GOP debate: Romney edges Perry, and the stage is set for a long, good contest

Mitt Romney won Wednesday night’s GOP presidential debate over newcomer Rick Perry, but not by much. Based on what I heard and saw, we’re in for a long and compelling contest between the two candidates at the front of the pack.

Romney won, I thought, for two main reasons, both of them noteworthy but neither of them definitive at this point:

First, Romney came prepared with new ways to disarm the Texas governor’s job-creation boasts without being seen as “messing with Texas.” He didn’t try to disparage the quality of the state’s many new jobs, as Democrats have done — just to question exactly how much Perry had to do with them. When Perry took the first shot, putting down Romney’s record on jobs as Massachusetts’ governor, first Romney defended his record as the work of a turnaround artist who stopped a free-falling state and got it rolling in the right direction. Then he went after Perry:

States are different. Texas is a great state. Texas has zero income tax, Texas is a right to work state, a Republican legislature, a Republican Supreme Court. Texas has a lot of oil and gas in the ground, those are wonderful things, but the governor doesn’t believe he created those things. If he tried to say that, it’d be like Al Gore saying he created the Internet.

The clear message: Texas’ success predates Perry and surpasses his influence. Then, when Perry responded with a line we’ve heard before — that Michael Dukakis had a better job-creation record in Massachusetts than Romney did — Romney was ready with this response: “George Bush and his predecessor created jobs at a faster rate than you did, governor.”

A check of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows Texas added 1.7 million jobs during Bush’s time as governor (January 1995 to December 2000) compared to 1 million since Perry took over from Bush. The BLS data sets only go back to 1993, so we can’t compare the record of Bush’s predecessor, Ann Richards — or those of Romney and Dukakis. (If I find another source, I’ll update this post.)

The second reason Romney won is that he seemed to have his sea legs under him a bit more. After not being challenged very much in the first few debates, Romney was ready to take punches and swing back. He went on offense when necessary, played defense pretty effectively and knew when to stay out of the scrum: He made a smart decision not to pile onto Perry about the Gardisil issue, simply pointing out that Perry had already admitted it was a mistake, but without arguing against the other candidates who’d laid blows on the Texan.

It wasn’t that Perry was nervous or hesitant — on the contrary, he jumped right into the fray and seemed to relish it. He didn’t make any big mistakes. On a few occasions, he looked at the camera — and thus the public — rather than the moderators. He knows how to handle himself in a debate.

What I mean is that Perry didn’t quite seem to be in a groove the way Romney and some of the other candidates — yes, there were six others on the Reagan Library stage — did. By now, we know Michele Bachmann is the focused, on-message assailant of Obamacare; Rick Santorum is the guy most interested in social issues and attacking other candidates’ hesitance about foreign “adventurism” (to use Perry’s word); Newt Gingrich is the guy who questions the questioners for some of their questions and tries to keep the field focused on Obama rather than each other; Herman Cain is the businessman with the businesslike approach; Jon Huntsman is the guy willing to challenge some elements of GOP orthodoxy (and who did far better Wednesday than in his initial debate appearance — maybe enough to register 2 or even 3 percent in the next round of polling!); and Ron Paul is Ron Paul (and, in what turned out to be Wednesday’s final word, he gave an outstanding answer about compassion not being about the government “giving away free stuff”).

Perry came across as a candidate who is focused on jobs, jobs, jobs, and who wants to speak in big-picture terms rather than the more technocratic details of Romney, Cain (of the 9/9/9 plan) or even Huntsman. Thus, Perry doesn’t want to talk about tweaking Social Security here and there; he wants to label it a Ponzi scheme. And, despite the protests of Romney on Wednesday, and of Karl Rove earlier this week, I think Perry is smart to talk in these terms as Social Security relates to younger Americans — the majority of whom agree with Perry that the system won’t survive until their retirement — while pledging not to change the deal for Americans already in retirement or approaching it. If older Americans believe him, younger Americans won’t penalize him for saying what they believe to be true.

Then again, it might just be that Perry, as the newcomer, isn’t ready to commit to any details. That’s what I mean about being unsure of how to think about him just yet. I think it’s possible that a big-picture candidate — with a track record as governor that says the details will be taken care of — can be successful in the primary and against Barack Obama. But it remains to be seen if that’s really what Perry is.

