There Are Two Kinds Of Progressive Bloggers

At least according to Ian Welsh, who recently attended this year's version of Netroots Nation:

To put it crudely and unfairly to both sides, itís the sell-outs without principles against the purists without realism. And many of them do put it that way. The netroots are split, in a very real way. [. . .] Itís not all-out war, not even close, but there is a disdain, bitterness and contempt between the two sides which is very real, and very dangerous.

That would have been fun to watch, but it sounds too simplistic to me. I'm certainly disappointed with both Democrats and the progressive blogosphere, but I do not think anyone is a sellout without principles or a purist without realism. But I place the disappointment on my own shoulders. My expectations were not realistic, indeed they probably were delusional. More . . .

With regard to Obama and the Democrats, I thought there was a real chance for dramatic sweeping change and that the urgency of the country's problems were such that President Obama and the Democrats might be able to meet the challenge. I was wrong. This does not make Obama "just like Bush" or even a mediocre President. It does smell of missed opportunity and, frankly, mismanaged policy in some respects. At the heart of the problem, both politically and substantively, was the timid approach to the stimulus and the economy in the first hundred days. And this timidity will extract a high political price in this year's midterms. Hopefully, the damage can be minimized. Less damaging politically, but, in my view, a missed opportunity on policy, was the favoring of the market based approach over the public sector approach to health care reform. Other disappointments can be listed, but the bottom line is this has not been 2 years of unvarnished progressive accomplishment but rather 2 years of incremental improvement. It could have been more in my view. YMMV.

With regard to the progressive blogosphere, well, expecting much of anything was unrealistic. There simply was no way that it would embrace a potential role as a Left Flank and all that entails. It was too wrapped up in Obama. Any expectation of change on this front was simply silly on my part. It was never going to happen and it probably never will.

The fact is both the Dem pols and the progressive blogosphere are what they are and likely will continue to be what we have seen.

Of course the funny thing from my perspective is that almost everyone in the progressive blogs, Obamabots (used affectionately here) to Firebaggers (also used affectionately) are to my Left on most issues. As regular readers know, I support the President on Afghanistan (and indeed, almost all of his foreign policy which I rate as excellent), am a free trader (I knew I would win on that one with Obama), and support the idea of a structured indefinite detention regime with real due process. On these issues, unlike most everyone else, I have little to complain about.

But on the domestic side, I think we all have a lot to complain about. But hope springs eternal. The Obama Administration is looking pretty strong on rolling back the Bush tax cuts, one of the 2 or 3 most important issues of the period of the Obama term. Holding the line on that issue will go a long way towards making me feel better about Obama and the Dems. We'll see what happens.

Speaking for me only

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    Very nice (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by Radiowalla on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:05:06 PM EST
    Very nice, reasoned post on the reality that presents itself today.  

    It is what it is.

    agreed (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:12:46 PM EST
    the Clinton administration also seem like a gigantic missed opportunity but at least we had the republicans and impeachment to blame for that.

    I hope I live to see a democratic administration that does not feel like a missed opportunity.


    No affection for crybabies? (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:26:56 PM EST
    Since the leftosphere is still so undefined, I'm shooting for personal goal of a baby eat baby atmosphere :)  

    Put the progress back in progressive (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Lora on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:32:12 PM EST
    We should all hold Obama's and the Dems' feet to the fire.  Period.

    Oooo... that make you a "purist" (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by rhbrandon on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:53:49 PM EST
    Me, too, for that matter.  What is it to gain the whole world and lose your own soul?

    Or something like that.

    The real problem with supporting the "realist" approach is that it has no real interest in advancing progressive causes.  It's just Democratic go-along-to-get-along. And the realists' threats are little more than extortion: "nice United States you have here; too bad if the GOP should beat the Democrats in 2010 and 2012."

    The Republic is more resilient than that, and not supporting the sellouts is a risk that many progressives are willing to take. They can't make or shame us into contributing cash.


    A fight between friends (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by andgarden on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:37:00 PM EST
    is always the bloodiest.

    But for me so much of the fighting is so poorly articulated that I can barely bother to read it.

    You sum up the situation well (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by Cream City on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:05:28 PM EST
    but at least it's giving me more time to read in my field again.  So much for current events; take me back to the past, where at least we can find folks with a sense of perspective.

