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A Different Kind of Malaise

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Posted on Jun 16, 2010

By E.J. Dionne, Jr.

A weird malaise is haunting the Democratic Party.

That’s a risky word to use, I know. It’s freighted with bad history and carries unfortunate implications. So let’s be clear: President Barack Obama is not Jimmy Carter, not even close. And Obama’s speech on Tuesday was nothing like Carter’s 1979 “malaise speech” in which Carter never actually used that word. Obama gave a good and sensible speech that was not a home run.

What’s odd is that Obama was seen as needing a home run. This is where the Democratic malaise comes in.

Democrats should feel a lot better than they do. They enacted a health care bill that had been their dream for more than 60 years. They pulled the country out of a terrifying economic spiral. They are on the verge of passing the biggest reform of Wall Street since the New Deal. The public has identified enemies that are typically seen as Republican allies: oil companies and big bankers. And given the Republicans’ past policies, the Gulf oil spill is at least as much their problem as Obama’s.

On top of this, the GOP seems to be doing all it can to make itself unelectable, veering far to the right and embracing a tea party movement that, at its extremes, preaches the need for revolution. That sounds more like the old New Left than a reinvigorated conservatism. Oh yes, and can you think of one thing Republicans stand for right now other than cutting spending? Never mind that they are conspicuously vague about what they’d cut.

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Yet it is Democrats who are petrified, uncertain and hesitant—and this was true before the oil spill made matters worse. Obama’s bold rhetoric about “the need to end America’s century-long addiction to fossil fuels” was not matched by specifics because he knows that nearly a dozen Senate Democrats are skittish about acting. Why does it so often seem that Republicans are full of passionate intensity while Democrats lack all conviction?

The month’s most important document may prove to be a poll done for National Public Radio by the Democratic firm of Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and the Republicans at Public Opinion Strategies. In the 70 most competitive House districts, 60 of them held by Democrats, the pollsters concluded that the Democrats “face a daunting environment in 2010.”

“The results are a wake-up call for Democrats whose losses in the House could well exceed 30 seats,” they declared. Two findings convey the whole: “Sixty-two percent of Republicans in Democratic districts describe themselves as very enthusiastic about the upcoming election,” compared with only 37 percent of Democrats. And: “By 57 to 37 percent, voters in these 60 Democratic seats believe that President Obama’s economic policies have produced record deficits while failing to slow job losses.”

Paranoia is striking deep among Democrats, and this poll will only aggravate this disorder. In those competitive districts, Democratic incumbents will be tempted to hunker down, distance themselves from the president, urge their leaders to be cautious, and run for the hills to seek refuge from a looming Republican wave.

But the numbers in the NPR survey are so bad that Democrats might pause before becoming lemmings. There is something preposterous about how the administration and congressional Democrats have lost every major public argument that they should be winning.

They lost the argument on a stimulus bill that clearly lifted the economy, as Alan Blinder, the former vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, argued persuasively in Wednesday’s Wall Street Journal. They are losing it on the health care bill, a big improvement enacted through a process that made it look like a tar ball on an Alabama beach. They are losing it on the deficit even though it was Republicans who cut taxes twice while the Bush administration was starting two wars.

Obama is often criticized for being too professorial. The irony is that Republicans who have little to say about how to solve the nation’s major problems are dominating the country’s underlying philosophical narrative.

From Plaquemines Parish to Wall Street, we are seeing what happens when government takes too hands-off an approach to private economic actors. Yet the GOP is managing to sell the idea that the big issue in this election should be—government spending.

Professor Obama and his allies ought to be ashamed of this. The cure for malaise, defined as “a sensation of exhaustion or inadequate energy to accomplish usual activities,” is to have a self-confident sense of purpose, and to act boldly in its pursuit.
   
E.J. Dionne’s e-mail address is ejdionne(at)washpost.com.
   
© 2010, Washington Post Writers Group


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By ofersince72, June 21, 2010 at 7:39 am Link to this comment

Until you check their voting records…they sound
real nice don’t they….

I like this Grayson guy,,,,
“I am for the wars, I am not for withdrawal, just need
them paid for in a different manner.”

