The Post Partisan Unity Schtick Meets Reality

Some are noticing this story. President Obama is meeting with Republicans today on the issue.

The question is this - is Obama posturing by holding this meeting or will he offer even more concessions (his proposal pre-conceded on a lot already)? Is this a play to the Media? If so, will it work? Or does Obama think this description was apt?

I'll wait to see what Obama does.

Speaking for me only

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    Dems have removed money (5.00 / 6) (#1)
    by DFLer on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:25:12 PM EST
    for contraception...as per Republicans, and at the direct request of President Obama, according to the TeeVee

    Excuse you?!?!? (3.00 / 4) (#116)
    by cotton candy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:18:23 PM EST
    Too bad Obama was a Black man because if he wasn't she would have won and we wouldn't be talking about giving in to the Republicans right now.

    Did you really just say that? Are you trying to say that Obama only won because he is black? Step back and reread what you wrote and then ask a black person on the street if they thought that being black was so advantageous.

    And people uprated this crap?


    You're correct; it is not advantageous (4.10 / 10) (#119)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:23:41 PM EST
    on the street.  But that's not the discussion here.

    MileHi, Sher, and others (none / 0) (#144)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:09:07 PM EST
    think it is advantageous on the street?  Or that it is okay to go off topic?  Explain.

    Out and out racist (2.80 / 5) (#137)
    by Realleft on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:41:31 PM EST
    Go back to your cave. This is ridiculous.

    Still using the "racist" smear ? (4.62 / 8) (#203)
    by ChrisO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:32:00 PM EST
    If you want to argue that Obama didn't benefit from being black, go right ahead. But please stop this crap of accusing anyone who has something negative to say about Obama as being a racist. If youy want to claim that Obama won an overwhelming share of the black vote based on policy, give it a go. Black voters had every right and reason to vote for the first viable black candidate, but please don't insult everyone's intelligence by claiming that Obama's race wasn't a significant factor. A case can certainly be made that there were countervailing elements that may have made his race a negative factor, but claiming that anyone who dares to raise the issue is a racist who has to go back into their cave is just offensive BS. Take that stuff to the morons at TPM.

    And despite the people who try to demagogue the issue by making simplistic arguments, saying that being black was an advantage for Obama is not equivalent to saying that being black is an advantage for the average black person in America.

    Obviously, I don't know your personal history. But in general, it never ceases to amaze me how many Obama supporters have been magically transformed into experts at spotting "out and out" racism, despite having never given racism a second thoughtr prior to this election.

    Tell me, did you write angry letters to Olbermann, Mathews and the other Obama fanboys, accusing them of "out and out racism" whenever they discuased Obama's favorable chances in an upcoming primary because of the large number of black voters in a state?


    Not So Good With The Jews Either (3.66 / 3) (#140)
    by squeaky on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:48:07 PM EST
    The commenter was warned for posting a racist stereotypical lie in another thread.

    "he won" isnt that what he said ? (5.00 / 5) (#2)
    by Amiss on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:27:57 PM EST
    He is wanting to concede far too much to republican ideals which the country voted out in November. The country spoke in overwhelming numbers against the economic policies of the Republicans yet he is asking Democrats to concede?

    /shakes head

    Family planning cut from stimulus package... (5.00 / 3) (#55)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:37:14 PM EST
    Via HuffPo:
    Stimulus: Dems May Drop Family Planning After GOP Attacks

    Deja vu anybody? Ready for Reagan redux? The GOP is back on their "welfare queen", sex-phobic, anti-contraception hobby horse.

    One hopes that Obama and the Dems would have seized the day and mounted a full court press, calling shame, shame, shame on the GOP for cynically using women's health and the well-being of poor families as a WEDGE ISSUE and a POLITICAL FOOTBALL to reignite the culture wars.

    Instead, Obama and the Dems have caved so readily on this matter, that one almost wonders if it wasn't pre-ordained. i.e. the family planning funds were originally put in the bill as 'outrage bait', a 'lost leader': something to selectively focus the ire of the GOP.

    Lobbing off these particular funds, now allows Obama to 'cooperate' with the GOP, presumably, with very little loss of political capital. After all, the only people getting fu@ked over are the most powerless segment of the population: poor women and their families.

    Meanwhile, Obama shores up his image of social conservatism and panders once again to the religious right; evidently, hoping to win over a critical mass of that constituency in 2012. As for women, the poor and the queer: since being elected, it increasingly appears that Obama believes we are readily replaceable, and/or we will still 'have no where else to go' in four years.

    [Modified from an earlier post at Shakesville.]


    Yeah - he didn't mention though (5.00 / 5) (#71)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:58:49 PM EST
    that he would agree to some of their preconditions(tax cuts)before meeting.

    No actually the country didn't (3.75 / 4) (#42)
    by tokin librul on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:30:12 PM EST
    give him a significant mandate.

    It gave him a very skinny nod of approval.

    He won by just about 6 points. He won only 52-53% of the vote against a geriatric geezer who was barely better than a clone of the failed policies and fiascoes of the last 8 years--who was only in it for the money, and was only too happy to throw the whole thing...

    46% of the electorate voted against him (i cannot believe they voted FOR McPalin). Around 60 million people.


    Yep, A Mandate (5.00 / 4) (#114)
    by daring grace on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:11:04 PM EST
    Significant (bigger) popular vote percentages than any since Reagan/Bush according to this site. And just a shade off Clinton's best EV totals.

                  Popular Vote %     Electoral Vote %

    Obama/Biden       53-46               68-32

    Bush/Cheney       51-48               53-47

    Bush/Cheney*   47.87-48.38            50-49

    Clinton/Gore      49-41               70-30

    Clinton/Gore      43-38               69-31

    Bush/Quayle       53-46               79-21

    Reagan/Bush       59-41               98-2

    2000 totals remain disputed, of course.


    He has a man-date.. so why (5.00 / 4) (#115)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:15:59 PM EST
    did he waste it on Boehner?

    okay... that made me laugh (none / 0) (#134)
    by sj on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:37:47 PM EST
    Me too (5.00 / 2) (#169)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:31:50 PM EST
    Especially if you mis-pronounce Boehner's name to how it looks phonetically.

    Well, given that what Obama's (2.00 / 0) (#49)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:33:56 PM EST
    selling, in the end, probably isn't much different than what McCain would have put through (as least as far as the economic stimulus package is concerned), I'm not sure why it matters.

    Hard Core Nonsense (5.00 / 3) (#142)
    by daring grace on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:53:09 PM EST
    You REALLY believe what Obama is 'selling' in this stimulus package isn't much different than what McCain would have proposed? Really?

    Things like this?

    -$16 billion to repair public housing and make it more energy efficient; and $6 billion to weatherize low-income homes;

    -$19 billion for clean water, flood control, and other environmental investments;

    -including $41 billion for local school districts, $79 billion in outlays to states to prevent educational service cutbacks; $15.6 billion to broaden the federal Pell Grant program, which gives need-based grants to fund education; and $6 billion to modernize higher education programs;

    -including $87 billion for Medicaid; $20 billion to improve health information technology; and around $4 billion to improve preventative care.

    - $140 billion directed toward tax cuts of $500 per worker or $1,000 per family over two years; expanded tax credits for working poor with children; and a $2,500 college tuition credit.

    -Automatic economic stabilizers like extensions of unemployment insurance;

    -Expansions of health insurance;

    Some form of "mortgage relief" aimed at helping Americans facing default.

    Granted, McCain might have proposed what Obama is with regards to An expanded GI bill for returning veterans. But then again, didn't he infamously vote against something similar for military families last year?


    What (none / 0) (#190)
    by cal1942 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:52:07 PM EST
    Are you serious?  Did you pay no attention whatever to the candidate's proposals?

    46% Against (none / 0) (#122)
    by Inspector Gadget on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:29:10 PM EST
    Is a number that is real. My confusion comes in how he now gets a 70% approval rating after just a week in office.  Is that saying 16% of the voters are now of the belief they voted incorrectly?

    At one poing, Bush has about a 90% (5.00 / 2) (#126)
    by tigercourse on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:33:22 PM EST
    approval rating. If you asked me after 9/11 if I approved of Bush, I probablly would have said yes. In tough times (military, economic or otherwise) we initially throw our support behind the President.

    Says A Lot (5.00 / 0) (#128)
    by squeaky on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:36:16 PM EST
    If you asked me after 9/11 if I approved of Bush, I probablly would have said yes.

    And even says more that you do not remember.


    People (none / 0) (#135)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:37:55 PM EST
    are glad to see Bush go away (even Republicans) and are willing to give the new guy a chance. But I think that 68% is soft - should level around 50-55% in a month or so, which will be about the number of people who voted for him.  In 6 months, I expect him to be in the high 40s as people realize he has to be more than hope and change.

    People (none / 0) (#192)
    by cal1942 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:55:41 PM EST
    may approve of what a President does on a given day but that doesn't mean they'll vote for him on another day.

    Also removing cram-down (5.00 / 6) (#5)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:31:34 PM EST
    Remember that provision to allow bankruptcy judges to cram-down mortgages? Republicans objected, predictably, and Obama asked Durbin to remove it from the stimulus package. Obama promised to help get it attached to some other piece of legislation that people would feel they just had to vote for.

