Senate Votes to Condemn Move-On Ad

The Senate today found time in its busy schedule to pass a resolution by Sen. John Cornyn condemning the Move-On ad regarding Gen. Petraeus.

It couldn't pass habeas reform or the Webb Amendment but could rally behind a stupid, toothless resolution?

The roll call vote is here.

And Obama can't be bothered to show up and vote against it? When he voted an hour earlier on Boxer's alternative resolution and also on Russ Feingold's amendment to begin immediate troop withdrawal?

At least Hillary Clinton and Chris Dodd voted against the Cornyn Amendment condemning the ad. For more:

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    Weak (5.00 / 4) (#1)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:14:52 PM EST
    Pathetic.  Piteous.  Heartbreaking.  Distressing.  Pitiful.  Sad.

    That about sums up how I feel about this.  I'm not sure how weak the Democrats can make themselves look, while they are attempting to avoid looking weak but this is getting pathetic.

    I would add STUPID! (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by larrythered on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:31:39 PM EST
    Was the MoveOn ad extreme? Pushing the envelope? let's agree that it was. That's exactly what Limbaugh and Coulter and Malkin and O'Reilly do for the Republicans - say extreme things that create space for "reasonable" Republicans to operate in, without explicitly endorsing the outrageous things they say. Won't these morons ever learn how to play hardball? Sheesh.

    while the Senate's making (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by tnthorpe on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:08:40 PM EST
    idiotic headlines, Feingold/Reid loses big time. The Democrats are on board for permanent war or else they'd be more effective ending it.

    Obama's reasons: (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by rashomon on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:33:30 PM EST
    The focus of the United States Senate should be on ending this war, not on criticizing newspaper advertisements. This amendment was a stunt designed only to score cheap political points while what we should be doing is focusing on the deadly serious challenge we face in Iraq. It's precisely this kind of political game-playing that makes most Americans cynical about Washington's ability to solve America's problems. By not casting a vote, I registered my protest against this empty politics. I registered my views on the ad itself the day it appeared.
    All of us respect the service of General Petraeus and all of our brave men and women in uniform. The way to honor that service is to give them a mission that is responsible, not to vote on amendments like the Cornyn amendment while we continue to pursue the wrong policy in Iraq.

    I have a different take on today's votes. (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Geekesque on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:46:03 PM EST
    Okay (none / 0) (#7)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:56:45 PM EST
    If I am offending by both?  Or do I have to choose?  One vote is more important than the other, obviously, but both show the same pattern of weakness and a total lack of leadership.

    The big crime was allowing it to become (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Geekesque on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:06:09 PM EST
    a distraction.

    Reid should be replaced.


    Can't disagree with that. (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:17:19 PM EST
    At this point both Reid and Pelosi should be replaced.  They are being outmaneuvered constantly by the minority party.

    Have they shot themselves in both feet by now? (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Edger on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:04:53 PM EST
    How many times?

    I agree with DA in LA. This is pathetic.

    I can think of a longer string of adjectives, but I'm sure so can everyone else.

    What's up with Obama? (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by kovie on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:16:15 PM EST
    He's clearly very smart and talented. But in his votes (or non-votes), hesitation, overcaution, and lack of a sense of passion and energy in his senate and campaign activities, he's just not making the grade in my eyes. Is he lazy? Is he cynical? Is he clueless? Is he gutless? Has he figured out that the way to succeed as a senator is to do as little as possible, and certainly not take any stands that could be used against you? What's with the holding back and being so underwhelming? It's like the spark when out of him and he's just going through the motions, like in his feckless "questioning" of Petraeus and Crocker last week. I don't get it.

    Then again, you could say this about Feingold and a bunch of other supposedly progressive Dems. Has Reid put a gag order on them? Why are they all holding back? What's up with that? Have they given up, do they believe that they don't need to fight, or is this a ploy to sucker the GOP into a mistaken sense of triumph and complacency before Dems go on the attack?

    I head John Murtha the other day say that he now believes that it's pointless to fight the GOP right now because they need to tack right to please their base for the primaries, but that once the primaries are over, they'll have to tack to the center to appeal to swing voters. I've heard this from some reporters, too. Makes some sense, but not nearly enough to justify holding back for ANOTHER Friedman Unit. How long are we going to keep that powder dry? It's just end up blowing up in Dems' faces if they fail to use it.

    I say fight them NOW, to make their attempts to give their base some red meat vastly harder. Disabuse them of their delusion that they can tack hard right now, and then tack to the center in a few months. Force them to settle on a long-term position NOW by making it a very public and nasty fight. Make it impossible for them to reinvent themselves in the spring as anti-war moderates. And NOW is the time to do that, not then. And it's the Dems who need to do that.

