Zac Byer: Gen Y He Said — Closing Argument for Mitt Romney

Our resident Gen Y “He Said; She Said” team — Jordan Stivers and Zac Byer (who also happen to be dating) offer their closing arguments for the presidential candidates.  Click here to read Jordan’s piece.  And Gen Y’s unofficial Hollywood spokeswoman, actor, writer and director Lena Dunham, weighs in here.

Here’s Zac:


Can America really afford to continue down the path we are on?

Can we afford to continue with the same policies that have left 23 million Americans unemployed?  That have resulted in the smallest labor force in over thirty years?  That have ballooned our national debt over $16 trillion – $5 trillion of which has been added in the last four years alone?

Forget about whether or not you’re satisfied with those numbers – I can’t believe you are.  So, the better question is whether you accept those numbers?  I sure hope you don’t.

We must bring real accountability to Washington.  Politicians don’t deserve free passes, especially when they pile even more debt on an already burdened public.  The cost of living is too high, and our national morale is too low.  Short-sighted, quick-fix economic policies and Washington solutions do not have to become the new normal.  Neither does the excuse-me-blame-him strategy.  We shouldn’t – and we won’t – accept that.

That’s why we shouldn’t accept four more years of poor prioritization, insincere excuses, and half-baked leadership.  It’s why we shouldn’t accept four more years of Barack Obama.


I won’t argue that the economy was in a good place on January 20, 2009.  The Bush Administration gave us a lot to pay for:  two wars, a new prescription drug subsidy, TARP, lower tax rates.  While his conservatism may have been compassionate, it certainly wasn’t cash-conscious.

And President Obama means well.  While I didn’t vote for him four years ago, I wanted him to succeed as much as his most loyal supporter.  When we wake up in the morning and go to sleep at night, we are still Americans…and we are all in this together.

But in the last four years, Obama’s hope has changed to disappointment.

Take the 2012 fiscal year.  The government taxed us to the tune of $2.5 trillion to operate the country.  Whether you think the 16th Amendment is the best or worst component of the Constitution, I hope you’ll agree that $2.5 trillion is a lot of money.  And yet, $2.5 trillion wasn’t enough for Obama’s government.  They spent $3.5 trillion – 44% more than they brought in!  Not only is that unsustainable, but in Mitt Romney’s words, that’s immoral.

Americans all across the country work hard to stick to a budget.  We live within our means, and we don’t spend more than we can afford.  If we can do it, why can’t Washington?  Why shouldn’t Washington?


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Zac Byer: Gen Y He Said — Closing Argument for Mitt Romney

Jordan Stivers: Gen Y She Said — Closing Argument for Obama

Many virtual trees have fallen in examining Gen Y’s involvement in Campaign 2012.  Seen as an excited, game-changing voting bloc in 2008 for Barack Obama, much has changed during the job-challenged recovery of the past few years.

Our resident Gen Y “He Said; She Said” team — Jordan Stivers and Zac Byer (who also happen to be dating) weighs in.  Click here to read Zac’s piece.  And Gen Y’s unofficial Hollywood spokeswoman, actor, writer and director Lena Dunham, weighs in here.

In 2008, I was a junior at the University of Kentucky and it was my first time voting in a presidential election.  I found it so exciting that my first ballot ever cast was for Barack Obama, a candidate so different from any I had ever seen or heard about, not only in terms of race or background, but in what he stood for – equality, opportunity, and working together.  As I walked around my fairly conservative campus the day after the election, wearing my Obama 08’ shirt and getting dirty looks from other students, I felt so proud that our country had come together and decided to go in a new direction.

I admit that a lot has changed since 2008, not only in my life, but in the country and in President Obama’s White House as well.  I’ve graduated from college, worked for two years, and started law school.  I’ve become an adult and realized that the state of the economy affects me and that it is vitally important for our national wellbeing.  The country has come down from the high it was on after the 2008 election, and because of the difficult recovery from the even more difficult financial situation Obama inherited, many have become disillusioned with the President.  But I don’t think this is a result of failed leadership of the President, but a result of our having impossibly high expectations of Obama, and a lack of understanding of the depth of the problems he has had to solve.

