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View Diary: Don't explain, DOUBLE DOWN! (198 comments)

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  •  Wrong, wrong, wrong approach. (6+ / 0-)

    You'll get no where by belittling the accomplishments of people like Steve Jobs and Henry Ford.  

    The PROPER response is, "I knew Henry Ford.  Henry Ford was a friend of mine.  You sir, are no Henry Ford."

    Mitt Romney is comparing HIMSELF to Henry Ford there.  That's the kind of hubris people of all stripes can take offense to when it's spotlighted.  

    Now, pile on to that by adding that Henry Ford CREATED JOBS, unlike so-called job creators like Mitt Romney who are JOB-DESTROYERS who falsely compare themselves to innovators when all they ever did was scavenge the hard work of other people who built great companies.  Ask them what Henry Ford would have thought of Mitt keeping his money in a Swiss Bank account and the Cayman Islands and not paying his fair share (and fortunately for us, there's no way to really ask Henry Ford that). And throw into that all the taxpayer money that went into paying for the bankruptcies created by Mitt Romney, and you have Mitt the GOLD-PLATED LEECH on the body of the taxpayers, the very opposite of what he wants to portray him and his friends as.

    "You, sir, are no Henry Ford.  Henry Ford wanted to spend his life building cars.  You, on the other hand, wanted to take a wrecking ball to American businesses and suck up the cash while firing Americans and shipping their jobs overseas."

    •  That's mighty shapetwisting jujitsu...worthy of (1+ / 0-)
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      Romney himself.

      I don't like these sorts of political mindbending at the presidential level. Frontal assult and direct penetrating statements are the way to go.

      What you're talking about is just a personal insult as a response to a wedge issue. "You suck!"

      Why don't you just give him the finger and call that a political response?

      •  I think I'm better addressing his real message. (1+ / 0-)
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        Mitt Romney is lumping himself together with some people that, no matter what you feel, I feel, and most people probably feel as well, really are innovators who improved the country because of the new things they produced.

        Mitt invokes names like Ford and Jobs in order to lump himself in with them.  It's one of the greatest conceits of the "jawb-maker" class.  Puncture that balloon.  Remind them that Henry Ford's business actually MADE THINGS PEOPLE USED.

        And I don't buy this argument at all, and am even, a little offended by it:

        Did Henry Ford attach motors to the Model T? No. Thousands of ordinary folks who get up in the morning and with calloused hands and sweaty brows...they are the ones who built those companies.
        I'm not offended at you, because I'm your fan.  Just that particular argument.  I think Henry Ford deserves huge credit.  Did Henry Ford do ALL the work including the manual labor?  Of course not, but nobody thinks he did.  But I feel compelled to come to Henry Ford's defense on this one.  Without him, a lot of things in this country's history would have been different.

        There are a lot of bad things you can say about Henry Ford.  Antisemite and Nazi sympathizer are just two of them.  But he deserves due credit for what he accomplished.  You're paddling upstream when you try to double down against Henry Ford.  You're misdirecting your fire.

        •  Nah. You're misreading the point of this attack. (2+ / 0-)
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          nominalize, petesmom

          It isn't to liken himself to Ford and Jobs. That's incidental. The point is that President Obama hates success. He's said as much. The message is, president obama doesn't want you to be successful.

          You don't see that? That's where the emotion of the argument comes in. Your hard work and dedication to success...Obama hates that. You don't see that's where this is targeted?

          You guys have set aside that entire argument and stop playing on GOP territory. This isn't about who is giving what amount of credit to who. This is at brain stem territory...lizard brain.

          The Romney message is that Obama hates success, Obama hates America. You aren't going to rebut that with "no..i love success too!" You've got to have an equally punch to the gut message.

          My choice is "Romney is a mean and selfish boss and shady slumlord." People who are gonna vote for us get that.

          •  No, I don't see that. (0+ / 0-)

            I disagree about the whole point of this.  It's not about what Obama thinks about everybody else.  Romney invokes the names of Capitalist supermen heroes deliberately.  He doesn't point to average people who deserve to have their work appreciated.  He points to Henry Ford and Steve Jobs, capitalist supermen, men the Republicans want people to admire and aspire to be when they think about tax cuts for the rich and the underappreciated jawb-creators.

            Going off on Henry Ford is such a big waste of time.  I'm surprised you don't see that.  What does that double down on?

            •  You drive a wedge. (1+ / 0-)
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              That's what wedge issues are for.

              LOL. If you think this is about trying to convince people to idolize businessmen, you've got not paid much attention to the way Republican attacks work. They aren't even designed for anything that sophisticated. They're designed for your balls...your guts...your libido.