As I said at the outset, the match-up between Romney and Perry is compelling enough to have some staying power — and to force all the other candidates into the shade. With five four more debates scheduled before Thanksgiving [NB: The original link is broken so I've replaced it, albeit with one that only shows four more debates in that time frame], we’ll get a good idea of whether Romney can keep his critiques of Perry fresh and effective, and whether Perry not only holds up but keeps up his early momentum.

(Note: Because of the timeliness of the debate, my Thursday print column will be published online a few hours later than usual, around noon today.)

– By Kyle Wingfield

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140 comments Add your comment

Romney who?

September 8th, 2011
5:21 am

Well, Mitt is unemployed and has been since 2006. Romney has 60 plus attorneys at his finger tips to advise him, and a host of other folks. Romney has all kinds of time to brush up on his debating skills, plus he has a state-of-art ear piece which no doubt he fine tuned since the debate it was picked up by the mikes and heard by everyone.

Given Perry is full time employed and handling a crisis in his state, seems to me Romney is the loser not the winner. Romney usually comes across a bit hair-brained.

At any rate Romney is a creep, like he was during his 2008 run.

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 8th, 2011
6:08 am

Great debate, and it’s great to have several superior candidates to choose from. Meanwhile, Democrats are chained to an inept loser whose policy ideas have failed miserably.

ByteMe

September 8th, 2011
6:25 am

He made a smart decision not to pile onto Perry about the Gardisil issue, simply pointing out that Perry had already admitted it was a mistake, but without arguing against the other candidates who’d laid blows on the Texan.

Romney needs Perry around as a foil as the race gets going. Don’t want to take him out with one punch when you can keep him around week after week as a punching bag. Romney knows the rest of the dwarfs on stage won’t get to the finish line (and most won’t make it past the January 1 payout), so he’s focused on Perry and wants to keep him in the race while slowly beating the snot out of him.

Perry sounds very sure of himself even when he’s completely wrong. Does he not realize that this is all on tape and not every state in the country is as crazy as Iowa and South Carolina and Texas? He also has to win in NY or CA or FL to get the nomination and win at least one of those to win the general. There are enough clips now of him saying he’ll kill Social Security that his time is limited. Did he really mention Galileo in support of his anti-science position??

Bachmann showed her insecurities. She kept inflating her record to make it seem like she was more than she really was. She claimed she was a leader on education reform. What exactly did she accomplish while she “led” that reformed education as we know it? She also, for the first time, looked old on stage. The clock is ticking for her.

Paul is a cranky old guy who wants to abolish the FAA, like that’s going to work out well. No wonder the media ignores him even when other cranky old people don’t.

Huntsman needs to take it up a notch, but I’m not sure he can. He’s a technocrat and that would play well against Perry, but doesn’t separate him from Romney.

Lead still to Romney, regardless of the polls. It’s not a nationwide election, but a state-by-state one and Romney has the numbers on his side.

Mark

September 8th, 2011
7:03 am

Ron Paul gets ignored by the media because he’s not bought and paid for like the other puppets. He gets ignored because he’s the only one that will do what is right and not what the big banks and wall street crooks tell him to do.
He wants to “End the Fed”, ( not the Fed Aviation Admin). Fed as in Federal Reserve. Reality check people…Bernanke and company can’t keep printing money out of thin air forever. Wake up, do some research other than mainstream media. Take a look at the history of our banks. Look at Europe right now. That chaos is coming people!

Traci

September 8th, 2011
7:08 am

Ron Paul may be a cranky old man but who can blame him? Have you looked at the state of US lately? Paul is the ONLY one of these candidates that I believe is honest and means what he says and is consistent. He is our last chance of not getting more of the same as he is a different breed. Will he win over one of the other two? Probably not which is why I will vote Libertarian again.

Karl Marx

September 8th, 2011
7:16 am

Ron Paul cannot win. He is too closely associated with the Libertarians which will never score more than 3%. I worry about Perry s close associations with Al Gore and I think he has been dodging questions about his Democrat years. Romney did well last night and I might not like it but he can and likley would beat Obama.

