Kos Buys What David Brooks Is Selling

Speaking for me only.

In what I can only term an absurd post, Markos writes that Democrats have had no ideas, it has been the GOP with the new ideas.

Setting aside whether "new" ideas for the sake of having something new means anything, it simply is false. "The new GOP idea`was the old GOP idea - cut taxes and strangle the government. Oh, and the most important GOP idea? Stop anything that comes from Dems, be it old ideas like Social Security and Medicare (see the 1995 government shutdown) to new ideas like universal health care and addressing climate change. Or how about the Earned Income Tax Credit? The largest tax reduction for the the poor working class ever given. Or raising the top tax rate on the richest Americans in order to balance the budget? How about those new ideas that the Republicans fought fiercely? Does Kos NOT know about those?

Because I have news for you -- those are the ideas that form the centerpiece of the Democratic agenda this election. They are not new ideas from Obama, Edwards or Clinton. These are Democratic ideas. Formulated in the last 15 years. By Democrats.

Kos has always said he does not pay much attention to policy. In this post, he proved it. And he does a great disservice to the Democratic Party when he buys the nonsense David Brooks is selling.

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    Dk is in full meltdown mode now (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by MarkL on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 06:53:53 PM EST
    The Obamamentia has never been worse.

    that is meaningless to me (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 06:58:51 PM EST
    Kos' voice matters and this was a grave awful mistake.

    Kos is too busy, or something (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by MarkL on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:02:20 PM EST
    I haven't seen a good post from him on any topic in some time.

    That matters less than this (none / 0) (#6)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:08:35 PM EST
    This did not happen overnight (none / 0) (#50)
    by citizen53 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:27:10 PM EST
    If one has observed, this a repeat of a pattern.  Crash the gates, start to work for Newsweek, and what more does one expect?  It's hard to be a Krugman in the face of success and the desire to accumulate wealth.

    I agree with your post.  Look at the state of our country, politically and economically.  Imagine how much worse it would be if there were only "perceived" Republican ideas.  They are merely updated ways to deceive people to accept regressive ideas.  Solutions and progress lies with Democratic ideas, those that promote the many and not just the few.


    correct. (none / 0) (#64)
    by ghost2 on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 11:35:32 AM EST
    Dailykos reminds me of George Orwell's Animal Farm.  I have that reaction very often! If you read Crashing the Gate with that in mind (I haven't read that book myself, though) it all makes sense.

    I have read great posts and comments here and on Taylor Marsh's blog.  Eriposte is fabulous, as usual.  

    Unfortunately, that reminds of a quote I once read.  From what I remember, Adlai Stevenson was told that he has the vote of all the thinking men. He replied, "That's not nearly enough, I need a majority."

    The sentiment is true even in the blogsphere.


    He is so totally wrong (5.00 / 4) (#10)
    by andgarden on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:23:43 PM EST
    and his latest post compounds the problem. He lists "ideas" that came from the Republican right, but doesn't seem to understand that none of them had anything in particular to do with why the Republicans won.

    No, they won mostly because they were able to appeal to whites in the South with various expressions of racism and bigotry, and to hold the line in the north with anti-tax rhetoric.

    That's a different point (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:25:44 PM EST
    I would ask him what new ideas he believe the current crop of Dem candidates are bringing to the table?

    I think it goes directly (none / 0) (#15)
    by andgarden on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:29:57 PM EST
    to his misunderstanding of how they did what they did.

    You are referring to his seoncd post I take it (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:49:33 PM EST
    I will take that one apart tomorrow.

    A bad night for Kos.


    politely, I hope! (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:52:15 PM EST
    I agree... (none / 0) (#28)
    by ctrenta on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:58:56 PM EST

    ... thanks for saying that Jeralyn.

    Big Tent (none / 0) (#38)
    by Judith on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:33:40 PM EST
    has been very polite - he call Kos his friend.  And friends can disagree.

    gee, i hope not (none / 0) (#56)
    by skippybkroo on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:28:46 AM EST
    why else would i read big tent?

    It will be fun to watch though. (none / 0) (#66)
    by oculus on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:22:15 PM EST
    Sorry, the second one pissed me off more (5.00 / 2) (#25)
    by andgarden on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:52:37 PM EST
    and I saw it first. I think the 3rd one proves that he's got some Clinton derangement tonight.