    Of course, with so many of them voting to condemn a major progressive organization, I wouldn't get my hopes up. Such sheep, even though they technically run the ranch. They are clearly suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. I mean, they won't even object to the term "Democrat Party". The won't fight!!!

    What's up with Obama? (none / 0) (#36)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 04:32:13 AM EST
    Is he lazy? Is he cynical? Is he clueless? Is he gutless?

    Well (none / 0) (#37)
    by kovie on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 05:36:42 AM EST
    I read your article and according to your analysis Obama is certainly being cynical, in playing us for fools (or cowards, what have you, in our fear of letting the Repubs win). And perhaps you are right. In fact, I'm sure that you are, to some extent at least, in the sense that nearly all successful politicians need to be cynical if they're to stay in power. Just look at how far Feingold's gotten with his relatively non-cynical approach to politics. Or Carter 30 years ago. Good guys really do finish last, in politics.

    Which is why I reluctantly (and perhaps cynically) view politics as usually a matter of supporting the lesser of several evils, rather than having at least one truly progressive, principled and viable choice--and it's the "viable" part that usually makes the difference. As I commented on DKos earlier today, I don't view any of the VIABLE Dems contenders as especially inspiring. Obama's a bit better, but not by much, it's increasingly becoming clear. So what am I going to do, vote for a Repub, or not vote, in protest? Of course not. I'm going to vote for the least worst Dem candidate in the WA caucus, and then whoever's the Dem in the general. And then hope for the best.

    I agree with you that our fundamental view of and approach to our foreign policy needs to change radically, shifting from an imperial one in which we have to aggresively use our hard and soft power to bully and beat the rest of the world into submission to our view of how the world should be organized, to one in which we are, at most, first among equals, but where there is much more cooperation and multilateralism, and much less competition and unilateralism. The thing is, how do we get there? A number of serious impediments stands in the way.

    First is perhaps the most serious one, which is the entrenched committment of our dominant political and policy class to the exisisting foreign policy paradigm (which can roughly be divided into the "soft" power types who tend center-left and the "hard" power types who tend center-right--and of course there is much overlap, but much more from the "soft" types into the "hard", than vice-versa). They totally buy into this paradigm, if not genuinely (although many certainly do), then at least cynically and opportunistically, for fear of being ostracized if they try to buck this paradigm, as well as out of personal ambition. This paradigm has "worked" for this class, and since they're the ones who are in a position to determine which paradigm we adopt, it's in their interest to preserve it, even if it's not a very good one--which it isn't.

    Second is that, having lived according to this paradigm for decades, we are essentially dependant on and addicted to it. We (meaning the west) still very much need oil from politically unstable regions of the world, and thus are dependant on the military power we clearly need to maintain its steady and relatively inexpensive flow. And the fear is that if we back off from this paradigm, this oil will not longer flow as freely or affordably. And we're simply not prepared for that, psychologically if not practically.

    Third, there is the understandable fear that if we back off of this paradigm, other, less enlightened nations and alliances will step into the vacuum and attempt to take over as the new big empire, be it China, Russia, or some combination of powers. Are we really prepared to let someone else be the world's leader? I think not, both because we cannot be sure that they won't be even more brutal and irresponsible as we've been (and there are plenty of historical examples to back this up), and because we would naturally worry how this would affect the US.

    And fourth, in order to transform this paradigm into a new and more enlightened, fair and responsible one, we have to actually formulate the new one, and how it would be implemented and maintained. Has this been done? I'm not an expert on current foreign policy trends so I can't answer this. I'm sure that plenty of very talented and earnest people have been hard at work coming up with such a 21st century foreign policy paradigm. But it doesn't seem to me that there's one as yet that's fully-formed and vetted enough to take the place for the existing one--even if the political will and capital existing to try to make it happen.

    For this to happen, not only will such a new paradigm need to be formulated in practically implementable detail--i.e. a fully-formed foreign policy business model for the 21st century--but the political leadership and clout will have to exist to actually implement it. And I see none of these right now. Instead, I see a transitional period in which the cold war hegemonic/imperialistic model and its adherents are being discredited in practice, but nothing and no one has truly emerged to take their place.