Tommy Maddox

September 8th, 2011
7:30 am

It was great seeing Newt calling out the media. All for one; all for ousting Obama.

Joe The Plumber too.

September 8th, 2011
7:35 am

For the first debate he has been in, I think Perry did well, not great but well. As the new kid on the block he was prepared for the attacks and fended off the moderators attempts to start the bickering among the eight pretty good. Newt was good with reminding everyone this is about getting rid of urkle, whomever the nominee is. Newt knows his campaign is going down the drain and by promoting unity he opens up a graceful bow out for himself. Romney held his own and Bachman seemed more at ease and focused. Herman Cain was all but ignored again, I think he will be a fine Cabinet pick for the next President though. I still see Perry/ Rubio as the ticket as long as Perry doesn’t destroy his own campaign. It’s time for Huntsman, Newt & Santorum to exit. Ron Paul also but we know that moonbat isn’t going anywhere.

Moderate Line

September 8th, 2011
7:43 am

Jobs under Anne Richards 847,778 in 4 years which is 17,662 a year.
Jobs under George Bush 1,067,275 in ~5 years under 15,032 a year.
Jobs under Perrry 1,221,505 in 11 years or 9,618 a year.

http://www.bls.gov/lau/

Moderate Line

September 8th, 2011
7:54 am

Mark

September 8th, 2011
7:03 am
Ron Paul gets ignored by the media because he’s not bought and paid for like the other puppets.
++++
That is really a cop out. Blame someone else for your failures.The media goes after the buck. If enough people liked Ron Paul they would follow him. Ron Paul is the Republican version of Ralph Nader.

ragnar danneskjold

September 8th, 2011
7:54 am

The language matters to me. I am wary of any candidate who implies that government or governors “create” jobs in the private sector. Government “stimulus” or government “investment” or government “jobs creation” never works, it merely shifts public funds to friends of the stimulator.

I am far more comfortable with politicians who acknowledge that government can only get in the way of job formation, and who would pledge to minimize that interference. That principle generally suggests that any of the republican candidates, even Huntsman, would be superior to the community organizer in chief.

carlosgvv

September 8th, 2011
8:06 am

Perry still insists that Social Security is a ponzi scheme. Is he actually advocating doing away with SS? If so, 50 million voters on SS will give him the boot big time!!

Tea Party Hobbit

September 8th, 2011
8:11 am

Ragnar, my wife and I feel the same way – any of the candidates up there would be a better POTUS than the current one. She prefers Bachmann and if it were up to me Cain would be the candidate, but we both know likely we’ll be picking between Romney and Perry. We loved Gingrich’s role last night – cheerleader and defender of the “faith”, if you will. Keep him in the debates (somehow, please, GOP!) he is one of the best things going, if for no other reason then he helps keep our attention on the true goal! And whoever wins the nomination will need the full support of the rest of the candidates up there. Okay, may not happen with the Ron Paul crowd, but whatever…

Tea Party Hobbit

September 8th, 2011
8:14 am

carlosgvv,

He said he would not do away with SS, but he does want it to be fixed. He actually is correct though – any new program designed the way SS is, if it were introduced today, would sound like it came from the mouth of Bernie Madoff. Like it or hate it, Perry uses exaggerative inflammatory language, it’s just his style. I guess we’ll find out soon enough how effective it is.

jt

September 8th, 2011
8:17 am

Ron Paul in 2012.
.
I will never vote for a centrally planned economy, perpetual warfare/welfare, and/or general headdown rot.

ByteMe

September 8th, 2011
8:28 am

He wants to “End the Fed”, ( not the Fed Aviation Admin). Fed as in Federal Reserve. Reality check people

Actually, last night he was clear that the federal government shouldn’t be in air traffic control, that it should be left to the free market or to the states. Like that would work. :roll:

Tiberius - Your lightning rod of hate!

September 8th, 2011
8:40 am

“Ron Paul gets ignored by the media because he’s not bought and paid for like the other puppets. He gets ignored because he’s the only one that will do what is right and not what the big banks and wall street crooks tell him to do.”

Ron Paul gets ignored by the media because he comes across as the crazy uncle you only want to visit twice a year.