    DKos jumps the shark tonight... (none / 0) (#44)
    by rhbrandon on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:50:12 PM EST
    Been over there off and on during the evening. Kos is jumping directly into the fray on behalf of both Obama and his supporters over there. It's pretty ugly. Huge comment numbers (hundreds) in a matter of minutes. on

    For my part, I'd like to reserve January 18, 2008, beginning at 6 p.m. CST, as my nominee for the moment when DKos officially jumped the shark.

    He's officially pulled the Limbaugh of his time (that is, when Limbaugh went from being "conservative" to being outright "Republican", supporting G.H.W. Bush to succeed Reagan in 1988). In this case, he's gone from being Democratic to a partisan of a faction in the party.

    Whatcha' think?


    naw, he jumped the shark last february (none / 0) (#57)
    by skippybkroo on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:29:32 AM EST
    when he took skippy off his blogroll!

    Dang skippy! (none / 0) (#58)
    by rhbrandon on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 06:05:09 AM EST
    Yep. Similarly, I miss BTD over there.  He has that attorney's way with words that artfully but effectively ticks opposing counsel into unexplicably losing their composure.

    That reminds me. I was sitting in court last week watching an old criminal defense attorney tick off a young (female) AAG on a forcible rape/forcible sodomy case that should have never been filed in the first place. Gist: gallant man tries to give drunk underaged woman a ride to her boyfriend's house from a bar where he's been with his friends (for her part, turns out that she's been drinking all day and "servicing" men in the parking lot). Big mistake. Still drunk, she starts grabbing the wheel; he brings her back to town. She drunkenly files a complaint, and off they go.  

    Got the AAG mad enough for her to tell the jury in the second part of her closing that they didn't have to believe two of her own witnesses. Defndant acquitted after they had lunch at the county's expense and time to read the instructions.  


    change! (none / 0) (#65)
    by ghost2 on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 11:37:35 AM EST
    and hope!

    Whatever that means.  

    I really think 'change' is a clever marketing ploy to say: get rid of baby boomers.


    He's not the only one (5.00 / 4) (#16)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:31:15 PM EST
    to take this interpretation of what Obama said. See Jake Tapper of ABC Newswho also posts much more of Obama's comments.

    When I read what Obama said, I took it the same way as the Clintons and Edwards -- that since Obama was saying Republicans were the party of ideas, and Democrats weren't, that he was implicitly saying Republicans were superior.

    Markos has said he's sending in his absentee/mail ballot for Obama, but I don't think that's why he takes this view. He ties it to the themes of his and Jerome's book.

    Markos seems to view Obama's comments in terms of strategy, rather than policy. While I don't, because I think their "ideas" and  woeful policy decisions are more important, it may just be an alternative lens he's viewing it from.

    Another thing I disliked about Obama's comments was his distancing himself from the 60's and pointing out again he wasn't of age then. Given the size of the baby boomer generation, I think that's a dumb thing for him to do. Many (like me) will be even more wary of him, thinking not only does he lack experience, and not only has he not been tested, but  that he won't make the same effort to fight for us economically and health-care wise as he will other groups like children and crime victims.  

     The DKos readership poll is heavily for Obama with marginal, almost non-existent support for HIllary. That doesn't make the blog any less of a must-read for me.

    I disagree (none / 0) (#19)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:44:12 PM EST
    Markos mistates the facts here due to his lack of knowledge.

    This is not about Obama.

    This is about David Brooks.

    BTW, I read CTG, and this is not in it.


    At this point, I will probably read for... (none / 0) (#47)
    by rhbrandon on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:59:42 PM EST
    non-sectarian (candidate-wise) diaries (like Bonddad - Hale Stewart - and others) and go bookmark their blogs.

    Like I already do with Bill Fleckstein at MSN Money for business commentary that's not propaganda.


    it's embarrassing (5.00 / 5) (#41)
    by Turkana on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:44:38 PM EST
    that this is even being discussed. it makes it sound like tweety's been right, all along. glad you posted this.

    this was my response, in kos's first thread:

    clinton made a stupid comment

    but plenty of liberal democrats had plenty of ideas that were challenging the conventional wisdom. ted kennedy has been talking national health insurance since the '70s. jimmy carter understood the need for clean renewable energy sources. al gore had so many innovative ideas that people joke about it without even knowing the facts. that the repugs were the party of ideas is just plain wrong.

    eriposte did a great job (5.00 / 2) (#60)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 08:56:56 AM EST
    I stole his post in my latest.

