Whatever Happened To George Lakoff?

Anybody know what George Lakoff is up to these days? Anyway, here's Drew Weston:

This President just doesn't have the stomach to make anyone do anything they don't want to do (except women to have unwanted babies because they can't afford an abortion or live in a red state and don't have an employer who offers insurance), and his advisors are enabling his most troubling character flaw, his conflict-avoidance.

This is an Open Thread.

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    When I called Democracy Now (5.00 / 4) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 01:12:04 PM EST
    I started bawling.  Poor guy on the other end of the phone, he didn't know what to do but he did his best.  He did tell that they haven't given up on the public option in reconciliation.  I stopped bawling and started laughing, and I told him that I had :)

    Here's the Howard Dean interview (none / 0) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:10:00 PM EST
    video  He does say that they hope the bill is improved in conference.  The gentleman at Democracy Now did say that this was a huge hope that they were banking on.

    Drew Weston nails it. (5.00 / 5) (#2)
    by shoephone on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 01:40:22 PM EST
    What's costing the president are three things: a laissez faire style of leadership that appears weak and removed to everyday Americans, a failure to articulate and defend any coherent ideological position on virtually anything, and a widespread perception that he cares more about special interests like bank, credit card, oil and coal, and health and pharmaceutical companies than he does about the people they are shafting.

    The problem is not that his record is being distorted. It's that all three have more than a grain of truth. And I say this not as one of those pesky "leftists." I say this as someone who has spent much of the last three years studying what moves voters in the middle, the Undecideds who will hear whichever side speaks to them with moral clarity.

    And I'd say that all three have more than just a grain of truth. More like the whole barrel.

    Been awhile since Obama the Silver Tongued (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:04:45 PM EST
    ... inspired anyone on any issue. Silently, he still looks great in the catalogues and brochures, and is readily available to be front and center for basking in the applause for others' accomplishments.

    But oy what a dud.


    Fantastic analysis (5.00 / 3) (#12)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:18:41 PM EST
    Definitely worth reading the whole piece.  This guy was an Obama supporter during the primaries (though not a Hillary hater).

    Yep (5.00 / 4) (#21)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:26:12 PM EST
    but where were these people last year and why are they realizing only now that he's a wimp? Good grief, the tons of "present" votes should have said that.

    Executive & Legislative Models (none / 0) (#31)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:47:46 PM EST
    A friend remarked during the primaries that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton may represent different leadership styles in the context of Executive & Legislative Models. For some time, the US witness the strong executive model in the form of the expanded role of the President and the concomitant ebb of the Congress. The person suggested at the time that so many Congressional Democrats may have aligned with now-President Obama (esp in the Feb to Apr timeframe, in part, because they viewed him as temporizing that expansion compared to his predecessors and, perhaps, supporting the return of the strong legislative model. (Cf. Classic debate about whether it is better for a city to have a strong mayor/weak city council or weak mayor/strong city council method.) If President Obama prefers, by temperament and philosophy, to develop something like a consensual model of decision-making between the two branches, I can understand why so many gravitated to the aspirational goal...especially after suffering through the Bush/Cheney expand-the-President-&-demolish-the-Congress years. On the other hand, the downside to putting the re-balancing into practice (esp with the rules of the Senate) may be a pattern of exceedingly long, meandering paths to big issue resolution. Oh for a happy median!

    No (none / 0) (#49)
    by cal1942 on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:54:38 PM EST
    The executive branch has played a consistently strong role in the federal government since FDR and has played a leading role during other periods in our history.

    Today's problem is not a contest between legislature and executive.

    The problem today is that we are at war over establishing the center.  The center meaning what government will do, what it will be.

    That war has been going on since the 70s.

    As a nation we're in obvious decline, a decline brought about by a weakening of the role of governmemt in domestic affairs.  In the last administration a strong executive fostered policies that further weakened the nation.

    The last thing this country needs right now is a President who refuses to use power and who doesn't understand the neglect that's allowing the nation to rot.  

    This President appears only interested in political process and not in what can be and must be accomplished by politics.


    Agree, BUT (none / 0) (#65)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 08:56:42 PM EST
    I agree that a principal issue--perhaps, the principal issue--centers on establishing the center. We sorely need to look squarely at what the 21st century calls for in terms of government roles, etc.  Where I would say "yes" (instead of your "no") is that there really does seem to be a potential pushing-pulling about the role of the executive vis-a-vis the legislature. In fact, it may to subsidiary to the overall government role in this age. They are related, but not mutually exclusive. For example, think about the role of government regarding the Patriot Act and also about how its passage spoke to the relative roles of expanding Executive authority and receding Legislative role. While the Executive in our country has almost always exercised extensive authority, some would argue that the latter half of the 20th century witnessed an unusual expansion of the Executive's war-related role and more.

