Bill Keller On Romney

Friday, August 17, 2012

Bill Keller, op-ed contributor and former executive editor for The New York Times, discusses Mitt Romney's circle of political advisers and donors and explores how these relationships would shape a Romney Administration.  He also discusses the news of Wikileaks chief Julian Assange being granted asylum by Ecuador.


Bill Keller

Comments [37]

Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Hi Taher from Croton on Hudson, how is your Arab Spring in Syria going today?

Aug. 17 2012 11:42 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Obama said he should serve only one term

According to President Obama, it's time for President Romney.

Aug. 17 2012 11:40 AM

Wow, this comments board has really gone off the rails. The mean-spirited, nonsensical partisanship is the kind I'd expect from commercial talk radio, not from WNYC.

Aug. 17 2012 11:37 AM
Taher from Croton on Hudson

Hi Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan, how is your Right Wing shill work going today?

Aug. 17 2012 11:29 AM
Taher from Croton on Hudson

Remember under Mr. Keller the NY Times was into “Yellow Journalism” pre-Iraq War. So everything this man says should be taken with that in mind. I remember.

Aug. 17 2012 10:53 AM
John A.

I don't get why the press shouldn't criticize the Baby-boomers for their* entitlements. The government hardly has, for almost two decades now.
The press exists to fact check the government. Criticize away.
- JA, a.53, boomer, 'our*'

Aug. 17 2012 10:48 AM

So much has already been noted on the total biased anti Rommey-Ryan program. Mr. Keller and here Mr. Lehrer are not "unbiased" No difference between Rush Limbaugh and these people. If I listen to this program it is a daily diet of Obama is bad but he is our only hope.
The world will come to an end if Rommey wins. Of course the donors that contribute to Obama campaign have no access or motives beyond altruism.
What nonsense!
Mr. Lehrer attempts to be neutral, but his "jokes" and sidebars are obviously liberal, "progressive" (toward what?).Intellect demands a rational discussion. No black and white only. Try.

Aug. 17 2012 10:48 AM

wow attacking RT...Assange's talk show was the most open imformative interview show going...did you even watch it? So now smear

So you guys laugh about all the Keller/Assange stuff...

Aug. 17 2012 10:43 AM

We don't believe in Assange as much as we believe in the emails....BK is a hack

Aug. 17 2012 10:39 AM
Jack Jackson from Central New Jersey

Horsepuckey, Ed from NJ!

During a one-on-one interview there is no requirement to represent the opposing viewpoint fairly. If it were an issue oriented debate THEN WNYC would need to present more than one side.

Or are you saying that there ought to be some sort of 'equal time' requirement. Reagan, FOX, Rush, et al. would disagree with you on that one.

Aug. 17 2012 10:39 AM

It's possible the bigger problem with the Romney/Ryan ticket may be not be the "loose gun Palin" issue but the "stronger than the president Cheney " issue.

Romney doesn't seem to stand for much except making sure he and his friends get to continue paying their 13% tax rate. His political career was one of being a centrist Republican: RomneyCare was a precursor for Obama's health plan, Romney's only recently "evolved" further to the right on social issues, (apparently the only type of evolution they believe in on the far far right), and it's no secret that Romney was pretty much everyone's second pick at the dance.

Ryan's ideas may be partially based on the ridiculous ideas in Ayn Rand's fantasy romance novels, but at least he's consistent and passionate about them. He's already been a darling of the Tea Party and their funders the Koch brothers. We could be in for another presidency where the VP has more conviction and presence than the president does with this ticket.

Aug. 17 2012 10:38 AM

I do not think that any, or at least very few of us, actual YOUNG people (not young looking) actually think that we don't want to pay taxes for benefits for our aunts, uncles, parents, and other older people whom we care about.

However, I did heard a woman from Florida on NPR say that Mitt+Ryan are making the "hard decisions" about "medic*" and that since "we need to all make the hard decisions", she supported them. This is funny because she is obviously not part of the group who would not get the benefits any more, so of course she doesn't care to take those benefits away from us, the young people. Now that is selfish of those old people who think like that.

Aug. 17 2012 10:38 AM
Leo from Queens

If Britain goes into the embassy by force, Britain will be setting a precedent for any country or organization to go in and assault any foreign embassy whenever. And they will be putting their diplomats in danger across the World

Aug. 17 2012 10:37 AM
Sandra from Brooklyn

We've been hearing a drumbeat for days here on BLS tearing apart Romney/Ryan plans for the economy, but I have yet to hear such talk on our current President's plans. I know this channel is beginning to preach to the choir so too speak, but it wasn't always that way. We used to hear real in-depth analysis of what was going on, instead of constantly hearing spin-masters.