    Not that scholarly journals are exactly riveting, but at least there is little whining.


    Yeah, I had the same feeling (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by andgarden on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:11:15 PM EST
    when I basically stopped watching cable news.

    I had a DVD collecting habit that I had to give up when I went to college. I'm picking up where I left off with Blu-Rays. . .


    You, too? (5.00 / 3) (#19)
    by Radiowalla on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:41:11 PM EST
    It's amazing how much reading I've been doing these last months.
    It feels so...so..so civilized and quaint!

    Regarding the first 100 days (5.00 / 6) (#6)
    by BTAL on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:48:39 PM EST
    The old saying "Start as you intend to finish" is apropos.  That "timidness" has set the stage for the remainder of Obama term.  As a POTUS, nobody in DC fears him and/or the power of the office from a political perspective - on either side of the aisle.

    Any attempt to change direction, becoming more of a leader from a position of power, will be difficult if not impossible task.

    Start timid and you will finish timid.

    Apologies if this is OT from the diary concept.

    Obama has so far BEEN mediocre (5.00 / 10) (#9)
    by Dadler on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:00:47 PM EST
    There, I'll say it. His weak personality, his "it's not my job to yell at people," his irrational appeasement of those whom he can't seem to realize are NEVER going to be appeased by him, it's all part of who he is, who he will always be as president. IMO, this is not a strong leader by ANY measure. He is what he is, a reasonably intelligent guy with very little in the way of fight or genuine progressive instinct. He'd be a good therapist, but I cannot seem him being much more than he is now as President. Compared to Clinton, Obama was raised in privelege -- remember, he attended the MOST prestigious and expensive prep school in all Hawaii. That means something.  How much it means remains to be seen -- for the rest of however long he is President.

    That said, I wish him well, the best, and I hope, at some point, he thinks of some issue that is worth losing his job over.

    Whatever happened to principled realists? (5.00 / 5) (#14)
    by goldberry on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:23:13 PM EST
    Oh, yeah, we got kicked to the curb.
    No wonder the party is split.

    BTD, you've made the point repeatedly: (5.00 / 9) (#25)
    by shoephone on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 07:12:52 PM EST
    Those who identify with and attach themselves to politicians, rather than to issues, are the problem. And my frustration with pol lovers is that, in the face of ample evidence showing what a failure their approach is, they march on using the same worn-out weaponry.

    We've covered it ad nauseum here. Issue-oriented politics is why Bush and Cheney were so successful in the first six years. The base of the GOP was behind them only when conservative principles were being served (tax cuts for the rich, unprovoked war in Iraq, fear of anyone brown). Right wing cable and radio talkers remained steadfast in their adherance to those principles. They awarded Bush with their loyalty when he stuck to the principles, and they registered their extreme disappointment when he wavered (such as on immigration reform). They pushed him to the right on most issues. Nobody is pushing Obama to the left -- no Dem talking heads, no members of the Congressional Pathetic Caucus, no bloggers -- so he knows darn well he can continue to skate the thin line of centrist and engage his fetish for bipartisanship as it suits him.

    "Progressives" and professional Democrats don't get it. The party platform actually means something to liberals, the historical base. We know we have been kicked to the curb and probably will remain there for the rest of the Obama presidential years. But we are the only ones who will challenge the pols who veer so far off the track that they look and sound just like Republicans. "Question authority" is still where it's at.

    "Progressive" bloggers, OTOH, are nothing more than a drooling cheering section for the status quo, now packaged in the form of a younger, hipper prez, with some pretty good political skills. But they question virtually nothing; they are as frightened of the bogey man as the weakest congressional Dems. And they do us harm with their blind devotion. I can't recall which TL commenter wrote it a couple of months ago, but the gist was: The congressional Dems act as if every single one of them was bullied out of their lunch money, every single day of elementary school. The fanboy bloggers want us to pretend we haven't noticed that, and instruct us to be "realistic," simply sit down and STFU -- oh, and praise the mighty list of accomplishments achieved so far!

    I'm not having any of it. The reality in citizen Joe and Jane Blow's world differs significantly from that in fanboy/Rahm Emanuel/Larry Summers world. "Progressives" want us all to turn a blind eye. F*ck the fanboy bloggers. They're villagers now. Netroots Nation speaks for so few, I wonder why we even give them five minutes with a microphone.

