The SYFP Brigade Out Early

As expected, the Obama Cult does not like to read any questioning of their Dear Leader. They demand we all STFU. For the non-Cultists among you, let me introduce you to one John Brennan:

Q: Assess the debate in Congress and with the administration over reforming the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. [Democratic lawmakers allowed the temporary extension of that law, the Protect America Act, to expire, over the vehement objections of the White House.] Why has it come to this point where politics has arguably pulled things off the rails?

Brennan: There is this great debate over whether or not the telecom companies should in fact be given immunity for their agreement to provide support and cooperate with the government after 9/11. I do believe strongly that they should be granted that immunity, because they were told to do so by the appropriate authorities that were operating in a legal context, and so I think that's important. . . . [Director of National Intelligence] Mike McConnell, I think, did a very good job trying to articulate the distinctions between the old FISA law, the FISA understanding under the Protect America Act, and then the House and Senate.

John Brennan is heading the Obama transition on intelligence issues. In the Wall Street Journal article cited today (and the WSJ news pages are not the WSJ opinion page, Obama Bots), the following is written:

President-elect Barack Obama is unlikely to radically overhaul controversial Bush administration intelligence policies, advisers say, an approach that is almost certain to create tension within the Democratic Party. . . . Mr. Obama is being advised largely by a group of intelligence professionals, including some who have supported Republicans, and centrist former officials in the Clinton administration. They say he is likely to fill key intelligence posts with pragmatists. . . . The intelligence-transition team is led by former National Counterterrorism Center chief John Brennan and former CIA intelligence-analysis director Jami Miscik, say officials close to the matter. . . Mr. Brennan is a leading contender for one of the two [top intelligence] jobs, say some advisers. He declined to comment on personnel matters.

Some of you may be pleased as punch that John Brennan is leading the transition on intelligence matters and is a leading candidate for Director of Intelligence in an Obama Administration. I am not pleased. I think the reasons should be clear to anyone who actually cares about civil liberties.

Other people are concerned about the possibility that Larry Summers might be the Treasury Secretary. I do not share their concerns but I respect their willingness to speak out on their views on the matter.

Other are adamant that Joe Lieberman be stripped of the committee chairmanship. I would make him promise to never join a Republican filibuster in exchange for keeping his chairmanship. Others are upset that Obama has stated he wants Lieberman to stay in the Dem Caucus. I do not share that upset. But I respect and admire those who are not afraid to speak their mind on the issue.

What I can not understand is the ridiculous Cult of Obama who believes that not a negative or questioning word should be said about Obama ever. Oh sure, they'll say "wait till he is President." But then they'll say "wait till he finishes his first year." And after that, "wait for the mid terms." And then "wait until after reelection." In short, members of a cult can never have the leader of the cult criticized. That is how the Republicans have done it, and no one is as zealous as a convert.

Not to worry, they'll be singing the "SYFP" song for the next 8 years and we'll keep ignoring them. For some of us, it is the issues, not the pol.

By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only

< Obama Transition Team "Clarifies" Position On Torture: He May Be For It | Audit: DOJ Isn't Spending All Its Anti-Terrorism Money On Anti-Terrorism >
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    Hmmm ... (5.00 / 9) (#1)
    by Robot Porter on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:42:58 PM EST
    What I can not understand is the ridiculous Cult of Obama who believes that not a negative word should be said about Obama ever. Oh sure, they'll say "wait till he is President. But then they'll say "wait till he finishes his first year. And after that, "wait for the mid terms." And then "wait until after reelection." In short, members of a cult can never have the leader of the cult criticized. That is how the Republicans have done it and no one is as zealous as a convert.

    I think they'll just defend his assaults on civil liberties if they come.

    Of course, these same people would post thousands upon thousands of words based on a subordinate clause uttered by Hillary Clinton.  And that's not hyperbole.  

    You're right BTD! (5.00 / 7) (#2)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:44:34 PM EST
    In short, members of a cult can never have the leader of the cult criticized.

    This people are crazy cultists.

    What do you want us to do to John Cole?  We're ready, say the word!

    Heh (5.00 / 3) (#4)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:47:06 PM EST
    read him. Laugh at him. Ridicule him.

    I think that was the advice Atrios and Thers were giving th is morning - oh wait that was about Cultist Republicans. Perhaps Cultist Obama bot are supposed to get better treatment.


    We hear and obey. (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:50:29 PM EST
    Perfect response (4.00 / 3) (#95)
    by Lolis on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 10:55:42 PM EST
    BTD gets really aggressive and confrontational with anyone who disagrees with him on this blog, especially Jeralyn.

    I'm sorry I'm not going to freak out over a speculative article especially when John Podesta reaffirmed that Obama will stick to the ideas/promises he campaigned upon.

    I have no problem with holding Obama accountable, but BTD should live up to his username and not personally insult people who disagree with him. This website in May was still featuring comments about whether Clinton should let Obama be her VP. This is not exactly the most reality-based blog on the web, which appeals to me in an odd way.

    I just think BTD and others should acknowledge that you had your Clinton love that blinded you in your own funny ways, too. You guys find Obama untrustworthy, we get it, all politicians are to a certain degree. They need us to keep them honest, but I haven't seen something that makes me doubt Obama at this time. I simply disagree with BTD that there is some smoking gun.

    Don't lecture me about the kool-aid. You guys are just as bad.


    Pompous and condescending much? (4.00 / 3) (#96)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 11:13:03 PM EST
    You mistakenly directed this post (none / 0) (#111)
    by digdugboy on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 10:08:22 AM EST
    to somebody other than BTD. Please be more careful in the future.

    Just FYI (none / 0) (#99)
    by Amiss on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 12:55:40 AM EST
    BTD was not a Clinton supporter, he was an Obama supporter from as far back as I can remember. Granted I am old and can be senile at times. I admire BTD for always standing on his principals and not backing down.

    If you remember (5.00 / 2) (#102)
    by Fabian on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 04:46:52 AM EST
    BTD's repeated explanations of his "tepid" support for Obama, IIRC, it was that Obama and Clinton were almost indistinguishable on policy and that Obama's Media Darling status would give him an edge in both the primaries and general election.