Great progressive talk !!!
I could go about Sherrod Brown also…will spare your
feelings.  OH , and how about that great
McCain/Feingold Act, that Feingold compromised away until
it had no teeth whatsoever.
Ardee that is such a good reason to vote Democrat, just
because you was born one, whoopee.
And what have they done in forty years Ardee? Are going
to give me that same Civil Rights line a crap???

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By garth, June 21, 2010 at 7:26 am Link to this comment

ardee, you’re right in this point.

“For my part as a born Democrat, I try to think of Sherrod Brown, Bernie Sanders, Feingold and Sheldon Whitehouse, in the Senate; Kucinich, Alan Grayson and several others in the House. “

Your point:
This is not about personality or individuals, it is about the bureaucracy and the leadership that controls the party and each individual within it. Certainly there is merit to some positions taken by the names you cite, but a few good folks cannot overcome the drift of that party towards the reefs on the starboard side ( that’s the right side to landlubbers).

—————————————————————-

That’s the trap I fall into and, I think, many people fall into when they think of an emergence or re-remergence of Progressive values.
To think a few good men will turn the nation around from its course into what looks like it is becoming: a mish mash of neo-liberalism, orthodox Christianity, corrupt politicos, and oligarchs, is foolish indeed, but that is the media, mind-control trap. 
And I slip back into it from time to time until I watch DemocracyNow!  This is a never-ending battle.

As far as third party candidates go, where are they?

Is everyone dreaming that she or he is the Alvin Greene of the South Carolina Senate race: You go to bed one night an indicted sex offender and wake up the next morning to find that you are the candidate for the Senate?

In local elections payoffs for running a strong challenge were a great way to secure a job.  If you di well in a race against a local pol, then you were assured a Government job or a cozy position, maybe even a No Show.

But in National Politics, the game is tougher.  When a third Party candidate loses, both Dems and Repubs rejoice.  The losers, even though they might have made a strong showing are given the bum’s rush.

Whatever happened to Anderson, Perot, etc?

In my gut, I have a feeling that we’ll have to follow our Declaration of Independence. 

“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness”

We have been carrying the freeloaders for far too long.  It’s time for them to go out and look for a job.

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By Not One More!, June 21, 2010 at 1:29 am Link to this comment

This discussion seems to be centered around 2 beliefs among those who recognize that our country is on a terrible path:

> those that stay with the known because it is known quantity and better than the other know quantity (they vote and work with the democratic party to change things) ... 

> and those that say that the democratic party is part of the problem and corrupted beyond redemption (and support and vote for third parties).

I believe that the democratic party is part of the corruption and policies that I oppose. It is part of the good cop, bad cop routine meant to co-opt those people who might not be so happy with the the bad cop (the republicans). But in the end you are giving in to the same cop corporation.

In fact, even Kucinich, when push came to shove, put the democratic party leadership interests above principles of peace and justice, more concerned about getting reelected rather than supporting the principles he claims to stand for. His choices are understandable, but they are not commendable. It is not what we need if we are to make a change.

Nader has been consistent on his message for the past 40 years: Government for the people, transparency, and accountability.

The bottom line is that the democratic party leadership would rather have a republican elected than a third party like Nader or McKinney (green party candidate). What that means is that they are more indebted to the corporate interests than basic principles of justice, liberty, and human rights for all. It speaks volumes.

Of course, if you read Zinn’s “People’s History of the United States” you see that government supported monied interests from the beginning. It is just more blatant and cruder in the past 30 years, and results in greater loss of life and environmental damage, but the intent is the same, support for the corporate elite first and foremost.

I don’t know if there will ever be a viable third party, but I believe that anyone who is concerned with the direction of our country and continues voting for the corporate democrats (including Obama, Clinton, Kerry etc) are undercutting their own desires and eliminating any possibility from having the change that is necessary to change the course that we are on (downward to eventual oblivion).

Voting for Obama cemented continued military imperialism, corporate bailouts at the expense of single payer health care (which was off the table along with criminal action against Bush).

I will continue voting third party because I don’t accept the narrative that voting for a democrat is better because the republicans who are going to murder 100,000 people vs. 50,000 the democrats are going to murder. I find both scenarios unacceptable and unsupportable. Some might think that is a pretty good deal, especially if they don’t think they are going to be part of the 50,000 dead.
Just as there as some who think that being held 6 inches under water is better than being held 12 inches under. But to the drowned person it didn’t make much difference. Those that vote democrat are making the corporate elites job easier.