    Cuz Ideas Have Appeal does NOT mean (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by seabos84 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:57:21 PM EST
    the Ideas are any good!

    I've been in the bottom 30 or 60% of family, household, and individual income my whole life (except a couple of years cooking in alaska and a few years being a microserf), AND

    I've always lived around or worked around people who didn't vote cuz so little was happening to them that benefited them that voting just enabled and empowered the incompetent, OR, I've been around people who listened to the lies / ideas and swallowed the lies / ideas.

    All these decades, in Boston or Seattle, I get poooh - poohed by all kinds of uber educated who deign to tell me that the

    HA HA HA

    thugs are lying and that there isn't any good or positive reality attached to their lies!

    uh - no f$$$ing kidding !!!!

    We, or Dem 'leaders', or Dem pooh-bahs, can't understand the appeal of the messages, (cuz the reality behind the lies is so bad) so we don't come up with ways to beat the lies / ideas --------------------

    other than standing around in our snooty snotty ivy arrogance wagging our fingers sternly at the unwashed who fall for the pretty lies.

    face it - the liars had great lies, and they called the lies 'ideas' as part of the Lie.

    We've(1.) had great ideas attached to reality, and we've(1.) done such an appallingly lousy crappy incompetent job of selling those ideas, we've gotten our butts handed to us by LIARS!

    (1.) I hate to say 'we' - I don't have the job of paid 'leader', I got another job that keeps me busy 50+ hours a week.

    Maybe BO and kos should say that the thugs have been the party of the best sounding lies of the last 4 decades, lies labeled as 'ideas' by the liars who made the lies?


    Kos and Obama (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by mmc9431 on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 07:57:11 AM EST
    I don't understand why people insist on candy coating their favorites. You can prefer one candidate over another without shutting off your brain. I know many progressive sites such as Daily Kos and Huffington have taken upon themselves to be the flag bearers for Obama. Although he has many great qualities, he is far from the "Progressive Hero" that they have annointed him as. He has voted in step on the war funding. He isn't opposed to school vouchers (which will be used to privatize and destroy the public school system), and he voted for the Patriot Act. These are not the actions of a Russ Feingold politician. Honesty should be paramount on these sites. This is what attracted me to them in the first place. There's enough spin in the MSM. If we continue on this route we'll be no better than the media world of O'Reilly and Fox.

    Marcos has just seen the light (2.00 / 1) (#52)
    by Aaron on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:38:12 PM EST
    And gotten on board with the majority of the people over at Daily Kos, who now favor Obama over Edwards.  It's taken him a while to come around to the candidate who represents true progressive thinking, Marcos like most everyone on this blog has been playing catch-up.

    It's funny that some liberals believe that their ideas have won over America, they haven't. The only reason the House and Senate are in Democratic hands today is because of George W. Bush, and the illegal immoral war he got us into, and that the Republicans continue to support.

    If the Republicans had not put a complete incompetent Constitution trashing moron in the White House, the liberals and progressives in this country would still be marginalized, and would have no hope of winning this this presidential election, certainly not with Hillary Clinton is the front runner.  As it is, it looks like even money where as six months ago it looked like a Democratic lock.

    So the folks here and talk left better wake up, and get with the program, otherwise we're going to be listening to your excuses when Hillary loses the general election, and the House and Senate begin to move back into Republican hands, before the Democrats have had a chance to do anything.

    Just keep playing it safe behind Hillary, and your candidate will wind up just like John Kerry and Al Gore, sitting in the mud playing with their toys, wondering where all went so terribly wrong.

    It's time for change in this country, and Hillary Clinton is not about change, she's about the status quo and being afraid.

    may I just say (none / 0) (#53)
    by Judith on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:39:56 PM EST
    yawn already.

    I second that yawn (none / 0) (#55)
    by RalphB on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:14:51 PM EST
    Perhaps the tiger can't change its stripes. (none / 0) (#4)
    by oculus on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:04:11 PM EST

    DK (none / 0) (#5)
    by athyrio on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:06:59 PM EST
    I used to go to his web site, but lately his posts don't support anything democratic or liberal....How sad, but his loss not mine...alot of people were willing to hook on to him as a great liberal supporter but they are finding out differently....

    I do not agree with that (none / 0) (#7)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:09:27 PM EST
    Markos is a friend and ally.

    This post is a grave mistake.