    We are in a transitional phase, but not a transformational one, yet. None of the current leaders in either party impresses me as this age's Jefferson, Jackson, Lincoln, Roosevelt, FDR or JFK. Or even Reagan for that matter. Yes, Reagan, because while I reject his policies and ideology, I do tip my hat to his leadership and transformational skills, however much harm they've done to our country and world. What we need now is an anti-Reagan, someone with his leadership and transformational skills, but this time with a sound, principled and progressive vision, not one intended to regress us back to the 1920's if not 1850's.

    I'm hoping that such a leader, or perhaps movement, emerges. But until then, I'll pick any Dem over any Repub any time. Until we're finally ready for that transformation--and this applies to domestic policy as well, as we absolutely needs to get past this idiotic supply-side, antio-regulatory, purely market-based nonsense ASAP--better a so-so Dem than a truly awful Repub--and they're all awful. We need to keep on pushing for a genuinely better tomorrow, but there's still today to take care of. And today's Dems, however marginally, are still better than Repubs in that sense. As anti-progressive as he was, can anyone seriously argue that Clinton wasn't a vastly better president than what preceded and succeeded him? Sure, we can do better, but we can also do much, much worse. And until we find someone who can do much better, better the modern Dem model than the modern GOP one.


    I'll pick any Dem over any Repub any time, too. (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 06:00:40 AM EST
    But I will attach, and encourage as many as I can to attach, one condition to it:
    The evidence states that Democrats are basically on board with Bush.

    This has been obvious for some time. Since the supplemental in the spring at least. The FISA Amendment should have been the clincher for anyone who doubted it.

    They are not capitulating to Bush. They are complicit with Bush. They are confident that the electorate will capitulate to them next year out of fear of the republicans. They are playing people. This, in my view, is Democrats using the same fearmongering tactics the Republicans used so successfully for the past few years.
    ...if leading Democrats heard enough people say to them that they will not vote for ANY Democrats next year EXCEPT Democrats who have been vocally, and by their votes on supplementals, calling for total withdrawal from Iraq they would quickly notice.

    They are politicians after all, and they are concerned with winning elections.

    They would notice if enough people turned the tables on them and used fear to motivate them, instead of voting simply out of fear of republicans.

    If Democrats were filled with fear that they would lose Congress and the presidency UNLESS the occupation was ended before the 2008 elections, they would end the occupation of Iraq.

    Any D over R, any R over D (none / 0) (#62)
    by kdog on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 03:17:27 PM EST
    not for nothing fellas, it's that line of thinking that has spoiled our democracy.

    Vote for the person, what they say, and what they do...ignore the letter after their name.

    I'll take Ron Paul over Hillary Clinton...wouldn't you guys?


    I would (none / 0) (#63)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 03:24:36 PM EST
    That's why I said with conditions. I think yours are nearly the same as mine, no?

    I'd prefer they called themselves D's and meant and acted it, instead of being R's calling themselves D's, as some are doing.


    I'd prefer..... (none / 0) (#64)
    by kdog on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 03:29:16 PM EST
    100 independant contractors in the Senate.

    Now you're talking. (none / 0) (#65)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 03:37:01 PM EST
    Ones that bring their own brains....

    No (none / 0) (#66)
    by DA in LA on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 04:13:43 PM EST
    I kind of like abortion being legal.  Also, the pre-medicare days in America were grim.  And his racist newsletter in the 80s and 90s is a tad offputting.

    I would vote for nearly anyone over Ron Paul


    D. Feinstein voted "yea." (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by oculus on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:18:44 PM EST
    Where is her brain?

    Look at her drug war record..... (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by kdog on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:22:06 PM EST
    I'd say she has yet to use it....her brain that is.

    She is basically (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:25:09 PM EST
    a Republican at this point.  Her votes over the past few years are horrible.

    She got the important vote right today. eom (none / 0) (#16)
    by Geekesque on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:38:00 PM EST
    Please explain. (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 05:42:47 PM EST
    Got it. Saw your diary. (none / 0) (#28)
    by oculus on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 08:17:08 PM EST
    contradiction? (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Satya1 on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 06:14:18 PM EST
    Hi Jeralyn,

    It seems to me there is an inconsistency in your thinking when you call the moveon vote a "a stupid, toothless resolution" and still you criticize Obama's no vote with "Obama can't be bothered to show up and vote against it?"  Either that or you think it was important for him to vote on a stupid, toothless resolution.  Am I missing something?

    I think the last paragraph of The Swamp article that you link to is a justifiable reason for his action.

    Stupid resolution, stupid ad (none / 0) (#25)
    by robrecht on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 07:19:15 PM EST
    I too noted the apparent/implicit (?) contradiction.  It was a stupid resolution, but it just goes to show how much of a blunder the MoveOn ad was.  Allowed the president and Republicans in the Senate to score cheap and easy points rather than engaging in real discussion of the mess we're in.