I’ve been hearing a lot of Republicans, and Mitt Romney himself, talking smugly about how young people are not as excited about Obama this time around, as if they’re saying, “I told you so, now you know better than to have any optimism about government and the good things it can achieve.”  This is so cynical.  The mood is different this time, but that’s natural.  The President has had the hard job of actually governing for the past four years, and some of the sexiness has worn off.  But this doesn’t mean that young people do not believe that President Obama is still the candidate with our best interests in mind.  Because of the President’s policies, I’ve been able to stay on my parents’ health insurance through my transition from school to work, then back to law school.  He’s supported many of my friends and colleagues who are gay by declaring that they should have the same rights as everyone else. He has kept student loan rates down so that we can pursue higher education. He’s allowed those of us who have grown up in the U.S. but are still not considered citizens to make it official.  And let’s not forget how strongly he has represented the U.S. in foreign policy by killing Osama Bin Laden.

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Jordan Stivers: Gen Y She Said — Closing Argument for Obama

Nancy Slotnick: Binders Full of Women

So ever since Romney used that phrase, I have  gotten boatloads full of nostalgic comments about Drip, the dating-café  that I started in the late ‘90s.  That’s because we actually did have binders full of women.  Women seeking Men.  Women seeking women.  And we set them up on dates.  With Matchmaker Café, we now do the same thing—i.e. set up men and women on real dates at a real café, and we introduce them when they get there.  Even though we now have all the technology we can imagine for meeting online, we still need that human interaction.   We still need personalized service and hand holding, even though we have Facebook.  Even though we have these things called aircraft carriers.

What made that comment about binders full of women so funny?  I think it was the irony.  If women were really equal in the world of politics, then Romney wouldn’t need to round up women in binders.  He wouldn’t have to go any farther then his own backyard.  They would already be on his short list.  So the binders represent a problem endemic to the system.  As did the binders at Drip.  They represented the same kind of problem.

When the world was simpler and people usually grew  old in the same town where they had grown up, they would meet their  mates through family and friends.  There were local community hang-outs and places like Cheers where everybody knows your name.  (Drip got compared to Cheers a lot.)  Today there’s a level of anonymity and isolation in big cities that engenders a problem when it comes to dating.  You need those binders full of women.  And you don’t have a staff like Romney did to round them up.  Luckily you’re only looking for one.

So why is it, in this age of Facebook, that no one uses Facebook for dating?  Facebook is our backyard, and it is the technological equivalent of binders full of women, yet there is embarrassment around your Facebook friends  knowing that you are single.  When I coach women about dating, I talk about turning your Cablight on, which means showing that you’re available.  When you turn it on then you get more and better dates.  But when Matchmaker Café wants to show your friends that you are using the App, a lot of you have told me that you want to turn off that feature.

What damage will be done if you’re friends know that you are single or that you are using Matchmaker Café?  Why is there a stigma?  Who has time for this ambivalence and mixed messages?  (Besides Romney’s staff.)  You have to show that you’re available by being open to rejection, and even embracing rejection. You have to post publicly for what you are looking for, even if it’s embarrassing.  I’m going to do that right now.  I’m looking for a café owner or small hospitality group in NYC who would like to partner with me to do a re-make of Drip.  We will have binders full of women.  But this time the binders will be digitized on iPads and the profiles will  utilize Facebook to tap into the existing social graph.  Why?  Because Facebook is online dating’s equivalent of nuclear submarines.  And because it will be so much fun.

The RP’s Weekly Web Gems: The Politics of Pigskin

The Politics of Pigskin

On Sunday the Steelers halted the rise of RGIII, who was outplayed by his senior in the league – Ben Roethlisberger. [Pitt Post-Gazette]

With their season slipping away by the week it’s time for the Cowboys to reevaluate. And make no mistake, Jerry Jones is going to be on top of it. [ESPN]

Seasons falling apart? Don’t forget about the Eagles! After firing defense coordinator Juan Castillo the Eagles went out and had one of their worst defensive performances of the year. You can’t fire Castillo again. [SI]

Denver pounded a really, really bad Saints defense. How bad is it? Historically. [PFT]

The Buccaneers appear to have a problem with their cornerbacks taking the banned substance, Adderall. []

Just for fun, here is a Sports Illustrated article from 1979 asking people around the league how they thought the game would be played in the year 2000. [SI Vault]


S. Randolph Waldman: A Closing Argument for Romney

I could write several pages of  why I think that Mitt Romney must be our next President but I realize that much  of it will fall on deaf ears as everyone has their own take on every issue that  I will bring up. Some will call out for a larger government, and I will argue for  a smaller government. Some will call out for increasing taxes, while I would  argue the opposite. So I am not going to waste my time or yours repeating the same party talking points.