For no more than an hour at a time.

In his case, it isn’t the message so much as it is the messenger.

carlosgvv

September 8th, 2011
8:49 am

Tiberius – “he comes across as the crazy uncle(aunt) you only want to visit twice a year”

Actually, almost all of the Republican candidates come across that way. And Obama comes across as Jimmy Carter. That old saying “can’t win for losing” comes to mind for us voters.

Joe The Plumber too.

September 8th, 2011
8:52 am

Tiberius: Ron Paul gets ignored by the media because he comes across as the crazy uncle you only want to visit twice a year.
Now that is funny, true but funny.

jt

September 8th, 2011
8:56 am

What’s up with this Kyle?
MSNBC poll.
(oh.. I know……….polls don’t mean nothing.right?)

Ron Paul

49.1%
(50,815 votes)
Mitt Romney

17.8%
(18,390 votes)
Rick Perry

14.7%
(15,205 votes)
Jon Huntsman

7%
(7,210 votes)
Newt Gingrich

4.7%
(4,835 votes)
Herman Cain

3.3%
(3,416 votes)
Michele Bachmann

2.4%
(2,443 votes)
Rick Santorum

Tiberius - Your lightning rod of hate!

September 8th, 2011
9:01 am

jt, please don’t try to hang your hat on a viewer poll where the respondents aren’t random. It is a virtually meaningless way to determine a winner because the candidate “faithful” skew the results.

Joe ther Plutocrat

September 8th, 2011
9:03 am

so, Social Security is a Ponzi scheme? what’s Perry’s take (or Cain’s, didn’t he help create all those jobs when he ran Burger King?) on private sector ranchers grazing their cattle on Federal land? while it is true they pay a fee to Uncle Sam; as with Social Security, the Federal Government spends more than the revenue generated by these paltry fees. why do you (and Herman Cain) think a McDonald’s or BK hamburger can be sold for .99? if ranchers had to purchase land in the “free market” and pay to irrigate, fertilize, and manage the land; beef would be $200/lbs! as has been stated by others; Ron Paul is the only truthful, pro-America candidate (along with his libertarian twin Gary Johnson) GOP candidate; and Paul has no chance. Ron Paul is not crazy;; the American people (especially the neo-con GOP) are crazy. You all need to skip over to the American Conservative.com and read Andrew Bacevich’s brilliant column about the end of the American Empire. read it; and weep.

Joe The Plumber too.

September 8th, 2011
9:05 am

Ron Paul is a moonbat. Not quite as bad as his followers but close.

Ceaser

September 8th, 2011
9:07 am

Yep, right on queue, here come the Ron Paul nazis! You idiots. Go crawl back up under the sheets mommie tucked you in under.

Anyway moving forward, the best back-n-forth last night was when Perry said Romney’s predecessor created jobs 4 times faster while governor. Mitt fired right back to Perry that so did George Bush when he was governor compared to Perry.

But aren’t we grateful that the Incompetent In Chief, who these debates are all about, backed off his little copycat move to have the “jobs” speech the same night and pushed it back a day? This president already had the guts to follow the GOP around like a lost puppy dog in Iowa. Yeah, the GOP said they’d have no response. Nanny Pelosi got her botox lips all puckered up and said it was an insult to the president. Uhm, SO WHAT? All the GOP has to do is replay one of their responses from the 2009 or 2010 ‘jobs” speech. Obama will have nothing new to offer, as he’s had for the past nearly three years.

Tea Party Hobbit

September 8th, 2011
9:08 am

Ron Paul…the overwhelmingly favored candidate by hackers everywhere. If it does not make sense why, read up on libertarianism!

The Real Fletch

September 8th, 2011
9:10 am

Wow, for all of the Obamatrons who cry how backwards Texas is, please realize that on paper, they are doing exactly everything right. If the US was doing as well as TX, we would be smiling ear to ear right now.

Here’s why: “States are different. Texas is a great state. Texas has zero income tax, Texas is a right to work state, a Republican legislature, a Republican Supreme Court.”

Guess what the most indebted states and the poorest cities in the US have in common? You guessed it.