    It was a dumb ad (none / 0) (#26)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 07:34:09 PM EST
    But the resolution was far dumber.  Legitimizes the Republican complaints.

    Dumber and dumber (none / 0) (#43)
    by robrecht on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 06:34:45 AM EST
    What difference does it make which was dumber?  The resolution was made possible and effective (for many) by the ad.  The Republicans capitalized on MoveOn's blunder, but the troops and the Democrats still lose.

    Republicans: 1
    MoveOn: -1
    Democrats: 0
    Troops: 4,092 dead (coalition) 27,767 wounded (US)


    Where was Obama today? (none / 0) (#30)
    by annefrank on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 08:34:36 PM EST
    Very confusing...Obama missed the 2nd vote supposedly because he was enroute to a rally in SC around noon. Then SC organizers released a statement that the rally was cancelled because Obama had to vote - and were disappointed because he could have addressed the Jena situation. Then we learned Obama had cancelled his appearance last night for the rally because of the impending votes today. Then Obama released his reason for missing the vote, presumably intentional as a "protest."

    He just keeps (none / 0) (#31)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 08:51:39 PM EST
    coming across as lacking leadership.  This would have been a great time for him to take to the Senate floor and passionately explain why this type of partisan nonsense is a problem.  And he should have backed up the people who are his base.  Bad, weak move.

    Is this what Congress is for? (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by roy on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 06:14:43 PM EST
    So Congress is using its time in session to condemn private groups' political speech.  While not actually violating the 1st Amendment, they certainly betray (word chosen deliberately) the principle of it.  We don't give them authority, salary, voting equipment, security, priviledge from arrest, sovereign immunity, or any of however many other tools, perks, and compensations so they can complain about what people are doing with the freedom Congress is meant to ensure.

    And if Congress members want to use spend their time in session posturing, they should be required to pay the associated costs out of their campaign funds, not tax funds.  I want my $0.00001 back.

    roy (1.00 / 0) (#41)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 06:25:34 AM EST
    If a political organization has the right to "say" it, doesn't the Senate have the right to "say"  it by condemning it??

    Jim (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by roy on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 11:46:29 AM EST
    If Congress members were to do so on their own time, at campaign events or party political meetings, I would absolutely defend their right to do so.  Similarly if they got every member of Congress together and held an unofficial vote while not in session and not using any tax-funded resources.  IMHO, the problem isn't what they're saying, it's that they're saying it in their official capacities as legislators rather than as private individuals or political campaigners, and that they're using resources allocated for official use in order to say it.

    Yes, under current law, Congress has the power to do so.  No surprise -- Congress makes its own rules.  But while there's room to disagree about where to draw lines, the basic distinction between official and political activity is not controversial.  That's why legislators have distinct staffers, phone billings, e-mail addresses, and (most critically) bank accounts for the two activities.


    Can't agree (1.00 / 0) (#57)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 01:39:30 PM EST
    They speak for the people in their state.  That's what they are supposed to do.

    If the people don't like it, they can vote them out.


    pandering by Hillary (1.00 / 1) (#29)
    by diogenes on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 08:33:50 PM EST
    If this is such useless posturing then they should have passed it unanimously without debate by voice vote and the issue would have melted away.  Hillary, the former opponent of flagburning, is playing to the leftist donors.  How does this help in the general election?  

    So if Hillary voted for the Cornyn Amendment, (none / 0) (#35)
    by Jamie on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 04:07:58 AM EST
    she's a warmongering, anti-free speech Republican-lite.

    And when she votes against it, she's pandering to the left.

    Will you anti-Hillary people just make up your mind about her?   Or do you prefer to just cover all your bases and bash her whatever she does?


    pointless votes (1.00 / 0) (#46)
    by diogenes on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 08:04:36 AM EST
    Just saying that the senate has lots of pointless, posturing votes (Moveon, flagburning, etc) and that Hillary's position on such bills and amendments is only consistent in that she votes whichever way is most politically favorable, although the original blurb by Jeralyn seemed to give her some sort of special credit for a "principled" vote by putting her in the same category as Chris Dodd.

    I love these.... (1.00 / 2) (#56)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 01:36:42 PM EST
    Someone tell Blue that habeas corpus has not been suspended/lost/taken away. Maybe that'll help her get over her hissy fit.

    Probably not, but we can hope.