    I love it... (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by JamesTX on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 10:02:37 PM EST
    "...simply sit down and STFU..."

    This is the hallmark attitude commonplace among the left now, and it used to be something we just didn't much like in principle at all. The left is a very different place than it used to be, if you can even call it the left anymore. We called the "simply sit down and STFU" strategy suppression of speech and censorship. Nowadays it's "realism". What the new left doesn't understand is that you do not have to organize using Republican principles to be powerful. Everything and everybody is not a corporation or a military mission. Yes, the strategy was effective for conservatives, but that doesn't mean it is the only way to effectively organize. The conservative revolution and rhetoric of the Reagan years left us with this generation of people who just simply never saw anything work any other way, and they bought into the conservative myths that authoritarianism is the only source of effective power and lock-step deference to leadership is the only means to group strength. They basically missed the sixties, and then bought into the revisionist account of it as ineffective chaos. It may have been chaotic (and it may have been planned by the government), but it was anything but ineffective!


    I have to admit I was caught by surprise (5.00 / 4) (#27)
    by ruffian on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 07:58:56 PM EST
    by this:
    There simply was no way that it would embrace a potential role as a Left Flank and all that entails.

    I guess I had no idea the extent, as BTD says, that most of the left blogosphere had come to identify with Obama rather than left flank ideas.

    Maybe if I hadn't stopped reading most of them I would have known...;-) My bad.

    It's not like (5.00 / 3) (#28)
    by NYShooter on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 08:03:33 PM EST
     the ideas & goals of today's "far Left" are naive, unrealistic, unworkable, fantasyland, nonsense.

    Go back, just a few decades, let's say pre-Reagan. We had:
    a. the "activist" Warren Court
    b. Growing Consumer Protection Agencies
    c. Truth in Lending, Truth in Advertising, etc
    d. clean air, water, and safety regs on the rise
    e. Civil & Women's rights on the rise
    f. Excellent School Systems
    g. low interest rates & inflation (pre oil shock)
    h. cheap food, energy & housing
    i. unbridled faith & optimism in the future
    j. A real progressive tax system
    k. No kidding, Liberal Republicans, and
    l. The two Parties actually spoke to each other

    As to medical care, I don't recall anyone being denied. And doctors still had the biggest houses and swimming pools in Town.

    And during this "Big Government, Socialist" Era, what horrors occurred?.... Business boomed, millionaires blossomed, and to one degree or another, "all boats" rose with the tide.

    Horrible, just horrible. We can never let that happen again.

    the bailout was a big disappointment too (5.00 / 3) (#29)
    by tworivers on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 08:44:07 PM EST
    At the heart of the problem, both politically and substantively, was the timid approach to the stimulus and the economy in the first hundred days.

    I would argue that Obama also missed a big opportunity when he followed Bush's path re: the bailout and gave Goldman Sachs et. al. a huge influx of taxpayer money with absolutely no strings attached.

    There was a stretch of time (early 2009) when Obama could have imposed meaningful reforms on Wall Street.  But Obama didn't, and now we're left with too big to fail banks that have gotten bigger still, a watered down financial reform bill that isn't nearly as strong as it needs to be, and the spectacle of Wall Street execs treating themselves to huge bonuses courtesy of the huge influx of taxpayer money.    

    Wall Street was over a barrel, and yet Obama (encouraged by Geithner and Summers, no doubt) saw to it that there were no meaningful conditions placed on the bailout money.  For their criminal incompetence/recklessness, AIG received 100 cents on the dollar from the government.  Why?  Why not 60 cents on the dollar or 70 cents on the dollar? Geithner can't answer this question, because there is no reasonable or plausible answer.  He's in the back pocket of Wall Street, plain and simple.

    Something is rotten in Washington.  The banks, along with other corporate interests "own the place".  Until this situation is fixed, I don't see how this country's fortunes improve very much.  

    agree (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by ruffian on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 08:55:54 PM EST
    During the campaign, when the TARP was being concocted, McCain gave him an opportunity, with his 'campaign freeze' stunt, to take a look at what Bush was doing and step away from it. Even prudence, given at that point that it looked like he would be elected, and the bailout was at best a risky move, should have dictated that he not support it as strongly as he did.