    Who does Obama think he is kidding? The Repubs will never support anything that would actually help people. And they have no interest in seeing Obama succeed. They want the country to get worse. They don't care that millions of Americans are suffering. They never deal in good faith.

    Why is Obama caving in to them? Why even bother to vote for Democrats?

    Um, one reason could be that (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:46:11 PM EST
    Obama actually agrees with the Republicans on certain aspects of economic policy.  What I don't get is why "progressives" never consider that option.  Is it just an example of denial?  

    I have wondered that too (5.00 / 2) (#72)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:59:37 PM EST
    He has not addressed the mortgage problem which is at the root of the problem. This is just another cave in. We will continue to see more and more mortgages fail and we need action fast. Unless bankruptcy judges are allowed to get involved the way they do with all other debt (including I have heard, mortgages on second homes - anyone know if this is true?)this will continue to spiral down. There is no structure in place besides bankruptcy judges to do this in the near future.

    Amen they have no interest (5.00 / 4) (#84)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:42:47 PM EST
    in Obama succeeding at anything he proposes.  They will fight against him all the way and if it causes failure it will be spun as Obama's faulty progressive ideals at work.  Ummmmm duh, the wealthy elite won't give way to saving the serfs without a mean fight.

    Interesting to see Hillary. (5.00 / 3) (#6)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:39:36 PM EST
    I wonder if this bill would be going any better if she were still in the Senate, as opposed to State.

    Yeh, probably (4.66 / 3) (#123)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:29:25 PM EST
    because at worst, another Clinton triangulated.

    I think our current prez now is up to quintangulating.


    Quintangulating (none / 0) (#129)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:36:23 PM EST
    The mind boggles.

    And you thought he was just kidding, (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:40:43 PM EST
    I wish you were right.

    I think (5.00 / 3) (#12)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:49:41 PM EST
    that Obama should go over the heads of the Republicans and make a pitch to the American people - and urge them to swamp their representatives with input about how they feel.

    I think everybody is giving too much credit to these people - the republicans.

    I don't think that they really represent anybody and we should stop treating them as if they are something special.

    And what if Obama agrees (5.00 / 2) (#15)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:52:58 PM EST
    with some of the Republican proposals?  Ever consider that?

    That... (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:54:59 PM EST
    my dear friend - is the point.

    But you are suggesting for (none / 0) (#19)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:58:01 PM EST
    Obama do things with the assumption that he actually disagrees with Republican concepts.  What if we assume Obama agrees with many of those concepts.  Sure looks like that could be the truth of the matter.

    Obama may well agree (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:05:51 PM EST
    with the Repubs, but what about Democrats in Congress? They don't have to agree to these things. Let them show some political will. Members of Congress face the voters next year, not the president. If the stimulus fails, as now seems possible, it won't be Obama's job on the line.

    Grow a spine here, Democrats.


    Veto power. (none / 0) (#26)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:07:21 PM EST
    Obama has the upper hand now.

    Why (none / 0) (#31)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:20:24 PM EST
    isn't he acting that way?

    The House will fold (none / 0) (#43)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:31:08 PM EST
     in the end, and Obama has veto power.  I'm sure Pelosi and Reid made their bargains with Obama a long time ago.

    Oh, but that would be so (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:31:57 PM EST
    post-partisan!  It would be hailed by media idjits!  Heavens would open. . . .

    I was suggesting (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:13:22 PM EST
    that he behave as if he had the courage of his convictions.

    But maybe he isn't convinced by his own thoughts - or maybe he doesn't have his own thoughts and is searching around.

    I would rather he hold a meeting with Krugman than the republicans.


    But why would he do that, (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:16:37 PM EST
    if his economic philosophy is closer to many Republicans than it is to Krugman?

    I'm (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:25:04 PM EST
    afraid you're right.

    Because he needs to get better (none / 0) (#40)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:27:20 PM EST
    counsel.  That's why.

    I think he will if they want to play (none / 0) (#103)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:39:23 PM EST
    at being stupid with him.

    I'm surprised (5.00 / 3) (#14)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:49:56 PM EST
    that so many are surprised.

    Some saw this coming, and while it may not have been a disqualifier, those were shouted down by cult mentality that told us that anything we said negative or of concern was only borne out of our bigotry and hatred and unwillingness to get along with everybody.

    I can't wait to see what's next.

    More than 18 million (5.00 / 4) (#127)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:34:13 PM EST
    Dems alone, give or take a million who were voting for other reasons, are not surprised.  Add in most of another almost 50 million who voted against him in the general.  So most Americans may not be surprised at all.  (TL is not a random sampling.)

    Not Quite (none / 0) (#145)
    by daring grace on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:15:13 PM EST
    More like 62 million voted against Obama in the general.

    On the other hand, polling in the months before the election in November showed a steady migration of Clinton supporters to Obama. As much as 81% in this Gallup poll in September.


    I read somewhere (none / 0) (#146)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:22:18 PM EST
    that something like 1 in 5 of her supporters did not vote for O

    1 in 5 (5.00 / 1) (#147)
    by CST on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:28:43 PM EST
    Is equal to 20%

    So if you take 100 and subtract 20, you get 80, which is very close to 81%

    Math is fun :)

    The glass is either half empty or half full.  Or in this case, 1/5 empty or 4/5 full.  It's all the same in the end.


    Or 3.6 Million 'Not Surprised' (5.00 / 1) (#148)
    by daring grace on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:45:51 PM EST
    to continue the meaning of CC's post...

    I'm thinking that corresponds to a perpetual segment of the population who are 'not surprised' by the incumbent's actions no matter who the incumbent is.


    Thanks -- I was relying on memory (none / 0) (#152)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:18:50 PM EST
    of the general election numbers, and relying on memory (sloppy of me but after a loooong day) is increasingly perilous for me.:-)

    I think that we agree on the gist of this, anyway.


    Poor women (5.00 / 9) (#22)
    by Stellaaa on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:00:45 PM EST
    get to be the first sacrificial lambs.  Now I want to see the leftie outrage equal to the Preacher speaking at the inauguration.  

    Don't hold your breath (5.00 / 5) (#62)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:48:20 PM EST
    every (male dominated), progressive blog is already pitching the "it's no big deal" narrative.  After all most of the teaching jobs of the methods of birth control, whether to teen in need or in education in general, go to mostly to women....so no big deal.  

    God I'm glad this blog is mostly (5.00 / 2) (#104)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:42:35 PM EST
    it for me these days.  I'm dead sick of the butthead men out there in progressosphere.  I still won't watch Bill Maher.  I saw his upcoming season advertised and it made me feel pukey and need to change the channel.

    But they are not poor for (none / 0) (#131)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:36:58 PM EST
    economic reasons.  They are sinners.  The Reverend Warren, the president's new selection to honor as spiritual mentor, says so.  Welcome back to the past.

    Clearly, an economic stimulus would not help if the cause is not economic.  Therefore, these women need spiritual stimuli!  Tapes of the Reverend Warren's talks will be available to these women . . . on their Blackberries.


    I don't think. . . (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:18:12 PM EST
    folks read the last line of BTD's post.

    I'll wait and see how it works out as well.  So far Obama's done what he said, which is to encourage bi-partisan consensus, but he hasn't been a push-over either.  Some of the items removed from the bill so far are pretty extraneous when it comes to providing economic stimulus.

    Let's see where it ends up on President's Day.  

    Bullcrap. (5.00 / 5) (#32)
    by scribe on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:22:21 PM EST
    I'm likely to lose my house because he folded on the cram-down.

    And I'm not nearly alone.

    The mortgage industry has been holding off on foreclosures, waiting to see how their lobbying work is going to pan out.  They've seen the results, and have no reason now to not foreclose on all those people they've been holding off from going after.


    I'm sorry to hear about. . . (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:40:35 PM EST
    your situation, and please don't take anything I've said to indicate that I want to see you, or anyone else, suffer.

    If the cram down provision is going to make the difference, I hope you will be able to get some kind of continuance from the judge until the actual fate of the measure is decided.

    I'm still willing to see what the final bill looks like and, if the cram down provisions are really gone, and whether they are passed separately.


    They have one reason (5.00 / 3) (#57)
    by CST on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:40:57 PM EST
    "have no reason now to not foreclose on all those people they've been holding off from going after"

    If they forclose, the people who could pay a little of the mortgage are now paying nothing, and the bank owns a house they can't sell.

    It is in the bank's best interest not to forclose.  I hope for your sake, they think so too.

    Honestly though, I feel like John Cusak in "America's Sweetheart" right now.  On the brink of a mental breakdown repeating "I'm grateful for the earth... I'm grateful for the stars and the sky..." trying to convince myself.

    So thanks for the optimism Larry, I needed it today.


    Thank you for letting us know (5.00 / 1) (#106)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:45:38 PM EST
    how things are going out there.  I live in a sort of VA loan system bubble.  I read stats, I know from study how this is going to go, but the personal is missing for me.  I'm going to need to get personal with this in order to get mad enough with everyone else.