    And I really think all Demos should have primary challenges... nothing like spending money on whipping each other...

    No one (5.00 / 0) (#59)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 01:49:44 PM EST
    expects you to get it, ppj.

    Get what? (1.00 / 2) (#60)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 02:36:08 PM EST
    A rant full of inaccurate information?

    Enjoy the kool aid.


    I saw (none / 0) (#2)
    by HeadScratcher on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:18:30 PM EST
    Gen. Wesley Clark condemn the ad when he was interviewed on Fox by O'Reilly. Was he wrong?

    Personally, I found the ad to be childish and somewhat akin to the petulant cry of a 3 year old not getting what they want.

    There are far better ways to make your points and argue than what MoveOn did. As my wife said of the ad (she's never voted anything other than Democrat) "Someone paid money for that?"

    So? (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 04:53:26 PM EST
    What does that have to do with a vote condemning it in the Senate?  That is what this is about, the use of the legislative process to forward the Republicans agenda - all done by Dems.  

    Amazing after yesterday's filibusters.  I'm pretty close to done with this party.  I can't handle the constant cowardly acts.


    Why can GOP filibuster and Dems dont (none / 0) (#20)
    by timber on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 06:23:39 PM EST
    What I want to know is why Democrats cannot stand up for the truth?

    What is factually wrong with the MoveOn Ad?

    When they vote to condemn the MoveOn Ad they are saying what Gen Petreus said was to be believed--that we are winning the war and the statistics he states are factual?

    What is wrong with Democrats?

    What is factually wrong with the MoveOn Ad? (1.00 / 1) (#39)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 06:20:06 AM EST

    did you see the ad or are you taking the GOP's (5.00 / 2) (#58)
    by Molly Bloom on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 01:47:34 PM EST
    word for what it said.

    They headline was:

    General Petraeus or General Betray Us?

    It is a question, not an accusation. Here is the entire text.

    General Petraeus is a military man constantly at war with the facts. In 2004, just before the election, he said there was "tangible progress" in Iraq and that "Iraqi leaders are stepping forward." And last week Petraeus, the architect of the escalation of troops in Iraq, said, "We say we have achieved progress, and we are obviously going to doeverything we can to build on that progress."

    Every independent report on the ground situation in Iraq shows that the surge strategy has failed. Yet the Generalclaims a reduction in violence. That's because, according to the New York Times, the Pentagon has adopted a bizarreformula for keeping tabs on violence. For example, deaths by car bombs don't count.

    The Washington Post reportedthat assassinations only count if you're shot in the back of the head -- not the front. According to the AssociatedPress, there have been more civilian deaths and more American soldier deaths in the past three months than in any other summer we've been there. We'll hear of neighborhoods where violence has decreased. But we won't hear that those neighborhoods have been ethnically cleansed.
    Most importantly, General Petraeus will not admit what everyone knows: Iraq is mired in an unwinnable religious civil war. We may hear of a plan to withdraw a few thousand American troops. But we won't hear what Americans are desperate to hear: a timetable for withdrawing all our troops. General Petraeus has actually said American troops will need to stay in Iraq for as long as ten years.

    Today, before Congress and before the American people, General Petraeus is likely to become General Betray Us.

    It expresses a fear that Petraeus will not give an honest assessment.

    This is what you and your GOP friends have your panties in a wad about. It is not an attack on the troops. It is not much of an attack on Petraeus.

    In the meantime there is much work to be done, there is a war on and the poor GOP and their allies are worryed that shrinking violet Petraeus will be hurt by this ad. But it beats talking about the real issues, I guess.

    When Petraeus decided to allow himself to be used as a poltical shield for GWB, he stepped into the world of politics. Criticising him is fair game. And after all, its not like they morphed him into OBL or lied about his service record.

    Again, to the GOP and their allies, remove the beam from thine eye, before you worry about the mote in mine.


    sigh......... (1.00 / 2) (#61)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 02:47:11 PM EST
    General Petraeus or General Betray Us?


    : of, relating to, or concerned with rhetoric b : employed for rhetorical effect; especially : asked merely for effect with no answer expected

    It expresses a fear that Petraeus will not give an honest assessment.


    Tell MoveOn to do it again.


    Yes Jim, you got the definition of (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by Molly Bloom on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 04:45:46 PM EST
    rhetorical correct. Do you have a point?

    Yeah (1.00 / 2) (#69)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 07:22:11 PM EST
    But you wouldn't understand.



    I've yet to see you answer my original question (5.00 / 0) (#71)
    by Molly Bloom on Sat Sep 22, 2007 at 09:48:42 AM EST
    Maybe you can't?