[...] – Kyle Wingfield of the Atlanta Journal: GOP debate: Romney edges Perry, and the stage is set for a long, good contest Mitt Romney won Wednesday night’s GOP presidential debate over newcomer Rick Perry, but not by [...]

Joe ther Plutocrat

September 8th, 2011
9:13 am

Joe the Plumber too, a “moonbat”? really? how so? because he doesn’t trust the Federal Reserve Bank (which has devalued our currency to the tune of 95 cents on the dollar, and used this Ponzi scheme to fund numerouas asset bubbles on Wall Street and Main Street; as well as multi-trillion dollar “nationbuilding” and “world’s policeman” boondoggles abroad? because he wants to abolish the IRS? seriously, you folks are rubes. Paul is dismissed and ridiculed because he is a threat to the plutocrats and oligarchs that rape Americans every day. and here’s a memo for you; when John Stewart refers to Paul as “the crazy uncle” the joke speaks more about the American people’s lemming-like consumption of the mainstream media’s dismissal of Paul, than Paul himself. long before their were “moonbats” who collectively refer to themselves as the Tea Party; Paul was towing the line as a principled, paleo-conservative libertarian.

DJ Sniper

September 8th, 2011
9:15 am

I’m just waiting for some media source to start pointing out how the Texas wildfires are blazing out of control at the same time that Rick Perry slashed funding to the organizations that fight these fires. And for all the bluster about the “Texas Miracle”, people tend to forget that Texas still has a pretty bad unemployment rate and it has the highest number of uninsured residents of any states.

Tiberius - Your lightning rod of hate!

September 8th, 2011
9:20 am

My thoughts on last night:

Romney: Continues to run a general election campaign. Looked good, sounded just right, even played peacemaker with the Perry / Gardisil issue (of course, it would have opened up a discussion about Romneycare, so probably a good idea not to pile on since the rest of them were so effective).

Perry: Great answer on the “cheering for the death penalty” follow-up from Brian Williams. His “Ponzi scheme” mantra for Social Security, while technically correct, is going to doom him with older voters, and while it might play to younger ones, they aren’t going to come out in numbers to offset the blue hairs.

Ron Paul: See above.

Michele Bachmann: Fading fast. The mainstream media has a new pinata in Perry, so she’s not even getting good questions anymore. No gaffes, but no chances to exceed the now elevated expectations she has since the first debate.

Herman Cain. Great stump speaker, but not every good thinking on his feet in a debate. He has :30 second answers to one minute questions and relied too much on rhetoric after those first :30 seconds or so were up.

Newt Gingrich: Fantastic answer on Ben Bernanke. He continues to be the pot banger for the rest of the field when it comes to calling out the mainstream media and is arguably one of the smartest, most knowledgeable on that stage, but still doesn’t connect with the average voter.

Jon Huntsman: There is something every unsettling watching him speak. Certainly devoid of any passion. The one raised eyebrow is a bit creepy, too. But while I found his answers better defined last night, he still lacks a charm that can connect with people whom he wants voting for him. Might be angling for Secretary of State if the GOP nominee wins in November.

Rick Santorum. Lousy U.S. Senator, alienates general election voters with his social agenda, and doesn’t get it on U.S. military adventurism. Still looks as if Ward Cleaver is going to send him to bed without his supper if he doesn’t answer the question right.

Left wing management

September 8th, 2011
9:21 am

first Romney defended his record as the work of a turnaround artist who stopped a free-falling state and got it rolling in the right direction

Sort of like Obama got the free-falling US economy out of its 700k-jobs-per-month spiral in 2009?

Joe ther Plutocrat

September 8th, 2011
9:23 am

OK Ron Pauliphobes, let me ask you this; remember the movie Navy SEALs? Charlie Sheen played a Navy SEAL. he had good days and bad days as a SEAL, but of course, we all know it was a movie. Now, remember in May when a team of Navy SEALs took down Ossama bin Laden? On the television screen (and in name), both were SEALs. the difference is; Charlie Sheen and his “team” were actors who were recruited, trained and directed to perform in a ficticious production designed to generate $$$ for a handful of investors. the SEALs who took down bin Laden are the real deal. the were not recruited; they volunteered and they perform because they believe in the mission and believe in America. so you can support the actors who do whatever the director(s) tells them, or you can support the true patriots who do what the Constitution tells them. I don’t even like Paul (I am more a Gary Johnson fan), but his veracity and character are what separates him from the shameless, shape-shifting posers who call themselves “Republicans”.