Aug. 17 2012 10:36 AM
Ed from New Jersey

Bill Keller is a poor choice of guests to have on to discuss any Republican politician or policy. He is very partisan and is not objective about anything dealing with politics. Where is the there any voice in this interview to provide a balance? Mr. Keller is not known for his ability to debate his views in an open forum. Brian did not challenge him at any point in this interview, just set up Mr. Keller for more of his opinion. If this is an example of how Brian is going to handle the issues in this election then he should be honest and declare himself as a Democratic partisan. This was one of the worst interviews done on WNYC.

Aug. 17 2012 10:33 AM
Jack Jackson from Central New Jersey

@Greta from Manhattan -

The indifference you feel is what feeds the President's inability to act decisively.

Your disaffection with Obama is misplaced in my opinion. You should be disappointed in your fellow voters, not the President they elected. When Obama needed the support MOST - November 2010 - the voters deserted HIM. And they didn't really vote against him...They just didn't show up to cast their votes when it was in their interest to do so. Sure, Democrats did too little to advertise their accomplishments. Voters were lulled into believing that some rollback of the 2008 mandate was to be expected. What they got instead was a Tea Party takeover that has paralyzed our ability to act!

Voting for Romney would be rewarding the obstructionists for their treasonous behavior. What we have is bad. Romney in the White House is worse.

Aug. 17 2012 10:33 AM

what!!! excuse me, but PLEASE do not compare greedy old Romney to Mark Sanchez! There is nothing in common and as far a Jets fans, few of us wanted Tebow in the East Coast. If anything resembles the situation, it is the that the money lords of football have move lever than the fans, aka, Koche bothers and Vegas casino owners have more money to influence politics than the people who are actually affected by the politics of the Republican candicates

Aug. 17 2012 10:32 AM
susan from long island

PLEASE talk about Ryan's war on women!!

Aug. 17 2012 10:30 AM
mejimenez from manhattan

Keller is a leader among the "Very Serious People" who think that imposing austerity on the poor and the elderly is a good idea. Dean Baker regularly dismantles their faulty logic. For example:

Aug. 17 2012 10:30 AM
John from NYC

There is this recurring topic about a Presidential candidate and foreign policy experience. The only recent President who Ican recall had any foreign policy experience was President George H.W. Bush. Where do we expect our candidates to obtain such experience if they aren't in Congress?

Aug. 17 2012 10:29 AM
Paul from MD via NYC

While not a fan of Gov. Romney, if he is elected President I am not as worried by a VP Ryan as I am if, heaven forbid, something happens and we wind up with a President Ryan. I mean isn't that something to be considered when selecting a VP?

Aug. 17 2012 10:28 AM
john from office

Vote for Obama, I dont want to see the ADELSON/RYAN administration. Romney will be casr off to a side room, where he can play with his spread sheets.

Adelson will pull out his batteries, robomitt.

Aug. 17 2012 10:24 AM
Leo from Queens.

Greta, president Obama has done a lot, but he has been restricted the the House of representatives, the Republicans in the Senate (it takes 66 votes to pas ANYTHING in the Senate) and by the mainstream media - including Fox and all the talking heads.

Aside from that he is accomplishing a lot in terms of civil rights, the environment and transit but can't really make too much noise about it so that Republicans don't go after and dismantle it as much as they have tried (remember that the Republican governors of Ohio, Florida and Wisconsin turned away the money and shutdown the new rail systems they were going to be built in their states that would have joined to other states for a great new national highspeed rail network.
Obama, more than Clinton, is working against a gang that wants to make sure that this Democrat, but more importantly, this black man, is a total failure.

Aug. 17 2012 10:23 AM
Jack Jackson from Central New Jersey

@MartinC -

Your refrain is apparently 'Fair Play for Romney!' and chide "Obama Public Radio" for not being fair. What a howler!

Where is your criticism of obstruction GOP Senators for not playing fair?

Where is your outrage that Congress has passed 54 bills in the last two years? 14 of those were to rename post offices.

Where is your criticism of the photo ID poll tax that may swing states to the GOP candidate in an effort to 'keep elections honest'?

Where was your criticism that the GOP DOUBLED the national debt from 2001 -09?

You are a partisan and an irrational Obama hater. Why should anyone regard your opinions seriously?

I've yet to hear a Romney backer whose fervor was NOT based on hatred of Obama. If Brian could find one, I'd love to hear him/her on the air, too. But in my opinion, such voters are as rare as Higgs boson particles.

Aug. 17 2012 10:21 AM
Tom Pinch

Greta, Obama can't sign a bill into law until congress passes it, and they said long ago that they're not going to pass anything that would be a credit to Obama. What would you prefer him to be doing???

Aug. 17 2012 10:19 AM
The Truth from Becky

The caller is SPOT ON...Paul Ryan will be silenced before long.

Aug. 17 2012 10:19 AM
William from Manhattan

Is it true that Ryan's first trip after Veep announcement was to Vegas to pay homage to casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who is the subject of federal investigations re money laundering and foreign corruption?