    Keep pretending (1.00 / 1) (#73)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Sep 23, 2007 at 09:48:13 AM EST
    but you are not fooling anyone.

    Still not responsive (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by Molly Bloom on Sun Sep 23, 2007 at 11:23:21 AM EST
    Unable to respond. (none / 0) (#75)
    by Edger on Sun Sep 23, 2007 at 01:24:13 PM EST
    Yes, they are (none / 0) (#21)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 06:31:09 PM EST
    That is the problem.  What does this vote say about Powell in front of the UN, or all the lies in the build up to the war?

    It's not only cowardly, it's irresponsible and sets a bad precedent.


    Anyone care to summarize (none / 0) (#22)
    by oculus on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 06:34:05 PM EST
    the procedure here?  Did the Reid have to o.k. this getting to a vote by the Senate?  If not Reid, who?  Thanks.

    Fundamentally flawed tactic (none / 0) (#23)
    by Aaron on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 06:40:35 PM EST
    Move on which claims to be the great bastion of liberalism, made the most fundamental error, by following in the footsteps of the Republicans, and attacking the messenger.

    It works for the Republicans because they don't have to worry about truth and integrity, but in this instance it fundamentally fails in its approach since General Petraeus was not telling us what he thought, he was repeating the arguments of the president, his commander in chief, and his direct military superior.

    I don't read moveon.org so it's hard for me to comment intelligently on their position, but in my opinion they're wasting their time and energies going after anyone but George W. Bush.  If anyone is guilty of betrayal, it is surely he.  

    You can condemn everyone beneath him for remaining loyal and putting forth a unified front, but when it comes to the military especially, you're talking about people who are sworn to take this man's orders.  And until evidence of high treason can be openly established, and proven beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law, the people in the military will do their very dammdist to carry out the president's orders, to the best of their ability.

    I know that George W. Bush is a traitor to the Republic, I don't have enough evidence to prove it, yet.  But when I do, I surely won't be going after General Petraeus, or any of the previous generals who came under his orders, no I will maintain my focus on the president, for it is he who is responsible, and it is WE THE PEOPLE who are responsible for him.  In a very real sense, it is the people who have failed General Petraeus, by sticking him with the Commander in chief that just barely qualifies to be a private in his army assigned the task of shining the general shoes.  It must be a mortifying experience for any military men of earned rank.

    It's common knowledge that the Petraeus report was rewritten by the White House, so it really wasn't the general's report at all, it was the White House's interpretation of the Petraeus report that was being presented to the Congress by General Petraeus, hence any legitimate criticism must be aimed at the White House and nowhere else.

    If the people and our representatives in Congress don't have the guts to remove this president, and wrestle control of our country back from a dictatorial president, and we are reduced to attacking his underlings, well then we have failed. And when you fail, best that you admit your defeat, and Move-on to the next battle.  

    The Iraq war is lost, at least until 2009.  By then we'll have a Democratic president and our military will still be deeply entrenched in Iraq, so where do we go from there.  We can waste our time and energies demolishing our own Democratic candidates, those who don't call for immediate withdrawal, which all thinking people must know isn't going to happen, or we can make the best of a very bad situation.

    I just watched a new freedomswatch.org commercial on cnn, condemning Move-on.  Nice job of giving the people who have no platform other than pretending to support our military, a springboard to launch their failed agenda into 2008.  No doubt the Republicans will be playing this story for all it's worth up until the election.  Sadly many Americans will fall for it, yet again.

    Fool me once, shame on you, fool me 50 times over with the same rhetoric, then you deserve to lose your country to dictatorship and graft.  As George said "won't get fooled again," at least not the marginally intelligent people.

    I'm glad Obama didn't show up for the vote, too bad all the other Democrats didn't follow suit, refusing to participate in an obvious waste of our Congress's time, would at least show some spine.  Did Hillary and Dodd get up there and filibuster?  Well then there dissenting votes mean next to nothing.  The Congress has betrayed us as well, let's keep the focus on the real bad guys shall we.  We have met the enemy, and they are the people we elected.

    Al Qaeda has no chance of defeating the United States of America, the only ones who can do that are the Americans.  We've always been our own worst enemy, going back to the Revolutionary war, it was the Americans who remained loyal to King George who were the greatest threat.  Ironically we seem to be reliving this scenario 131 years later.

    Down with King George!

    Up the Republic!

    Aaron (1.00 / 0) (#42)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 06:29:00 AM EST
    The Iraq war is lost, at least until 2009.