LeeH1

September 8th, 2011
9:25 am

I hope all those people who have their parents living on Social Security, will find it easy to take them back in to their own homes when Rick Perry kills the program!

It will certainly help share the poverty!

Tiberius - Your lightning rod of hate!

September 8th, 2011
9:27 am

“Sort of like Obama got the free-falling US economy out of its 700k-jobs-per-month spiral in 2009?”

The difference is that Romney didn’t go into debt to the tune of $3 trillion (or any debt at all for that matter) to make that turnaround happen.

Alex

September 8th, 2011
9:30 am

Ron Paul 2012. He is the only one with enough guts to get the job done.

The Austrian Brotherhood

September 8th, 2011
9:36 am

@byteme

Canada’s air traffic control is privatized you dimwitted socialist scumbag. Why don’t you change your name to kickme, better yet, change it to kickmeintheteeth cause lot’s of folks would pay good money to do it given your ignorant evil statist mindset. Sick, dumb POS

Intown

September 8th, 2011
9:38 am

I cannot bring myself to watch a Republican debate. It is garbage logic/ideology arguing against garbage logic/ideology. But, if Kyle is right, then Republicans will hopefully exhaust themselves beating on each other in the primaries. And Obama sails to victory in a 2nd term … and one branch of the federal government is saved for another 4 years.

Joe The Plumber too.

September 8th, 2011
9:39 am

lee, perhaps the most idiotic post of the day. Nobody wants to take away what seniors have coming but if you think there is any difference in what SS has become to what Madoff did then even using small words won’t help you. SS is broken, has been for a long time and a new way of saving needs to done for future generations.

Joe The Plumber too.

September 8th, 2011
9:41 am

Have to run and make some urkle dollars to recharge a few bedwetters ebt’s. Be nice.

Tiberius - Your lightning rod of hate!

September 8th, 2011
9:46 am

“I cannot bring myself to watch a Republican debate.”

Wow. Admitting that you prefer to remain ignorant about alternatives to the most incompetent President In modern history.

Pretty bold to do that, Intown.

kayaker 71

September 8th, 2011
9:47 am

Not one of these candidates is advocating “taking away social security”. That has been a political ploy to scare seniors and others from tanking a candidate for decades now. None of the seniors presently on SS will see a change in their monthly payments. They are advocating change which would affect 35 and 40yr olds. The reason why SS is in such peril is obvious….. Congress and our government stole all of the funds contributed and spent them on something else. SS recipients are being paid with borrowed money. If that’s not a Ponzi scheme, I must be missing something.

retired early

September 8th, 2011
9:49 am

I did not realize there are so many millionaires out there. You GOP supporters on this blog must be thrilled at the prospect of an all GOP government, especially when you look back at all the great benefits you get from the Grand Old Party. You pay 18% of “net income” in taxes…this is AFTER deducting several million in mortgage interest from your first AND second homes. While someone making under 20,000 per year, who pays rent, can’t deduct a dime from their income tax…ha ha ha.
THOSE people don’t deserve a break. Man, what a great country, and healthcare!!!…PLEASE, if they can’t afford…tough sh*t…right. Now when the GOP gets “total control” you will get “EVEN BIGGER” tax cuts because it will “create jobs”, just like it did during the Bush years…NOT!!! but hell, the uneducated voters out there don’t know any better…they just want to get the “Muslim” out of the White House so they will vote for anyone besides Obama…just as long as he is white. So, you people have got it “made in the shade”. What a great country……..

Joe ther Plutocrat

September 8th, 2011
9:49 am

hey Joe the Plumber too, the next time you pull into a convenience store; see if there is a sign on the door that reads; “We Accept EBT”. seems to me, the staunch tea party/small government types would nip this corruption in the bud by refusing to accept EBT as payment. kind of a reverse boycott. ‘cept, like the cattle ranchers, they are only for “small goverment” where it does not effect their bottom line. note to all Americans; there is no free market and there is no private sector in a plutocracy.