    I agree (none / 0) (#81)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 01:10:15 AM EST
    that the executive's role has broadened excessively.  In all too many cases (war powers as you mentioned, especially war powers) Congress has abrogated its responsibility.

    Inasmuch as Obama is concerned his seeming avoidance of confrontation may further concentrate executive power. This article describes an administration plan to create a commission to recommend changes in taxes, spending, etc. The membership of the Committee would be "bi-partisan" and controlled by the White House.  Its conclusions would be sent to Congress for an up or down vote.  The commission would camouflage responsibility so Congress would be more likely to vote up.  Commissions are not new but often their real task was to give the appearance of tackling a problem.  This proposal is, IMO, insidious and goes a step farther.

    Congress has given up power and the executive now plans to camouflage responsibility.  This is quite simply a complete lack of political courage.

    Lack of political courage in Congress has allowed the executive to grow disproportionally powerful and now the executive's lack of conviction and courage may, ironically, also increase executive power.

    My point is that today, in the face of numerous short and long term problems a determined President, understanding the nature of those problems must be aggressive.  That in itself is not a usurpation of Congress' power.  The Constitution in artcle 2, section 3 expects the President to act in this manner.

    "recommend to their (Congress) consideration such measures as he shall deem necessary and expedient"

    His past record, his book and his performance in the primaries were all strong predictors of what he is and isn't.


    That "commission" is a very (none / 0) (#87)
    by MO Blue on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 09:34:30 AM EST
    dangerous idea.

    Any "bipartisan" commission can be stacked with people who share the same world view and would be filibuster proof. For example, under a Republican administration, it could be used to start dismantling Social Security and Medicare. Heck, even Obama has stated that he would use this commission to "fix" those programs starting with Social Security.


    Yeah (none / 0) (#88)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 11:46:28 AM EST
    notice that Kent Conrad is a player.

    The Dem Senators promoting this idea (none / 0) (#89)
    by MO Blue on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 11:55:20 AM EST
    are from the more conservative elements of the party.

    sorry, but (none / 0) (#51)
    by Farmboy on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:03:27 PM EST
    the appearance of "weak and removed" and the "widespread perception" fertilizer can only apply to MSM talking heads and wanna-be important bloggers, and "failure to articulate" only applies if you aren't listening.

    Obama is doing what he said he'd do during the campaign. So far this year he's attempted to pass a jobs-focused economic stimulus, come up with a hopefully coherent plan to end the Afghanistan war, negotiate an international climate deal, and improve the nation's health care industry. But hey, what do I know. Maybe he should have spent 3 months on vacation clearing brush instead to make himself popular.


    Maybe he should have actually led (5.00 / 2) (#53)
    by shoephone on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:19:14 PM EST
    on the health care issue, instead of playing coy and leaving it up to Congress.

    "Improving the health care industry."

    Thanks. My biggest laugh of the day.


    Lakoff, heh. (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Pacific John on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 01:46:29 PM EST
    It was amazing how '08 made so many people become self-parodies.

    Since Lakoff was more or less the Netroots' father of the theory of moral contrast, he has a lot of explaining to do. He should start by being honest with himself.

    Maybe his ex-wife Robin can coach him through this trying time. ;)

    Robin Lakoff nails it, too (5.00 / 5) (#9)
    by Spamlet on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:10:19 PM EST
    So many women feel that the election was somehow stolen, and by their own party, to boot. They thus feel much the way many Democrats feel about the 2000 election.

    Glad this is an open thread. This POS health care (sic) reform (sic) bill makes me want to refight the primaries yet again.


    What makes you think... (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by lambert on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:25:21 PM EST
    ... you aren't refighting the primaries again?

    I'mnot (none / 0) (#34)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:33:23 PM EST
    I see no reason to re-fight something that ended in February of 2008.

    But (5.00 / 3) (#36)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:40:21 PM EST
    theoretically it didnt end because a lot of the issues that Obama tried to tamp down on keep coming back to haunt him. It's like a continual "I told you so". Obama certainly has a talent for demoralizing the very people who voted for him. Now that everyone is under the bus I wonder who'll show up to vote for him?

    Well, it would be nice... (5.00 / 4) (#38)
    by lambert on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:41:28 PM EST
    ... if the majority of Dems who didn't vote for the guy in 2008 did, but since they were asked to leave the party....