    So it wasn't idolatry or ideology, it was just which candidate gave us the best shot at getting a Democrat in the White House.  Simple pragmatism.  (Plus the acknowledgment that the Media plays a large part in selecting our Presidents.)


    true (5.00 / 2) (#105)
    by kempis on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 07:04:27 AM EST
    While I agree that BTD's "agree with me or you're a fool" shtick gets old, he's often right. And to characterize him or this site as Obama-hating is incorrect.

    Yeah, there are Obama-haters here, some of whom are as unhinged as Obama-worshipers. But the principals, Jeralyn and BTD and TChris have all been strong Obama-supporters since the primaries ended and Hillary suspended her campaign. I'm not sure how anyone could have missed that.

    Actually, I am. Politics relies on either-or thinking to hook us into partisan camps. Thus either you were for Obama 1000% or you were against him. You were for Obama in the primaries, or you were a PUMA. There are a lot of articulate but stupid people blogging their hearts out, making these kinds of harmful and untrue assumptions.

    I wish they'd knock it off.



    Until the Superdelegates (none / 0) (#120)
    by hairspray on Thu Dec 18, 2008 at 05:42:57 PM EST
    decided to "give the nod" to Obama this statement was not so far out:
    This website in May was still featuring comments about whether Clinton should let Obama be her VP.

    But then like so many of my friends who worship Obama you did not follow the caucuses and primaries and watch the Democratic party "award" all those delegates to Obama.  Why not google "Primaries and Caucuses" by Peniel and read up on where these ideas come from.

    G#d it. I am really pissed. (none / 0) (#84)
    by oculus on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:24:55 PM EST
    Just an observation (none / 0) (#116)
    by OxyCon on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 07:14:41 PM EST
    I've noticed many bloggers and commenters who were devout Bush supporters, who readily admitted that they voted for Bush twice, were the most ardent, radical, rude, sickening, Obama supporters this time around.
    On every blog I visited during this past election cycle, the most despicable Obama supporting bloggers and commenters were usually the ones who transformed over night from 8 years of being Bush Cultists, into being Obama Cultists.

    I agree that we must pressure Obama (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by arguewithmydad com on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:46:59 PM EST
    to honor the Constitution and return our right to have our communications and laptops safe from government scrutiny, unless a valid, court ordered warrant is in play.  Not a blanket order, not a secret letter, but a true Pre-Bushian FISA court order.

    Seriously. . . (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:48:02 PM EST
    this actually sounds like a more troubling connection -- and not just because of Brennan but because:

    Mr. Obama is being advised largely by a group of intelligence professionals, including some who have supported Republicans, and centrist former officials in the Clinton administration

    That makes it sound like an awfully status quo group.

    Status quo is a neutral description (5.00 / 5) (#8)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:50:43 PM EST
    It is important to say that the status quo, mean torture, Gitmo, illegal eavesdropping and so on.

    Or one could say ... (none / 0) (#10)
    by Robot Porter on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:57:15 PM EST
    Obama's in danger of becoming this.

    Hey BTD (none / 0) (#101)
    by manish on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:37:03 AM EST
    You are trying to divine what Obama is going to do as President based on leaks that may or may not be accurate and for the most part don't capture any nuance in Obama's positions.  We don't know what much of whats coming out really means until he actually implements those policies.  Jan 20th really isn't that far away.

    heh (5.00 / 7) (#6)
    by Turkana on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:48:13 PM EST
    i've been out of commission, but i'm loving that you're saying what needs be said. meteor blades had a good post, a few days back, but the usual suspects are doing the usual. the great convergence- many of the blogs and bloggers are now little different than the corporate media.

    Vice versa. . . (5.00 / 6) (#9)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:52:08 PM EST
    if you think about it.  At present, it's the left-o-sphere that's saying "hey, don't look over there, everything's fine, nothing to worry about" and articles like this that are reporting the actual issues (in this case, the rather status quo nature of Obama's intelligence advisors.

    PS: "Out of commission" hopefully doesn't mean everything is not okay.


    thanks (5.00 / 7) (#41)
    by Turkana on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:52:11 PM EST
    yeah- things were not okay, but they are now...

    Thanks for bucking the 'bots. (5.00 / 7) (#11)
    by Joelarama on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:57:29 PM EST
    SYFPH is what lead to the Republicans' fall. It will happen to Democrats if we stick our heads in the sand.

    We're seeing this reaction on Proposition 8, too -- we need to look at facts without blinders to succeed in the long term.

    Well (5.00 / 4) (#12)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:57:32 PM EST
    Josh Marshall was worried about Summers as far as "optics" goes.  Some are worried about Lieberman because of party discipline.  You're sounding the alarm about someone who seems to entirely disagree with progressives moving close to a top national security position.

    Now which of these is most important?  And which one should we most hope we have Obama's ear on?

    Especially considering a lot of Obama's promise came supposedly from his ability to push back on Republican frames and redefine the way we think about issues like foreign policy.  

    Hear, hear! (5.00 / 5) (#20)
    by Robot Porter on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:13:28 PM EST
    And I'd hardly say Obama hasn't done anything.  

    He's selected Brennan to head his intelligence-transition team.

    That's an action.


    They all deserve to be grilled. (none / 0) (#89)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:54:21 PM EST
    We have a shot at a fresh start.  We do not want stale neo-con thinking to take root.


    Q:  One of the things that [the administration does] right away is get lots of legal justifications lined up, from the Bybee memo [the so-called "torture memo"] to everything -- would there have been very much difference between what Tenet believed the CIA should do in terms of renditions and all of it? And what we can assume the vice president and the president and others would want the CIA to do? Was Tenet especially more careful, more cautious than they were sounding like they were?

    A:  I think George had two concerns. One is to make sure that there was that legal justification, as well as protection for CIA officers who are going to be engaged in some of these things, so that they would not be then prosecuted or held liable for actions that were being directed by the administration. So we want to make sure the findings and other things were done probably with the appropriate Department of Justice review.

