann Romney. Despite all that money and stuff I think she is moderately in touch with reality and I admire the way she has fought to overcome health difficulties. I can't understand how she could marry such a dweeb.

I think Republicans are better at faking enthusiasm than Democrats. Republicans somehow get tears in their eyes when they cheer. Democrats only cheer and look serious. It's kind of like a fraternity party versus a think tank. Democrats look like they need a shot of Wild Turkey.

I think we should outlaw Teleprompters. I think that people should either
memorize their speeches of talk off the cuff. I mean take a look at Macbeth or Hamlet. Now if you can memorize those lines in that English, then a president-to-be should be able to do a simple speech.

One of the hated Koch brothers, I think it's David Koch, is in favor of legalizing gay marriage. That's like Dr. Kevorkian telling people he believed in the Hippocratic Oath to never do any harm.

Two months to go. Hold on, the ride is going to be bumpy.

Talkbacks

yes_that_nick | Sept. 7, 2012 at 9:00 a.m. (report)

@mikeb Don't confuse the Nobel Peace Prize with the other Nobels. Peace prizes are awarded by the Norwegian Nobel Committee and share little but the name with the scientific Nobel prizes. Though some peace prizes have been awarded on shaky ground, the scientific prizes are not. The Nobel for Economics is at or among the top prizes in the field and should not be taken lightly. Paul Krugman may be employed to editorialize (which he does with relish), but his analysis is sound. He is still an economist of the highest order.

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mikeb | Sept. 6, 2012 at 7:29 p.m. (report)

Tammy Baldwin will lose the Senate election because she is to the left of Russ Feingold. If you'll recall, the heterosexual Feingold lost in his last election by a pretty decent margin. Baldwin's strategy seems to be, "vote for me because Tommy is rich.". Never mind that the guy they are replacing is a rich guy and I don't think many people think Senator Kohl is into the ladies. The Noble Prize thing in certain areas no longer has much credibility. If you're a liberal, you win. Jimmy Carter has a Nobel Peace Prize despite being something of an anti-semite. Al Gore has one for having a theory that many people are divided on. President Obama got one right after he won election because he seemed like a pretty cool guy. Meanwhile, Reagan and HW Bush are empty handed even though their policies did have something to do with the collapse of the Soviet Union and their grip on Eastern Europe. And at any rate, Krugman has been working as an Editorial writer rather than an Economist for some time now

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beefsupreme | Sept. 6, 2012 at 6:54 p.m. (report)

I triple dog dare omc to post a pole on Dave begel

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