And I agree with 0fersince72, if the current injustices that he listed are not enough to make you say enough is enough and start voting third party, you will probably wait until they come after you, and then it is too late.

When you are on a path, don’t be surprised when you get to it’s destination.

“I am not blaming those who are resolved to rule, only those who show an even greater readiness to submit.” ~Thucydides

http://www.NotOneMore.US

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By ofersince72, June 20, 2010 at 7:12 pm Link to this comment

Democrats love to pull the race card, their survival
depends on it.

Lets take another black democrat lawmaker,
Kendrick Meek of Florida, about as conservative as
you can get, might as well be a republican. Cators
to the anti-Castro Cubans ..votes against most social
legislation, always for war funding.

Then, ever check the great progressive
Maxine Waters voting record out, you would find out
she is long on rhetoric and short on actions.

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By ofersince72, June 20, 2010 at 7:02 pm Link to this comment

The Smashing defeat of Artur Davis in Alabama proves
that Americans are getting wise.

Artur Davis was a very, very conservative Democrat,
I hope he keeps his word and decides not to run again.
He couldn’t even garnish the black vote in his home town.

Hopefully Americans are wising up , it isn’t race,
it is economics.

However, in order to keep their voting base, Democrat
Journalists are going to keep pressing the race card
all the way through the 2012 elections, because the
democrats will lose resoundingly without the black vote.
And they are getting wise to the Democrat empty promises.

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By ofersince72, June 20, 2010 at 6:57 pm Link to this comment

But really, all one has to do is look at the prison
system we have,  at the education system we have,
at the unemployment rate of blacks that we have,
at the development of the gettos that we haven’t had

to see that the sixties legislation was only
window trimmings anyhow.

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By ofersince72, June 20, 2010 at 6:02 pm Link to this comment

Enablers of the Democrats and Repulicans love to point
to the civil rights legislation of the sixties, to say
“see”.  How laughable, like those parties came together
and said, “wow , we have neglected our power ,lets give
them darkies some rights”.
  It was massive demonstrations and the the cities
burning down that forced this legislation.  You democrat
enablers love to twist history.

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By ofersince72, June 20, 2010 at 5:54 pm Link to this comment

You need to understand, you don’t have to win an election
to win some battles.
Had it not been for thrid parties, we would have never
got a forty hour work week, child labor laws and many
of the other reforms that we take for granted.
  The third party runs of , Debs, Lafollet, WJbryon,
and others are what made the two major parties cave on
much needed reform.
  Everyone wants to vote for a winner, it is american
culture.
  Just 10% of the vote being lost to a third party
scares them into reform and change.
Enableing them never will.

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By drum4one4all, June 20, 2010 at 5:14 pm Link to this comment

To mehere..definitely my apologies if I am misreading, or misunderstanding what I thought I read.

What I thought I read from JDmystic was that he would not vote for a third party unless it is viable..and my point is that each of us are responsible for its viablity.  The wait and see posture is detrimental. And certainly scapegoating the third party as the causation for miserable Repub/Dem control…is simply horribly non-sensical.

And what I thought I read from mehere was that mehere was in agreement with what JDmystic just wrote.

And yes, A longer view of one election cycle is important, as many votes as possible in that first cycle propels positively the next cycle.

And really,  we’ve already seen the first cycle.  Somehow its different now.  It does seem like more people are really comprehending the corporate stranglehold, the corporate sameness of both parties.

We may have 2012 and 2016 to go…Sounds like mehere, you and I may be on the same page.  Still not sure JDmystic is on that page..

Gerard comments are right on with steps for organizing.

I read something somewhere yesterday, that Lieberman submitted a bill to have government pull the switch, so to speak, on accessing the internet in the case of a nat’l emergancy or at their whim…

I want to hear more about this.

Organizing will be much more difficult…except that it must be clear…that if Dems flip the switch on the internet…every single internet user will never vote Dem again…and since it will be a republican bill..hopefully, no more repubs will vote their own party.  First it would be nice to not allow this bill to pass.  Second it would be nice to have a bill to not allow a bill that cuts off communication ever again.  Third it would be nice to see the demopubs kick their own ass off the stage.