    That's funny (none / 0) (#93)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:40:37 PM EST
    because I think the vast majority of Dem's voted for Obama in November of 2008, but then again I'm paying more attention to the general election than to a historical collapse in the primary elections (it is interesting that the fundraising leader prior to Iowa in both primaries collapsed in spectacular fashion-- of course Dean didn't hold on and continue campaigning after it was over.)

    Gosh darn it, clap hard and/or push harder (5.00 / 3) (#39)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:52:03 PM EST
    ... all you people under and outside the bus! (It's an Express or can't you even read?)

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by lambert on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:40:23 PM EST
    That is all.

    Sick [sic] but so true! n/t (none / 0) (#11)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:11:45 PM EST
    Good times, Good times (none / 0) (#14)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:40:31 PM EST
    people not realizing that a major segment of the base was going to be angered regardless of outcome-- frankly, it makes a good argument for making White Males the face of the party that way women and african-americans can feel equally disenfranchised.

    Ah yes, it's all about feelings... (5.00 / 3) (#64)
    by lambert on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 08:55:21 PM EST
    And not about racist smears, grotesque misogyny, and caucus fraud. My bad.

    As I said (none / 0) (#94)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:41:42 PM EST
    one side made racists smears, the other misogynist ones, either choice was going to offend a segement of the base.

    I think not (4.00 / 4) (#77)
    by Spamlet on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 11:10:41 PM EST
    a major segment of the base was going to be angered regardless of outcome

    No one except the raving misogynist fauxgressive Democratic white men of Whole Foods Nation would have been angered enough not to vote for Senator Clinton in the general election. Why not African Americans, you may ask? Because Hillary Clinton, the lies of the Obama fan base notwithstanding, did not spend her entire campaign LIHOPping racism, unlike the Obama campaign with respect to sexism (not to mention ageism and false accusations of racism).

    But go ahead and pretend that Obama and his dirty campaign tactics didn't split the Democratic Party, and that there's not a hell of a lot of formerly Democratic, now independent women who increasingly see no reason to keep propping the Democrats up, at least the Democrats as now constituted.

    By the way, when did white males stop being the face of the Democratic Party? When Obama was shooed in by the superdelegates and elected by Lehman Brothers? Dream on.


    Rank and File (none / 0) (#82)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 01:28:57 AM EST
    The 2nd largest demographic in the Democratic Party is white males. The largest is white females.

    You don't need the majority of those demographics, but, you need a pretty big minority of the two to get elected.


    Funny (none / 0) (#95)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:43:46 PM EST
    I don't think white women were alienated either they voted in large numbers for Obama in both the primaries and in the general election-- unlike African-American's for Hillary, but of course its easy to assume AA's wouldn't have been offended after all they're used to moving to the back of the bus for a white woman.

    I am talking about (none / 0) (#101)
    by Spamlet on Wed Dec 23, 2009 at 12:20:37 AM EST
    a considerable group of

    formerly Democratic, now independent women

    and only those women--women who were loyal Democrats for forty years in some cases. Many did not vote for Obama in 2008 and will not vote for him in 2012, which is not to say that they will vote for the Republican or that they won't vote for other Democrats downballot.

    It's not smart to throw a loyal constituency like that under the bus. That blunder could come back to bite Obama in 2012 if he continues to lose other independents as well as moderate Republicans who crossed over in 2008 (primaries and general), not to mention all the first-time younger voters who chose him in 2008 and who now see that he is not delivering.

    its easy to assume AA's wouldn't have been offended after all they're used to moving to the back of the bus for a white woman

    That's precisely the sort of sexist white-boy racist cr@p that Obama never denounced in his supporters. Why am I not surprised to see it coming from you?


    I was probably a bit hasty there (none / 0) (#96)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:44:43 PM EST
    after all Women did vote for Obama in the general, thus they really weren't too alienated.

    Crafting BS that was more filigreed than old BS (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:10:35 PM EST
    ... isn't what a meme's all about.

    A meme isn't about rote and repetition applied to a slogan of the moment, or about astro-turfing by oBot. If it's adverse to people's experience, it only tastes more like Sh!t the more emphatically the hucksters call it candy and implore you to try harder to like it.


