Fox News Blames Poor Children for Romney’s Bad Poll Numbers

With the economy still lagging, Mitt Romney is only neck in neck (47-47) with incumbent Barack Obama according to a WaPo/ABC poll taken May 17. This fact stunned Fox and Friends, with a scornful, cold-hearted Gretchen Carlson declaring that the reason people support President Obama on the economy is because they are taking “handouts”.

What programs exactly is Gretchen taking aim at? Safety net spending actually decreased in 2010 and 2011 under President Obama, but those programs went to feed poor children, help abused and neglected children, and offer assistance to families struggling with high energy and food costs.

Watch here courtesy of Media Matters:

Carlson said, “Here is why that is not shocking. Because we are at a tipping point in our country right now, and this is what the election will be all about — whether or not people want to have a handout and we’re reaching almost 50% of the country that is in that position, or you don’t, and if you do, that’s why you think President Obama is doing a good job with the economy, because you are getting what you need.”

Unless Fox is taking aim at their viewers’ Social Security and Medicare, spending on social safety net “handouts” actually declined in 2010 and 2011. The Center on Policy and Budget explained,”About 13 percent of the federal budget in 2011, or $466 billion, went to support programs that provide aid (other than health insurance or Social Security benefits) to individuals and families facing hardship. Spending on safety programs declined in both nominal and real terms between 2010 and 2011 as the economy continued to improve and initiatives funded by the 2009 Recovery Act began to expire.”

These programs prevented millions of Americans from entering poverty by giving assistance via food stamps and help with home energy costs, helping abused children and paid for school meals. If feeding children or keeping them warm in winter is what Gretchen means by “getting what you need” then yes, actually, many Americans will proudly stand by those values even if they are not actually benefiting from them directly.

I will agree with Gretchen that it’s stunning that the two candidates are tied. After all, Romney’s plan for the economy is the same Bush plan that got us into this mess, a plan that real fiscal conservatives still have nightmares about and distance themselves from to this day.

But Romney doesn’t plan to stop at the Bush debacle of wars left off of the budget while borrowing money to hand out tax giveaways to the rich. Oh, no. Romney has embraced the Randian Republican Paul Ryan budget. Now, one might think this is a matter of ideology; government spending versus alleged fiscal conservatism – but if one thought that, one would be in denial. For the Rand budget leaves us more in debt, as does the similar Romney budget.

Why is that, you ask? Well, see, if the US Government were a business, like Republicans say it is, then they would understand that said business needs to make revenue. Our largest source of revenue comes from taxes. Or rather, it used to under the heady days of Ronald Reagan.

But after alleged fiscal conservatives got a hold of our tax code, we are struggling to generate revenue. Under the Ryan budget, our revenue would be a low 15% of our GDP. As it is right now, we do not generate enough revenue to pay off of our spending, and this is due to the extension of the Bush tax cuts as well as our corporate tax code that allows many corporations to pay no taxes at all, legally, due to loopholes.

While there isn’t a one size fits all solution, we can’t cure debt with more debt. We need growth.

It’s easy to see why even if one buys into the frame that government should run like a business (in spite of the fact that our government was set up as a non-profit entity to protect the common good), the current Republican model of “business” is unsustainable.

Mitt Romney’s ideas for business are to starve the wages of the average American, give huge tax breaks to the wealthy, and make promises about trickles downward. We have been waiting for those trickles for over 40 years and it hasn’t worked. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity.

Fox and Friends are puppets for the corporations, disdainfully looking down upon the good people of this country for their circumstances, when their circumstances are the direct result of policies championed by Fox News.

We might wonder what the average poor Republican voter thinks as they listen to their aunts and uncles at Fox mock them, but have no fear. They are conditioned to think that while THEY deserve handouts, much like their corporate masters, other Americans, even children, do not. See, other Americans are lazy.

Yes, the people fired after Mitt Romney came to town and bankrupted the company where they were gainfully employed are lazy. It’s all their fault that no other manufacturing plant came to town, that mom and pop businesses shut down as a result of the Bain destruction, and that their pensions were stolen from them. Their fault.

Things like that never happen to hard-working Americans. In Fox world, bad things don’t happen to good people who work hard. Bad things only happen to those who deserve it. This is the equivalent of blaming someone for getting cancer after they work around asbestos for 40 years.

In the real world, we know all too well that bad things happen to good people all of the time. Good people lose their jobs, they get sick, their kids get a life-threatening illness, and brave veterans are homeless. These things do happen, and they aren’t explained by a simple blame the victim narrative. There isn’t an omnipotent God sitting up in Heaven only doling out rewards to the good. When hard-working families are hit by a bad economy, sometimes their kids go hungry and freeze. It bothers some Americans to think of families and children going hungry here in America, some of us even imagine “There but for the grace of God, go I.” So we put into place these emergency measures that Gretchen is so outraged by.

That is why a long time ago, when our country was founded, we made a government to look after the common good. We planned to use the common wealth for the common good — for things like education, infrastructure, taking care of our veterans, and scientific research. These services are valuable to the ongoing success of our country, and they are paid for via tax revenue.