The order on those items is very negotiable.

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By gerard, June 20, 2010 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

The word is “viable”—“a viable third party”—and excuse me.  My excuse?  An infected index finger.  i stabbed myself with a pair of scissors—accidentally, at least for the present!
  And I forgot to specifically mention the Indy Media people, the anti-G20s. the Seattle people, Greenpeace, the anti-recruitment/ Alternatives to Violence people, tne Iraq/Afghan Vets Against War, and Amy Goodman for publicity and information clearance, and Hollywood liberals for funding and musicians for all kinds of help and the Raging Grannies and all those stalwart Quakers and Others.  They’re out there!

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By gerard, June 20, 2010 at 1:31 pm Link to this comment

To begin a vianle third party:
1. Put tohether an Organizing Board responsible for proposing a platform and a list of possible people to be drafted and write broad progressive/liberal platform (end wars, spend on peaceful conversion of industries, financial/corporate reform, “spend for life”  etc., select possible candidates for major offices:  President, VP. Party chairperson and regional directors.
2. Submit suggestions to National Progressive/ Green/Liberal/Socialist/Democrats in Revolt Convention for orderly discussion and ratification.\ by members present (as broadly representative as possible.
3. Organize broad grassroots finance campaign and leadeship.  Decide strategy and tactics for campaign.
5. Raise money at first meeting for Initial nationwide campaign and engage volunteer services of best experienced media people from among attenders to promote immediate broad Public Information Campaign. Concentrate on young people/viable futures.
6. Coordinate regional committees for progress evaluation, information sharing, ideas, key reactions, correction of errors etc.
Proceed as results indicate.
Engage all possible “liberal” groups already working on various issues (ie: church, student, civil rights, unions, peace, economic reform, welfare)

It’s do-able; it’s necessary; it’s a joyous opportunity’ it has a huge future.

United we stand.

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By MeHere, June 20, 2010 at 12:33 pm Link to this comment

drum4one4all

I think you may have misread my comments. Read them again. I only support
third parties. In any case, it’s OK—it’s human to misread!

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By drum4one4all, June 20, 2010 at 12:13 pm Link to this comment

mehere and jdmystic…to continue to vote for the very thing that is harming you, the world, is the problem.

Logistically, if one never voted “until” something is viable is to also ensure that it Never becomes viable.

Your arguments of not voting for it UNtil…simply make no sense logistically, or in reality.

If we 49 percent of us voted for a third party..and lost…you better believe there would be a HUGE amount of energy to ensure 51 % the next cycle. 

But to not for Your and humanity’s interests means simply that YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM.

Your voting for Dem/Repub ensures that that the third party remains un-viable.

Further…a vote for a third party never ensures that a repub or dem get into office…it lessens the chance.

ONLY A VOTE for a dem or repub actually places that person in office. 

Stop scapegoating third parties and start building in thorough unrelenting support for third parties.

Period.

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By bookmark dofollow, June 20, 2010 at 7:57 am Link to this comment

I thought the plan was to blame Bush for the whole first term….You mean to tell me that isn’t working ? Democrats have done a great job for labor unions and they saved GM and all those Democratic votes. I thought buying votes with government spending was the ticket to electoral success. What do you think, sir?

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By MeHere, June 20, 2010 at 7:28 am Link to this comment

I agree with JDMysticJD:

“For the record, let me state, I advise everyone to vote for a viable third party,
providing that party is progressive, and viable. I advise everyone to support an
emerging third party, in order to make it viable, but I advise everyone not to
vote for a third party, if that party is not viable, for the reasons previously
stated.”

I think the fundamental problem many have with this position is that it is
expected to produce quick results. It will not. There are no quick remedies at
this point. But supporting and building a progressive third party is the only way
to go, and that can take time. No candidates emerging within the Democratic
party, regardless of how progressive they sound, can bring about the change
many of us would want. A third party needs to be patiently built up regardless
of its performance in elections. At the very least, this may challenge the corrupt
Democrat organization in a positive way.