    My sense was that (none / 0) (#13)
    by jondee on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:39:14 PM EST
    Hillary had such an accumulated backlog of smear baggage, going back to the early ninties, when the wingnut noise machine seemed intent on making her the bete noire lurking in the unconscious of any adult in this country with an issue around intelligent, assertive women of quasi-liberal orientation, that she had become by '08 unelectable;
    particularly in a country in which most people's knowledge of history and the issues-of-the-day is at best (relatively sound) received wisdom and more commonly, sound-bites contracted the way certain STDs are.

    That was a central impression that OFA (5.00 / 10) (#16)
    by Pacific John on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:50:30 PM EST
    strenuously worked to create, but later polling, including on election day, consistently showed that Hillary was more popular with the electorate than Obama.

    This was, interestingly, due to framing. Hillary had been so smeared by her critics on both sides, that her natural talent could only rise above low expectations. Obama was the polar opposite: his expectations were so stratospheric that he could only look worse upon normal examination. OFA pushed the meme that the more you saw Obama, the more you liked him, and the opposite of Hillary, but Hillary won the last three months by something like 8%.

    DP elites knew this, but as another blog points out, they're paid to fail. The DP is the Washington Generals, and the team owner is big money.


    'Unelectable' is as bad a term as 'Divisive' (5.00 / 7) (#18)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:54:03 PM EST
    Both are BS terms and plainly stupid phony attributes for picking a candidate and basing a campaign.

    I was equally 'undecided' on Sens Clinton and Obama until the later stages, when Obama revealed himself as Reagan's BFF and a huge kisser of right wing ass.

    Clinton, however, had fought THEM -- AND the media and personal enemies -- and not only remained standing, but emerged as the most qualified candidate in the race. We needed a fighter. I wanted a fighter.

    We ended up with Obama. Oh well.


    A little too much of a "fighter" (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by jondee on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:29:06 PM EST
    for the neocon - PNAC crowd and the insatiable MIC: judging by her public statements, she's one of the few people in the country who never heard of either.

    Lets not wax TOO romantically revisionist just because Obama's a disappointment.


    No Revisionist stuff here: you're selecting random (none / 0) (#48)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:49:58 PM EST
    ... statements, which are as faulty BS as 'Unelectable' and 'Divisive' are innate attributes.

    You'd be better off quoting Obama's Best Anti-War Speech Evah, or, in lieu of those, citing where any of the pro-HRC 'romanticism' was to equal The Legend of Obama fighting against the war(s).


    Not mentioning either (2.67 / 3) (#52)
    by jondee on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:10:53 PM EST
    part of a trillion dollar two-front war the country is knee-deep in for fear the discussion might somehow implicate the object of your sophomore girl crush: things just dont get any more revisionist than that.

    You just don't know when to quit, do you? (2.00 / 0) (#54)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:20:01 PM EST
    part of a trillion dollar two-front war the country is knee-deep in

    Which reputedly "anti-war" candidate Obama is escalating ...

    for fear the discussion might somehow implicate the object of your sophomore girl crush: things just dont get any more revisionist than that.

    Riiiight. Good thing I don't have to swallow that half-baked pretzel logic cause watching you choke down on it is painful enough.


    All I ever said was (3.50 / 2) (#55)
    by jondee on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:33:59 PM EST
    I thought Obama was a better bet than McCain.

    No misty, Hallmark greeting cards of omission here about who's "a fighter" and who isnt, and how empathetic and caring the Clinton's p.r firms tell us they are when they accidentally bomb pharmaceutical warehouses.


    OMG! (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Spamlet on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:43:49 PM EST
    Hillary murdered Vince Foster!

    Bill ran a drug cartel in Arkansas!

    Look! Over there! The Clintons are stealing the White House silver!


    OMG (none / 0) (#58)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 07:00:56 PM EST
    It's the Ann Coulter talking points. I guess McCain would be preferable to Hillary and it's just pure apologia that comes out when Obama escalates the war in Afghanistan. No wonder the word "progressive" is starting to bring continual peals of laughter.

    OMG (3.50 / 2) (#62)
    by jondee on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 07:58:11 PM EST
    If Hillary had been elected, the deescalation and pull out would be full swing now. Everybody knows that.

    Given that HRC was the candidate most acceptable to the GOP, maybe it's time you started giving Ann some love.


    ROTFLMAO (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:15:06 PM EST
    Wow talk about a selective memory. It was all about how there was a whole class of Obamacans but the problem with that was the reason they supported him: the only one who told the truth was P.J. O'rourke who said that the reason that they were supporting him was because they knew they could walk over him.

    Er, most acceptable the GOP? (3.66 / 3) (#66)
    by lambert on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 08:57:10 PM EST
    With early endorsements of Obama by GOP luminaries like Bareback Andy and David Brooks? And the cross-over votes? Do tell.