    BTW - Kings don't run for election and aren't limited to 8 years.


    Yeah (none / 0) (#24)
    by DA in LA on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 07:06:24 PM EST
    but, Democrats allowing this to go to a vote just aid the other side.  Now they can use this vote to help to label MoveOn, even more than they already do.  Democrats are actually stepping on the hand that feeds them and grinding it into the dirt.

    Actually, this is what the Repubs wanted (1.00 / 0) (#40)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 06:21:59 AM EST

    Senate Democrats Block Resolution Condemning
    MoveON Ad Attacking Army General!!

    I agree (none / 0) (#72)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Sep 23, 2007 at 09:47:18 AM EST
    That would have been a wonderful headline.

    This is what politics is about these days (none / 0) (#27)
    by Al on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 08:12:06 PM EST
    Public posturing to hide incompetence, at the very least.

    They can't vet RW-SCOTUS noms, but rally for this (none / 0) (#32)
    by Ellie on Thu Sep 20, 2007 at 10:58:42 PM EST
    Since this is a law and order site, I trust that I don't need to say anything more descriptive than: this is simply indefensible. However, in the name of venting outrage ...

    The Dems have used up every last shred of slack they call for when explaining and excusing their pathetic actions to do right by their duties and trust.

    They expend more energy trampling the support they have now to chase after superficial, meaningless and transiet approval from parties that wish to destroy them.

    If they won't use the power they do have properly, intelligently and effectively, they're out of line to ask for more.

    this is not (none / 0) (#33)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 01:24:19 AM EST
    a law and order site. It is a criminal defense oriented site, just the opposite.

    With all due respect (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Ellie on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 07:19:46 AM EST
    With all due respect

    This is your site, so your mandate and descriptions apply.

    However, the concept and phrase "law and order" (which has, since the sixties, acquired the pop-cultural baggage of head-busting goons keeping people in line) dates back beyond the oldest written codifications to the earliest hominids grouping together and agreeing to an order under which to live (government) and the means to preserve this (laws).

    Acting adversarially to defend a criminal isn't the opposite of law and order -- you don't become a lawless co-criminal and/or anarchist when you go to work -- but ensuring your client's recourse as s/he goes through the formal process.

    I'm not a native born speaker, but I do recognize the difference between a society based on laws and constitutional rights equally applied to all, and de facto fascism.

    Of course, if I've hastily assumed (incorrectly) that you do act outside the law for your clients, it's handy to keep in mind beyond any need for a good defense attorney. Should I ever abandon my current thankless career in arts & media for a more exciting and lucrative one in the world of crime, I'll keep you in mind as a potential a wartime consigliere, lookout on a heist or convincing role player when I go on the grift. (BTD would have been my second choice in the first area and first choice on the secondary group.)


    "just the opposite" (1.00 / 1) (#34)
    by Patrick on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 02:17:02 AM EST
    No argument there...

    Four thoughts (none / 0) (#44)
    by LarryE on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 07:18:21 AM EST
    1. This is a snippet of what I said over at my own place on this business:
      Personally, I think the ad was foolish not for what it said but because it gave the wingnuts an opening to launch the kinds of bogus attacks they have, successfully diverting some on the left into wasting time and energy going "oh no no, I'm not with them" (which only legitimizes the original attack by treating it as something requiring response) instead of getting on with opposing the insanity that surrounds us - that being a tendency on the left about which I have griped for years. So I will not be apologizing for or answering for MoveOn or its ad and beyond the tactical criticism I just made I will not be criticizing it. I'm just going to keep saying what I think in my words and for those I take full responsibility.

    2. One good thing to come out of this vote is that you have a much better sense of who your real friends, the ones you can count on in the pinch, are.

    3. It's little enough comfort, but imagine what the vote would have been under similar circumstances if this had been, say, 2004.

    4. Praise be to MoveOn for not backing down, which is both strategically and tactically the best thing they can do right now. Backing down in the face of bullies will never, ever satisfy them.

    Well, I disagree that (none / 0) (#48)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 08:29:27 AM EST
    there is nothing that we can do about this on a collective scale--and they know it

    That is not the the problem, IMO.

    The problem, as I see it, is that, so far, there is nothing than collectively people are doing about this on a collective scale--and they know it.

    Because... nearly everyone keeps saying that there is nothing that we can do about this on a collective scale--and they know it...

    Because... nearly everyone is waiting for someone else to go first.

    I believe they they will not change unless they are afraid of losing tens of millions of votes."