    But at the same time, there is a question about how aggressive you want to be against terrorism in terms of, what does it mean to take the gloves off? There was a real debate within the agency, including today, about what are the minimum standards that you want to stoop to and beyond where you're not going to go, because we don't want to stoop to using the same types of standards that terrorists use. We are in this business, whether it be intelligence or the government, to protect freedom, democracy and liberty, not to violate that.

    When it comes to individuals who are determined to destroy our nation, though, we have to make sure that we take every possible measure. It's a tough ethical question, and it's a question that really needs to be aired more publicly. The issue of the reported domestic spying -- these are very healthy debates that need to take place. They can't be stifled, because I think that we as a country and a society have to determine what is it we want to do, whether it be eavesdropping, whether it be taking actions against individuals who are either known or suspected to be terrorists. What length do we want to go to? What measures do we want to use? What tactics do we want to use?

    Hopefully, that "dark side" is not going to be something that's going to forever tarnish the image of the United States abroad and that we're going to look back on this time and regret some of the things that we did, because it is not in keeping with our values. ...

    Sometimes there are actions that we are forced to take, but there need to be boundaries beyond which we are going to recognize that we're not going to go because we still are Americans, and we are supposed to be representing something to people in this country and overseas. So the dark side has its limits.

    We need to ask these questions.  We need to ask how what Brennan says here matches up with his defense of FISA.  We need to know what he defines as "actions we are forced to take."  

    Or we can find out when he makes a move we all regret.  But that's not a good idea.


    More (5.00 / 3) (#92)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 10:05:27 PM EST
    Jane Mayer: New Yorker.

    Among the few C.I.A. officials who knew the details of the detention and interrogation program, there was a tense debate about where to draw the line in terms of treatment. John Brennan, Tenet's former chief of staff, said, "It all comes down to individual moral barometers." Waterboarding, in particular, troubled many officials, from both a moral and a legal perspective. Until 2002, when Bush Administration lawyers asserted that waterboarding was a permissible interrogation technique for "enemy combatants," it was classified as a form of torture, and treated as a serious criminal offense. American soldiers were court-martialled for waterboarding captives as recently as the Vietnam War.

    I think it's fair to ask if that's change.


    I disagree (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by kmonster on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 04:58:20 PM EST
    Obama has continuously outsmarted everyone else out there--we don't yet know what his position is or what he is planning on doing.

    All he is trying to do is take a slow, methodical approach--it's in his personality to take it easy and listen to everyone before making a decision.

    There is no evidence whatsoever that Obama is going to end up taking positions that anyone here would disagree with--people are getting up in arms way too early.

    Don't get me wrong, I think it is important for liberals to question Obama--very important.  But we also have to be careful to not jump to conclusions.

    You disagree that (5.00 / 3) (#14)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:01:28 PM EST
    we should speak out against potential actions we think are wrong? I assume you mean when Obama is involved. Because you are not shy to speak out against me here when you think I am wrong.

    I find that ironic as all hell. Obama is your president and you say we shut up about him but you should spend a lot of time questioning me instead.



    No (none / 0) (#18)
    by kmonster on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:07:17 PM EST
    I don't disagree that you should speak out against actions you think are wrong--if u had read my comment, you would know that.

    I'm just saying, I don't think this is cause for alarm, and that given Obama's personality, it is a mistake to jump to conclusions.


    Why is it not the baiss for alarm? (5.00 / 3) (#22)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:14:58 PM EST
    Do you know what John Brennan stands for? what he has advocated for? I mean honestly. I bet you were not worried about Obama's vote on telecom immunity either.

    I was worried (none / 0) (#26)
    by kmonster on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:22:31 PM EST
    about the telecom decision at first, and I don't know what to make of it now, but I can definitely see the other perspective--which should always be the goal.

    The immunity wasn't as cut and dry as everyone wants to pretend.  Obama was compromising to get a better--but obviously not good--FISA bill.  That's what he does.  If you don't want him to compromise, then that's fine, but he is going to do it.


    huh? (5.00 / 11) (#31)
    by Democratic Cat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:30:43 PM EST
    Where is this better FISA bill that he was compromising to get?

    And I, personally, do not ever care to "see the other perspective on torture."


    Well wait up (none / 0) (#30)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:29:07 PM EST
    your ACTUAL argument is you do not care about telecom immunity at spying on Americans.

    That is your perogative and if that is your view, then of course you do not care about Brennan.

    I do not care about Summers but I respect those who do and do not criticize them for going after him.


    I care about spying on Americans (none / 0) (#33)
    by kmonster on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:35:59 PM EST
    but I'm not sure that immunity the key battle in that war.

    Then you did not read what Brennan (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:42:06 PM EST
    said, he STRONGLY ENDORSED what Mike McConnell said.

    Please, for crissakes, pay attention.


    I really don't know why you need to be rude (none / 0) (#49)
    by kmonster on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:12:47 PM EST
    I would not call
    Mike McConnell, I think, did a very good job trying to articulate the distinctions between the old FISA law, the FISA understanding under the Protect America Act, and then the House and Senate.

    STRONGLY ENDORSING.  You may be right about Brennan, but I don't think it's so wrong to have doubts about your argument.

    God forbid there be some civility.


    His "personality"? (5.00 / 8) (#60)
    by Fabian on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:24:30 PM EST
    If the politics of personality is your thang, go for it!

    As for me, no thanks.


    As for no evidence whatsover (5.00 / 4) (#15)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:02:40 PM EST
    If John BRennan leading the transition on intelligence matters means "no evidence" to you, then we have nothing to talk about.

    you have decided to not believe "your lying eyes." I have no use for that.


    For evidence. . . (5.00 / 4) (#19)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:09:23 PM EST
    one can also consider the FISA vote.  That was a specific vote on a specific intelligence matter on which, as I understand it, Obama had promised to vote one way -- and he went the other way.

    Shhhh, quiet! (5.00 / 8) (#24)
    by Democratic Cat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:18:09 PM EST
    We can't talk about that until after the election....

    And voted for the FISA bill (5.00 / 6) (#42)
    by Cream City on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:55:14 PM EST
    with a big grin.  Worrisome.  

