The Ostroy Report

The Ostroy Report is a fresh, aggressive voice for Democrats and a watchdog of the GOP/Tea Party. We support President Obama and the Democratic agenda and seek to preserve the Senate majority while taking back the House. But we're also not afraid to criticize the left when necessary.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What Our Young Folks Need to Know About Ron Paul



He's the Republican Party's Howard Dean, right? The independent outsider who speaks his mind, takes unorthodox positions and appears to be afraid of no one. The kind of irreverent, in-your-face candidate young people find very attractive. But do they know about Ron Paul's history of making outrageously offensive, racist comments? Probably not. If and when they do they'll drop him like a bad check.

Ron Paul is the Bee Gees of politics. And just like young people in the 1970's were clueless that the hip "Saturday Night Fever" disco band had an even greater run as a 60's rock band, they're gonna find out that Paul has a big past as well, albeit a very dubious one. Right now he's benefiting from an upsurge in support following the implosions of the Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain campaigns, as well as the apparent swift failure of Newt Gingrich 2.0. In fact, new polls show him as the front runner in the Iowa caucuses, and a real threat to Mitt Romney, especially if he breaks off and runs as an independent.

But young folks need to go back and read the Ron Paul Political Report and the Ron Paul Survival Report from about 1989-1994 to gain further insight into the radical extremist mind of the candidate who's winning their hearts. Here are some examples of his incendiary remarks:

-"Given the inefficiencies of what D.C. laughingly calls the `criminal justice system,' I think we can safely assume that 95 percent of the black males in that city are semi-criminal or entirely criminal."

-"If you have ever been robbed by a black teen-aged male, you know how unbelievably fleet-footed they can be."

-"Order was only restored in L.A. (after the riots) when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks."

-"We don't think a child of 13 should be held responsible as a man of 23. That's true for most people, but black males age 13 who have been raised on the streets and who have joined criminal gangs are as big, strong, tough, scary and culpable as any adult and should be treated as such."

-"What else do we need to know about the political establishment than that it refuses to discuss the crimes that terrify Americans on grounds that doing so is racist? Why isn't that true of complex embezzling, which is 100 percent white and Asian?"

Paul's also written that black protesters should gather "at a food stamp bureau or a crack house" instead of the Statue of Liberty; that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. "seduced underage girls and boys;" and that people with AIDS "enjoy the attention and pity that comes with being sick."

Over the years Paul has either denied he's made these statements (claiming someone else wrote them) or says they've been taken out of context.

"It's typical political demagoguery," he said. "If people are interested in my character . . . come and talk to my neighbors."

Well, it's hard to imagine any other "context" for these racist rants. And as for whether he's the actual writer or not, the offensive comments were made in his newsletters under his byline. Claiming there was a ghostwriter is a pretty lame excuse for someone whose entire foundation and principles rest with personal liberties and responsibility.

Paul is a 1950's era Texan who's on record saying he doesn't believe in the 1964 Civil Rights act. He's an angry old man with dangerous views about minorities, civil liberties and how America should be governed. He's not just some awe-inspiring, patriotic Thomas Paine-like elder firebrand who deserves the admiration and respect of our youth. To the contrary, his virulent positions blatantly contradict what America truly stands for.

I know Howard Dean. I've supported Howard Dean. Ron Paul is no Howard Dean. The sooner our young citizens figure this out the better off they, and America, will be.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

House Bill to End Food Stamps for Millionaires....and Other Ridiculously Meaningless Measures


There was an actual headline in Tuesday's NY Times that the Republican led House of Representatives was taking up a measure to end food stamps and unemployment benefits for millionaires. I suppose their single-digit approval rating has finally prompted them into action to enact such truly meaningful legislation.

Thankfully, the House isn't wasting precious Chamber time on payroll tax cuts and
jobs bills. In fact, they've been quite busy this week. Below is a list of some
other critical measures passed by the House:

-A bill to end farm subsidies to NYC landlords

-A bill prohibiting Talmudic Law from being allowed in US courts

-A bill prohibiting ObamaCare from applying to pets

-A bill limiting the mortgage interest deduction to only people who own homes

-A bill banning fairies and mermaids from serving in the military

-A bill to secure our borders from space aliens

-A bill naming the Statue of Liberty the official statue given to us by the
French around 1886

-A bill restricting the presidency to only people with birth certificates

-A bill declaring the week during the Republican convention "Intelligence Amnesty Week"

-A bill to make English America's official language. Oh wait, this one's actually for real...