    And then of course, as you say,  after he took office he did not do what he could to implement the law in a way that helped people more than the banks.


    Obama's support of the bailout (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 10:09:39 AM EST
    and appointment of Geithner were the first clues that any coming change would be cosmetic at best.  These banks should have gone under and smaller, better run banks would have picked at the remains.  That's how it works.  I don;t believe for a minute that the world would have collapsed, just cetain individuals' worlds.  And that is why those "important" individuals were bailed out.

    We were told these banks would start loaning money and get things going again.  I see that has happened.  They took the money and ran.


    "Excellent" foreign policy (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 09:43:47 AM EST
    These pointless wars and their human devastation, offering nothing of substance at the climate change conference, supporting outrageous defense budgets and never ending military posturing around the globe, calling out countries for stifling dissent while continuing to stifle domestic protests (e.g., here's a nice fenced in pen miles away from any activity for you all to shout your slogans in), prosecuting those telling the truth about murderous US actions abroad

    Wow, excelllent?  US foreign policy has been for a long time and continues to be a national disgrace.  Ruthless empire is always disgraceful, and there is no other kind.

    Well (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by lilburro on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 10:14:30 AM EST
    I don't understand the purpose of indulging every possible excuse the Democrats give for doing what they do.  Is empathizing with someone over their powerlessness going to incite them to play hardball?   IMO, no.  It doesn't appear to be doing anything to affect Republican actions either...if you're willing to let yourself get screwed, you will get screwed.

    Hope springs eternal for fools only! (4.57 / 7) (#26)
    by mjames on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 07:50:54 PM EST
    Seriously. That's what you're offering? Hope?
    How about reality, grim tho it may be. Obama is a corporatist, bought and paid for by Wall Street and the insurance companies.
    He has done nothing that I can see of a liberal nature - ever. He is throwing you a tidbit with the tax thing - to keep you in the fold and hoping! What has he ever done that is liberal? Seriously, what?
    I can't take this nonsense anymore. I am speaking as a 65-year-old female atty, who has watched the progress of the 60s destroyed by so-called Democrats.
    The war in Afghanistan? Say what? Killing so many innocents? You're OK with that? To what end?
    One other thing before I sign off. I am tired of the phrase: pols are pols and this is what they do. They only do it if we let them. To accept their behavior makes us complicit in the destruction of this country. After all, last I counted, we outnumber them.
    To me, you are still in denial about the true awfulness of Obama.
    To me, Ian Welsh described the bloggers' convention accurately, tho simplistically. The blogger boyz (and to me they are just that - boys) sold out for access, otherwise known as a man crush.
    (But you did lure me in - as you usually do - even tho I can barely tolerate the hijacking of threads that's been going on over here for a very long time. So thanks for that!)

    brava (none / 0) (#34)
    by The Addams Family on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 12:56:29 AM EST
    One thing I don't understand (none / 0) (#8)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 05:57:56 PM EST
    how can the supposed two warring blogger camps that have been proven so ineffective see themselves and their infighting as so dangerous?  Dangerous to whom?

    You act like you don't think it matters (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by waldenpond on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:15:58 PM EST
    if Dems get elected.  It's as if you think it's all one big oligarchy and there are few pols that will make a difference in your daily life.  You have to show up!  You just have to!

    Actually, the theory of the centrist-progressives is that the liberals may not show up so the liberals should shut up.  :)


    Um, no, here's the theory (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by goldberry on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:33:26 PM EST
    Let the Republicans win.  Yeah, let them have the whole dagnam thing.  Let them turn the country into Glenn Beckistan.  People will simply not turn away from movement conservatism until it hits them so incredibly hard that they learn their lesson once and for all.  They have to be so burned by the media whores that they never listen to them again.  They have to be so down on their luck that they'd be willing to risk socialism.
    No, seriously, that's what it's going to take.  Americans have been so confused by language manipulation, not knowing what's liberal and what's conservative, what's socialism and what's not that the only thing that will snap them out of it is actually touching that hot stove.  
    Then, when the Republicans are in charge of everything and implement every dangerous, reactionary, stingy, hard hearted policy there is and hurt children, the elderly and hard working Americans and take the country back to neofeudalism, then we can pin the blame exactly where it belongs and finally get rid of them once and for all.  Yeah, voting at that stage may become a pointless and fruitless exercise but Americans will either start acting like real citizens or they'll rapidly devolve into third rate nation residents.  
    At that point, the parties will become irrelevant and a new movement will have to get it all together.  A more socialist nation may emerge from the ashes- 30 or 40 years from now.  
    Better to just start the process and get it over with.