    Sorry to hear that. (none / 0) (#69)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:56:45 PM EST
    How exactly are you in dire straights?

    For example I have an ARM, adjustable in Jan of every year, and the interest rate just adjusted down 2 points (would have adjusted down 2.5, but it's limited to 2 points/adjustment) and my payments are now the lowest since we've owned the house (9 years).

    Is your rate really high? Why?


    Its not the rate (none / 0) (#91)
    by scribe on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:53:56 PM EST
    it's the lack of paying work.

    Do you seriously believe (5.00 / 5) (#33)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:23:24 PM EST
    that the pre-concession will work? If not, "waiting to see" is waiting for failure.

    Pressure now or agony later.


    Wait until President's Day (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by scribe on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:24:42 PM EST
    sounds like the new definition of a Friedman unit.

    I, for one, have had enough of that crap.


    Dunno. (5.00 / 0) (#47)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:33:18 PM EST
    The tip on Obama is that he's good at this kind of thing.

    I think he started out with a bill broadly where he wanted the bill to be.  Yes, it has too much tax cutting for my tastes, but middle class tax cuts were a clear and direct promise he made during the campaign, and my tastes, sadly, are not the nation's.

    What I don't want to see is a party-line vote in which the Republicans are able to claim the moral upper hand. If negotiations don't produce a decent bill there's still the option of a party-line vote -- but only after a demonstrable effort was made.

    If the negotiations produce a truly lousy bill, I'll be against it as much as anyone.


    The bill was lousy to start with (5.00 / 7) (#54)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:37:11 PM EST
    And I, for one, am unwilling to just trust that Obama is "good at this kind of thing."

    I don't want a bill to be bipartisan as a first priority, I want it to fix the economy. If it does that, no one will care that it was passed on Democratic votes.


    Well, (5.00 / 4) (#59)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:44:17 PM EST
    I think he started out with a bill broadly where he wanted the bill to be.

    That pretty much covers it, as far as I'm concerned.  All the negotiation stuff is window dressing.

    Of course, I can't be as blase about it as you are.  Obama's center-right plan is damaging on several levels.  Not only will it not do much to help people who need it, but it will give Republicans help in reinvigorating themselves.  For, when the economy starts looking better (not in terms of economic eqality, but in terms of increased capital in the hands of a few), they can just claim it's becuase of the tax cuts (i.e. argue they were right all along), and if the economy gets worse they'll just argue that the Democrats were in charge and messed things up.


    I seem to recall (5.00 / 3) (#74)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:05:11 PM EST
    him caving on that bill he claimed he passed which "forces" nuclear power plants to disclose radioactive leaks. After he was lobbied by Exelon and others in the industry and watered it down to voluntary standards. The bill didn't even pass. So he is not always good at this kind of thing. I was heartened by his "I won" remark but need to see more evidence that he isn't a pushover. If he is giving in that easily with his approval ratings at sky high levels, what will he do when the glow wears off?

    BTD is very willing to criticize (5.00 / 5) (#75)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:06:46 PM EST
    Obama when he thinks he deserves it. He has done it recently as do a lot of the people who post here.

    Feh. (5.00 / 7) (#87)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:46:45 PM EST
    As you probably know, I was a Clinton supporter during the primaries.  And BTD is hardly in the tank for Obama (or for anybody, for that matter, who doesn't play football for Florida).

    Your mistake is to imagine that there are only two positions on any issue -- sycophantic acquiescence or constant moral outrage.  In fact, there is a continuum of opinion.


    You're silly. (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:05:34 PM EST
    Others who are true blue supporters like you and BTD are trying to put a hold on things because you just don't want to say you were wrong about Obama.

    Neither BTD nor I are "true blue supporters" of Obama -- or anybody.  You repeat your silly charge in your second comment.  In fact, nothing you write indicates that you've read BTD's post, my comment to which you responded, my response to your comment, or anything either BTD or I have ever written here before.

    For the record and as I've stated before, I think the income tax cuts are dumb and non-stimulative.  I've always opposed them.  However, they were a campaign promise, and I think Obama intends to see them through.


    But you did. . . (5.00 / 1) (#130)
    by LarryInNYC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:36:23 PM EST
    I didn't make it about you

    You have repeatedly and falsely claimed that both BTD and I are somehow shilling for Obama.  That isn't true.  This entire post by BTD is critical of Obama, not supportive.  In fact, it is a continuation of a long running critique BTD has had of Obama's post-partisan style.

    In your post you said he was keeping a campaign promise. I don't think he is based on what people are actually getting.

    That is fiction on your part.  What are these, tax hikes?  No, they are cuts.  About $600 per person.  Do I think that will have a positive stimulative effect?  Not much of one.  Is it in the ballpark of the cuts he promised?  Yes.  What your motivation is in denying an obvious fact I can't guess.  But you seem to be confusing your preconceived notion that Obama is a liar with the actual fact that he does appear to be keeping a campaign pledge.

    You say you haven't been reading here long, but you're very quick to decide, on no evidence at all, who is an Obama sycophant and who isn't.


    So whose tip on Obama would that be? (5.00 / 0) (#143)
    by allimom99 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:01:23 PM EST
    I honestly don't recall hearing what a great negotiator he is, well from anyone! I keep hoping he will show some kind of backbone, but nah, not happening. Too bad for us.

    I hate to think it, (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:47:42 PM EST
    but it's going to be agony later.  The beltway is going to sink us before real action for the people happens and people drop their dyed in the wool rhetoric.

    Oh - Dumba*s - one more prediction: (5.00 / 6) (#30)
    by scribe on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:19:39 PM EST
    Because you just folded on this small matter, from here on out everything just got harder.


    Got it?

    Arabs and Israelis?  They will dig their heels in and commit new outrages.  Because they don't see you as strong enough to enforce your will for peace on them.

    Financial industry thievery?  They spit on you.  They knew your kind at college - the golden boy with a heart of marshmallow.

    Military?  Ha!

    Fellow Democrats?  How do you think Bushie kept the Republicans in line - to abandon civilization?  They feared him.

    No one fears you.  Not now.

    Hell - you can't even get an attorney general confirmed.  If you had had a set, you would have done what I told you on this site and elsewhere, when it became apparent Haggis was going to dredge up old Clinton-era crap about Holder:  draft a temporary appointment for him (and others) in advance of your swearing-in and hand them out, then have them take office and start issuing grand jury subpoenas for all the little peccadillos all those Rethugs have hanging around them.  And put the fear of God in them.  Instead of cowering and asking them pretty please.  

    You should not have even gone up to Capitol Hill today.  They wanted something out?  They.  Come. To.  You.  In your building and office.  If you choose to receive them instead of meeting with the Dakota Dairy Princesses or some similar dignitary.

    I dunno (5.00 / 0) (#50)
    by Steve M on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:34:49 PM EST
    I sort of understand this line of thinking, but lately I've been starting to wonder if it isn't just the conservative brand of foreign policy transmogrified into a partisan political strategy.

    You know the mentality I'm talking about, the line of thinking that says if we kick the crap out of some country like Iraq, and if we stay there for 100 years and never ever waver, that will show all the evildoers of the world that we mean business and they won't dare to cross us because the same thing will happen to them.  That sort of cowboy talk sounds tough and steely and it wins votes but it never ever seems to work in practice.  The terrorists apparently don't look to us for excuses to become emboldened.

    I wonder if the same kind of fallacy doesn't exist when we try to apply this line of thought to partisan politics.  If we give in to the GOP on anything, the argument goes, they'll become emboldened and challenge us on more and more!  We have to show we're tough and strong and manly, so they never ever try to question us.  The more I think about it, the more I feel like we're dreaming up a scenario that would never play out in the real world, any more than the fantasies of the neocons came to pass.  The bad guys simply aren't wired the way we want them to be.


    Unlike Democrats (5.00 / 4) (#66)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:55:33 PM EST
    Republicans will fight back either way. The big problem is that the media accepts their explanation, maybe because Democrats don't usually make a good case for their positions, even though they are usually superior. They seem to count on the media to be objective. This is still going on. I heard Mika Brzezinski (an Obama supporter so no right winger) say the New Deal did not create any jobs, repeating right wing propaganda based on stats that leave out all the jobs created directly by government programs like WPA and CCC. Democrats are a bunch of weenies who are so set on being liked that they roll over when the Republican bullies attack with blatant lies. I was hoping things might have changed with this election but I am not seeing it. It is really dangerous for democracy when the media promotes propaganda instead of truth.

    Not really (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by sj on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:49:06 PM EST
    If we give in to the GOP on anything, the argument goes, they'll become emboldened and challenge us on more and more!

    I think the flaw in your thinking is this:  They will challenge us more and more whether or not we give in.  They don't give a hoot how gracious or how resolute the Dems are.  It doesn't factor into their playbook at all.  

    Give in to the R's when the have a good idea.  I'm sure it could happen.  Well, anyway I think it could happen.  But I think comparing not agreeing to bad ideas to kicking the cr*p out of some country is a stretch.


    I can't agree (5.00 / 3) (#202)
    by cal1942 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:22:02 PM EST
    with equating a foreign policy mindset with a domestic policy mindset.