Aug. 17 2012 10:19 AM
Anonymous from Manhattan

The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit is a novel by Charles Dickens, considered the last of his picaresque novels. It was originally serialized in 1843 and 1844. Wikipedia
Published: 1844
Author: Charles Dickens

Aug. 17 2012 10:18 AM
The Truth from Becky

Great Greta! I was planning on cancelling out your vote anyways! Hopefully you get the satisfaction you seek when you vote for mitt. Oh he has not stated exactly what that will be now, has he?

Aug. 17 2012 10:16 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

"I'm Barack Obama ...... and I approve this message from the Brian Lehrer Show."

Aug. 17 2012 10:13 AM
Greta from Manhattan

I guess now thinking of it I have been a democrat for over 40 years now... wow. And I am completely turned off by obama at this point. his inability to really take on what I see as real looming disasters for our country that will effect my grandchildren is too troubling for me to vote for him. Instead he is focusing on the weeds and leaving the trees to rot.I am truly saddened as I had such high hopes for him 4 years ago. I may end up splitting the ticket this november.

Aug. 17 2012 10:12 AM
mejimenez from manhattan

A post on asks why did the NY Times not mention the following:

– Ecuador invited Sweden to come to the Embassy and interview Assange, or to talk with him via teleconferencing, which is something the Swedish justice system is set up to do routinely. The Swedes refused.

– Ecuador tried to get Sweden to guarantee they would not extradite Assange to the US to face espionage charges. The Swedes refused.

– Assange himself has offered to go to Sweden immediately if they would guarantee that he would not be extradited to the US on espionage charges. The Swedes refused.

Aug. 17 2012 10:12 AM

Bill Keller writes about Assange, it would be better if he wrote about the things that Assange has brought to light.

Ron Paul 2012

Aug. 17 2012 10:10 AM

The 13% is on Romney's entire income.

That's only income taxes of course, as there's no Social Security or Medicare taxes [currently] on investment income.

If Obama was smart he'd be talking about the conservative tax plan of Ronald Reagan in 1986, putting the top rate at 28% for all income, not just ordinary - and getting rid of the tax expenditures at the same time.

(He could couple that with making all income SS and Medicare taxable. SS would fast end up over-funded and then the rates could be cut if desired - the money should either way be taken out of general revenues and put into Gore's "lock box").

28% all income + 6% Social Security + 2% Medicare = 36% top tax = still a tax cut from the 39.6% top rate which we currently have after the TEMPORARY Bush tax cuts become effective.

Btw, Romney is using fuzzy math to finance his tax plan, using growth that will allegedly come from further tax cuts. How'd that increased revenue work with the Bush tax cuts? The Laffer curve doesn't work on the declining side of the parabola.

Aug. 17 2012 09:54 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

Forget Bill Keller's petty partisanship ... why not ask the people of Poland what THEY think about the “Leader” of the Free World ? (Yes, Poland..skip the Polish jokes.) That would be a nice segment...ask them how much they trust the Community Organizer (who whispers “flexibility” to Dmitry and Vladimir “after the election”) to help them maintain their independence from Putin and his thugs. Poor Poland is about to get screwed again by the newest version of Neville Chamberlain... this one via Hawaii/Chicago.

Wall Street Journal online today-
"Poland should build its own missile-defense system, the country’s president said Wednesday, adding to earlier signals that the country no longer plans to rely solely on security guarantees offered by the U.S.
In recent years, Polish officials have become increasingly skeptical about (Obama's) readiness to defend Poland in any circumstances."

Aug. 17 2012 09:52 AM
Bill from New Rochelle

Mr. Keller's opinion of:
Mitt Romney and his taxes....

I still want to know:

Is that 13% Mr Romney says he paid, 13% of his entire income, or is it just of Romney's "wages and salery."
His "wages and salery" is only about .2% of his total income.
That would make Romney's real tax load about .026% of total income.

So, Did George Romney's son Mitt actually pay a real tax rate of a quarter on one percent of his TOTAL GROSS income?

Is there a real tax professional who could verify this?

Aug. 17 2012 09:22 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

Shame on you, Brian. Unbelievable.

Another blatantly contrived segment concocted to bash Romney-Ryan here at Obama Public Radio.

Who the heck cares what Bill Keller "THINKS" might "POSSIBLY" happen "IF" Romney is elected??? (He was a highly partisan "journalist" at the NYT and his recent op-ed columns have only gotten more shrill. WE ALREADY KNOW WHAT THIS GUY THINKS ABOUT ROMNEY.) What a bogus excuse for a segment.
You have a president who YOU DON"T DISCUSS regarding what has or hasn't ACTUALLY happened in his 4 pathetic years as American Idol.

As another poster said earlier this week, you go to great lengths to avoid examining Obama and his record. You should be required to submit a campaign donation form after these blatantly political segments. Embarrassing. "Have you no shame, sir?"

Aug. 17 2012 09:09 AM

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