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By ardee, June 20, 2010 at 6:32 am Link to this comment

ofersince72, June 19 at 8:00 pm #

Not to worry Ardee, You and the rest of Truth Dig only have to put up with me until the firs of the month when i have directed my internet provider to shut me down.

Cant say I’m sorry to see you go.

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By ardee, June 20, 2010 at 6:30 am Link to this comment

JDmysticDJ, June 19 at 10:21 pm

I just lost a 4000 word post in response to your puzzling backtrack, a post complete with quotations from Voltaire, Mandela and Alice Walker. Sad this place, but sadder a confused electorate.

Your current position is in direct conflict, in my opinion, with your refusal to see validation or progress via third party politics. I take you at your word concerning your agenda but must emphatically state that your support for the Democratic Party is support for those against what you claim you stand for.

Damn, I wish I had that initial post back.

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By drum4one4all, June 19, 2010 at 6:31 pm Link to this comment

JDmystic says “Show me a viable Social Democratic Political Party; show me a viable Green Party option, and I’ll give my utmost in support, but until there is a viable alternative to the reactionary, extremely dangerous Republican morons, I’ll continue the struggle within the Democratic Party. At best, it may only be a holding action but, as of now, it will provide the best vehicle for continuing the struggle.”

But he refuses to do his part in making a third party viable.  His Malaise as well as Dionne’s is to keep us stuck by continuing to support corporatist parties who don’t give a flick about you or I or even his own person.

The malaise Dionne writes about, and indeed the malaise of the Dems who continue to vote against their own interests….need to look at themselves in the mirror and stop pointing fingers at larger society who actually are shifting their political affiliations and resources.

I will not read anymore of EJ Dionne. 

JDMYSTIC if you want a party outside of the current corporate structure, first try joining it and making it viable. Make it.  MLK certainly did not wait for others to do the work…he worked it.

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 6:21 pm Link to this comment

By ardee, June 19 at 4:53 pm #

Did you read my post to Not One More in its entirety? If so, you have misrepresented me in a most disingenuous fashion. I understand that doing so serves your agenda, but frankly, it strikes me as being less than honest.

You say,

“You fail to recognize two important points, in my own opinion, and I will enumerate them here;
“point one, the Democratic Party is as culpable as the GOP, as responsible, and as guilty. Obama is Bush 44, nothing less and certainly nothing more. With the assistance of his party ( the one you seemingly naively put all your hopes in) he has broken his promise to end rendition and torture, he has escalated a sordid and illegal war, he has sold his soul and this nation to the corporations. That includes, by the by, the Health Care industry with that abominable joke of a reform bill.One that assures only the continued profit of the Industry and the continued deaths of thousands each year.”

I have called Obama a war criminal, and I sincerely believe this to be a fact, and I hold all in Congress who have supported him in his continuation of Bush Policies as being culpable. Let me add that Obama is most certainly a corporatist. His performance in the Health Care Debate was inadequate, but did you notice that the Health Care Bill we dislike so much was shaped by Senate Republicans, and a handful of Blue Dogs. Do you suppose that Obama would have vetoed a bill that included the public option, if it had made it through the Senate?

I recognized early on that the bill would be a boon to Health Care Insurance Companies, but the bill does provide some improvements in Health Care, all of which were opposed by the Republicans unanimously. Are you suggesting that there was a conspiracy between Republicans and Democrats to insure that the bill would only benefit the Health Care Insurance Companies? Having read your comments in the past, I have not considered you to be subject to conspiracy theories, perhaps I was wrong. I, like Noam Chomsky, Dennis Kucinich, Bernie Sanders, and all Senate Democrats supported the bill as being the best that could be passed. The future struggle will be to improve the bill and make it stronger, but that won’t happen if Republicans achieve a greater presence in Congress.

The most damning accusation against Obama when considering the Health Care Debate was his agreement with the pharmaceutical companies. Are you by any chance aware of what killed “Hilary Care” in the first years of the Clinton Administration? Political reality can be painful, but political realities are unavoidable at times. I don’t admire Obama for not fighting for Universal Health Care, but I do recognize that that goal was unachievable, under current political realities.

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 6:10 pm Link to this comment

Ardee (Cont.)

You say,

“Where, one wonders, especially with a large majority in both Houses ( Bush had, at most, 53 Repugs in the Senate yet managed quite nicely to pass his own agenda) are the prosecutions, where is the justice, where in fact is your own common sense and vision of the truth of this political reality?”

