A Different Reality Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Whistle Past the Graveyard

Kevin Drum on How To Learn To Stop Worrying and Whistle Past the GraveYard:

Parties rarely move to the center immediately after a big defeat. Usually it takes two or three before they finally get the message, and on that metric Republicans aren't due for a move to the center until sometime after 2012.

As for the tea parties, they're nothing new. We've seen similar conservative movements flower like clockwork during previous Democratic administrations, and they always burn themselves out after a few years. The tea party movement has ascended faster than its ancestors, partly because of lousy economic conditions and partly because of the power of modern media, and my guess is that their fall will be equally swift when it comes. Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin simply aren't the kind of people who wear well. Their fifteen minutes aren't up yet, but they will be within a year or two.

(Emphasis supplied.) Meanwhile, back on Planet Earth, the Dems are on their way to a crushing defeat in November. Apparently, people like the current crop of Dems "did not wear well" and their fall looks like it will be swift. But at least our discourse is civil. They can't take that away from us.

Speaking for me only

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    I have lost almost all faith in polls (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Gisleson on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 02:08:14 PM EST
    They ask the wrong questions, for one thing. Today they're touting a Minnesota Public Radio poll here in Minnesota that says Minnesotans hate Congress. No follow up questions to ascertain why or who in Congress Minnesotans are upset with.

    I have not heard of any pollster asking point blank, "The economy's in the crapper. Do you blame Bush-Cheney or Obama-Biden?" No, they just ask if government's to blame and as a result they get meaningless numbers.

    The Democrats will lose seats this fall. If they keep running from their record and playing electoral games, they may get clobbered. But if they stand up to the Republicans' bullying and cut our ties to Wall Street, we could . . . OK, that's not going to happend and we're going to get our brains beaten out.

    I was hoping this would be the summer when the left would purify the Democratic party. Instead the crazies have moved the Republicans further to the right.

    At this point in time, I have zero faith in our economy ever improving. The Plutonomy is here, and we've still got a lot of excess middle class to dispose of.

    "purify" (none / 0) (#4)
    by christinep on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 02:19:13 PM EST
    An interesting concept. Does it mean "cleanse" or "purge?" From my point of view, "purity" is best reserved for spirituality, not politics. And, various political purification actions tend to turn into something resembling cannibalization. Because that is usually the toll it takes on both sides.

    I don't know, (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by dk on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 03:03:56 PM EST
    I see most of the purity talk coming from the pragmatists.  I.e. if you're not pragmatic, you are ignorant/politically naive/haven't learned the christinep-approved "life lessons"/a repeater of right wing talking points....the list goes on and on.  And all for a pragmatic purity that results in moving the country further and further to the right where the only winners continue to be the corporate executives whose incomes continue to rise at the expense of permanently high unemployment rates and declining standard of living for everyone else.

    Where is the country moving the right? (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by vicndabx on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 03:23:37 PM EST
    It seems to me it's largely around the center.  From a social perspective, we've seen more progress toward center-left than center right.  The budget for the social safety net isn't shrinking, abortions are mostly available, civil-rights are on the verge of being expanded once again.  Where is this further right you are talking about?

    This part is capitalisms fault:

    Corporate executives whose incomes continue to rise at the expense of permanently high unemployment rates and declining standard of living for everyone else

    So I guess (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by dk on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 03:41:15 PM EST
    the New Deal and the Great Society occurred during periods when capitalism didn't exist?  That's news to me.

    Well, the healthcare bill, which was passed in a democratic congress and signed by a democratic president, has reinforced, not lessened the power of largely unregulated, for profit health insurance companies.  Obama lobbied for TARP, giving away trillions of taxpayer dollars to large corporations and their executives and thus making large scale government initiatives even more difficult to enact; the Obama administration, through the health insurance bill and his executive order, have expanded anti-choice policy, and the Obama administration is fighting against GLBT civil rights in the courts.  Looks like rightward progress to me.


    Don't forget HAMP (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by cawaltz on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 05:01:46 PM EST
    as far as a corporate handout. It was pretty wonderful too.

    I wish--really--that my friends & I (2.00 / 1) (#13)
    by christinep on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 09:59:12 PM EST
    could access your world, dk. Honest. I have no idea what you are talking about. You & I look at a given set of "facts" and see it so differently. Perceptual screens really are something, aren't they. Well...good luck to you.

    I wish you could as well. (none / 0) (#14)
    by dk on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 10:16:06 PM EST
    But, when you're more worried about your favorite person winning a popularity contest than you are about issues, it's understandable.