    Was astonished, but it's Kos defending Obama (none / 0) (#8)
    by koshembos on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:12:23 PM EST

    Do not care who he is defending (none / 0) (#9)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:14:04 PM EST
    That is not the point.

    The point is he bought into David Brooks' BS and he is talking fron sheer ignorance.


    how the heck (none / 0) (#34)
    by Judith on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:20:33 PM EST
    could any Democrat take what Brooks says as truth?

    a democrat (none / 0) (#35)
    by athyrio on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:24:51 PM EST
    A true democrat would never make that mistake...

    i dont know (none / 0) (#36)
    by Judith on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:27:20 PM EST
    all I can say is anybody who uses David Brooks as a source loses right off the bat.  The man is an imbecile.

    Confusing in general (none / 0) (#11)
    by manys on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:24:17 PM EST
    I haven't read DK for years due to the site's overwhelming hysteria and my inability to wade through hundreds and hundreds of comments on posts about boring subjects (FDL writ large), but I'm curious about this "I don't pay attention to policy" business. What else is there to pay attention to? Personality? Speechifying?

    There is a lot to political strategy (none / 0) (#13)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:26:41 PM EST
    and generally he is very adept and astute about that.

    I do not think that the specifics of policy need be everyone's bailiwick.


    Such a narrow lens... (none / 0) (#54)
    by citizen53 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:42:02 PM EST
    leads to excess cynicism that helps to perpetuate the climate that needs changing.

    I guess I'm missing something (none / 0) (#14)
    by DA in LA on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:28:20 PM EST
    Isn't he just saying the Republicans have driven the agenda?  Seems to me they have.  One only has to look at the pathetic defensive positions of Pelosi and Reid to see the results of the beating we have taken over the years.

    I think there is a big difference between driving the agenda and having ideas.  We clearly have had ideas, but they have won the battles with their devious tactics.

    I think when we lose the ability, as a party, to discuss subjects rationally, we lose.

    Maybe Kos meant the Republicans have driven the (4.66 / 3) (#32)
    by ding7777 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:12:00 PM EST
    agenda but here's what Kos said

    the GOP build a Vast Right Wing Conspiracy that used its think tanks to create ideas, a media machine to sell those ideas, and a modernized campaign operation to win elections on those ideas.

    It was messages - not ideas that the Republicans created, sold and won elections with. Specifically, the message of fear - Communism, unions, Willie Horton, welfare queens, etc.

    Where are the ideas?


    Then he used the wrong words (none / 0) (#20)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:44:44 PM EST
    Kos was right on the money... (none / 0) (#17)
    by eddeevy on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:39:32 PM EST
    I read the post by Kos earlier this evening and it was clear to me that he was right on the money...he made it clear that the right-wing conservatives have been able to generate numerous BAD ideas. As he pointed out, they have controlled the narrative. Thats a simple fact.
    There is a reason why Kos is considered one of the most influential voices in the progressive blogosphere.  

    The ideas I identify in my post? (none / 0) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:42:53 PM EST
    Did they not exist?

    There you go again (none / 0) (#21)
    by converse on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:47:22 PM EST
    putting words in someone's mouth and then calling it wrong.

    "Markos writes that Democrats have had no ideas, it has been the GOP with the new ideas."

    WRONG!  Never wrote it.

    He did write:

    "A nicely crafted straw man argument, if I've ever seen one. Bravo, John (BTD), for being an ass and dishonestly distorting what Obama (Markos) said!"

    Seems To Me Kos Needs To Practice What He (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by MO Blue on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:47:08 PM EST
    preaches. In his post entitled  "Hillary has Lieberman's back" Kos shows a clip of a Clinton interview and states:

    Hillary thinks Lieberman should keep his committee assignments, even though he's campaigning for Republican John McCain.

    Listen to the clip. While the interviewer did ask about Lieberman's committee assignments, Clinton very carefully stayed away from discussing them. Basically this is what she said:

    He caucuses with us, he votes with us and I certainly believe that it is important we continue that.

    Exuse me? (none / 0) (#22)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:48:35 PM EST
    When he designates the GOP as the Pparty with ideas what does that make the Dems, "the other parrty with ideas?"

    Do not be ridiculous.


    Sorry, No Excuses This Time (none / 0) (#26)
    by converse on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:53:26 PM EST
    Your tired schtick of putting words in other people's mouths is getting so, so old.  Give it a rest.  Try factual attribution for a change.