    The foreign policy example - carrying out a self-defeating occupation for an interminable period doesn't work because a foreign adversary understands just that.  That such a position is debilitating, self-defeating and they'll be happy to see us shoot ourselves in the foot.

    Domestic policy on the other hand can be demonstrated as a success that counts with the electorate, the body that has the last word.

    Today, compromise on domestic policy is not only unnecessary, given significant Congressional majorities, it is fraught with the danger of weakening the impact of legislation, diminishing the chance of success and opens the door for strengthening the opposition perhaps to the extent of falling out of power.

    Doing what Obama APPEARS to be doing at this point is certainly not a recipe for greatness. If this course continues as we now have reason to fear, the nation's decline will continue and future historians will regard it as a missed opportunity that will label Obama as a significant failure.


    Pre-Concessions (5.00 / 3) (#34)
    by tokin librul on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:23:39 PM EST
    That's the thing I like LEAST about Obama (and to me there is quite a bit to dislike): he'd rather get a deal than support a principle. Folks like him--meliorizers--go into negotiations having already in mind what they will concede, but without fixed ideas about what the concession should buy. I know he's a compromiser. But that doesn't take much courage, and I am beginning to doubt his courage.

    " I know he's a compromiser." (5.00 / 0) (#58)
    by Inspector Gadget on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:42:12 PM EST
    How do you know that? I'm trying to come up with one thing Obama said about himself, his convictions and his accomplishments during the election that he could actually prove.

    What was it Barney Frank said (5.00 / 9) (#45)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:32:30 PM EST
    said about Obama? Something along the lines of "He overestimates his ability to charm."

    Mythology aside, you can't charm a snake. And Congressional Repubs are snakes through and through.

    My favorite Frank quote (5.00 / 10) (#73)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:02:41 PM EST
    "Obama tends to overstate the his ability to get people to change their opinions and underestimates the importance of confronting ideological differences."

    God I love Barney the Frank (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:48:48 PM EST
    Courting the media instead of the voters (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by esmense on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:33:13 PM EST
    Democrats have long failed to understand the distinction between the two and as a result keep making the same mistakes over and over. Most end up personally mocked and disdained for their efforts. So far Obama has avoided that fate -- but if the beltway media continues to present the Republicans' distortions, lies and obstructionism as reasonable, true and having some large measure of merit, its reluctance to trash Obama personally may not matter.

    Big media is not in a position to be unbiased... (5.00 / 3) (#89)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:52:45 PM EST
    The media is a corporate entity and they work on behalf of corporate interests. The GOP is more favorable toward corporate interests, hence the media is more favorable toward the GOP. Media will only be favorable toward Dems insofar as the Dems are willing to mimic the GOP.

    That dynamic won't change unless, and until, the public organizes massive protests and boycotts of the parent companies and subsidiaries of big media outlets. I'm not holding my breath.


    My hope is that he emerges (5.00 / 6) (#51)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:34:57 PM EST
    and says 'hey, I tried', and this little experiment in post-partisan unity will be over. We are partisan for good reason sometimes - because there are some issues over which we do have clear ideological divides, and our parties have typically taken different sides.

    Let us hope that (5.00 / 4) (#76)
    by KeysDan on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:09:36 PM EST
    Tim Geithner reads your comment. Look to what Mr. Geithner thinks, since that is what Obama apparently thinks, having been willing, in his case,  to have, essentially, a partisan vote to get him.  Economic policy has always been a major line of demarcation between the parties. Republicans have never seen a tax cut that they do not like.  And, they never have liked the New Deal and have been trying to undo it for 75 years.  The prospect of a new New Deal means that all stops will be pulled to prevent its happening. President Clinton's first and most important budget was passed without one single Republican vote.

    If he is reading my comments I'd like (5.00 / 5) (#80)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:14:46 PM EST
    to chastise him for making me listen to my rightie coworkers crowing about his taxes. It has been a miserable morning around here.

    I believe it is better, and absolutely imperative in this case, to pass the right bill with minimal votes rather than the wrong one with bipartisan support. If Obama and Geithner do not believe that, maybe the economy is not as bad as I thought.  


    I think this is what happens on an (5.00 / 10) (#61)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:47:51 PM EST
    issue of such magnitude, when you have someone at the helm who has never, to my knowledge, taken the political risk of leading people - kicking and screaming, if necessary - to where he believes at his core is the right place for them to go.  He wants too badly for everyone in the Congress to be happy, for everyone in the Congress to win, and he just does not get that some of the people who work in wood-paneled offices are going to have to lose in order for the people of this country - the ones collecting unemployment, using space heaters and their ovens for warmth, the ones working four part-time jobs with no health benefits, the ones who lie awake at night worrying how they will possibly survive this - to win.

    The John Boehners and Mitch McConnells have done nothing for us - and Obama needs to get a clue about that and stop rolling over for them - they aren't going to help him, they are reeling him in and when they land him, he will be stuffed and mounted on a wall.

    Where are the Democrats?  Why do I have to keep seeing Boehner mouthing the same old lies, that the media never challenge?

    This is just maddening.

    Instead of saying "I won" (5.00 / 7) (#63)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:52:28 PM EST
    which is true but only sounds Bushian, I wish he and Dems in general would say loudly that Boehner and McConnell have NO credibility on the economy. None. Or anything else for that matter. their ideas do not deserve respect because they have already failed.  

    The media did not report (none / 0) (#77)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:10:18 PM EST
    the context of that statement. He said the issue of giving money to people who don't pay taxes (income taxes in truth speak) was debated during the campaign. Then he said "I won", indicating that the voters had heard the Republicans argument on that specific issue but voted for Obama anyway. I would have preferred he had said something like "the people have spoken" but I was still glad he was willing to say this to them.

    Yes, that was a good start (none / 0) (#82)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:17:31 PM EST
    I should have said 'in addition to' rather than 'instead of'.

    What makes you say this? (none / 0) (#68)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:56:35 PM EST
    to where he believes at his core is the right place for them to go.

    Seems to me that Obama's center-right stimulus proposal is exactly what he was promising during the campaign.  Perhaps he is giving us what he believes.  Frankly, to me this is a more plausible explanation that that Obama is some kind of pushover.


    I was never one who believed Obama (5.00 / 7) (#79)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:14:11 PM EST
    had the first clue about what was at his core - he has too much of a need to be liked, and too little confidence and too little courage to put it all on the line, and stand at the head of the line, for anything; he is very much a which-way-is-this-headed kind of guy, and the problem I have is that he seems to be allowing the GOP to determine where that is.

    It's amazing to realize that, one week into his administration, the GOP already seems to own him.

    One week.


    I don't believe Obama has (5.00 / 2) (#83)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:29:17 PM EST
    changed in the slightest. What you're seeing now is the Obama who wrote the nasty, smarmy diary in DK back in 2005.

    "Our enemies are innovative (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:12:40 PM EST
    and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."

    -- George W. Bush (August 5, 2004)

    The media has set an impossible and absurd (5.00 / 2) (#92)
    by esmense on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:05:56 PM EST
    standard for judging Obama's efforts at bi-partisanship. NBC's Chuck Todd asked Obama if he would veto the bill if it didn't receive any Republican votes -- on the grounds that it wouldn't be bi-partisan. That's a standard that puts all the control in Republican hands and all the responsibility in Obama's -- and, of course, makes Republican support a greater goal and good (in the media's framing), and a more important test of Obama's success, than real action to address the economic crisis. So I'd say the answer to BTD's questions may be that if this is a play to the media (which I think it is) it most likely will not work.

    Asked Gibbs, Obama's Press Secretary (5.00 / 0) (#100)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:18:15 PM EST
    Who, BTW, really stinks as WH Press Secretary so far imo.

    Not smooth. He is much better in a campaign. Not as good in government I think.


    I agree (5.00 / 1) (#102)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:34:56 PM EST
    Gibbs reminds me of McClellan without the charm.

    when not churning out (none / 0) (#95)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:12:24 PM EST
    sensational gloom and doom stories in order to gain audience share or to drive internet traffic.

    I kind of like the question (none / 0) (#97)
    by sj on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:14:43 PM EST
    Oh, not for reason he asked it.  And I agree with you that it puts the control in Republican hands and responsibility in Obamas.

    I like the question because it inadvertantly limns how utterly meaningless the emphasis on getting buy-in from the minority really is.

    I'm almost afraid to ask how Obama answered...


    As BTD points out he actually asked Gibbs (none / 0) (#101)
    by esmense on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:25:41 PM EST
    if Obama would veto any bill that does not receive Republican votes (sorry I was unclear). Gibbs gave a long rambling answer that seemed to say such "hypotheticals" were "premature."

    Dog Training 101 (5.00 / 2) (#105)
    by sarany on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:43:24 PM EST
    When your dog bites you, don't reward.  And certainly don't be surprised when you get bitten again and again.

    I sure hope Obama learns fast that this ain't working.

    Obama purports to be the pack leader (5.00 / 2) (#112)
    by shoephone on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:02:00 PM EST
    but, in reality, he doesn't BEHAVE as the pack leader. All failures flow from that.

    Looks to me like Boehner is the alpha dog.