    in an oddly nihilistic way (5.00 / 2) (#32)
    by The Addams Family on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 12:48:06 AM EST
    this statement strikes me as foolishly idealistic

    when the Republicans are in charge of everything and implement every dangerous, reactionary, stingy, hard hearted policy there is and hurt children, the elderly and hard working Americans and take the country back to neofeudalism, then we can pin the blame exactly where it belongs and finally get rid of them once and for all.  Yeah, voting at that stage may become a pointless and fruitless exercise but Americans will either start acting like real citizens or they'll rapidly devolve into third rate nation residents.

    are we not most of the way there right now? having arrived at this point with Dems & Republicans both controlled by what Gore Vidal calls the country's owners?

    you have faith in some amorphous "new movement" 40 years down the road - good for you i guess - i think we are basically f^cked once & for all


    Didn't we try that already (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by ruffian on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 06:00:13 AM EST
    in 2001-2006? It was every bit as horrible as you describe, and the people did reject it.  You may be right and their votes were meaningless. I hope it's not too late to stop the devolution.

    yes we did (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by CST on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 10:05:43 AM EST
    letting republicans win worked out really well for the whole country.  And at the end of it all we got this liberal beacon that fixed everything :)

    I remember the "dems are just as bad" argument in 2000 as well.  The only heroes in the Dem party are the ones who are gone.  But in their day - they were the reason Dems weren't good enough.

    To each his/her own, but I'll take a $hitty Dem president/congress over a $hitty Repub president/congress any day.


    I HOPE it won't take that but I believe (none / 0) (#42)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 09:50:37 AM EST
    that you have accurately predicted what will transpire.

    I HOPE you're wrong but I believe (none / 0) (#44)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 09:57:14 AM EST
    you have described very accurately what is going to happen over the next few decades.

    People are so misinformed, probably because 24/7 corporate controlled news cycles.  If everything is important, as it must be to fil up 24 hours of news programming, nothing is important.  I think that is why the WashPo story on our national security state nightmare does not resonate with the public, or the Wikileaks Afghanistan story.

    Until a majority, or significant minority, of people have been burned themselves by the economic/political system we have created nothing is going to change.  But I also fear the change when 85% of people, according to a recent poll, view the military as the most trustworthy institution in the US.  That is scary given the road we are on.


    I show up and voter EVERY time (none / 0) (#15)
    by BTAL on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:25:53 PM EST
    As to your question - please (seriously) provide a list of recent Ds who have delivered on the promises to your base.

    Politics is politics (to paraphrase a BTD mantra), the challenge is not lockstepping and echo-chambering your own side but understanding what the other side is wanting/trying to accomplish.  

    With any luck, maybe just maybe we can come up with solutions that are best for everyone.


    What question? (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by waldenpond on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:52:37 PM EST
    Did you click the wrong comment?  I'm not quite sure why a Repub is demanding I post votes of Dem votes that I agree with and I won't.

    I can guarantee you I understand exactly what your Repub side is trying to accomplish.... tax cuts, eliminate SS, eliminate MCR, de-regulate damn the financial industry and the environment and that 'we' will never agree on those solutions.


    Yes, we (or I) may be at crossed purposes (none / 0) (#23)
    by BTAL on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 07:00:49 PM EST
    as to which was the parent comment - still attempting to get this format down even as a programmer.

    However, I think your brush is a bit broad with the:

    • Eliminate SS
    • Eliminate MCR
    • Completely deregulate EVERYTHING


    To point:

    •  I support SS, if we can bring it back to what it was originally designed to accomplish and our government plays fair with our money.

    •  I support a social safety net, even beyond private charity provided that our government is rational and prudent.

    •  I believe the government should be a honest broker and referee in the marketplace.  Call fouls/penalize the offenders but NOT inject themselves into the game as a participant.  

    Lord love a duck! (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by MKS on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 12:54:59 AM EST
    Enough of the conservative propganda.....

    We know what you want.....