    Oh goodie (none / 0) (#97)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:47:54 PM EST
    Anti-gay rhetoric form Captain Nazi- what a shock Lambert was opposed next thing your going to tell me that the nuttters in PUMA, the Confluence and whackadoos like the  "the whitey tape is a coming" guy are scary.

    Wow. Now it's Moment to Moment Baby Revisionism (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 07:44:56 PM EST
    Nowhere did you mention McCain, (as far as the All You Did was Mention" part goes ...)

    However, what you DID mention, Petardedly so and quoted back at you, is what you're choking on.

    You bought Obama, he pwn3 you. I have to stop now on purely compassionate grounds, but LOL nonetheless.


    nah (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by jedimom on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:30:46 PM EST
    that was a deliberate campaign to make her the 'polarizing figure' as 5 million primary voters clearly showed HRC would have been elected and was and is electable

    she polls more favorably than anyone else in Obamas DC Team, including Obama

    HRC has higher GOP approval than anyone but Gates and he is very close to her

    the Clarus pollster says she is in great shape for another run


    In 2016 (none / 0) (#35)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:34:26 PM EST
    she'll be the frontrunner, the only downside is her age.

    Gates is only one with a higher GOP (none / 0) (#46)
    by jondee on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:33:26 PM EST
    rating. Someone is supposed to take comfort from that?

    Must be because of all that obliterating and lethal injecting talk.


    I'm not sure where you'd get that idea (5.00 / 5) (#26)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:36:55 PM EST
    From the beginning of the campaign -even when she was the frontrunner, the conservative press and talking heads weren't really going after her much.  Heck, for most of the campaign (even after the Republican primaries were over), they defended her on many occassions.  See, if you were paying attention, you would have realized that she managed to charm and work with many of her Republican colleagues in the Senate - people who were the most vocal haters of her during BC's presidency.  She won them over, so they knew she wasn't the big, bad wolf.

    Also, if you'd been paying attention, you'd realize that personal attacks on her weren't going to fly (coming from Republicans, as opposed to OFA) because it was old news - so 1990s.

    But, many were just thrilled and tingled by shiny objects.....


    The two really amazing things about (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Pacific John on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 07:14:04 PM EST
    media culture in '08 were 1) that Democrats largely tuned out the torrent of pro-BHO, anti-HRC paid and unpaid media. This did prove that the working class base is far savvier than the the racist rubes they were painted as by comfortable elites. And 2), the bias was so distinct, that Faux Friggin' News didn't even have to make sh*t up; it was all so absurd that they were relegated to straight news. They were clearly both out of sorts and amused at this turn of events.

    Exactly (5.00 / 3) (#67)
    by lambert on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 08:59:03 PM EST
    A majority of Democrats completely ignored the press and voted their candidate. To which the response of the Dem leadership was to throw them out of the party. Yay!

    Not only that (none / 0) (#70)
    by Pacific John on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:28:03 PM EST
    ... but like women voted in huge percentages for Hillary after she was "likable enough," in Texas and Ohio (I'm told), the Dem base got really pissed off at Tim Russert's prejudice in his debate a few days before the primary. Our most active field day leading up to the caucus was the following day. People were pissed. We had a big office with a bunch of landlines and about a couple of dozen extra cell phones, and all were booked that evening. Of course, since I was the only white guy, rather than our vols being characterized racists like they were in Ohio ("Archie Bunkers," according to Axlerod) my vols were strenuously dismissed and ignored. (So much for the Hispanic SW being the future of the party and country).

    Why the elites and OFA think media bias is ever good for the country is beyond me... and the majority of D voters, it seems.


    Amazing how (none / 0) (#98)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:50:13 PM EST
    they "threw them out of the party" and still won a bigger margin than any dem since 1964, man we must have run some truly mediocre canidates from 1968-2004, heck our two term president was never enough of a leader to crack 50%.

    Comfortable elites (5.00 / 1) (#90)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 11:56:55 AM EST
    are you referring to the comfortable elites who donate $ 12 million to their own campaigns, or the other comfortable elites?

    If "the working class" (blacks dont work, so they dont enter in here) is so savvy, then possibly some of them were also taking into account HRC's six year tenure on the board of union-busting, outsourcing Walmart, or her equally down-with-the-people old man's work for the labor organizer murderer, Columbia's Uribe.


    "Elites" (none / 0) (#91)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 12:02:47 PM EST
    who they are and who they aren't.