My common sense is that Bush had a unified party behind him, as well as the support of a sufficient number of Democrats to pass most of his agendas, that was the political reality. My common sense regarding the lack of prosecutions has already been stated, and my common sense regarding these issues would be considered quite extreme by most people. I’d like to see Bush, Cheney, and the whole coterie of murderers and torturers rotting in prison. I hold Obama accountable for not pursuing those prosecutions. Having said that, can you imagine the uproar that would have accompanied those prosecutions? Worst case scenarios would include violence in the streets, military coup, or assassination. At the very least, those prosecutions would have created political chaos that would have made governing nearly impossible. Justice did not prevail, but perhaps, cooler heads did.

You say,

The most dangerous enablers in this nation are simply those like you, which brings me to point two;

Of course I don’t agree with your bold assertion, perhaps you feel that I’m responsible for all our current difficulties, and that I could solve all our current problems by voting for a third party, which would contribute to the victory of, and enable, the worst of Bush’s sympathizers.

You say,

“You call the emerging third party politics in the nation as not viable. You ignore the simple and eloquent fact that a party comes into power when a sizable portion of the electorate votes for it.”

Are there viable third parties? I don’t know how eloquent the fact is, but the reality is that a third party(s) won’t be viable unless, “A sizable portion of the electorate votes for it.” For the record, let me state, I advise everyone to vote for a viable third party, providing that party is progressive, and viable. I advise everyone to support an emerging third party, in order to make it viable, but I advise everyone not to vote for a third party, if that party is not viable, for the reasons previously stated.

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 6:00 pm Link to this comment

Ardee (Cont.)

You say,

“You thus portray a self fulfilling prophecy, and ,hopefully, you will drown because of your refusal to understand the corrupt nature of this Duopoly system and the fact that the emerging third parties are the only hope we have.”

What am I, a suitable subject for water boarding? Perhaps reforming the Democratic Party would be another hope we might have, it would serve the added benefit of not turning the government over to unthinking murderous proto-fascists, and avoid escalating, rather than winding down our military presence in foreign countries. Of course I don’t foresee a winding down of our foreign military presence, without a concerted struggle to make that winding down a reality, but I can assure you that that struggle will be totally futile, if the Republicans take control of our government.

You say,

“I see, in point of fact, nothing whatever wrong with remaining within the democratic party if your chosen goal is the reformation of that party. But your slam of third party politics betrays your real motivation, to calm the slaves and make them satisfied with the status quo. You do not seek reformation only continuation, you fight a losing battle.

I did not slam third party politics, I only pointed out that third party politics are not currently a viable option, and that supporting a non viable third party will have the above mentioned consequences. My real motivation is denying power to the most dangerous elements of our political system. Your assertions are hysterical nonsense not verified by anything I have said. You misrepresent me in order to discredit my view, or because the truth of what I say upsets you. Go ahead and throw your vote away, and advise others to do the same, you will be pleased with yourself, until the consequences of what you have done become evident, but on second thought, as I recall, you don’t regret your vote for Nader in 2000, so it’s more than likely that you will not accept the consequences of your actions. Perhaps that is the core root of your hysteria, one can only speculate, and I’m sure that our speculations will not be the same. I’ll speculate that Gore would have listened to warnings about Osama Bin Laden’s intentions and he would have gone after Osama Bin Laden and his agents, avoiding the invasion of Iraq. A few billion dollars and uncountable lives saved. Of course one can only speculate. I’m not interested in further speculation, so forget it.

This has been extremely tedious; you have accused me of vile intentions, and forced me to defend myself for something I’m not guilty of. To be succinct, and to avoid insulting you, I’ll simply say, you’re wrong about my intentions and motivations.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 4:00 pm Link to this comment

Not to worry Ardee, You and the rest of Truth Dig only
have to put up with me until the firs of the month
when i have directed my internet provider to shut me
down.  I have had the internet about seven months and
i was much better informed without it.