    But woe unto those who maketh me readeth such abominations on every thread....Verily I say unto thee, if thouest continuest with such shallow, boring and annoying speaking-in-tongues, the heavens shall open and tear assunder each and every one of thou's posts......

    If I wanted to incessantly hear these talking points, I would tune in Rush Limbaugh.....Who do you think you are persuading here?


    Why should you think (none / 0) (#37)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 07:39:18 AM EST
    he must persuade anyone?? He states his position.

    "We know what you want..." (none / 0) (#38)
    by BTAL on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 08:20:40 AM EST

    Verily I say unto thee, if thouest continuest with such shallow, boring and annoying speaking-in-tongues, the heavens shall open and tear assunder each and every one of thou's posts......

    Even more so.


    Social security should be expanded as should (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 09:58:30 AM EST
    Medicare, not "brought back" to some right winger's wet dream of historical remembrance.

    Dangersous to the Klingons ;) (none / 0) (#10)
    by BTAL on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:02:59 PM EST
    Seriously, it results in a messaging nightmare for any party.  That's the danger to the Ds.

    The messaging was right on though (5.00 / 4) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:26:31 PM EST
    only two years ago.  It is the difference between that messaging and what actually ended up shoved down everyone's throat that is the problem.  And it isn't that Obama didn't get what he promised us, it is that he didn't even try, he didn't even break a sweat.  The only thing that that can add up to is that everyone was played, and that will never ever again go over well in any internet using future because as even "J" points out, the internet remembers.  There is a certain amount of campaign B.S.ing that I believe is over for good.

    I don't even fear the new style Republicans that Newt and friends gave birth to.  They are so out of their minds their arguments hold no water.  You can literally just stand there waiting for them to pony up.  Once they have, all that remains is any number of 140+ I.Q. leftwing bloggers deftly making mincemeat out of them for the most part.  I make some room for different anomolies of course.

    I don't fear being taken over by Republicans, the only way it can continue to happen with the new fangled breed of Republican we currently enjoy is if Democrats continue to insist on being incompetent, and a bunch of double dealing liars.


    And this is the worst (none / 0) (#18)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:37:12 PM EST
    This is the very worst about how crazy everything is.  Not long ago I posted something about the Golden Mean on here that can exist in a capitalistic society.  I posted that and later self reflected, those are the words of nothing more special than a damned centrist.  I'm a solid centrist where the economy is concerned, but politics has become so warped by outside money that my words are now the words of a crybaby firebagging Puma.  It's phucking nuts out there!

    You are correct, and actually the (none / 0) (#20)
    by BTAL on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:44:02 PM EST
    D messaging was correct back to 2006 with the change of majorities in the legislature.  Full disclosure, my party screwed the pooch royally from 2002 - 2006 in both the house and senate.  They deserved to have their collective azz's handed to them.

    IMHO, the same effect is happening to the Pelosi and Reid lead houses.  Both were vile in their attacks, beyond what was politically necessary.  What they did was set themselves up for the same backlash the Rs did to themselves.  Guess politicians of all stripes have this innate fascination with their feet and the firearm the public entrusts them with.

    As for messaging, I do my share of face-palms with some of the current prospects from the R side.


    Yes....too true (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 06:58:38 PM EST
    First thing they didn't do was they didn't put the brakes to anything that Bush was doing.  When the country became concerned, the Republicans were voted out of total power. But still they did almost nothing to have any real affect on the course the country was on.  Their plan and goals I guess were to give Bush all the rope he wanted to hang himself and implode his party and the whole country with it.  They allowed things to get so bad though there is no way back unless you really mean to do something.  Their plan was obviously to simply not be as bad as the Republicans....to be Republican lite if they want to be.  And everything is my fault because I can't see the forest for the trees I guess.  It is hard to do though when the woods are ablaze and burning to the ground.

    Fair enough but the resulting alternative (none / 0) (#24)
    by BTAL on Tue Jul 27, 2010 at 07:12:15 PM EST
    was the pendulum was swung too far in the opposite direction.  Case in point the house Climate bill and its massive attempted intrusions into areas the govt has no business.  Another being, and this is a bi-partisan position, the administration's outsourcing of the agenda to the congress on HCR and other issues.  

    There is a 50 yard line upon which to meet.  