    But then he said -- he pledged -- that fixing FISA to get immunity out of it of would be the first priority of his administration.

    Therefore, we can expect to see the Obama Fix-the-FISA before Congress on January 21.

    Tick, tock, tick, tock. . . .


    B-b-but the ECONOMY! (5.00 / 4) (#59)
    by Fabian on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:22:52 PM EST
    And so it goes....

    I believe he (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by NYShooter on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 11:48:30 PM EST
    even endorsed, or was willing to lead, a flibuster against the bill.

    do i have that right?


    Yes, you're right. (5.00 / 1) (#121)
    by andrys on Fri Dec 19, 2008 at 01:45:58 AM EST
    He had promised to at least take part in a filibuster.

    My take on him is that he wants to do good but sees himself, in a sort of removed way, as 'wise' and will easily change his mind because it will mean he's more 'open' to other information and thought.

     His ability to remain so 'cool' (which is much admired) may be because he doesn't have strong emotions or passions over things, just a sort of passionless intellectualized approach, almost game-like.  He does want what he considers the best minds with the best overall experience, but in the national-intelligence area, he's choosing people whose advice he will be relying on because he considers them the best for that, at this point.

      When some Obama people say, watch what we DO, that's one aspect.  The choices he makes.   Who is speaking in his ear, to give him guidance, as chosen by him?  


    Well that too (none / 0) (#21)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:13:58 PM EST
    Brennan was there from the beginning (none / 0) (#61)
    by Pepe on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:27:58 PM EST
    and it was very clear he was going nowhere then and it s even more clear now. Like Obama told his supporters - 'We may not always agree'.

    O will be listening to no one on the outside. His game will be to toss out enough bones so as to get reelected.


    Well if anyone wonders (5.00 / 3) (#17)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:07:10 PM EST
    why Obama doesn't care about blogs...

    The positive effect of blogs on the MSM is based upon their ability to fact-check and push back against sloppy reporting.  I would think the same goes for Obama.  What other way to earn his respect?  

    Heh (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:15:48 PM EST
    Surely he does not believe that "pols are pols and do what they do."

    Where I come from (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Steve M on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:22:13 PM EST
    it is SYFPH and not SYFP.  These are important issues.

    I like SYFP better (none / 0) (#28)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:26:57 PM EST
    the Urban Dictionary.... (none / 0) (#51)
    by jerry on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:14:51 PM EST
    To be a pedantic grammarian, I am compelled to point out that the Urban Dictionary, widely considered authoritative in such matters, has it listed as syfph and contains no listing for syfp.

    Eff the Urban Dictionary (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:19:29 PM EST
    BTW (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:21:54 PM EST
    Here is my use of SYFP back in 2007. Ironically, Larry was the subject of the post.

    I prefer... (none / 0) (#68)
    by jerry on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 07:46:51 PM EST

    Which is an expression requesting others to be remain politely quiet while I dine on my pie.


    I had no idea. (none / 0) (#71)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:03:02 PM EST
    Really -- I don't anything I've written has ever inspired someone to respond before, certainly not on the front page of a different blog (albeit one no one's ever heard of).  I'm genuinely honored.

    The substance of the  response, of course, is an example of the self-defeating silliness I was calling out in the first place.  But that's all water under the bridge.  Too cool.


    I had to google both of them (none / 0) (#53)
    by CST on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:18:16 PM EST
    You are right Steve, only STFPH came up as an acronym.  STFP came up as - this post.

    I need a crash course in acronyms, I never know what any of them mean.  Although I have become very familiar with ODS, CDS, PDS, although strangely enough, I have never heard of MDS yet.


    MDS (none / 0) (#72)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:22:46 PM EST
    is not a disease, it's the cure!

    I agree on Lieberman (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by heineken1717 on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:22:52 PM EST
    That's a good solution, chairmanship for no filibustering. The morons who want to push Lieberman out of the party are acting like George W. Bush with Jim Jeffords. We need every vote we can get, the idea that we'll be way over 50 senators for eternity is foolish.

    Lieberman v Jeffords (none / 0) (#38)
    by Donna Z on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:49:41 PM EST
    Lieberman is not a Democrat so he could not leave the party. Jeffords chose to caucus with Democrats. The situation is very different.

    I'm less concerned with Lieberman's recent behavior, and more concerned with the fact that Lieberman did a bad job at Homeland Security. He's not effect; he's not a person who promotes anything close to an enlightened security policy.

    If Lieberman is to remain with the Democratic caucus then I would suggest he move to a different committee. There are Democrats who worked very hard for other Democrats that are waiting in line for committee chairs. Maybe they need to be treated with at least the respect that Reid affords Joe.

    My vote: SYFPH...which I will not do.


    Exactly what some people said about Bush (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by FreakyBeaky on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:27:03 PM EST
    Seriously, I'm feeling much, much better today than I was at this time four or eight years ago - but cringe-worthy is right.

    oh come on (none / 0) (#117)
    by Iris on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 09:30:04 PM EST
    this comparing Obama to Bush and talking about a "cult" is so over the top and just plain wrong.  I resent that characterization.  When children are being indoctrinated at Jesus camps to hate and fear, with cardboard cutouts of the glorious leader Obama used for inspiration, give me a call.  What is wrong with you people?  

    What's wrong with being thankful that Barack Obama had the smarts, courage and competence to become the 44th President; that he started out trying to improve people's lives directly as a community organizer and moved on to public office to try to better effect meaningful change?  You don't have to be uncritical or worshipful of Obama to recognize that this is really a pretty remarkable individual who managed to achieve what few Democrats have in any of our lifetimes.  And he did it in an inspiring and optimistic way that reached out to all Americans.

    It's very troubling to me that anyone here would poke fun at someone for that bit of admiration for Barack Obama.  Sure, he got there with the help of our votes, and needs to remember "those that brung him," but we can be thankful too, for one that he hadn't let the Bush years make him completely cynical and paranoid the way so many of his detractors are.