    As if this surreal, blogger folklore were so some sort of improvement about over the big media conspiracy you keep harping on.


    Great Post (none / 0) (#84)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 01:43:50 AM EST

    That was and still is (5.00 / 2) (#83)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 01:40:03 AM EST
    coming from Obama supporters.  His campaign really fueled that one but it doesn't stand up to scrutiny.

    As the primaries were ending the state-by-state polls showed Hilary soundly beating McCain.

    At the same time Obama was losing to McCain.

    Conveniently, Obama's minions missed the national polls after the conventions.  McCain led Obama until the meltdown.

    The vile press meme, near and dear to the hearts of Obama's people, wasn't a factor where Clinton was concerned.  She continued to win the major states in spite of constant media perfidy.


    Stay comfy in (none / 0) (#99)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:51:43 PM EST
    the land of delusion.

    Oh yes (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by lilburro on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 01:49:47 PM EST
    "Mr. Empathy," framing the entire health care debate about costs and the federal deficit.  That always struck me as rather dumb considering his talents.

    Anyway, I'm glad Obama's utter lack of Obama-vision is being exposed.

    One has to ask (5.00 / 4) (#6)
    by Pacific John on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:00:47 PM EST
    ...why in the middle for what 60 Minutes refers to as the Great Recession, Obama is so friggin' tone deaf to people who don't have jobs, heat or food? It's not simply a failure of marketing or framing, but of moral compass.

    Well (none / 0) (#92)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 12:26:44 PM EST
    Are the media elites only allowing us to have one leader; one alpha male; one king at a time (with a moral compass), and keeping all the other ones down, somehow?

    Is that it?


    Don't worry folks! (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:32:57 PM EST

    On health care more generally, Obama told Ryan he stayed up to watch the Senate's early-morning vote on a health care bill and said he's confident Congress can work out the "five percent" difference between the House and Senate bills.

    "I was up because I wanted to make sure that I was watching what could end up being an historic moment," Obama said.

    The president sought to downplay the lack of a public health insurance option in the Senate bill, saying: "There is so much good in this bill, and I'm now confident that it's going to pass."

    "I think people need to understand just how significant this is," Obama told Ryan.

    The public option, he said, "is an area that has just become symbolic of a lot of ideological fights." But, Obama added: "As a practical matter, this is not the most important aspect of this bill -- the House bill or the Senate bill."

    Only "a few million people" who buy into the insurance exchange set up in the bill would have benefited from the public option, he said.

    "So it wasn't like suddenly everybody would just go out there and buy a government-run plan," Obama said. "Most people will still get health insurance from their employers."

    (emphasis mine)

    He is (5.00 / 5) (#27)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:37:30 PM EST
    so clueless it amazes even me with my rock bottom expectations for him.

    "Clueless" is being charitable (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by shoephone on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:11:54 PM EST
    There's a lot more than 5% difference.

    The House Progressive Caucus wrote Obama a letter ten days ago, on December 11. (Please excuse my lousy formatting.) They said any bill must assure the following:

    *The creation of a nation-wide public option, such as the one in the House bill that increases competition, affordability and access for all Americans.

    *Health insurance that is affordable for everyone. The Senate should not decrease the cost of the bill at the expense of affordability for the consumer. Any changes the Senate makes to decrease the costs of the bill should not be at the expense of affordability credits or subsidies. We should not be held to an arbitrary cap of$900 billion. We must protect lower and middle income Americans by:

    -Ensuring that necessary subsidies are provided to everyone who needs them. The House subsidies for those under 250% of the Federal Poverty Line and Senate subsidies for those above 250% of the Federal Poverty Line are the best approach
    to achieving this goal.

    -Expanding Medicaid to 150% offederal poverty level

    -Increasing payments to primary care providers under Medicaid.

    *Insurance market regulations to keep premiums reasonable and end abusive practices. Those provisions include: a Priorjustification, disclosure and review ofpremium increases, as in the House bill.

    *Repeal of the health insurance industry exemption from antitrust laws.

    *FTC review.

    *Minimum percentage of premium dollars that must be spent on medical care
    should be at least as high as the House bill.

    *Prohibitions on Exchange participation by insurers that act irresponsibility.

    *The employer insurance provision mandate in the House reform bill.

    *Comprehensive services for children, including preventive services, EPSDT, mental health and substance abuse provisions, and administrative simplification ofthe enrollment process.


    Perfect. Obama watching history (5.00 / 7) (#28)
    by oldpro on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:40:44 PM EST
    instead of making it.