    Climate bill, unwarrented govt. intrusion? (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 09:46:36 AM EST
    Just who in the Hell else is in position to mandate reductions in carbon emissions?  The market?

    Are you serious?


    Heh (none / 0) (#43)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 09:51:08 AM EST
    Some things I just don't have the energy to get into.  And where I live, in the middle of the reddest, a fave bumper sticker around here is

    It isn't called global warming, it's called summer

    you must live in KY too (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 10:02:45 AM EST

    Yeah (none / 0) (#52)
    by jondee on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 12:34:02 PM EST
    Summer on Venus.

    At least they're not saying "It's Called God's Wrath"..but give it a few years.


    The jet stream shifted this past (none / 0) (#54)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 12:54:30 PM EST
    winter here too and that cold air from Canada shot right over the top of us for months.  I had to put up with them saying that this was the coldest this place had been in decades and they were all smirking.  And then it refused to warm up.  These people around here have gone through two weeks of temps in the 30s being as cold as it gets since the day they were born.  Then it snowed, they all quit laughing and furrowed brows returned.

    When it warmed up it happened instantly, not much of a spring. And now we are having a scorching July, with a heat index that has threatened to shut down some of the train up happening at Fort Benning this month.

    Before we moved here we did look at the global warming patterns that were being predicted.  It is predicted that global warming is going to suck the humidity out of the South and we figured we could make that work for us.  There is going to be an awful lot of vegetation drying out down here though.  Last year it was a bit of a frightening tinderbox in GA.


    "the govt" (none / 0) (#53)
    by jondee on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 12:45:42 PM EST
    by the people, for the people, no? Or is that a too-secular-to-respect ideal to strive for?

    Or, is that too-big-to-fail also means too big to be expected to adhere to the rules of civilized society?



    Given Dems incompetence and double dealing (none / 0) (#46)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 10:02:06 AM EST
    with their base, you should fear the GOP.  Despite being totally discredited only two short years ago, Obama with his reaching out and solicition of input from these evil money grubbing morons has resuscitated their brand.  That along with Obama's contiual dissapointing of his base makes a GOP Congress a very real prospect.

    Relative IQs don't matter, Reagonomics and Bushism amply demonstrates that.


    I really think that so many people (none / 0) (#55)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 01:02:48 PM EST
    are going to be hurting too badly for rhetoric from either party to be tolerated in mass quantities.  I could be wrong, but pain and suffering usually does make people a bit more demanding for truth and results.

    I anticipate that if Obama gets much worse at this job, someone will primary him.  Kennedy primaried Carter, stuff happens when things become too impossible to deal with. And we haven't had anything like the current situation smack us up against the head since the Great Depression.

    This situation could end up being a Ralph Nader dream too.  With what needs fixed, I can almost fathom voting for Nader myself.


    Feingold/Kucinich--Independent (none / 0) (#56)
    by Lora on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 08:44:25 PM EST
    I could do that too (none / 0) (#57)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jul 29, 2010 at 07:39:18 AM EST
    I pray for a realistic primary challenger (none / 0) (#58)
    by BobTinKY on Thu Jul 29, 2010 at 02:45:26 PM EST
    I bet they'll be at least one anti-war candidate.  In the absence of any other liberal choice I'd vote for & contribute $$ to him or her too.

    I was happily awash (none / 0) (#35)
    by MKS on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 01:02:05 AM EST
    in Obamamania from Iowa on.....

    I was happy to ride a wave that I knew would wash out at some point but was happy to ride it as far as it would go.  I didn't think it would last past Super Tuesday but it did.....

    The thud of reality was inevitable.....

    I do think BTD has been proven right about the stimulus being too small and too skewed to tax cuts......It was big enough to cost a lot and get us half way across the ocean.  Now we are stuck without having rowed the boat ashore.  The worst possible result as conservatives will say it was all a failure....when the problem was that Obama made the same mistake as FDR initially did with the New Deal by making it too small.

    BTD called it from the beginning.....I thought he was being too pessimistic.....

    Glad you're halfway there (5.00 / 4) (#39)
    by dk on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 08:50:22 AM EST
    but if you're still equating Obama's early presidency to FDR's you may not have reached 100% reality yet.

    I've always been there (none / 0) (#51)
    by MKS on Wed Jul 28, 2010 at 11:54:00 AM EST
    and will probably stay there....