Yes, it’s shocking that Mitt Romney is polling even with the President on the economy, given Romney’s Bushian economic plan coupled with the fact that his experience as a venture capitalist gives him zero understanding of how to negotiate with other countries regarding economic solutions that will benefit the US. Will he buy them up and bankrupt them? But sadly the even polls are explained quite well by Fox News’ distortion of reality and the subsequent trickle down of their propaganda. Their reasoning is “You want to fix this broken economy? Double down on what got us here!”

And of course, they never utter a word about the House Republicans jihad on economic recovery, or the manner in which Republicans cling to austerity measures for the people as they give huge handouts to the wealthy even though economists from both sides of the aisle know that is not the solution.

Perhaps it’s a combination of simple-mindedness, lack of imagination, and way too much fear, but conservatives appear cruel in their simplistic attempts to blame the victims of the conservative economy for their fate, especially when those victims are defenseless children.

Blaming children for taking handouts is exactly what Gretchen did, though she may not be aware of that fact, given that she issues proclamations about “handouts” and “entitlements” without appearing to know or understand exactly what those programs do in reality. Still, she’s accountable for her ignorance if she’s going to infest our national dialogue with it.

22 Replies to “Fox News Blames Poor Children for Romney’s Bad Poll Numbers”

  1. It’s amazing how the number of “lazy people who want a handout” always increases after the Republicans trash the economy in support of “the job creators”.

    *Something* is “trickling down”, but it doesn’t smell much like prosperity…

  2. I’ve said this before: “job”, in the Midwest, a half a century or so ago, was a euphemism for “turd”. So yes, those uppercrusters are “job creators”, and those jobs are just trickling down (the porcelain) even now.

  3. Well, maybe if more people had access to birth control and abortion services, they wouldn’t be having all these kids on welfare. It would take pennies to provide birth control as opposed to the enormous amount it takes to feed, clothe, and education a kid for 18 yrs.

    Does it ever dawn on these right-wing knuckleheads that their two positions- anti-birth control and anti-welfare are incompatible? What will it take for them to wake up and get with the program?

  4. So Fox is admitting that the GOP has been sabotaging the economy to up Romney’s chances???

    As for the campaign: it looks exceedingly dull to me: what are they going to say for the next six months? The GOP is just spinning and spinning the same yarn: Obama failed on the economy…Duh. Not THAT much of a failure, dudes!!!

    What else? They’ve discovered, apparently from their dumb focus groups that the swing voters don’t like the really stupid vitriolic ads directed at the Nazi/Communist/Kenyan/ et al. So now they are trying the soft approach: a fictional white middle class woman whose children have had to move back home because they can’t find jobs. And that’s supposed to do the trick?

    Hmm. This fictional white lady still, after all, HAS a HOME, it’s not been foreclosed on.

    But the GOP can’t go there, because all it wants to do is to imply that they will do better than Obama for those white Republican families that are now seeing what their GOP presidency for 8 years netted them. Implying, thus, that Obama’s only cleaning up the economy for the democratic demographic.

    Won’t work. They really CAN’T run on the economy, lest they open the door to powerful ads about the Bush economic crisis and the horrors it has brought on.

  5. as far as I’m concerned, it’s way beyond stunning that president Obama is not further ahead than he is. It’s pretty obvious that the GOP voters have no concept of what Romney’s plans are. Adding 10 trillion to the debt, cutting taxes and spending massively on the military, more than likely going to war with Iran and judging from the articles I have read from former Mormons far more than likely going to allow the Mormon leadership to influence his decisions.

    And if he still has a house or a Senate that is Republican our deficit will go up so much of it will be unbelievable. And the people who need support will lose all of it including seniors.

    But on the bright side the rich will be far richer while the Republicans try to figure out how to get more taxes out of people with no money

  6. Well, it’s clear to the Right Wing that the way to eliminate poverty is to eliminate poor people. They can’t do it by letting them earn more money, because that’s socialism. They can’t do it by letting them have birth control, because then immoral sluts wouldn’t be punished for having sex. The only way for a good, Gahd-fearing, ril uhMericun Republican to go about this is to make sure the poor folks have so many kids and so little income they all starve to death.

  7. Same ol’ chit, different day. Demonize the poor, that’s the name of the republican game, despite the fact that MILLIONS of those poor they’re demonizing are their own constituents.

    If you are a republican voter and you or anyone in your family takes one damn dollar of federal or state money in assistance, you better wake the he!! up. Food stamps, housing assistance, daycare assistance, SSI, disabled, free school lunches, medicare, medicaid, you name it…you use it and vote republican, you deserve what you may get.

  8. FOX NEWS… always hiring the intellectual elite… like Sarah Palin.

    Oh yeah..that’s right.. they just hire douchebags and bimbos.

  9. That or start another war.

    I’ve always wondered if the first and second world wars were tied to having large numbers of poor people and not enough jobs – especially the second world war. Then it was run so poorly that it is a miracle that Germany didn’t win (and lots and lots of those average citizens died – reducing the number of people seeking jobs).