    There were a lot of things we were wrong about.  We didn't think Barack Obama could win Virginia, Iowa, North Carolina, Indiana, Ohio...and many doubted Florida and Michigan.  We didn't think Obama was ready, and yet he has shown himself more ready than anyone thought.  Some said he wasn't a "real Democrat" and he proved them wrong.  Many others were convinced that Obama didn't like the Clintons, and the Clintons didn't like Obama (what a lovely little soap opera drama) and they laid that to rest in a way that left those people speechless.  Maybe, just maybe, he's not as naive as you all think.  

    By all means, question away and hold Barack Obama accountable.  But if he proves you wrong, be prepared to admit it without using snark and qualifiers.  It's just petty and it makes others not pay attention to the substance of your arguments.


    Oh Come On, Iris! (none / 0) (#118)
    by Politalkix on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 10:05:17 PM EST
    Let them have fun. Being in a perennial doom and gloom state is very comforting to many in TL. Meanwhile in the real world, a lot of good things are happening. It seems Begich has taken the lead in Alaska, Franken is inching closer to a win in Minnesota and Helen Thomas is returning to her celebrated place among White House Press Corps.  

    This is so wrong-headed, because (5.00 / 4) (#32)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:33:11 PM EST
    the most important decisions are being made now.
    Once key appointments are made, Obama's freedom to act will be constrained by those acts.

    Obama's freedom to act... (5.00 / 2) (#40)
    by lambert on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:52:03 PM EST
    ... is already drastically curtailed by the Bush + Reid + Pelosi + Obama + Paulson trillion dollar bailout for Big Money, for which he -- sorry, that would be He -- worked the phones.

    What in god's name (none / 0) (#46)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:02:32 PM EST
    does TARP have to do with FISA or Brennan or torture?

    It's a direct response to the comment... (none / 0) (#55)
    by lambert on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:18:44 PM EST
    ... to which it responds, which is:

    the most important decisions are being made now.
    Once key appointments are made, Obama's freedom to act will be constrained by those acts.

    May I suggest that you take up any theological questions you may have with that commenter -- to whom you, for some reason, did not react?

    Surreal (none / 0) (#79)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:04:11 PM EST
    The commenter's point made perfect sense.  It's yours that comes from somewhere through the looking glass (even assuming you're a right winger and don't subscribe to Keynesian economics).

    First God, now Keynes (none / 0) (#112)
    by lambert on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 11:01:12 AM EST
    Readers can judge who's on topic here, I think. And who's right wing.

    Heh (none / 0) (#119)
    by gyrfalcon on Thu Nov 13, 2008 at 12:56:56 AM EST
    No doubt.  I'm sure you're not a right-winger, but you apparently haven't a clue about Keynesian economics.

    No surprise, since you can't even carry on a logical argument, that simple Keynes would be beyond you.


    This is the best time to speak out (5.00 / 3) (#50)
    by BarnBabe on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:12:50 PM EST
    Why wait until Jan 20th when in fact the vast majority of people have made the change to President Obama already? Look at the news headlines. Bush lays a wreath and Obama, Obama, Obama, Obama's kids. Bush has not lead this country for some time. He has been in limbo, and you know, how low can you go?

    Knowing that sometimes leaders can test the waters to see what sinks or swims, these are the times to be listening to what people close to Obama, (Mr. Brennan), are saying. If we do not like what we are hearing, then we need to alert him to that fact.

    Torture is not a progressive, liberal, or even centralist action item. It is what Americans should not be doing. It is what Americans tell other countries not to be doing. It should not be condoned and the new President should be willing to end this barbaric practice and announce there is a new sheriff in town. Putting someone in charge (Mr Brennan) who is not going to change the current policy because he thinks it is just fine, is a very bad idea and does not bode well for the future.  

    [snort!] (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by Fabian on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:20:39 PM EST
    Glad I wasn't eating or drinking when I read that!

    these interrogation procedures...saved lives (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by S Brennan on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:44:47 PM EST
    BRENNAN: But it's something the individual wants to stop at any cost.

    SMITH: Is that torture?

    BRENNAN: I think it is, certainly, subjecting an individual to severe pain and suffer, which is the classic definition of torture. And I believe, quite frankly, it's inconsistent with American values and it's something that should be prohibited. But I think Judge Mukasey is in a very difficult position right now, as the attorney general nominee, to be asked whether or not this is torture and if torture then is unconstitutional or illegal, they're asking whether or not water boarding is illegal and whether or not the individuals, which includes the president and others, if it was used, who authorized and actually used this type of procedure, may be subject to some type of judicial action.

    SMITH: You know, this all becomes such a giant issue because the president has gone on record so many times saying the United States does not torture. If we acknowledge that this kind of activity goes on, you know, what does that mean, exactly I guess?

    BRENNAN: Well, the CIA has acknowledged that it has detained about 100 terrorists since 9/11, and about a third of them have been subjected to what the CIA refers to as "enhanced interrogation tactics." And only a small proportion of those have, in fact, been subjected to the most serious types of enhanced procedures.

    SMITH: And you say some of this has born fruit.

    BRENNAN: There has been a lot of information that has come out from these interrogation procedures that the agency has, in fact, used against the real hardcore terrorists. It has saved lives. And let's not forget, these are hardened terrorists who have been responsible for 9/11, who have shown no remorse at all for the death of 3,000 innocents.

    SMITH: John Brennan, we thank you very, very much for enlightening us this morning. We really do appreciate it.

    BRENNAN: Thank you Harry.

    I wouldn't care if it (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by eric on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:54:37 PM EST
    save the world.  It's that whole Ends/Means thing.

    One Way Ratchet (5.00 / 4) (#64)
    by cstallwo on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:46:24 PM EST
    Think back to your Con Law I or II class ... what President ever voluntarily gave up any real power? That is what this is about - power pure and simple.

    I saw the cult of Obama on display during the primaries - I was a Hillary supporter and saw despicable behavior by Kos, Huffpo, and others.
    Now that Obama is making some bonehead moves don't expect them to leave the cult ...

    I didn't (none / 0) (#66)
    by eric on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:56:47 PM EST
    take Con Law II because, well, there was no such thing at my school, but to answer your question:  Jimmy Carter.  He definitely changed things so that the presidency was more open and accountable.  I think that is giving up power.