              This is no different from "Obama is a muslim." What do you think the point of that is? To convince people to idolize jesus?

              No. This is about "he isn't one of us." Much more elemental and base. Responding with "im one of you!" is the way Democrats keep losing elections.

              The proper argument is "no...YOU aren't one of US!" and pick who you want "US" to be. So yes, it is perfectly intelligent to drive a wegde between people who "idolize steve jobs" and people who hate their greedy boss. Mainly because there are a lot more of the latter.

              •  From Hunter's diary about what this is about: (1+ / 0-)
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                The current political riff over whether or not Barack Obama does or does not loathe businessmen and wish to do them harm is yet another in a long line of examples in which the narrative is, in variation after variation, centered on the titans of finance and what we can do for them. If the economy is suffering, it is because we have not appeased the titans properly. If there are no jobs to be had, it is because the titans are still too unsure of our intentions towards them.  If there are still crooks on Wall Street, it is because entirely too many things have been declared to be illegal. Whether or not people have money to buy the things the titans are selling never comes up; it is implicit, in every debate, that the titans will decide whether we will buy things or not. When the economy crashed and things needed propping up, it was Wall Street that got propped up first. When the economy recovered, it was Wall Street that gained the largest share of the profits. According to current narrative, the entire world economy can be neatly encapsulated by the considering the desires and requirements of the top one percent of the top one percent; everyone else on the planet is a footnote.
                If you want to double down, double down on puncturing that.
            •  I agree with most of this....I've (1+ / 0-)
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              been having conversations about Rmoney's business practices for months now.  Explaining to people that Rmoney was in the middle of the offshoring craze of the 1980's.  Since textiles were big in this area until then, most people here "get" that.

              Ford's practice of paying his workers enough to be able to buy his product is very key here.  He really did BUILD a business.  Rmoney only TAKES from already established businesses, whether they are in trouble or not.  

              David Koch is Longshanks, and Occupy is the real Braveheart.

              by PsychoSavannah on Thu Jul 19, 2012 at 11:09:07 AM PDT

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          •  But there would be no iPod without Jobs. (2+ / 0-)
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            wozzlecat, PsychoSavannah

            There would be no Model T without Ford. They didn't just provide the financing, they provided the whole idea and business model.  Without them their workers would have nothing of value to assemble.  Of course they couldn't have done it at all without workers (or the infrastructure, or an educational system), but the workers wouldn't have done it without them.  It takes both.

            Unlike Jobs and Ford, Romney never invented a damn thing in his life. There is a difference between financial manipulators and entrepreneurs who invent great products.  The "team owner" analogy is flat out wrong when applied to people like Jobs or Ford; they were not investors, they were inventors.

            My point is that the Dems will lose the middle big time if they argue that people who start businesses and invent great products add nothing of value.  Obama never said anything of the kind, and it would be a huge mistake for him to own the fatal framing that Romney trying to hang on him.

            Now linking Romney to the son-of-a-bitch finance whiz who invented nothing but sent your job overseas and impoverished your family ... THAT might have legs!

            •  Now you're fighting on GOP territory. (5+ / 0-)

              See, you're trying to pick which businessmen we ought to admire, which is exactly what the way these sorts of attacks have typically flummoxed Democrats in the past.

              Private Equity bad. Warren Buffet good. Mitt Romney bad. George Lucas good.

              You're fighting the wrong battle. Once you're fighting over which rich guy is good and which rich guy is bad, you've already lost.

              The goal is to align the Democratic party with people who work. Period. Not inventors. Not deciding if Jobs is wonderful and that guy is awful. Its "people who dont invent anything but just get up and punch a clock." That's our vote. If we dont see that we're just gonna keep losing these elections.

              •  To be honest, if you do that you start to lose me. (0+ / 0-)
                The goal is to align the Democratic party with people who work.  Period.  Not inventors.
                I've been a lifelong Democrat.  I've also been modestly successful working in the tech industry out here in the SF Bay Area, as have a lot of folks who tend to vote Democrat. I didn't turn screws on an assembly line, I was an I.T. programmer who ultimately became a senior manager, now have my own small business (VERY small, with one employee - me).  

                I'm not an inventor, but I'm around a lot of them and admire them immensely.  A lot of them support Obama.  I have no problem saying that there are some businesspeople worthy of admiration versus some that are slimeballs.  Obama had tremendous support out here in 2008 - I was volunteering at a Silicon Valley office with dozens, eventually hundreds of phone volunteers, many of them with similar backgrounds to me.  Do you really want to lose the support of those people? You will if you move to the "all businessmen BAD" rhetoric.