MarkV

September 8th, 2011
9:51 am

Anybody, who calls Social Security a Ponzi scheme, is either 1) a stupid person, who in unable to think through that claim; 2) a liar who knows better but makes that claim anyway for political purposes. There is also a possibility of a combination of both, Since I do not believe that Perry is really stupid, the second alternative is most likely. However, considering also Perry’s anti-science statement, the combination cannot be excluded.

Tiberius - Your lightning rod of hate!

September 8th, 2011
9:56 am

From Wiki: “A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to separate investors, not from any actual profit earned by the organization, but from their own money or money paid by subsequent investors. The Ponzi scheme usually entices new investors by offering returns other investments cannot guarantee, in the form of short-term returns that are either abnormally high or unusually consistent. The perpetuation of the returns that a Ponzi scheme advertises and pays requires an ever-increasing flow of money from investors to keep the scheme going.

The system is destined to collapse because the earnings, if any, are less than the payments to investors.”

If Social Security isn’t a Ponzi scheme, then it’s the closest thing to it.

kayaker 71

September 8th, 2011
9:57 am

retired early,

Those making 20K/yr pay no federal income tax. And they have no deductions because they do not itemize. Most of them get checks back at the end of the year. This is along with subsidized government housing, aid to dependent children, food stamps, home heating subsidies, welfare checks, free breakfast and lunch programs, affirmative action and who knows what else.
BTW, that “muslim” in the WH could be most any color…. even green with pink polka dots….. he is a perfect example of a cross between the Peter Principle and Affirmative Action, and it has nothing to do with his color. He just doesn’t have a clue.

Perry won not Romney

September 8th, 2011
9:58 am

Perry sounded confident, bold, not a flip flopper and persidential. Romney on the other hand was explaining and defending.

Perry won and not Romney. If anyone can defeat Obama its Perry and not Romney. Now do I agree about his evolution concept? No. SS as ponzi scheme ? Absolutely yes! Regarding jobs, People talk of low wage jobs. My question is do you want to live on food stamps or with dignity. Also when you talk of low wage jobs why no one talks of UNDER EMPLOYMENT nationwide? Adding unemployment and under employment it is almost 25%. That is what is hurting Americans not just unemployment of 9.1%

Anyway its better for Romney to cut his losses and walk out now

Tea Party Hobbit

September 8th, 2011
9:59 am

retired early,

Somebody making under 20k will likely take standard deductions (unless they give a ton to charity). If they don’t have a ton of dependents, the withholding per paycheck will more than cover the meager amount of tax they owe, and come April 15 every year they get a nice little refund coming back to them. And they are normally employed by the people you are so vehemently vilifying. Why do liberals feel compelled to think all wealthy people are evil Bernie Madoff clones? And I am not rich, in case you wonder. I don’t make a six-figure income, I am squarely in the working middle class. And hey – I don’t want to lose my Bush tax cuts! So much for them only being for the top 1% or whatever number you liars like to throw out there…

Road Scholar

September 8th, 2011
10:02 am

Moderate: Is your math wrong?

Anne Richards 847,778 in 4 years which is 211,944 a year.
George Bush 1,067,275 in ~5 years under 213,455 a year.
Perrry 1,221,505 in 11 years or a year 111,046 a year.

But don’t worry, conservatives don’t worry about accuracy, history, or science.

I wonder what Romney’s numbers were? I am also interested what those who tout term limits have to say about Perry’s 11 years in office. How many terms are “too much” for a governor? I assume Texas has an election for governor every 4 years like the rest of the states.

Joe ther Plutocrat

September 8th, 2011
10:03 am

MarkV, Perry is the not so rare combination of both stupid and a liar. but think about it; most Americans are profoundly stupid (read this or any blog). and of course, while many proclaim this to be a Christian nation; dishonesty and deception trump the truth (again, read any blog that mentions Ron Paul). Social Security was just fine (financially) until the very same politicians who vilify it as a “New Deal Ponzi Scheme” began to use it as an ATM. where there was once trillions in cash (to be disbursed to those who paid into the fund) there is now a “lock box” filled with ATM withdrawl receipts. yep, and Ron Paul is crazy.