    Fair Point... (none / 0) (#115)
    by cstallwo on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:03:02 PM EST
    ... but you won't find many examples of that.

    Generally agreed among constitutional scholars that Prez's don't give up power unless the courts take it (e.g. exec priv).


    O.k. That's it! (none / 0) (#98)
    by NYShooter on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 12:06:33 AM EST
    You are in serious jeopardy of defending a plagiarism charge from me. Your statement on "power" exactly mirrors what I said here yesterday on another thread.
    On the other hand, you have nothing to worry about as the last lawyer I hired left me with nothing but pocket lint to barter with.

    You're right about "power," but I was there first.

    Na, na


    Settle Down Na (none / 0) (#113)
    by cstallwo on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:00:02 PM EST
    Settle down with the lawyer slams and plagerism accustaions ;) Didn't read your comment so couldn't plagarize - AND am not a lawyer but would like to be when I grow up.

    Other than that - we agree.


    thanks BTD, (5.00 / 3) (#73)
    by cpinva on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:38:51 PM EST
    for just making me feel ever so much better, now that we've elected a democrat as president. of course, as i've maintained all along, he may be a democrat, but he's certainly no progressive.

    oh well, we'll see what happens. like we have a choice.

    What part of this don't they understand? (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by nellre on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:51:48 PM EST
    "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

    Please take a deep breath (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by Xclusionary Rule 4ever on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:01:52 PM EST
    Don't you think the president-elect is trying to avoid interfering with US foreign relations by playing it cool until he is actually in power?  If he starts discussing every Bush policy he's going to reverse in the first 100 days, he makes it harder for the current administration to run the country until 1-20-09.  I think he's just being classy.  It would be foolish to squander the goodwill he has generated here and abroad by championing human rights, and he's not a fool.

    So it's your contention. . . (5.00 / 3) (#80)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:19:33 PM EST
    that whereas at present Mr. Brennan seems to hold a view of intelligence matters that condones warrantless wiretapping and possibly torture that suddenly, after January 20th he'll no longer hold those views?  Or that the hiring and policy decisions made quietly between now and then will somehow turn turnout out to run counter to his previously expressed beliefs?

    And just how would we squander goodwill abroad by championing human rights, pray tell?


    That last sentence of yours (5.00 / 4) (#85)
    by Cream City on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:33:14 PM EST
    ought to be chiseled over a D.C. doorway.

    Or at least it ought to be a bumper sticker.


    OK, my bad (none / 0) (#109)
    by Xclusionary Rule 4ever on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 09:31:46 AM EST
    First, I apologize for lousy editing.  My position is that BO has built up goodwill worldwide.  He seems to have done this by championing human rights and a reversal of hegemonic foreign policy.  Domestic and International goodwill is valuable.  I don't think he's going to squander it by reversing himself dramatically on civil rights and foreign policy.

    Second, I stand by my position that he hasn't done so, YET.  The intelligence community is important. A national security disaster linked to perceived "shakeups" in the Intel community for political reasons would sink the Democrats' ship.  A little continuity in certain career positions is not going to hurt.  The important appointments are the AG and DNI.  Under sec 702 of the FISA amendments Act of 2008, the AG and DNI have to  apply to the FISA court in advance to engage in a warrantless "mass acquisition" wiretapping scheme.  It must contain minimization provisions and must be directly related to foreign surveillance efforts.  In many ways it resembles a DUI roadblock, and is objectionable for the same reasons; however, roadblocks are constitutional and so is the FAA of 2008. Here is a description of the present law from ACLU:

    Before authorizing surveillance under section 702(a) . . . the Attorney General and the DNI must submit an application for an order (hereinafter, a "mass acquisition order") to the FISC.  FAA §§ 702(a), (c)(2).  To obtain a mass acquisition order, the Attorney General and DNI must provide to the FISC "a written certification and supporting affidavit" attesting that the FISC has approved, or that the government has submitted to the FISC for approval, procedures ("targeting procedures") reasonably designed to (i) ensure that the acquisition is "limited to targeting persons reasonably believed to be located outside the United States," and (ii) "prevent the intentional acquisition of any communication as to which the sender and all intended recipients are known at the time of the acquisition to be located in the United States."  Id. § 702(g)(2)(A)(i).  The certification and supporting affidavit must attest that the FISC has approved, or that the government has submitted to the FISC for approval, procedures ("minimization procedures") that meet the definition of "minimization procedures" under 50 U.S.C. §§ 1801(h) or 1821(4).  The certification and supporting affidavit must also attest, inter alia, that the Attorney General has adopted "guidelines" to ensure compliance with the limitations set out in section 702(b); that the targeting procedures, minimization procedures, and guidelines are consistent with the Fourth Amendment; and that "a significant purpose of the acquisition is to obtain foreign intelligence information."  FAA §702(g)(2)(A)(iii)-(vii).4  

    Remember that the danger of this law is not that our privacy will be invaded, but that a mass acquisition order will be abused for political reasons, ala Nixon.  The President's duty to preserve and protect the country is in the Constitution right there with the 4th amendment.

    Third, IMHO Bush and Gonzales were the real problem.  So Hayden and McConnell are likely out, and as a compromise and to maintain morale in the Intel community, Brennan may be in.  His comments from a March 2008 interview do not necessarily mean he is going to be dictating policy to BO on torture and wiretapping.  In fact, it's very likely the other way around.

    Fourth, I could very well be wrong, as I do still have Kool-aid stains on my mouth.  In the interest of full disclosure, "yes we can."   I think BO voted for the FISA amendments mindful of the "phone sex" type abuses, thinking that the law wasn't perfect but was a step toward ending the overreaching going on at NSA at the President's direction.  


    I'm with John Cole (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by s5 on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:22:38 PM EST
    He's not the president yet. If you believe that progressives have a duty to hold Obama accountable, then hold your fire until he's actually done something.

    Much of the shrieking I've heard is over non-decisions that have been rumored but not confirmed and the furthest from official. If progressives want to cry wolf over stuff that hasn't happened and may never happen, then go ahead I guess. But I'm not going to going to get excited by watching a movement that I identify strongly with make itself irrelevant.