    Imagine FDR even thinking such a thing...much less saying it.  Oy...doomed...


    Did the Senate 'Make Him' stay up? (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:43:55 PM EST
    Pooooor baby. Allow me to join "only" a few million people in golf-clapping this heroic failed suffering on our behalf.

    Wonder if htis has anything to do wth HRC? (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:43:46 PM EST
    um...HCR.... (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:51:44 PM EST
    Hoeven is very popular (none / 0) (#73)
    by Steve M on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:46:20 PM EST
    always has been, too, but so far he's not running.

    Seattle Times (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:54:46 PM EST
    says Obama's bill is too screwed up and it's time to ditch it and move on to something else.


    Hopefully a domino effect of other printed media will follow suit.

    Completely Unpersuasive (none / 0) (#41)
    by CST on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:01:01 PM EST
    There might be valid reasons to put it aside.  but this article doesn't highlight any of them.

    "Other things to do" really isn't a selling point for me.  They have already spent how much time on this?  If it's done by Christmas, another week in a 6 month long process is peanuts.

    And frankly "the economy sucks" is a terrible reason.  #1 - a lot of this stuff doesn't start until 2014.  #2 - a cr@ppy economy means people need help now more than ever.

    Just the fact that they say it places "undue burden on businesses" sounds like a Republican talking point to me.  And a bunch of b.s.


    If (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:55:08 PM EST
    If you read they give the best reason to kill off the bill -- lack of a public option, i.e. lack of cost controls.  And then go on to say the bill is a mess....which it is.

    I could care less about their reasons.  Their conclusion is right.  The bill is junk and should die.


    Social Security (none / 0) (#100)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:53:52 PM EST
    sucked in 1935 it didn't cover agricultural workers and was specifically constructed so as to avoid helping African-Americans too bad that sell-out FDR signed it in to law.

    The economy argument... (none / 0) (#45)
    by kdog on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:32:30 PM EST
    is pretty lame, well said. 2014...if the economy ain't better by then look out!

    Though "other things to do" sells me right quick...lets stop what we're doing wrong, like the wars and the prisons and the debts, before we try and start something new, especially when it looks like we're gonna get this one wrong too.  I like other things to do, what the editorial fails to mention is those things ain't gettin' done no way no how.


    Hoping if it doesn't die now it will soon (none / 0) (#47)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 05:41:10 PM EST
    Where that op-ed hits home (or my salt-mine) is the two awful choices I have on some of my accts while doing my year-end.

    One acct owes me a substantial debt (five figs, no decimal pt) that's over a year old. The debt-bloated proprietor is hanging onto a home, but also "owns" luxury items (like a boat). I'm sympathetic about the former but phhhht about the latter.

    I have no faith the economy will sufficiently improve and not inclined to take this person on as a personal charity case or accept the bad-economy excuse either. (I have to live in it, too).

    Not going to kneecap anyone here or p!ss on the holiday feast, but I'm getting to the front of the line to collect what I'm owed before the last New Year's Eve balloon pops.


    They all sound good, but anyone wanna go halfsies (1.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 07:54:16 PM EST
    ... on a framed copy of this triumphant photo, which accompanied the glorious WOO HOO media appearance of our history making health "reform" machine?

    Lakoff (none / 0) (#8)
    by call me Ishmael on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:08:01 PM EST
    is devoting his time to California politics where he is trying to get a Constitutional amendment to break our archaic 2/3 rule for both budgets and taxes.  

    the way the legislature is apportioned regionally a 2/3rds majority will almost never be reached- and primaries insure that representatives will be on the margins-- thus no compromise can happen-- an LBJ-Reagan-FDR clone-hybrid would fail to pass a budget in Cali.

    Why didn't the Dems throw (none / 0) (#17)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 02:52:45 PM EST
    tort reform into the Health Care bill it seems like it would have been a good bargaining chip.

    Kidding, right? "A good bargaining (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by oldpro on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:03:59 PM EST

    For whom?  With whom?  For what exactly would it be traded?

    The day the Democrats throw the trial lawyers under the bus with the rest of us is the day you can call off the suicide watch and declare them dead, dead, dead.


    "Suicide Watch"? (none / 0) (#20)
    by Politalkix on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:15:36 PM EST
    Yup. That's how I see it. (5.00 / 8) (#22)
    by oldpro on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:27:19 PM EST
    When folks like me who've spent their entire adult lives and their working-class 'fortunes' in activist Democratic politics leave the party and join the Independents, I think we're on suicide watch.  The party is shrinking.