  The “cream of the crop” is what you all on Truth Dig
are supposed to be and that is what you fancy yourselves.
Throw terms around that have no meaning whatsoever such
as privatized capitolism.
I will be gone and you all can be glad and rejoice and
go on and become Hedges groupies again with no one to
challenge that silly notion. Or discuss inane articles
that E.J. , Scheer and Robinson throw out every week and
feel so intellectual…..GO FOR IT GUYS AND GALS.
YOU ALL THE CREAM…..........

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By garth, June 19, 2010 at 3:25 pm Link to this comment

ardee and Ofersince72,

ardee, maybe argument too strong a word.  I don’t take the time to filter the my words to that granularity.

If a debate springs out of your back-and-forth, between ofersince and JD, then it will surely benefit all those who read it. Maybe it’ll start something.

I agree with all of you: ardee, ofersince and JD and that is my problem.  But I want to read the give and take.

Unfortunately, I tried a nihilistic point of view in Bush’s second term.  Philosophically, it led me to where I am today. 

I think we should definitley unseat Obama on the grounds that it would be a Bush fourth term. 

Can someone stand up and take the heat?  IS there a Eugene McCarthy out there?  Will an opportunist like Ted Kennedy try to take center stage.

Obama’s Nixon ploy, you know where Nixon had a secret plan to end the war in Vietnam, now, where Obama says he’ll end the war sometime in the future, will that play again?

How many Generals with medal-covered chests have to appear before congress before Congress wises up to the fact that Americans are sick of war?

Why can’t the Green Party mount a serious campaign with a serious candidate who has the potential to unseat this empty suit?

Money doesn’t vote.  Feingold of Wisconsin does not accept PAC money, last I heard.


The big If:  If enough people get angry enough and see their lives starting to circle the toilet bowl, will they have the gumption to stand up and take their lives back?

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 3:16 pm Link to this comment

that they didn’t force a straight up and down vote
on the right to organize while they had the votes
didn’t open your eyes.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 3:10 pm Link to this comment

Ardee, glad to see you back , you are a great example
that not all Jews are bad that several on here have been
professing lately.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 3:07 pm Link to this comment

If all the attorney general’s decisions didn’t open your
eyes.
If the Kabul prison torture system didn’t open your eyes.
If the MMS didn’t open your eyes
If the No_Fly_Zone over the Gulf didn’t open your eyes.

then the ten thousand more reasons that I can give for
not voting for cheaters, liers, murderers and thieves
will not open your eyes.

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By ardee, June 19, 2010 at 3:04 pm Link to this comment

garth

“all I am really sure of at this point is that to elect a Republican would be like playing Russian Roulette with a fully-loaded pistol.”

Really, I fail to see a difference between the actions of the Democrats when in power, and the GOP. That Republicans adopt extremist positions when out of power, perhaps in a misguided attempt to rally support from the radical right who work tirelessly if unknowingly, to help our nations fall towards fascism, is moot. That the actions of the Obama administration mirror those of the Bush administration is also moot, and is the crux of my point that neither major party is worth a damn.

” hope this argument between JDMysticDJ and ardee continues. It’s the first time on Truthdig that I am interested in following the back-and-forth between two commenters.”

Firstly, a I would prefer the term “debate” to your choice of “argument”. Secondly, both a debate and an argument require a back and forth. Thus far Ive seen no such thing. JD responded after my post but not to it. Thus I am so far talking ,not to him apparently, but to any who would read, think and respond.

“For my part as a born Democrat, I try to think of Sherrod Brown, Bernie Sanders, Feingold and Sheldon Whitehouse, in the Senate; Kucinich, Alan Grayson and several others in the House. “

This is not about personality or individuals, it is about the bureaucracy and the leadership that controls the party and each individual within it. Certainly there is merit to some positions taken by the names you cite, but a few good folks cannot overcome the drift of that party towards the reefs on the starboard side ( that’s the right side to landlubbers).