I think that there is one issue that no one can really argue. We must have bi-partisan participation and compromise in the next four years if we are to resolve the major fiscal problems that threaten not only our country but also the entire free world.

Barack Obama promised to unite our country but we knew early on that this  would not be the case. Early examples were sobering including the failed stimulus trillion and the health care plan. Obama has not only failed to unite us….”there are no blue states or red states only the United States” ….but he  has been the most partisan President in the history of the US.

Romney has been called a Massachusetts moderate by his challengers in the  Republican Party and most of us think that is accurate. He reached across the  aisle as a Governor and everyone expects him to do the same as President. Does  anyone really think that Axelrod, Jarrett, Holder, Cutter, or other White House  insiders to do the same. Instead it will be four more years of a dysfunctional  Washington where name and blame continues and the public continues to be more and more disenchanted.

We need a President who will actually meet with Democrats as often as he  does Republicans . We need to shove aside ideology in favor of pragmatism. There  is only one candidate who will appoint moderates to positions of leadership.  There is only one candidate who will govern from the middle. Mitt Romney must be our next President .

S. Randolph Waldman, MD is the Director of Waldman -Schantz Plastic Surgery

Dan Creinin: A Closing Argument for Obama

While our current POTUS has not come through with many of the campaign promises that he made in the 2008 election, I get the sense that he takes responsibilities for these missed goals, and will continue to work toward moving the country forward.

When I listen to Mitt Romney, and look at the amount of pivoting that he has done, I feel he speaks with a forked tongue.  I think that he is a strong business leader, but, I don’t think that he has the majority of this country in mind.  I don’t feel like he can truly connect with the middle, wherever the middle is.

It’s not one thing, but a summary of things.  Everyone makes a bad comment, or has a bad day, but, with Mitt, in looking at this statements, he seems to be contradicting himself throughout the entire nomination and election process.

I don’t feel like he can be trusted with running this country.

Greg Harris: Closing Argument for Mitt Romney — Views from his Base

Insurance Executive:  We don’t like Obamacare.  Before Obama, our control over the health industry gave us great license to do everything we wanted to do in order to make big bucks.  A person on one of our polices who gets really sick and expensive to cover?  Throw them off.  A child with a pre-existing condition who will cost more to insure over a lifetime?  Deny her coverage.  Can’t afford coverage?  Sucks to be you.

We also became very adept at spending more on ourselves and our middle-men than spending on healthcare.  Obama now isn’t letting us do that.  We actually have to send rebates to the people we insure if we spend more on ourselves than on their health!  And his purchasing cooperatives will make us compete with private insurers in cities and in some cases, entire states, in areas where we once had absolute monopolies, which will make us lower prices to be competitive.  Yeah, we price out about 50 million people, but that’s free enterprise!  Vote Romney!

Plutocrat:  Obama will appoint Supreme Court Justices that will most certainly overturn Citizens United.  My ability to anonymously fund Super PAC’s with unlimited dollars is my right because the Supreme Court says spending and speech are one in the same.  Indeed, rich people are now much freer than everyday people.  Let’s keep it that way.  I spent $20 million helping Romney via my Super PAC; but that’s a drop in the bucket compared to tax cuts I will receive if Romney prevails.  And some of my wealth will even trickle down to the lowly 47%, so everybody wins!  Vote Romney!

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Greg Harris: Closing Argument for Mitt Romney — Views from his Base

Tim Hamm: A Closing Argument for Obama

Quite simply, one has to ask before pulling the lever: Do I want this man to be president?

Do I want my candidate to win, or simply the other man to lose?

I know when I voted for the president’s re-election that I would be getting a return to fair taxation, a continued drawdown of foreign wars, the rights of women respected fully, and a continuation of a recovery program that has taken us from hemorrhaging 700000 jobs a month to gaining thousands more.

Still, the right has vilified this man from jump street.  Their stated top priority on his election day was not to help the country right itself after the failure of their rule, but to defeat the president.  For four years they have stood in the way of growth for their own political ends.  They have blocked every measure they could that would improve the economy and to top it off, they are now running a candidate without a single firm position other than, “I’m not the guy your radio tells you to hate.”

Will you reward them?

Will you elect a man who has presented no ideas?

Will you hand power back to those who have so recently and so fully abused it?

John Y’s Musings from the Middle: Travels to SoCal

Another day traveling by air.

Another day with mild to modest frustration with a major airline.

The major airlines seem more and more to remind me of a old school ma’arm, just waiting to slap you on the wrist for something inconsequential.