    I wish you good luck as well.


    Cut the BS (2.00 / 1) (#15)
    by christinep on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 10:19:52 PM EST
    But, then, maybe you never wanted a real conversation. If anyone is gameplaying...all I can say is, it ain't me. I support my party because I believe that the legislation that Democrats have produced in the past and produce now is markedly better than anything we've ever seen from Republicans. So...ta da...I work for Democratic candidates. As for you, who do you support. Ah, but I know, you can't say.

    Haha...where'd the (5.00 / 3) (#17)
    by dk on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 10:38:43 PM EST
    faux spiritualism and life lessons go?  If someone disagrees with you by presenting enough examples of the rightward shift of the Democratic party, you show your real side?

    Look, if you loved TARP, if you love filling the coffers of coporate executives at the expense of everyone else, if you enjoy the expansion of restrictions on women's rights, GLBT rights, etc., if you love the war in Afghanistan, etc. etc. that have been the product of legislation passed and justice department briefs filed in the last two years, then fine.  Go for it, and work yourself silly for those candidates.  I bet you'll really love when some of the conclusions of the Cat Food Commission are implement.  

    I guess in your world back and forth are only conversations if people agree with you.  Sorry to say, but it doesn't always work out that way.  


    You've only given conclusions, not examples (none / 0) (#20)
    by christinep on Fri Sep 03, 2010 at 12:41:13 PM EST
    BTW, it isn't faux spiritualism, etc. on my part. I just got angry--and let it show. Thats because I'm human. And now that I'm refreshed from an inspirational afternoon/early evening Democratic womens' gathering yesterday: Have a wonderful forward-looking Labor Day weekend....

    You might want (none / 0) (#22)
    by dk on Fri Sep 03, 2010 at 05:01:15 PM EST
    to get a little more refreshing going, so you can work on your definitions of examples and conclusions.  Perhaps the labor day weekend will do the trick.

    Wow (1.33 / 3) (#16)
    by squeaky on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 10:35:43 PM EST
    What a hilarious statement coming from you, considering your 1000+ comments as a Hillary fan club cheerleader.

    I do, too (none / 0) (#19)
    by sj on Fri Sep 03, 2010 at 09:41:56 AM EST
    Wish that you could access our world.  Because I know exactly what dk is talking about...sweetie.

    Yeah everything's just (none / 0) (#7)
    by Warren Terrer on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 03:32:12 PM EST

    I never said it was. (none / 0) (#8)
    by vicndabx on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 03:37:16 PM EST
    Whoa (1.50 / 2) (#12)
    by christinep on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 09:54:56 PM EST
    "pragmatic purity" now that is a stretch & a hoot. No, sweetie. My approach only is: A Big Tent for Democrats. In a phrase: Cut the purity. Its always been a loser; and, as I suspect you are aware, it will be again (for both sides.)

    LOL (5.00 / 3) (#18)
    by dk on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 10:41:54 PM EST
    Keep up the pragmatic purity.  It's been working so well eh?  Go tell that to your friends who are unemployed due to the inadequate stimulus.  

    My goodness (none / 0) (#21)
    by christinep on Fri Sep 03, 2010 at 12:43:12 PM EST
    and I thought that yesterday saw me angry. But, you seem to be practically seething.

    I don't see any problem (none / 0) (#23)
    by dk on Fri Sep 03, 2010 at 05:02:45 PM EST
    with anger.  Never said I did.  Faux spiritualism is, in my experience at least, a thin veil.  It's pretty easy to see the anger within, and IMO healthier for you to express it anyway.

    But at least our discourse is civil. (1.00 / 1) (#1)
    by BTAL on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 12:37:10 PM EST
    Absolutely!  Olbermann, Ed Schultz and Mike Malloy set the standard of inspirational civil discourse.

    And while we wait for the 15 minutes to expire it (none / 0) (#2)
    by lausunu on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 01:04:22 PM EST
    will be oh so pleasant I'm sure. Republicans move to the center? Let's just say I have my doubts, but I had this crazy thought that that is what Obama is really waiting for....those sensible, rationale,well meaning "real" Republicans to move to the "center" so he can say, "See, biparisanship works for me!" Meanwhile Rome burns.

    Speaking for no one really.

    thanks BTD

    If the Republicans moved to the center (5.00 / 5) (#11)
    by Demi Moaned on Thu Sep 02, 2010 at 05:08:48 PM EST
    ... they'd be to the left of the Democrats.