    ETIC (none / 0) (#27)
    by Rojas on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 07:57:55 PM EST
    Brainchild of a Southern Democrat.
    Signed in to law in 75 (republican)
    Expanded in 86, 90, 93 and 01 (R,R,D,R)

    But you got to be cazy to think you can work with those people

    EITC - Control of Senate (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by ding7777 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:33:10 PM EST
    1975 - Majority Party: Democrat

    1986 - Majority Party: Republican with Democrats recaputring in 1987  

    1990 - Majority Party: Democrat

    1993 - Majority Party: Democrat

    2001 - Majority Party: Democrat


    There you go again (none / 0) (#29)
    by converse on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:04:34 PM EST
    letting the facts get in the way of a perfectly fun argument.

    Thank you (none / 0) (#30)
    by athyrio on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:07:01 PM EST
    Big Tent, for fairly trying to represent all sides of the democratic party and for trying to be honest....Also thanks to Jeralyn for her posts as well.. I love this site because it is fair and honest....

    Fair and Balanced (none / 0) (#33)
    by Rojas on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:14:47 PM EST
    As usual, you make excellent points A (none / 0) (#31)
    by bronte17 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:09:27 PM EST
    but kos didn't refer to the GOP processes as "new" ideas... he just said they had "ideas" churning out from their think tanks that was spread via their media machine and they won through their campaign machine.

    In fact, Obama isn't saying anything that couldn't come straight out of Crashing the Gate -- that the GOP build a Vast Right Wing Conspiracy that used its think tanks to create ideas, a media machine to sell those ideas, and a modernized campaign operation to win elections on those ideas. Yes, the GOP was the party of ideas. They were crappy ideas. But they were "ideas".

    But they weren't ideas (none / 0) (#39)
    by ding7777 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:37:05 PM EST
    they were messages of fear

    Don't be ridiculous. (none / 0) (#45)
    by bronte17 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:56:05 PM EST
    There have been serious policies that have come out from these think tanks and it requires serious people to rebuke them... supply-side economics meet the Laffer curve.

    It's their mantra.  


    I thought the GOP (none / 0) (#48)
    by Judith on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:00:09 PM EST
    had just one big idea - destroy everything the Democrats built.

    (admittedly this came with several sub sections)

    Or, as Cheney so eloquently put it

    "It's OUR turn!"


    The Laffer Curve (none / 0) (#51)
    by ding7777 on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:34:48 PM EST
    is no different than "the law of diminishing returns" that's been around for centuries.

    An old idea, repackaged to be sure, but sold via the message that the government is too BIG and taking too much of your MONEY


    Speaking of Kos... (none / 0) (#40)
    by Tano on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:40:09 PM EST
    Did y'all see this new post of his?

    "So what did Hillary Clinton tell the Salmon Press editorial board? Apparently, nothing different than what Obama said."

    "But no president can do it alone. She must break recent tradition, cast cronyism aside and fill her cabinet with the best people, not only the best Democrats, but the best Republicans as well.. We're confident she will do that. Her list of favorite presidents - Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Lincoln, both Roosevelts, Truman, George H.W. Bush and Reagan - demonstrates how she thinks. As expected, Bill Clinton was also included on the aforementioned list. "

    a lie (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by athyrio on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 09:18:50 PM EST
    she didnt include Reagan as her favorite president....has been completely debunked...maybe Kos just likes to carry on the lie in order to support Obama

    David Cutler, the co-owner of Salmon Press Newspapers, released the following statement:

    The question posed was originally what portraits would you hang in the White House if you were President and as the dialogue progressed, who are the presidents you admire most?

    She [Sen. Clinton] listed several presidents that she admired and mentioned she liked Reagan's communication skills. She did not say Reagan was her favorite President. She didn't say anything close to that.


    Keep reading...his fourth straight anti- (none / 0) (#42)
    by Teresa on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 08:45:16 PM EST
    Hillary post. The newspaper made an error.

    I know I (none / 0) (#61)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 10:15:40 AM EST
    am going to get plastered for this, but the National Socialist party in Germany of the 20's proposed Universal health care.  Hardly a new idea.  As did the international socialists in the USSR.  

    Jonah Goldberg in the House!! (5.00 / 2) (#62)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 10:20:12 AM EST
    Well, (none / 0) (#63)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 10:34:08 AM EST
    you did say Universal Health care was new.  I'm just pointing out It isn't.