    Is it wrong to ask why... (5.00 / 2) (#109)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:49:36 PM EST
    the federal government is in the contraception business to begin with?

    Don't get me wrong, I swear by contraception and am childless to prove it...but I was always quite capable of seeing to it myself with my partners, even when I was nearly flat broke.  It ain't rocket science to where we need bueracrats to hold our hands or put the damn thing on for us, right?  

    What am I missing?  Why get bogged down on these lesser important wedge issues when we've got big problems?  

    Every majority party (5.00 / 2) (#111)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:59:16 PM EST
    demonstrates its priorities through add-ons.
    There's no reason to give in to Republicans on such a minor issue. Turn it around: if they can't even take a tiny disappointment like this without going full on WATB, how can you expect them to accomodate Democrats for more important issues, like global warming?
    The answer is, they won't.

    Because it costs much more for women (5.00 / 6) (#138)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:46:49 PM EST
    to get on birth control, because the medical profession would only back off almost a century ago for a compromise that made women's birth control by prescription only.  Meaning, doctor's appointments and maybe tests and certainly costly prescriptions, all costing a lot more than an over-the-counter condom.   That is, for women who want: a. far more reliable mechanisms than condoms, etc., and b. that second part: control, rather than the far less reliable mechanism called a guy.  Not all of them are as responsible as you are, kdog.

    So, because it is for the good of society for families to plan, for poor women -- and their children -- to not be further impoverished by more children, the government provides aid to them.

    It's like asking "why food stamps?"  After all, government funding for birth control also goes to the poor, not to women who can (barely) afford it -- at hundreds and hundreds of dollars a year, thanks to the medical profession.  And the politicians who allowed the medical profession to get away with this.

    Now, let's widen the discussion to talk about how the medical profession also won political support to force women to separate buildings for medical procedures (the ones called abortions), and how that has imperiled their access to them.  Let's have Male Prostrate Surgery Clinics, and let's organize a march with posters and pictures of prostrates to block men from medical care!


    I see.... (5.00 / 1) (#149)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 05:58:19 PM EST
    Thanks Cream...I got rubbers stuck in my head, forgot about the pill, which I agree should be available without a script and covered under insurance like the little blue pill for the fellas.

    Though I think every drug should be available without a script, or as I like to call them, permission slips.  We're grown up free Americans, permission slips are for kids.  I probably lose you there:)

    As to whether the government, or taxpayers, should pay for birth control for the poor..I'm kinda torn.  Better than the government paying for a new weapons system, hell yeah.  But it is not a necessity like food, water, and shelter.  Poor people need to be responsible for themselves and their actions too.  Can't afford to get on the pill?  Get rubbers.  Can't afford rubbers? Get your rocks off without vaginal intercourse...or suffer the consequences.  


    Hmmmm.....You sound a lot like a (5.00 / 2) (#150)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:08:20 PM EST
    libertarian and hardly at all like a liberal/progressive who believes in community.

    I've got strong libertarian tendencies... (5.00 / 1) (#154)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:35:42 PM EST
    because I love liberty above all else...but I like to think I have a sense of community as well...community with voluntary associations and a respect for others choices and beliefs that may differ from mine.

    With the emphasis on "voluntary". (5.00 / 1) (#155)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:45:11 PM EST
    That sounds very libertarian to me.

    Label me as you wish... (none / 0) (#157)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:51:01 PM EST
    I'm on a constant journey, changing my mind all the time it seems...went so far left some say I'm far right now...I think all the political philosophies have good ideas and bad.  And we're probably at our best when we borrow from all of them.

    I like political philosophies (none / 0) (#159)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:54:44 PM EST
    based on a pragmatic understanding of what works, and grounded in sound moral and ethical values.
    The Bushies quite obviously learned some lessons from Hitler---especially about  the use of the big lie---but their values were abhorrent.

    Oh, and Libertarianism (5.00 / 1) (#160)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:55:45 PM EST
    is less in contact with reality than even Communism, IMO. I can't care a fig about values, if they cannot possibly be integrated into a workable system.

    Fair enough... (none / 0) (#173)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:06:29 PM EST
    IMO, there is no workable system without liberty and a sound respect for the sovereignty of the individual.

    And I know my government uses the same workable system argument to force me to fund my own arrest.  Socialism is just as scary, if not more...better for government to stick to the basics.  If we were libertarian in this instance birth control, even the morning after pill, could be had over the counter at the pharmacy.  For low income people, there is Planned Parenthood, mainly privately funded already.  People of like minds, voluntarily (gasp!:), could pick up the slack to replace the govt. funds and everybody wins.  That sounds pretty good to me...workable.


    The problem is that you as a (none / 0) (#176)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:17:48 PM EST
    Libertarian make no distinction between cases in government action, except arbitrarily.
    What's the point of discussing with you whether the government should fund birth control, or environmental programs and regulations? None at all, since you are unwilling to look at these issues with anything but your ideological bludgeon.

    I don't think... (none / 0) (#181)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:31:06 PM EST
    I'm the one with the bludgeon here friend.  

    I'm looking at the issue...birth control funding.  Is it that hard to believe that many Americans believe it, in their heart of hearts, to be a terrible sin...as much as you and I think that's nuts.  Can we not respect their right to believe that, and cut a check to Planned Parenthood...while demanding they respect our right to unfettered access to birth control? Is that not reasonable?


    You've changed your tune. (5.00 / 2) (#183)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:35:09 PM EST
    Originally you were proposing not funding birth control. Now you say we just need to respect each other's rights to have differing opinions.
    You've mastered PostPartisan Pabulum 101

    Same song of Liberty friend... (none / 0) (#186)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:43:51 PM EST
    respecting my neighbors right to object to funding birth control, what he/she believes to be a terrible sin.  My neighbor respecting my right, your right, to birth control of all kinds.  Let freedom ring.

    So if your neighbor believes (5.00 / 1) (#187)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:48:06 PM EST
    that beating his children and wife are a part of his religious belief system, do you respect that too?  Curious as to how the libertarian mind works....is it all about "live and let live" even if you see someone hurting those weaker and smaller?

    Oh, for heaven's sake... (5.00 / 5) (#197)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:05:27 PM EST
    ask your neighbor if he or she has any freakin' clue what his or her tax dollars - all of them - pay for; I'm guessing he or she has some general idea - schools?  the police? - but is nonetheless ready to go ballistic about helping poor women get access to birth control.  I would bet my last dollar that this person also objects to funding programs that help poor women pay to help feed and care for the kids they have because they didn't use birth control.

    Man, those poor women: damned if they do, and damned if they don't, huh?  Maybe if the government could pay for self-control, everyone would be happy - even your neighbor.

    I'm pretty much just fed up with the people who whine endlessly about the government getting in the way of them living their lives; you know, the people who don't want to wear seat belts, or wear helmets when riding motorcycles or bikes, who think insurance is just an impediment to a free life, who think what they do affects no one but themselves.  It's cr@p.  Utter, stinking cr@p.  Just ask all of us who pay to scrape the non-helmet-wearers off the highway, whose insurance rates keep going up to pay for those who didn't have it - and we pay for the kids whose parents can't afford them, too, and for their mothers who end up with health problems because they don't get health care.  Ask us property owners who keep paying more and more.

    No one lives on an island of one; until they do, they need to understand that the greater good sometimes will just have to prevail over their beliefs that somehow the rules and the structure should not have to apply to them.

    Freedom isn't free.  


    Are there no "commons" you can believe (5.00 / 1) (#189)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:51:25 PM EST
    in for your community?  Government is after all, US.  WE, the people, not THEY the people.

    Libertarians always make it sound as though government is some entity outside of the people.  Or do you not believe that democracy is possible, of the people, by the people, for the people?


    I always say (5.00 / 5) (#191)
    by Steve M on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:54:11 PM EST
    that people can object to funding other people's abortions when I get to object to funding their war.

    If the result is that the people who most need (5.00 / 3) (#198)
    by esmense on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:07:47 PM EST
    and could benefit from family planning resources can't afford and won't have access to them, then no, it's not reasonable.

    I, and many, many other people, have great moral objections to the way the government spends our money in the area of defense, but I have never heard a libertarian suggest the government should eliminate defense spending because of pacifists' moral objections. Why is that? Is it because they believe the security concerns of the majority outweigh the moral objections of a minority? And if that's true fir defense why isn't it true for anything else?


    Hmmmmm (5.00 / 3) (#166)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:09:33 PM EST
    Have spent a lifetime working in schools in poor, ethnic communities, the sense of family and community are what works best for schools.  

    I truly believe it does take a village but then I grew up in a family that was about community, when and where neighborhoods mattered and cared.

    I do not believe that the "goodness" of those who have won the DNA lottery will fix the problems. If the years of Reagan and W, the years of Newt and friends and their bullying did not teach us yet about how regulation is needed because greed will overtake too many, I don't know what will.

    I want the drugs I have to put into my body checked for quality and safety; same thing for food; or for the cars I buy, the planes in which I ride, the banks in which I deposit money.

    If people still believe leaving everyone to do it on their own, look out for themselves in this complicated world, then I say they are either greedy or naive.