  10. The Second World War was a complex issue, and though there was deliberate malfeasance on the part of Chamberlain and Bonnet, I’d say your conjecture does not apply to it. WWI may well have had such a factor behind it- surely on our part- but was largely due to the senile pride of a bunch of aging monarchs who were the tools of ambitious courtiers.

    I studied the European theater of the Second World War at some length. The threads tying it together are too intertwined to detangle here, yet without WWI there would have been no Hitler, and without Hitler, there would have been no WWII, though there may well have been separate conflicts in Europe, Asia, and possibly Mediterranean Africa and the area then called Abyssinia. Recall the words of Eowyn: those who have not swords can still die on them. Once Hitler had a sword, that was the choice before whoever was in his path.

  11. Spot-on, Dan! Gretchen Carlson…former Miss America!
    Seriously, we need to be commenting on articles where these brainwashed GOP Voters frequent.
    I’m constantly reading their comments that say: “Yea, if Obama wins all he will do is take from the Rich and Middle Class…and give it to the lazy bums who don’t want to work”. Lies & Lies of Omission are ALL many of our fellow Americans hear. Go to this Pub site…see what they’re reading and then…intelligently comment!
    Honestly, I’m getting the impression some of those poor ‘brainwashed folks’ are coming to realize it’s nothing but propaganda they’re being subjected to! Keep Commenting!

  12. These MORONS should be DRUG TESTED before they are allowed to go on TV presenting themselves as….uhhh….whatever it is they are supposed to be….a bunch of damn IDIOTS

  13. Fox news subscribes to the theory of the old white southern supremest, “Every thing I have I earned, and everything I don’t have is because the government is giving it away to the minorities.” And if they ever need a helping hand, well that’s different.

  14. Progressives have to do a much better job of jabbing back at the “name calling” and “partisan rancor”. After some liberty-loving conservative gets done taking cheap shots, all you have to do is ask them, “what is the next step”. They won’t have an answer, and we can get back to policy debate. You are correct, Romney policies will continue the disruption and carving out of our economy in leiu of building it. The very minor 1% will continue to accumulate more wealth that could serve as capital for our economy, at the expense of the majority. Unfortunately, that majority is quite silent, too strung out on iPods and Dancing with the Stars. Hopefully, they’ll wake up before November.

  15. Good gods and goddesses, I don’t even WATCH fauxnews and I am sick and tired of seeing these losers’ rancid (not even good for fertilizer) runny cowshit.

    Hang in there if you can, everyone.

    Your friend,


    Warren G. Richards
    Mesa AZ

  16. I think you’re being way too optimistic about the results of merely calling the right wing’s bluff. You’re making the classic progressive mistake: assuming the other guy will respond to reason and admit when he’s been beaten.

    Trust me, all asking “what’s the next step” will accomplish is a moebius loop of snarky bumpersticker slogans and if that doesn’t shut you up they’ll just keep ratcheting up the name calling or pivot to a totally different topic. Rinse and repeat until you get tired and give up.

    What progressives need to get better at is putting a spotlight on this kind of behavior so we can get these assholes voted out.

  17. The years of good Republican leaders are long gone. The last time that there was a Republican Presiednt who cared about “we The People”, and OUR needs as a nation, was when Dwight D. Eisenhower was President.
    Since then what have these people who call themselves The Republican Party done?
    Richard M. Nixon who resigned the office of the Presidency to avoid impeachment. Ronald Wilson Reagan, who began running us into the serious debt that we now face. George H.W. Bush who continued to run up the debt. His son George W.(wanted and self adimtted War Criminal) Bush who ran up the debt even further, with his unfunded wars, bogus perscription drug program, and massive tax cuts for the top two percent of annual incomes.
    The fact is that the lion’s share of the present national debt of $14,000,000,000,000.00 (and still counting) has been caused by Republican Presidents with their failed policy of “Borrow and Waste-o-Nomics”.
    The fact is that in January of 1981, The REAL Republican Party died, and was replaced by a new party that kept the name Republican, but have evolved into what we have today. They are actually what I, (and anyone who has been awake, and paying attention) refer to as “The ReNAZIpublican Party, Inc.
    They, and their OWNERS (a small group of wealthy individuals, and major corporations) have enacted, and been working on their master plan since January of 1981. It is their all new, (and not so improved) M.A.F. Plan (Make America Fail)!
    The ReNAZIpublicans, and their OWNERS want to do away with this “We The People” nonsence. They simply want to change the name of this nation from “The United States of America” to something that fits into their plans, and intentions.
    Something like “Your NAZI/Fascist States of Amerika, Inc.” (Misspell Intended) Where there will no longer be such a thing as “We The People” The ReNAZIpublicans, and their OWNERS will instad refer to us as “Them The Slaves”!

  18. How about Kilmeade’s asinine comment “I can’t believe this is neck and neck! I mean One guy ran a state, ran an organization, the other guy…..I don’t know” uhhhh, the other guy HAS RUN THE COUNTRY FOR THE PAST 4 YEARS! What a bunch of brain dead idiots….

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