    This is where I drew the line a few months ago. They lose my support unless they do what they were elected to do.

    If they believe they will have the votes without doing what they were elected to do, and instead keep enabling Bush, then they have no reason to change and there is no effective difference between them and the rethugs.

    I will not, two years down the road, be defending myself for supporting people who enabled Bush when they had the power to stop him.

    And everyone will say, be realistic, it will never happen. Many will say "there is nothing that we can do about this on a collective scale" and say things like "better the modern Dem model than the modern GOP one."

    And The Democratic Leadership will be "correct in assuming that we fear putting Repubs back in power even more than we despise them for their fecklessmess, cowardice, cluelessnes and cynicism, and that we will--this time--put up with their despicable selves because the alternative is far, far worse. And it clearly is."

    But it clearly is not.

    Great comment, Edger (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by dutchfox on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 08:38:48 AM EST
    If they believe they will have the votes without doing what they were elected to do, and instead keep enabling Bush, then they have no reason to change and there is no effective difference between them and the rethugs.

    What's so frustrating to me is how some of our elected reps use the excuse that there aren't enough votes, when clearly if they got off their doopas and stood for something, they could get those votes. Where is their moral compass? Down the tubes, IMO, and that sez it all for me.

    Different kinds of votes (none / 0) (#51)
    by kovie on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 08:47:27 AM EST
    They clearly mean that they don't have the votes in congress--i.e. the Repubs. But they WILL most likely have the votes to get reelected and increase their majorities, among the voting public.

    Of course, if you mean that if they started standing up for what they supposedly believe in (or at least were elected to do) and putting pressure on the Repubs, some of those Repubs would flip, you're probably right. They're not flipping because they don't have to, with Dems not fighting them meaningfully or making them look bad.

    But what I'm hearing now is that Dems are going to wait till primary season is over before going after them, figuring that right now they have to give their base red meat, but that once the general election campaign is underway, Repubs will have to tack to the center.

    Maybe. Nothing like kicking that can down the road and keeping the old powder dry for another Friedman Unit. Funny, though, how they don't seem to be in any hurry to offer THEIR "base" any red meat.

    Maybe we just don't demand it as much as the Repub base does.


    It's prisoner's dilemma (none / 0) (#50)
    by kovie on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 08:40:35 AM EST
    We WANT to scare them into doing the right thing, by witholding our support, but we ourselves are scared that this might throw congress and the White House to the Repubs. The Dems know this, and are banking on it. So this isn't, I think, a matter of waiting for someone else to get the ball rolling, but of our collectively deciding that it's better, however marginally, to support these Dems, than to risk handing things back to the Repubs.

    And unless you can convince the public that either this would NOT be better (which is pretty much impossible to do at this point, given the Repubs's track record), or that it might be better, but not sufficiently better to be worth supporting them--or, perhaps, that the risk of handing the election to the Repubs isn't as great as they think it is--this just isn't going to happen.

    Voters just don't think that way. And remember what happened the last time there was a movement to not support either major party candidate because neither was good enough? I do not intend to allow another Nader fiasco happen. I'm going with the lesser of two evils this time, because we simply cannot afford to allow the greater of the two to have one more shot at destroying the country and world. We just can't.

    And, I repeat, the Dems know it, and are banking on it--smartly, if cynically. Don't try to out-game the way the system works. It's a losing strategy.


    Re: we ourselves are scared (none / 0) (#52)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 10:24:48 AM EST
    There is an old saying that I just made up.

    If you want to not live in fear always being reactive... the way to do it is to get up evey morning and go do the thing that scares you the most, before you do anything else.

    Soon you find that you can't find something to do before you do anything else, and the rest of the world is reacting to you.

    IOW, scare them into doing the right thing, in spite of, and because of, the fact that we ourselves are scared that this might throw congress and the White House to the Repubs.

    Otherwise the game was over and lost before it began.


    Throw congress and the White House to the Repubs? (none / 0) (#53)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 11:11:56 AM EST
    The rethugs already have the White House.

    And the Congress.

    The Democratic Leadership has been throwing Congress to the rethugs all along.

    What point is there in being afraid of something that has already happened?

    It's time to turn the tables on these f**kers.


    Can anyone answer this question? (none / 0) (#67)
    by DA in LA on Fri Sep 21, 2007 at 04:15:43 PM EST
    Could Reid have actually stopped the amendment from going to the floor?  Was a hold possible?  I understand it was an amendment to other legislation.

    Yet, I cannot find any stories about what that legislation was.  Could he have put a hold on the legislation to stop the amendment from making it to the floor?