    I also want... (none / 0) (#177)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:18:58 PM EST
    standards enforced for food, clean water, weights and measures, the workplace, currency...the necessities.  The no-brainers.  I'm sorry, that's not what we are talking about here Jjc.

    I don't want the community telling me...forcing me...to face arrest to smoke reefer, to pay 5 bucks a pack in tax on cigarettes because it is bad for me, to pay to drop bombs on people I'll never know thousands of miles away.  I can respect, though not agree, with my neighbor not wanting to fund what they believe to be a sin.  A lbertarian compromise of sticking to the necessities is reasonable and just, imo.


    Your definition of (5.00 / 1) (#179)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:28:38 PM EST
    necessity is arbitrary and personal.
    For instance, many Libertarians are vehemently opposed to any regulation of any drugs, whatsoever. Your choice of the example of reefer is of course highly typical---something every Libertarian I know shares.

    Chains will do that to you... (none / 0) (#185)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:40:53 PM EST
    chains brought to you by community minded, central planning, sure of themselves liberals.

    Ya keep trying to pigeonhole me...who said no regulation?  Have the FDA test it, list the side effects, make sure it is what the mfg. says it is, make sure the dose is as labeled...and call it day.  Don't tell people what they can take or make them pay for optional drugs other people take, excluding of course life sustaining drugs for the sick, old, and disabled...I'm not that hardcore libertarian, I think we can get everyone down with a safety net "voluntarily".


    You seem to separate (5.00 / 1) (#193)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:56:16 PM EST
    government from yourself, which is what most libertarians do.  WE, the people......it takes work.  But the point is that as a community we can and do set standards.  But for the last 50 years, too many want some "hero" to come in and protect us, and then tell us what is good and what is evil.  It takes work to have a democracy.  I worked long and hard with my friend before she died to put pressure on CO to legalize medical use of marijuanna.  Some progress is being made for legalizing it in some places.  DEMOCRACY is slow and clumsy but it works when people are WILLING TO WORK.  Too many on the right want authoritarians, too many libertarians just want to be left alone.....
    that is not how democracy works.

    Keep in mind (5.00 / 2) (#151)
    by Steve M on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:14:48 PM EST
    if the result is a kid that mom doesn't want or can't afford, in a lot of respects it's the kid and not mom who's going to "suffer the consequences."  And of course dad often gets off completely scot-free.

    Many women go hungry to feed their children... (none / 0) (#163)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:04:58 PM EST
    Many clothe their children before they clothe themselves; and they put the overall health and welfare of their children above their own needs. It is the concept of sacrifice, and more often than not, mothers are willing to do it for their children.

    So, respectfully, Steve M, please reconsider what you said about the outcome of unplanned pregnancies among poor women:

    in a lot of respects it's the kid and not mom who's going to "suffer the consequences."

    In my experience, women of all socio-economic classes often choose to "suffer the consequences" themselves, so as to spare their children as best they can.


    I think (none / 0) (#171)
    by Steve M on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:50:45 PM EST
    that you really really misunderstand where I am coming from, and what I was responding to.

    How so? (none / 0) (#175)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:14:41 PM EST
    Of course... (none / 0) (#188)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:51:13 PM EST
    fathers too make great sacrifices for children they did not plan for.  

    Steve did not intend to disparage all the heroic single moms out there, I assure you.  He was responding to me, see upthread.  

    And he was right, the kids often suffer the most.  They weren't irresponsible like mom and dad, with the exception of unlucky contraception failure, or the heinous exception of rape of course.


    Unfortunately, kdog, it is often easier for men (5.00 / 4) (#153)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:22:23 PM EST
    to say "no" to vaginal intercourse than it is for women. And, when the condoms break or the man just won't take "no" for an answer, it is the woman who is pregnant. Expensive, prescription required birth control is the kind that gives the woman control over her own reproductive health.

    Complete control over one's reproductive health is an economic issue for women. Putting this in an economic package makes total sense. Remember, legal or not, women face discrimination in the workplace because they either are pregnant or could get pregnant. Not every job offers family leave. Child care is insanely expensive, if you can even find it.

    And most families require two working parents to keep things going. The loss of one income is devastating for many. Imagine how much more economically devastating an unplanned pregnancy is for a single woman trying to support herself and, perhaps, other children.


    No argument.. (none / 0) (#156)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:47:33 PM EST
    my only question is...is it just to force others who have moral objections to birth control, or others in general, to pay for it?  Just as I feel sick about chipping in my 5 grand a year to help pay for the DEA to invade someones home, a hardcore Christian might feel sick about this...and I can sympathize.

    Compared to the boatloads of money wasted, stolen, or used to tyrannize...yeah, it's a no brainer for me to help women who want birth control get it...take it outta the DEA's budget and I'm happy as a clam.  But is this the job of government, especially the federal government?  I have doubts.


    kdog, it's health care. (5.00 / 3) (#161)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:59:38 PM EST
    Women's reproductive health is also a health care issue. and why should it be okay for my health, or anyone's health, to be regulated  by anyone's religious beliefs?  

    I remember during the early years of the AIDS crisis all the religious objections to any kind of help for people with AIDS/HIV. They were outraged that their tax dollars might go to help some queer or some drug user. Afterall, people with AIDS brought it on themselves. And they were sinners. And they had sex, and they were not always married to the person they had sex with. This was the kind of thinking that let thousands of people die.

    And some religions object to blood transfusions; some object to any and all medical care. Should we eliminate all government funding for health care because these folks might object to this use of their tax dollars?

    No one's health care should be left to the mercy of any religion.

    If someone objects to birth control, then they don't have to use it.


    I see... (none / 0) (#195)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:01:48 PM EST
    In cases of medical necessity, I totally see your point.  I'm down with providing medical care to the poor, if there is a medical necessity for birth control pills or abortion it should be provided as part of our safety net.

    It gets fuzzy beyond that.  It's not a disease like HIV, it's a pregnancy.  The miracle of life.  The absolute right to abortion and the morning after pill and making those who object to it on moral grounds pay to provide it are different things in my mind.  I mean I believe in the right to reproductive rights 110%, but I've got my personal moral qualms about abortion too.  It's not a life-saving procedure like a blood transfusion.

    BTW...Thanks for the food for thought, you should me angles I was missing casey.


    Ugh. (5.00 / 1) (#200)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:18:59 PM EST
    Your "miracle of life" is someone else's disaster.
    Don't you respect the views of those who don't want to have children when they are not able to take care of them? Shame on you!

    Yes, since it is the federal government (5.00 / 3) (#162)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:04:41 PM EST
    that, with that compromise with the medical profession, made birth control so much more costly for women than for men.

    The alternative fix for this ought to really please a libertarian:  Do not require women to see doctors to get prescriptions (and tests and such, as required by doctors, many of whom love to require them) for birth control.  

    Unless and until women are treated equally in terms of access to birth control, the federal government -- which is us -- pays for the inequal treatment.  One way or another . . . as we will pay for the food stamps and housing and schooling and much more for the kids that will be born into the increasing poverty of those mothers/parents.

    So get on your libertarian high horse with us and lead the charge for equal treatment of women, including medically.


    My dearest Cream... (5.00 / 1) (#168)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:30:26 PM EST
    you are doing the lord's work here. Each naysayer response gives you another opportunity for a 'teachable moment'.

    *Something that's under-discussed: family planning, in the form of condoms, greatly reduces the medical costs that would otherwise ensue from the spread of STDs and, more importantly, HIV and AIDS.

    *By way of further support, I had a thought about the "rights" of taxpayers who have moral, or religious, objections to certain government expenditures, consider this: Quakers and other pacifists object to military expenditures; Jehovah's Witnesses object to blood transfusions and organ transplants; the religious right objects to everything that would give women greater autonomy and control over their bodies.

    Who gets to determine which of the foregoing moral and religious objections are indulged by our government? Why should any of them be indulged at all?


    That's a rhetorical suggestion (none / 0) (#164)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:06:13 PM EST
    I hope---the health complications for women on birth control can be quite serious.

    I've commented.... (none / 0) (#199)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:11:58 PM EST
    the exact same already sister:)

    Once the sovereignty of the individual is given due respect, I think we'll maybe find the equality for all under the law we both crave Cream.  Regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, nationality, or personal lifestyle choice.

    If only the Democrats and Republicans were down.


    What specifically about birth control (none / 0) (#158)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 06:51:59 PM EST
    is the problem? You are Libertarian, so you don't want the government to spend money on almost anything! Why single out an issue which gives political aid to the Republicans---unless you are a Republican? I don't get it.

    What is up with this fixation on aid for family planning!

    You tell me guys... (none / 0) (#201)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:20:09 PM EST
    lets disband the CIA tomorrow...definitely more pressing, I agree.

    If the holy rollers object to funding birth control, why get bogged down?  Let's all put our money where our mouth is and cut a check to Planned Parenthood to make up the funding and get to work on dismantling our bloody, torturous, occupying, bombing the living sh*t out of people foreign policy.

    Oh yeah, the "liberals" that now run our government don't want any of that.  They rather point at the holy rollers and say "they won't pay for birth control!" That will keep the heart in the right place "liberals" off our back about torture for awhile and keep 'em paying those taxes.  