Monday, December 12, 2011

Democrats For Newt!



Ok, I admit it. I secretly support Newt Gingrich's bid for the Republican presidential nomination. I mean, I really really want him to win. I think he's the quintessential conservative and, gosh darnit, he's been around so long he truly deserves this honor. And the party deserves him, as do Republican voters. I can't think of a more fitting nominee to lead this party of hypocritical crazies off a cliff.

Oops, did I just give myself away there? Perhaps. Maybe I'm not so altruistic after all. Maybe I think President Barack Obama's re-election odds increase about a zillion percent if he runs against Gingrich. Quite frankly, I practically wet myself just thinking about it.

Once the Republican love fest with Newt reaches it's primary climax later next year (that is, of course, if he doesn't self-destruct before then), the reality of the general election will quickly set in. If the current crop of leading GOP'ers (including Sen. Tom Coburn, Rep. Peter King, John Sununu and former Rep. Guy Molinari) who've been outspoken in excoriating Gingrich is any indication, he's in huge trouble.

Imagine Obama going up against Gingrich and his record. Imagine what happens when the president and Democrats bang down his closet door and unleash the avalanche of skeletons that have been ever-so-vulnerably stored there for the past fifteen years (Wanna know the difference between Democrats, Republicans and independents? Republicans are the only ones forgiving of Newt's myriad personal and political transgressions).

Gingrich's "repentant sinner" routine may allow those self-righteous, sanctimonious evangelicals to excuse his serial philandering and multiple ethics violations in the interest of vitriolic partisan politics, but the rest of America has a tad more scruples than that. They expect that if you run as a values candidate, ya gotta have some actual values. Newt's core is as rotten today as it was when he crucified Bill Clinton over the Monica Lewinsky affair while he was sticking his...er...um...hand in the cooking jar of infidelity.

While Newt would like to portray himself as the wise old user-friendly 68-year-old Washington outsider grandad who's finally found Jesus enough to keep his married shmecky in his pants, the rest of thinking America sees him for what he is: the bomb-throwing sabre-rattling morally-bankrupt career-insider who makes outrageously offensive comments about the president, the poor and Palestinians to name a few.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The GOP Candidates Do Monty Python's "Four Yorkshiremen"



The Republican presidential campaign has so far delighted us with sixteen debates in what has become the best reality freak show on television. And Saturday night's free-for-all in Iowa provided an extra special treat.

The candidates sparred over everything from the economy, health care and Palestinians to ethics and infidelity. There was even another huge "oops" moment, this time for Mitt Romney, who reinforced his reputation as a rich out-of-touch elitist by challenging Rick Perry to a $10,000 bet over his health care record (Perry would have lost the bet, btw). This blunder didn't go over well in a state where the average income is $40,000. What the hell was he thinking? This one's gonna cost him dearly.

But the most fun came at the end of the debate when the candidates were asked what financial sacrifices they had made in their lives. And as my friend Paul keenly observed, this is when the debate turned into Monty Python's hilarious "Four Yorkshiremen" sketch where a bunch of snooty aristocrats wax nostalgic about their difficult upbringings, trying to out-poor each other with one absurd claim after another.

Perry said he his house didn't have running water until he was six, and that his mother sewed his clothes until he went off to college. Gingrich said he was raised in an apartment above a gas station. Ron Paul told of growing up through the Depression. Michele Bachmann said she had to work at 13 because her single mom fell below the poverty line. Romney sheepishly admitted he hadn't been poor, but that his father had been.

If only the Repubs had had more time they surely would've ended up describing how they had lived in a rolled up newspaper or a shoebox.

By the way, here's what I think of Romney's $10K bet...

Friday, December 09, 2011

Donald Trump's Irrelevance Must Be Killing Him



What do Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman have in common? Besides seeking the Republican presidential nomination, they've all just very painfully reminded Donald Trump just how politically irrelevant he truly is. And I say "painfully" because Trump is a megalomaniac who'd rather slice of his left hand than be irrelevant.

The real-estate-tycoon-turned-buffoon is set to moderate the Newsmax ION Television 2012 Presidential Debate December 27 in Des Moines, IA. But only Rick Santorum and Newt "Holy-Shit-I'm-the-Fucking-Frontrunner!" Gingrich have agreed to attend. Understandably, Santorum would attend a crack-whores conference if it offered him a chance to speak. And Gingrich desperately wants Trump's endorsement and is sure to get it now (are there really folks out there dumb enough to vote for Newt just because Donald Trump said to?).