Mostly because they enjoy doing it…

And another day, thankfully, salvaged by Southwest.

The new cool substitute teacher that all the students love. And all the school marmy teachers hate.  ;  )


In SouCal airports you see a lot of people who look like celebrities, carry themselves like a celebrity , and who want to be confused for a celebrity–but who are not a celebrity.

I think it’s fun.

The fun part for me is staring at them awestruck and looking like, carrying myself like and wanting to be confused for one of their fans.


It smells good in California.

Even in the airport.


It’s like people here shower two or three times a day.

Or use some sort of New Age magnetic device that repels dirt and dust and prevents perspiration.

It’s not quite human.

Like a fresh fruity well-toned  Droid  who just finished another colon cleanse.

I somehow worry that people I say hi too will suspect I don’t smell like one of them and know I’m not from here.

The  low level humming from my iPhone from the Black Crowes isn’t helping any either


It’s a dog’s life —not!

Remember the bleak saying about every down-and-outer getting their moment, “Every dog has it’s day”? I doubt that gets used in SoCal.

As I pulled out of the airport into San Diego last night the one thing I noticed over….and over…. and, yes, over again…was the privileged life that dogs lead out here.

At least one in three people I saw out last night in a suburb near downtown San Diego were walking their well-groomed, poised and, frankly, self-confident dog(s). Not in a cutesy or ostentatious way, like Paris Hilton carrying a tiny lap dog in her purse as a sort of panting accoutrement. Rather it was a normal person finally acting like the “dog’s best friend” we’ve always promised to be but—as any dog you know will tell you—have not lived up to.

And that attention and connection with their human shows, too—shows in the way SoCal dogs carry themselves and interact with other dogs—and even humans. They have a carriage about them which says, “Welcome to my town. Notice my owner. Pretty cool guy, huh?” It’s like the dogs are as self-conscious of who is walking them as their owners are about impressing others with their choice and type and breed of dog.

It’s darn near like the dogs out her are treated as a separate but co-equal species to humans. When you see a person and their dog on a chain walking, it’s not like back home. It’s like a couple out to get ice cream. Sure, the human appears to have control of the leash, but I suspect if you look closely it’s some sort of mutual canine-human leash that lets the two co-equal species stay together but without holding hands, or paws.

Oh, and dogs aren’t left outside here when their human pet goes into a store. No hitching post for these darlings. The dog walks in with every right to be there as anybody else. And seems a little impatient because there isn’t a larger canine section.

And as much as I hate to admit it, these dogs can be intimidating to people visiting from out of town. A strong-and-silent type pit bull was in Rite Aid last night with a cute young couple for a walk. The dog was well-manicured and obviously a female because it had a little bow in the corner of its well-coiffed mane.  She began sniffing me—not like other dogs…but slyly as if by accident— and I instantly felt self-conscious when the dog looked up at me with these soft but probing and judgmental eyes. Although my new domesticated pit bull acquaintance didn’t say these exact words out loud, she was clearly thinking “You’re not from around here, are you? What….what kind of –whatever it is that you are….are you? And don’t even think about cutting in front of us in line. I’ll bite you and humiliate you in front of everyone. I’m still a dog, you know. Are we clear?”

I nodded affirmatively to the dog. I recovered my bearings long enough to realize something wasn’t quite right and mumbled, “Nice bow.”

The dog’s head whipped around as if to say, “What was that?!” “What?” I said. “I didn’t say anything.” The human owners looked oddly at me.

I offered, “Sorry. I wasn’t talking to you.”

It was the first time in a very long time that I felt like Junior from Hee-Haw stammering for something to say and knowing it would not be something appropriate or helpful. So I just kept quiet. And let this dog have its day. Like it does everyday in SoCal.

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John Y’s Musings from the Middle: Travels to SoCal

James Pence: My Closing Argument for NOTA (NSFW)

(While this closing argument might approach the civility line, it certainly is bi-partisan (or anti-partisan), and it was too funny to pass up. Besides, we love Jim Pence, who blogs at Hillbilly Report. – eds)

My fellow Americans. This has been a long and trying campaign and I’m sure you’ve noticed that I intend to screw you if I’m elected.

My opponent has said time and time again he intends to screw you to.

Screwing 314,653,649 people is a big job and we’re asking, along with your vote, you send us any left over Viagra you might have and in turn we’ll send you a coupon for a extra large tube of K-Y Jelly.

I am asking for your vote and look forward to screwing you. God bless you and God bless America.

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