    Every day in every way the Democrats are disappointing more of their friends, former friends, acquaintences, partners, neighbors...  If you read the post and the links, you'll hear the echo of a growing hopelessness with the pathetic remnants of FDR's legacy.

    It's not your father's Democratic Party...nor your mother's.  And it's not mine, I'm very sad to say.


    Hang in there, 'Pro we'll make them see the light (none / 0) (#63)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 08:40:39 PM EST
    Independence means the Dems have to woo people back with better hooey than "We're Not Republicans."

    Independent voters can no longer be muddled or confused, when they're a fast growing demographic that BOTH parties have to address -- or fall upon failing to do so.

    The Dems got away with it while electing Obama but IMO 2010 will deliver a harsh lesson about that.


    Independents (none / 0) (#69)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:16:37 PM EST
    While not wanting to set up a target, it might be worthwhile to look at various political science studies on the "independent voter." My understanding of those surveys are that a strong component of that voter segment has been (and may continue to be) weak or low information. While it is true that people leave the two-party system to become "independent" for a variety of reasons--not the least of which is disenchantment with either of the two parties in policy or behavior--it is also true that a significant percentage of "independents" have low threshold tolerance for political/societal issues in general and can tend to be reactive to how their pocketbook is perceived to be effected at any given time.

    There's a lot of truth to this (5.00 / 2) (#74)
    by Pacific John on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:46:29 PM EST
    Here in CA where Decline to State voters have grown rapidly for pushing 20 years at the expense of both parties' numbers, this is all true.

    Having spent a lot of time registering these voters, I think the common thread is that these voters were turned off to both parties when the GOP went all hyper-partisan, and slimed the DP as being similarly mindlessly partisan. These voters have no partisan loyalty, and are often casual, skipping low-excitement elections. But in election after election in the state, these voters are really Democrats.

    The thing to keep an eye on is if this rule continues, or if new DTS voters tend to be as alienated against the DP as previous DTS voters were against the GOP.

    The problem here for the DP is that it takes for granted that DTS voters are really Dems who will be activated by a decent media and field campaign, so when things change, the DP will likely be caught completely off guard. It assumed that pro-Obama media bias would provide a long-lasting cushion, that a wave of young liberals would stay loyal for life, and that a billion dollars of corporate campaign cash was just great. After being so wrong about so many fundamental things, it won't surprise me if they also get slapped hard by a new version of independents.


    I hope the factor of Keeping Them Honest (none / 0) (#71)
    by Ellie on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:35:26 PM EST
    Will be given its rightful place; it's long overdue.

    a parallel system (none / 0) (#24)
    by jedimom on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:32:29 PM EST
    they created some parallel arbitration like system in that Mgrs Amendment where Plaintiffs pick where to litigate, lol, sure to drive costs UP

    No one to bargain with (none / 0) (#72)
    by Steve M on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:45:15 PM EST
    I'm sure the Dems would have been up for some form of tort reform in order to gain a Republican vote or two, but there are none available.  Even the most moderate Republican was not willing to say, "You can have my vote provided there's some tort reform in there."

    Obama on tort reform in his (none / 0) (#75)
    by MO Blue on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 09:59:39 PM EST

    Now, finally, many in this chamber -- particularly on the Republican side of the aisle -- have long insisted that reforming our medical malpractice laws can help bring down the cost of health care.  (Applause.)  Now -- there you go.  There you go.  Now, I don't believe malpractice reform is a silver bullet, but I've talked to enough doctors to know that defensive medicine may be contributing to unnecessary costs.  (Applause.)  So I'm proposing that we move forward on a range of ideas about how to put patient safety first and let doctors focus on practicing medicine.  (Applause.)  I know that the Bush administration considered authorizing demonstration projects in individual states to test these ideas.  I think it's a good idea, and I'm directing my Secretary of Health and Human Services to move forward on this initiative today.  (Applause.) link

    Even John Edwards (none / 0) (#76)
    by Steve M on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 10:18:15 PM EST
    embraced certain tort reform ideas in the 2004 VP debate!

    Since I don't know what form of tort reform (none / 0) (#78)
    by MO Blue on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 11:39:32 PM EST
    Obama would embrace, my post was not intended to criticize but to point out that Obama did make a statement that indicated he was open to ideas on tort reform. A possible preliminary gesture to open the subject for further discussion had the Republicans chosen to productively pursue the subject.

    Thanks for the unreality check (none / 0) (#85)
    by FreakyBeaky on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 02:01:34 AM EST
    That's some serious crazy there ...