    I disagree about no prescription (5.00 / 1) (#184)
    by BernieO on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:36:56 PM EST
    If we had a system which mandated that the pharmacist counsel people, I would say yes. But some people - like those with blood clotting problems should not take it so I think it would make sense to have to talk to someone first.

    Where We Are Now (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:32:08 PM EST

          Without reviewing all the vertiginous particulars of the year now ending, suffice it to say that the US economy fell on its ass and that the "global economy" did a face-plant as well. The American banking sector imploded spectacularly to the degree that investment banking actually went extinct -- as if a meteor landed on the corner of Madison Avenue and 51st Street. The response by our government was to shovel "loans" onto the loading dock of every organization that pretended to be something like a bank, while "bailing out" an ever-longer line of corporate claimants with a pitiable song-and-dance. The oil markets went on a roller coaster ride. The housing bubble collapse grew to avalanche velocity (taking out whole colonies of realtors, mortgage brokers, and construction contractors in its path), the commercial real estate sector developed hemorrhagic fever, retail drove off a cliff on Christmas Eve, the stock market fell in the toilet, jobs and incomes went up in a vapor, and tens of millions of ordinary citizens addicted to revolving credit found themselves in a life-and-death struggle for the means of existence. None of this is over yet.

    Well (none / 0) (#132)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:37:11 PM EST
    that's as good an example of Mass Karma as you can get.

    Hillary's schtick (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by jedimom on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:38:50 PM EST
    notice POTUS swiped Hillary's three legged stool reference form her SoS speech just one day after she said it, it is a habit with him now I betcha, lol...

    now the economy is on a three legged stool plan too..uh huh

    It was all over the radio this evening (5.00 / 3) (#170)
    by joanneleon on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:48:23 PM EST
    and this afternoon I saw the statements from Pence and others.  They seemed genuinely flattered that Obama came to meet with them.  Pence made a point of saying that the door to their caucus remains open to this President.  On the radio they were saying that this type of thing is unprecedented.  I heard or read somewhere that they were all flocking to have their picture taken with Obama too.

    The Senate, however, according to what I heard, had been primed by members like John McCain to oppose the bill like a stone wall, regardless what was said or done in Obama's visit to the Republican Senate caucus.

    I have to say that I was beginning to see some wisdom in all of this.  I was just starting to think that maybe my gut reaction to all of it is entirely wrong.  I figured that eventually, by treating the Republicans this way, Obama intends to undermine their leadership.  I was sensing the brilliance of it and seeing the opening he was giving to those on the other side of the aisle, appealing to the best in them, giving them an opportunity to be a part of the renaissance as participants instead of outsiders, to step into the light :) and such.  


    Then I thought about Mitch McConnell's statement on the Senate floor last week, about how grateful he was to Pres. Obama for listening to them and making compromises, etc. etc.  And then he went on to say how they would not be able to support him.

    I just caught a little bit of Rep. Obey's statements on the House floor a few minutes ago.  He looked tired and crestfallen and was talking about how apparently the House members had been told by their leadership to oppose the stimulus legislation.

    Which is exactly what I expected would happen before I waffled on it this afternoon.  I just don't know what to think.  Maybe he'll pick off a few votes.  Maybe if he continued to cater to them, he'd succeed in undermining the leadership.  But what kind of a success would that be in the end?  We'd end up watering down every piece of important legislation.  Some portion of their caucus would always obstruct.  If this were a different time, when it wasn't so important to pass things quickly, I might agree with the kumbaya strategy.  With lots of patience and lots of compromise, it might really work.  But the situation right now doesn't allow for a lot of time and patience.  

    At this point, it looks like the Republicans' strategy of forcing the Dems to bow to them and compromise, causing the Dems to change the legislation from what they originally crafted to be a successful program, then voting against the legislation anyway, is a more successful strategy than Obama's, in the short term anyway.  They don't end up looking very good though, except to the most vengeful and ideological of their base.

    In any case, there is a lot of weirdness going on.  You had to see those House Repubs. coming out of that meeting to believe it.  Part of me still thinks that while it may not work with this bill, something good may come out of this approach, and the other part of me says I'm a naive fool for even going there, knowing what I know from experience these past 8+ years.

    P.S. Steve Clemons was just on Countdown.

    Obama was the choice of the (5.00 / 1) (#182)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:34:42 PM EST
    Democratic establishment, and the media, for a reason. He always intended to govern as a centrist and to err on the side of the right i.e. see his position on: single payer, universal health care; social security; gay marriage; reproductive rights; etc.

    When will the faithful stop excusing every nod to the GOP and the religious right as a "compromise" or an "exception"? Face it, this is his entire modus operandi.

    *The move to close Gitmo and to reintroduce the Army Field Manual are welcome measures. But let's not forget, the Obama administration has a compelling interest in taking steps to avoid their own future charges of war crimes. Granted, can't blame 'em for that.  


    Yep. That's why "that woman" (3.50 / 2) (#196)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:03:45 PM EST
    had to be defeated, even though it took demeaning all women to do it, calling her a pimp and thus her daughter a whore, repeatedly changing party rules, even really making history by calling off the very purpose of a party convention, the roll call.

    The Beltway likes the post-partisan "shtick."


    I think what irks me more than a little is (5.00 / 3) (#172)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:53:41 PM EST
    that there seems to be a willingness to abandon the notion of having a real point-by-point plan, with specific steps and timeline, based on an economic school of thought, for some patchwork, hit-or-miss, pinch-of-this, dash-of-that amalgamation of different theories of economic policy, that requires a belief that somehow, if these various interest groups and sectors and camps can be occupied with a bone or two, that  will translate to economic health, will create jobs, will put our 401(k)'s back on track, will lift up the poorest of the poor and all will be well.

    To my mind, this approach is indicative of a lack of commitment to core principles - which was what I always saw as Obama's central failing, the thing that is going to doom each and every major issue before him.  Can I say now that I am not at all optimistic about health care?

    It's all well and good to rescind this executive order and issue that executive order, but when it comes to something that really is the sum of its parts, one has to know what it is one is building, or trying to build, if there is any hope of ending up with anything even close to what one envisioned.

    There is no magic wand for making this happen.  This is where the hard work comes into play, something that many of us did not believe particularly interested Obama.  It's more than just having a plan - every plan needs a sales strategy that answers all the opposition, and makes people believe.  Whatever plan Obama may have had is being lost because he seems to see giving in as a better path than digging in.

    It may now be up to the Congressional Democratic leadership to take Obama by the shoulders and shake some sense into him - except that we have leaders in Congress who aren't known for their intransigence, but for their conciliation.

    They fiddle; meanwhile, Rome is in flames.

    Post Partisan my eye (5.00 / 2) (#194)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:01:41 PM EST
    The reality that should have struck Obama is that it isn't in the Republican's interest for Obama and the Democrat's to succeed. Until he accepts that reality, we're all in trouble.

    We've tried their strategies for 8 years now and look where we are. Why would anyone with half a brain want their opinion now? Next he'll be calling Gonzales for advice on the DOJ. Or maybe Brownie could give him pointers on FEMA.

    Obama hit a bigger reality check today (5.00 / 2) (#204)
    by RonK Seattle on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:47:05 PM EST
    White House nearly lost a key vote on the Stimpak, and won it only by making a promise to the House Blue Dogs that will cripple Administration budgets from here on out.

    The Hill: Obama budget promise wins Blue Dog support

    Ooh, that video (none / 0) (#3)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:30:44 PM EST
    is going to ruffle some feathers. The critique is absolutely valid, of course.

    I'm wondering when, exactly, Obama will decide to stop negotiating against himself.

    I thought (none / 0) (#16)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:54:03 PM EST
    that she sounded looser and more real than Obama - especially in the first portion of the clip.

    I am having flashbacks (none / 0) (#8)
    by eric on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:43:18 PM EST
    to 1993.  Obama should call Bill and ask him what NOT to do to deal with these people.

    The difference in '93 (5.00 / 6) (#10)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:46:11 PM EST
    is that you had lots of "Democrats" like Dick Shelby who were absolutely not going to support the President's plan. This year, we're attempting to appease Republicans because. . .

    And didn't Clinton's bill (none / 0) (#17)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:54:58 PM EST
    in '93 end up with tax increases, and not the disproportionate amount of tax cuts Obama proposed before he even started "compromising" with Republicans?

    He raised the gas tax (none / 0) (#20)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:58:25 PM EST
    among other taxes.

    It was good policy for the time. Raising taxes right now is probably not the right call, but tax cuts are certainly not. What's needed is massive deficit spending, and this bill, even as written, doesn't deliver. That's what happens when you prenegotiate.


    Or what happens if you (none / 0) (#21)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:59:54 PM EST
    actually believe that tax cuts are a good thing right now...which Obama and his economic advisors may well think.

    That still wouldn't explain (5.00 / 4) (#23)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:01:43 PM EST
    yanking the family planning money or reducing expenditures on high speed rail.

    Well, women's rights (5.00 / 4) (#24)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:04:21 PM EST
    and transportation issues have never seemed to be priorities for Obama either.  So, not surprising, really.