                •  Well, that's okay. I don't mind. (3+ / 0-)
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                  a2nite, Little Flower, bryduck

                  I know that were gonna lose a lot of upper income whites with a more working class approach. Fact is though, there are a lot more retail workers, construction workers, cleaning ladies, truck drivers, warehouse foremen, etc. etc., than there are inventors and high tech people. Yes, I'd rather inventors just be Republicans if they want the Democratic Party to pay attention to their concerns.

                  Silicon Valley? Fuck em. They're doing just fine. They don't need any help.

                  What we need is a party that stands up for people who make a lot less money doing a lot less interesting shit. Mainly because they're more of them. But also because they're the ones in need of allies in Washington, not tech guys.

              •  Agreed & well said BBB (0+ / 0-)

                The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

                by a2nite on Thu Jul 19, 2012 at 12:53:36 PM PDT

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            •  Jobs & Reagan are in the same circle of hell (0+ / 0-)

              The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

              by a2nite on Thu Jul 19, 2012 at 12:52:53 PM PDT

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    •  No! Here's why he's using those names (0+ / 0-)

      He's relying on group loyalty to get us to shut up.

      Henry Ford and Steve Jobs are two CEO-types that liberals sympathize with, and often cite as "good guys".  Ford, because he actually paid his employees (and did a bottom-up stimulus), and Jobs because Apple products are so awesome.  

      By using these names, he's trying to set up a conflict where we want to criticize CEOs but we don't want to criticize these two.  Thus, he hopes, we'll back off criticizing CEO's to avoid criticizing Ford and Jobs.

      The problem is what bbb pointed out in the diary--- we don't hate CEO's as a class because they are evil. We recognize that  leaders only succeed when followers and others help, and no amount of biz-speak or butthurt outbursts will change that truth.

      Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

      by nominalize on Thu Jul 19, 2012 at 10:05:31 AM PDT

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      •  Hmmm... I didn't know liberals liked (1+ / 0-)
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        Henry Ford.  I can admire the work he did in setting up his car company, but he was still an antisemite nazi sympathizer.  Not exactly a liberal icon.  I didn't realize my sympathies were with Ford.

        I think it would hurt Mitt's feefees terribly if we were to suggest that he and the other venture capitalist "job creators" (that don't really create jobs) weren't the same thing as heroes of American ingenuity like Henry Ford.

        You know, if you read Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand's heroes are all great innovators in the Henry Ford mold.  Like Hank Reardon, sweating his ass off night and day to invent Reardon Steel.  The difference between the Ayn Rand ideal that the looney right want to see themselves as and the reality of venture capitalists like Romney is enormous.  They produce NOTHING.  They innovate NOTHING.  When they get in trouble, they get government bail outs.  They pay less taxes than their secretaries.  It's worth reminding everybody of that.

        We can do all that without making lame attempts to diminish Henry Ford's accomplishments through observations about how he had employees who worked hard.  Everybody knows that.  That kind of argument only REINFORCES the Republican argument that Democrats don't respect the accomplishment of business heroes.

        •  I didn't say like... (0+ / 0-)

          let's not put words in people's mouths. :)

          When we argue against income inequality, and want to show that paying employees better isn't bad for business, our go-to guy is Henry Ford.  Every time.  His name comes out of the mouths of liberals constantly.

          Does that mean Henry Ford is a liberal god?  Of course not. There is a vast gulf between evil conservative and liberal icon... and Henry Ford falls in between.  His notions of valuing the lowliest workers in his factories, etc. are values that underpin much of liberal policy today.  His paternalism, anti-Semitism, and his bizarro attempt to colonize Brazil, we ignore (the awareness by an infinitesimal minority notwithstanding).  That's what people do with historical figures, like Charles Lindbergh, etc.

          I think it would hurt Mitt's feefees terribly if we were to suggest that he and the other venture capitalist "job creators" (that don't really create jobs) weren't the same thing as heroes of American ingenuity like Henry Ford.
          I think so, too.  But Mr Romney's ego is irrelevant, because his choice isn't about him, but us.  What we have to ask is this: Of all the heroes of American ingenuity he could be comparing himself to, why pick those specific two?  Not Thomas Edison, not Bill Gates,  Walt Disney, Ray Kroc, Jeff Bezos, George Eastman, and so on.  Because liberals hold them in high esteem  

          Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

          by nominalize on Thu Jul 19, 2012 at 01:07:54 PM PDT

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