    And this:

    Oh sure, they'll say "wait till he is President." But then they'll say "wait till he finishes his first year." And after that, "wait for the mid terms." And then "wait until after reelection."

    is pure strawman. No one is making those arguments. If they do, set them straight. But until he's president and actually does some stuff, endless complaining about rumors is the quickest path to irrelevance.

    He's done something. (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:24:44 PM EST
    He's made an appointment.  And the person he appointed has propounded theories that probably everyone here will consider at least questionable.

    If you had any interest (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:41:14 PM EST
    as to who would be VP, then you should be interested in what is happening now.  Maybe people are missing the whole "considered for top job" thing re: Brennan?

    Concur in part, disagree in part (none / 0) (#88)
    by RiderOnTheStorm on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:47:04 PM EST
    I have held misgivings about President-Elect Obama's stance on a number of issues (notably FISA) for quite some time.  What isn't entirely clear to me -- and probably won't be until after 1/20/09 -- is whether his reticence to reverse current administration policy is based on his own convictions, or is a manifestation of his reserved, calculating approach.  I'm hoping for the latter while carefully noting signs of the former.

    As pointed out, this appointment would seem to argue for the former -- a disturbing development.  But I also think we may all be somewhat premature at drawing conclusions, given that he is not yet President.  I am, at the moment, inclined to wait for the inauguration and subsequent pronouncements, with a mixture of hope and skepticism. (It's possible that this is an instance of cynicism fatigue; if so, bear with me as I'm sure it'll pass soon enough.)


    If you're running low. . . (5.00 / 4) (#90)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:57:05 PM EST
    on cynicism, I'm having a special.  Also snarkiness, nit-picking, overreaction and contrariness.  A one-stop shop for all your blogging needs.

    Obviously we'll wait to see what Obama actually does once in office.  It bears mentioning, however, that Obama's picks for advisors and actual staff so far have been very Clinton admin heavy, and very status quo.


    This is why I want Hillary as Majority Leader (5.00 / 2) (#86)
    by blogtopus on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:35:46 PM EST
    She can be the burr in his butt; sure, she'll be demonized by the 'bots, but how is that any different? I would enjoy watching them twist into ever fractalized pretzels trying to explain why Hillary is evil for pushing Obama towards more progressive policies...

    I'm sad to say I'm not surprised. (5.00 / 3) (#100)
    by mexboy on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 02:56:15 AM EST
    I stopped posting here, as much, because I believe Obama is not the man he claims to be.

    I really wanted to be wrong about him, but his past actions, FISA, to just name one, clearly portends the way he intends to rule.

    Egads (1.00 / 1) (#76)
    by LochNess on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:54:40 PM EST
    Obama cultists?

    Why don't you just declare yourself a PUMA and be done with it?

    Heh (5.00 / 7) (#77)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:56:46 PM EST
    Spoken like a true cultist.

    I would only note that many people, including (none / 0) (#34)
    by steviez314 on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:37:39 PM EST
    myself, think FISA/telecom immunity and Gitmo/torture/rendition are not equally evil.

    Do you have any links to Brennan's views on the Gitmo/torture policy?

    Not directly (none / 0) (#35)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:40:43 PM EST
    But I think his general statements should give you pause. I think Brennan is utterly unacceptable in this capacity personally.

    Don't they go together, really? (none / 0) (#36)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:41:54 PM EST
    I suppose people with nothing to hide are not bothered by domestic spying.

    No, I don't think they do. (none / 0) (#39)
    by steviez314 on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:50:14 PM EST
    Listening in to my phone calls is not equivalent to coming to my house, putting a bag over my head, handcuffing me, taking me to Gitmo, waterboarding me, keeping me from a lawyer and redress for an indefinite time.

    Maybe they are the same in being wrong and illegal, but not in the sense of what is truly evil.


    It is a single system... (5.00 / 2) (#43)
    by lambert on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:55:48 PM EST
    .... and all the parts enable each other. It's foolish to consider them as single acts, and then rank them as individually more or less bad.

    Or do you not think torture opponents are surveilled?


    They need to eavesdrop on you (4.83 / 6) (#44)
    by Cream City on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 05:57:36 PM EST
    first to decide to then come to your house, put the bag over your head, etc.-- so that if ever it gets to a court, they'll have the evidence justifying their actions from having eavesdropped on you.

    Yeh, they're related.


    Thanks for the intro to John Brennan, BUT (none / 0) (#45)
    by barryluda on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:01:12 PM EST
    I'm still trying to understand exactly why you're persuaded that John Brennan shouldn't be Director of Intelligence.  You say:

    I think the reasons should be clear to anyone who actually cares about civil liberties.

    I'd like to think I care about civil liberties...maybe I'm just slow.

    Is it because he pushed for telecom companies to get immunity for cooperating with the government after 9/11?  I hold Obama accountable here.  Brennan seems like an advisor who was giving appropriate perspective on the issue, that the telecom companies were told by "appropriate authorities that were operating in a legal context" to cooperate.  I'm disappointed in Obama for going back on a promise.  It was up to Obama to listen to all of his advisors -- and remember his promise -- and make the right decision.

    If that's not it, is it because your convinced that Brennan would push for a continuation of the current policy allowing torture?  If that's your concern, where is the evidence that Brennan is pushing for Obama to retain those policies?

    You've always had such insightful comments, BTD, that I'm probably just missing something here.  But so far I can't connect the dots to understand why you're so opposed to Brennan.

    I'm trying to make an honest effort to understand the issue here since I agree with Brennan on at least this:

    Sometimes a superficial understanding of a problem leads one to making superficial decisions.

    Do I need to post the whole interview? (none / 0) (#47)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:06:18 PM EST
    Honestly, do you expect him to say "I want to continue to torture terror suspects?"

    I read the whole interview (none / 0) (#52)
    by barryluda on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:16:42 PM EST
    Yes, the full Q&A with Shane Harris.

    And what I took away from it was, mostly, that Brennan thinks it's a mistake to deal at a low level with individual terrorist but, instead, we need to look further upstream to the cause of the problem.  In fact, while I wouldn't go so far as to say I got the opposite impression from you, at least the following gave me some reason to hope...