    They aren't really that bold in their (5.00 / 4) (#36)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:24:58 PM EST
    thinking - they think they are bold - but they aren't really that bold.

    They have also been remarkably weak on the pr front allowing the Republicans to get ahead of them in the media debate big time.  I have seen more news punditry state that FDR's programs were a complete failure.  It is just stunning really.

    But had they really been bold, they would have increased the price tag of this package by 50% - called it a stabilization and stimulus package; and let the GOP beat them back on 30% of the total.

    Honestly, Democrats need a course in negotiation - especially when they are dealing with Wall Street - they need to ask for more than they think they can get so that they can walk away with what they must have.  They always start at the bare minimum and they end up pleasing no one.


    My teenage cousin (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:27:01 PM EST
    could negotiate a better package. It's unreal.

    You are assuming that (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:29:18 PM EST
    Obama and his economic advisors agree with Krugman, for instance.  To be honest, given the way he campaigned, and the people he surrounds himself with, I don't know how that argument can be made, but if you can I'd like to hear it.

    No I am not assuming that about (5.00 / 5) (#70)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:58:48 PM EST
    Obama at all.  I've always viewed him as far more conservative than most of his most enthusiastic supporters are willing to admit.  But I think that this situation goes well beyond ideology right now.  If Obama and the Democrats do not get into big time bold mode, this depression will become theirs to own.  

    They can't do everything, but there is a lot they can do right now and I believe they have a lot more to lose if they choose to be cautious than they do if they are really bold.  So that is point number one.  

    How to be bold then becomes the question and it is clear as a bell that our Congress and government have already tried withholding family planning amongst other stupid things and we are here today where we are for a reason.  That's point number two.

    Point number three and four are interlinked - I don't think that Obama really understands the economy all that well - and I don't think he is very liberal on that front either.  I think he is more conservative in part because I don't think he fully comprehends the fact that there is such a thing as a good government role in the economy - that a government that is actively involved in setting standards and rules for doing business creates a more stable and sustainable economy for everyone.  He is talking about that these ideas a little bit, but I still don't see the bright light bulb of comprehension coming on full power yet.

    Obama for the sake of his own political survival is going to have to abandon 30+ years of anti-government propaganda that he like so many people have assimilated - many unknowingly so - and start investing his hopes and dreams in government and governance.  Tucker Carlson was on tv this morning insisting that the best thing to do right now is nothing - he said, "because sometimes it is best to just do nothing."  His quasi impression of a charlatan yogi was hi-larious - but he and his ilk are doing their best to convince Obama and Democrats that doing nothing is safer for them than doing something.  Dropping bales of cash across the country out of airplanes would be smarter than inaction would be right now.

    Obama is either going to figure all this out or he is not.  All I can say is we'll see.


    HOLC (none / 0) (#99)
    by jedimom on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:18:11 PM EST
    I want our frakin HOLC like last year already!! GIVE US HOLC

    Team Obama knows how to negotiate... (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:43:28 PM EST
    The question is who do they intend to be the primary beneficiary of their negotiations?

    If one assumes that they intend for the public to be the primary beneficiaries, then it looks like Obama and the Dems are very BAD negotiators.

    However, if one suspects that they want the usual fat cats to be the prime beneficiaries, then Obama et al are very SAVVY negotiators.

    Ergo, Team Obama knew what they were doing when they gave away half the farm before they went in to negotiate giving away the other half.

    Imo, these people aren't dumb: they're DINOs (Democrats In Name Only).


    If you believe tax cuts will help now (5.00 / 3) (#44)
    by cpa1 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:32:21 PM EST
    you are a f____g idiot and should not be making national policy.  Increasing Chatsworth Osborne Jr's after tax trust payments by Reagan and W did what for the economy but create a whole lot of putrid gimmicks for Wall Street to sell. What is it about deep recession that you or someone who wants tax cuts now doesn't understand.

    We need for American companies to invest in hiring employees, build new factories and try new products.  The ONLY way that will happen is if America becomes a market again, where people have good jobs and security.  If the corporate tax rate were zero and interest rates stay where they are, there would still be no investment if Americans are afraid to buy and don't have the money.


    Tell that to Obama. (none / 0) (#53)
    by dk on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:36:26 PM EST
    He's all about the tax cuts.  I agree with you.

    All of those (5.00 / 0) (#65)
    by JThomas on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:53:34 PM EST
    cuts are to the bottom 95% who need the cash and will spend it...very little is corporate tax cuts.

    No one would ever be totally happy with a giant bill like this...of course Hillary fans who will not let go will complain about everything for the next 8 years...what a prospect.


    US Steel (none / 0) (#98)
    by jedimom on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:17:13 PM EST
    in related issue, what say you on the provision saying the stimulus funds are to be spent only on American companies, like the steel?

    the CEO of CAT sounded like he would stroke out, (God Forbid), discussing it on CNBC, saying US jobs would be lost, b/c then China and others would follow suit and our companies, like CAT heh, would not get THEIR stimulus dollars...

    apparently some EU Steel makers are already pressing for similar restrictions on their stimulus funds etc etc

    I cant tell anymore what is true and what is GOP Supply Side mythology

    is it real or is it Raygun Memorex??


    No tax cuts! (5.00 / 2) (#180)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 08:29:36 PM EST
    Please no tax cuts. I can't afford them. Every time the Feds cut taxes, mine go up everywhere else. State, county and local. Last year I go $250 back from the Feds and my property tax went up $2000. My water bill doubled as did my garbage bill. All my utility taxes were increased too. I can't afford these cuts anymore!

    No compromise on tax cuts (none / 0) (#86)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:44:52 PM EST
    in fact... (none / 0) (#96)
    by jedimom on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:14:18 PM EST
    oh yes!, Larry Summers said Sunday that we need to pay for some of this shortly, STRONGLY suggesting/inferring when pressed that Cap Gains and Dividend treatment will indeed revert back to pre Dubyah rates in 2010 when they sunset...

    We all wish (or, we all should wish) (none / 0) (#9)
    by ChiTownDenny on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:44:47 PM EST
    President Obama is successful.  But, this is hilarious!  BTD, you rock!!!  Point well made.

    The First 100 Minutes (none / 0) (#48)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:33:21 PM EST
    A word on pre-concessions (none / 0) (#60)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 01:45:28 PM EST
    They don't count if the other side does not consider them as concessions. In this case, the other side does not hesitate to lie about whether their inputs were taken into consideration.

    Sure wish this lesson weren't being taught at the expense of the most important bill in his first year.

    In 2009 (none / 0) (#81)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:14:57 PM EST
    a trillion dollars worth of mortgage resets is going to take place at higher interest rates.

    yep (none / 0) (#94)
    by jedimom on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:12:06 PM EST
    methinks they are waiting to pass the pork laden 'infrastructure investment stimulus' that has barely any infrastructure first, then addressing housing via TARP Tranche Deux...

    interesting report here on the Summers pushback on mass transit funding in this gigantic bill...

    ps Mike Pence R-IN is on Faux right now saying we want the American people to know the POTUS is very friendly and open but the Congressional DEMS are not are blocking all input...


    Obama is interesting (none / 0) (#90)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:52:48 PM EST
    He attacks inside of Pakistan while speaking respectfully to the Muslim world......garnering the support of moderate Muslims.  He has the attention of some of the Repulican voting base too right now due to current pressures our country is facing, pressures that will likely get worse if something isn't done.  He just had a big ole face to face with the Muslim world, it can't be much harder having a big ole face to face with the American people like that one other dude awhile back did.  I could be wrong but I think the last dude who looked anything like this the conservatives called "slick willy".  

    Well (5.00 / 1) (#117)
    by Steve M on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:21:23 PM EST
    He didn't get this far by completely sucking at politics!

    No easy (none / 0) (#93)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:08:59 PM EST
    way out of this mess.

    It's gonna take harrrrd worrrrk (none / 0) (#165)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:07:19 PM EST
    as Obama's predecessor said.  And it seems, from this move today, that it might be worrrrk too harrrrd for Obama, if he doesn't get past this post-partison shtick and take back this country.

    Well, he is an interesting politician (none / 0) (#167)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:12:17 PM EST
    BTD always said that Obama didn't believe in his unity shtick, but Obama is beginning to make me think he really does believe! That still means he's either a slick politician, or naive.. I can't believe that his professed philosophy will have the impact of a wet marshmallow.

    cx: the nickname he used (none / 0) (#121)
    by Cream City on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:27:39 PM EST
    to use.

    I hereby state that I have no knowledge of whether anyone named a name that shall not be used ever sued anyone.  Don't hurt me.

    We're a lost cause (none / 0) (#139)
    by SOS on Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:47:20 PM EST
    Sad to say it

    It doesn't seem so popular, (none / 0) (#205)
    by knappster on Thu Mar 05, 2009 at 09:08:02 PM EST
    but I actually respect and appreciate the President's efforts to reach out to Repubs.  It will help him in the end by setting a better tone for debate to come.  It makes no sense to steamroll in there.  It didn't work for Clinton and it won't work for Obama.  We may get to the Post Partisan era after all.