Oct 17, 2012
Back in 1968, Alabama Governor George Wallace thundered that “There’s not a dime’s worth of difference between the Republicans and Democrats.” Wallace’s famous quote sprung to mind last night as Mitt Romney and Barack Obama  squared off in their second debate.
Surely there were differences between them, but to watch the debate was to see two candidates vying to say who would cut taxes the least for top earners, who would “crack down” most on China, and who believed the most in an “all of the above” energy strategy. Neither said much of import, if at all, each candidate won certain segments, but the impossible to escape conclusion was just how unimpressive both candidates were.
It was like two beginners playing tennis with each other, neither able to hit the ball over the net. Both deserve to lose.
It began with the first question asked by a Hofstra College student who wanted to know what either would do to ensure that future grads like him will have jobs.
Romney responded that (all quotes paraphrased) “We’ll have to make a college education more affordable for all, and I’ll do this through growth of the Pell Grant program.” The problem, of course, is that it’s the federal government’s existing subsidization of college loans through programs like the Pell Grant that reduce the incentives for colleges and universities to lower tuition costs. And then in promoting a boost in Pell Grant funding, Romney’s calling for more of the same whereby the feds take money from one set of American hands, and place those funds in the hands of others. On the street this would be called theft, but when politicians propose it, it’s “compassion.”