Someday we'll get to fully understand the genesis of Trump's massive neurosis. I'm not a shrink, but clearly this man has a very deep emotional hole. His insatiable hunger for attention, recognition and relevance is gargantuan and alarmingly self-destructive. Truth be told, he was once considered, and by this writer as well, to be a brilliant, innovative, straight-shooting independent thinker on the right side of many social and political issues. And then he apparently took asshole pills and turned from The Donald into The Douche. He's become an angry, belligerent, small-minded fool who will literally do or say anything if it means someone will stick a mike or camera in front of his horrifically-coiffed head. Whatever comes out of his mouth now just seems like it's been marinated in batshit-crazy-sauce.

Trump seems to have crossed the critical line where one loses an ability to realize just how insane they look and sound. He's now just an embarrassing punchline. One thing's for sure: you know you've become a pathetic joke when Ron Paul, Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry won't have anything to do with you.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

This is Why Romney Won't Win the GOP Nomination



Mitt Romney, the 1%'er who was born on 3rd base and thinks he hit a triple, apparently suffers from an entitlement disorder so profound that it makes him believe he can run for president of the United States and not be challenged to explain his positions.

In an interview Tuesday with the usually softball-throwing Fox News, Romney demonstrated on national television perhaps his biggest shortfall: that he thinks the world owes him something. Furthermore, he thinks he has the right to do or say anything he wants in order to get it.

Romney was all smiles as he sat down for what he incorrectly thought would be the typically friendly Fox lovefest. But host Bret Baier apparently had something else in mind as he began grilling the former front-runner over his rampant policy flip-flops. Romney quickly became defensive, testy, condescending and quite fidgety as he nervously shifted in his seat and awkwardly crossed his legs.

Baier: Like the [New Hampshire’s leading newspaper, which endorsed Romney rival Newt Gingrich last weekend] “Union Leader,” your critics charge that you make decisions based on political expediency and not core convictions. You have been on the both sides of -- of some issues. And there’s videotape of you going back years speaking about different issues -- climate change, abortion, immigration, gay rights. How can voters trust what they hear from you today is what you will believe if you win the White House?

Romney: Well, Bret, your list is just not accurate. So, one, we’re going to have to be better informed about my views on issues. My view is you can look at what I’ve written in my book. You can look at a person who has devoted his life to his family, to his faith, to his country. And I’m running for president because of the things I believe I think I can do to help this country. And -- and I know in politics, there are going to be those who try in every way they can to tear down one another.

The former Massachusetts governor also strongly denied ever suggesting that his state's health care model of the individual mandate be adopted nationwide.

Baier: So, governor, you did say on camera and other places that, at times, you thought it would be a model for the nation.

Romney: You’re wrong, Bret.

Romney: No, no. There’s tape..the tape out there — continue to read the tape, and the tape goes on to say for each state to be able to look at it.

Baier on Wednesday said on Fox's The O'Reilly Factor that Romney was annoyed by what he claimed was his unfair questioning. He said Romney "was irritated by the interview after we were done." The feisty flip-flopper "made it clear at the end of the interview" that he was not happy. "He said he thought it was overly aggressive." He added that "as we were walking in the ‘walk and talk’ and then after we finished, he went to his holding room and then came back and said he didn’t like the interview and thought it was uncalled for."

Well, too bad Mitt. We're truly sorry that you think your record as a businessman and politician is above scrutiny. We're sorry that challenging you to explain your controversial record feels like an unfair 'gotcha' attack. We're sorry that you feel so entitled to the nomination that you believe the bright glare of the media should beat down only on others. We're sorry that you feel voters don't have a right to know who the hell they're voting for.

Romney's performance during that Fox interview was a revelation into just who he really is: an out-of-touch privileged whiner who will fold like a $2 beach chair the minute the real pressure's on. And most important it was a testament to his character, or lack thereof. It showed that behind all the youthfully black hair dye and pearly white smiles there's a highly pompous, arrogant CEO who simply doesn't get it that being president is very different than having the ability and power to tell everyone what to do. We can expect more of this outrageous behavior from him as these next few contentious weeks unfold.

Though I thought I'd never be saying this, let's hope the rest of the 'mainstream media" is as "aggressive" as Fox as they interview the various candidates.