    We also have to have a full discussion about the appropriate techniques we're going to use when individuals are captured or detained. But we have to be looking at what are those foreign policies, aid programs, international efforts that we need to be engaged in, that are going to try and stem the flow of those terrorists further upstream. ... [W]e have to look at the longer-term issues that are more difficult to deal with -- why individuals are succumbing to a lot of the recruitment efforts on the part of terrorist groups.

    I guess I just don't read into it that he's advocating continuing the policy of allowing torture.


    Well (none / 0) (#54)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:18:43 PM EST
    Your opinion and you are entitled to it. I read it quite differently.

    OK, we'll agree to disagree (none / 0) (#67)
    by barryluda on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:59:03 PM EST
    But did you see S Brennan's post below quoting from an interview with Brennan on CBS?

    Brennan seems to say clearly that he's against continuing Bush's policy of allowing torture:

    "Is that torture?" Brennan responded by saying, "I think it is, certainly, subjecting an individual to severe pain and suffer, which is the classic definition of torture. And I believe, quite frankly, it's inconsistent with American values and it's something that should be prohibited."

    Who should be leading this team? (none / 0) (#48)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:07:52 PM EST
    It seems that one of the things he brings is knowledge of the players, who is good at their job, what possible organizational changes can and should be made.  Isn't conveying that type of knowlege to the president THE major goal of a transition team.  I am not arguing that civil liberties should left outside ot transitition, I just wonder how many people are out there who have his knowledge base and experience to help set up this important aspect of our government.

    Obama is a smart guy (none / 0) (#62)
    by eric on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 06:39:31 PM EST
    and unlike Bush, an honest one that won't live in a bubble.  If this is really the direction that he is heading, all one need do is get someone to confront him on this.  Maybe a question at a press conference.  If he says anything that wavers on torture, we will know that he is a fraud.

    re: Here's some cringe-worthy cultist ... (none / 0) (#75)
    by LochNess on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 08:53:11 PM EST
    I suggest you look at that person's commenting history before you take that too seriously.

    Kinda odd to think. . . (none / 0) (#82)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 09:23:33 PM EST
    that John Cole is in this position, isn't it?

    The True Believer (none / 0) (#91)
    by The Other Steve on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 10:00:58 PM EST
    It's interesting... Eric Hoffer in his book The True Believer notes that zealots are the most easily persuadable.  That a True Believer for one group can quite easily be made into a True Believer for another group.  Certainly if we look at some of our own history you see this in many of the neocons, the David Horowitz types and such.

    I wonder what's next for you BTD?  Do you start railing against the Kos Kidz, and the Hateful Liberal bloggers?

    I'm sorry that I'm not taking you seriously.  But as Marshall over at TPM noted, there hasn't really been many decisions made, it's all thinly sourced speculation and hardly worth responding to.  And yet here you are, getting yourself all into a froth.

    One more thing.  We prefer to be called the Cult of the Magical Unity Pony.

    Chutzpah. (5.00 / 3) (#93)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 10:06:26 PM EST
    But as Marshall over at TPM noted, there hasn't really been many decisions made, it's all thinly sourced speculation and hardly worth responding to.

    I used to think that it was the kid who kills his parents and then throws himself on the mercy of the court as an orphan.  But now I know it's Josh Marshall complaining about thinly sourced speculation being reported as fact.


    But gosh (none / 0) (#94)
    by lilburro on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 10:08:03 PM EST
    Democrats are battered spouses, because Bill Clinton makes calls for Lieberman!

    Except he doesn't.  Whoops.  


    "You're known by the company you keep." (none / 0) (#103)
    by SeeEmDee on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 05:49:40 AM EST
    As in the associations and organizations that Prez-Elect Obama belongs to are the same that the present Administration's membership were derived from.

    "Meet the new boss; he's the same as the old boss." 'Change'? Yeah, right...

    Obama Cult? Whats with Talkleft Readers? (none / 0) (#104)
    by LIndalawyernew on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 06:24:26 AM EST
    Hey folks. I used to be an avid Talkleft reader, but  but the Obama-negativity has hijacked the blog.  The content may be important but why can't readers be allowed to draw their own conclusions? And before you all throw Obama under the bus, you might at least consider that the candidates who most mirror the policies and values we would support did not have a nano-chance to win.

    It's a BIG administration (none / 0) (#106)
    by Fabian on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 07:38:24 AM EST
    Why not a seat at the table?

    John Cole is right (none / 0) (#107)
    by Blue Neponset on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 07:49:28 AM EST
    Your reputation precedes you BTD.  If you want to be known as anything other than the most arrogant person on the internets then maybe you should keep your powder dry until Obama actually does something?  

    I do not mind being known as anything (none / 0) (#114)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:02:14 PM EST
    I never did. I care about the issues. I certainly hope my concern is misplaced. We will see.

    The idea of John Cole is the sage is hilarious to me.

    But the magic of the pony is strong.


    If you truly care about civil liberties... (none / 0) (#108)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 08:53:49 AM EST
    why would you vote for Barack Obama in the first place? Or any Democrat for that matter?

    War on Drugs, Patriot Act, FISA...I mean the writing was on the wall, did anybody need it spelled out to them?

    Dramatic overreaction... (none / 0) (#110)
    by OldCity on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 10:04:36 AM EST
    I've always been a believer in siloing issues, that is, discussing them discretely, and then looking for relationships between.

    I don't think Brennan was being disingenuous when he rather clearly stated his belief that torture was against American values.  That's a pretty tough statement to walk back from.

    Now, how his opinion on torture has been construed to dovetail with his opinion on telecom immunity is a mystery to me.  There's a logical leap there that is in no way clear.

    A condition of a commitment to bring on the best and brightest assumes that the best and the brightest would have some level of experience.  How else does one legitimately claim expertise?  so, Emmanuel is a pretty logical pick, having worked both as WH staffer and a legislator.  He was effective in both roles.  So, the gripe about him is totally misplaced.  Who, honestly, would appoint a novice to such a post?