I noted a post by ofersince72,one whose efforts I confess to seldom reading , due, in large part, to his penchant for taking over threads with multiple and generally unnecessary postings. But this short one did catch my eye as it contained the number of democrats who voted for this madness of war, a war which only benefits the military industrial complex, and takes a large number of kids off the unemployment and welfare roles as well, apparently the ruling class cares little for the horrific damage this or any war causes.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

I could take my time and write out a well thought out
response of the undeserving support still given to the
Democrat Party by those that are still believing in a
myth.
It isn’t worth it because I am not going to change your
mind.
If the Health Care couldn’t open your eyes,
If the Kucinach Airplane ride couldn’t open your eyes
If all the Committee hearings of Conyers, Waxman, Levin
Whithouse, and others that proved great media show until
they were forgot about, then dropped , didn’t opin ur eyes
If all the dead bodies in Pakistan and Afghanistan doesn’t
make any difference to you
If the corporate bailout didn’t open your eyes
If Obama’s response to a global changing disaster didn’t
open your eyes.
If all the black men still in prisoned didn’t open your
eyes,  all the D.C. residents still without a vote didn’t
open your eyes.
If support for Blance Lincoln didn’t open your eyes
If the DemProgCaucas support for Jane Harmen didn’t open
your eyes.
Then why mention the other thousand reasons not to support
the Democrats, because they won’t pull a head out of the
sand either if said head wants to ignore that the people
he is supporting are cheaters, liers, murderers and thieves.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 2:45 pm Link to this comment

JD, quite the oppisite, not until I am dead and in the
ground.
I admire your concern for the future.
I would say you are the one that has accepted defeat and
become apethetic with your “oh, well, better than
republicans” attitude, and in reality they aren’t.
But they do remain cheaters, liers, murderers and thieves.

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By garth, June 19, 2010 at 2:34 pm Link to this comment

I hope this argument between JDMysticDJ and ardee continues. It’s the first time on Truthdig that I am interested in following the back-and-forth between two commenters.

I have strong feelings behind both positions and my weak brain doesn’t enable me to resolve the conflict on my own. 

All I am really sure of at this point is that to elect a Republican would be like playing Russian Roulette with a fully-loaded pistol.

Please continue, if I may encourage you.

For my part as a born Democrat, I try to think of Sherrod Brown, Bernie Sanders, Feingold and Sheldon Whitehouse, in the Senate; Kucinich, Alan Grayson and several others in the House.

We were so political and so Democratic that we differentiated on everything. We bought Nissen’s bread, a bread from a local bakery.  Republicans bought Wonder Bread. We took Anacin for headaches, so Republicans took Bayer, and so on.  But the point is clear. 
I was born before the end of WWII and I grew up in a country that was still benefitting from FDR’s policies, strong unions and a strong Democratic Party.
Some Democrats were corrupt, yes, it goes without saying, but show me a Republican who can say with a straight face in front of a room full of school children against whom he just voted to end the school lunch program, as they did in 1994, and I’ll show you a godamned pathological liar and a no good bastard.

The time has long since past when the dream of influencing Obama just as the Democratic Progressives influenced FDR into championing social policies, policies that laid the groundwork for the resurgence of the U.S as the greatest nation on Earth (A little public school propaganda there, I’m afraid.)

But no one can dispute the fact that we are the richest nation, still. And what are we doing with that wealth?  I’d say pissing it away on war.

We don’t need war.  We don’t need revenge on some hapless Afghans who happen to have been living in a spot where our Government says the 9/11 conspiracy plot was hatched.

We need a lot of truth. 

The S&L crisis was paid up.  Two years ago, the 2008 Financial Meltdown said that someone owed someone about 600 Trillion dollars, conservatively speaking.  Who’s going to pay that off?

One of Amy’s guests on DemocracyNow! about a year ago said that this Cap & Trade, carbon capture carbon tax is going to be the next Wall Street Boom.

Aren’t we owed a little honesty of what’s really involved and what’s really at stake before we sign the dotted line? 

I looked it up.  Europe, especially England, is not so crazy about a carbon tax.  Why do you think that is?

Do we, as Americans, stand alone as the dumbest 300 million people that ever lived. 

Is that our Exceptionalism?

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 2:29 pm Link to this comment

Ofersince72

I admire you for your opposition to the madness, but I respect you less for your lack of common sense. Do you prefer Republicans to Democrats? The end result of your activism will mean a victory for Republicans. I see your hatred as genuine, but counter productive. There is a difference between Republicans and Democrats, but you are blinded to that difference. The “struggle” I have mentioned does not apply to you, you have surrendered to defeat, and anger and venom is all that is left to you.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 1:22 pm Link to this comment

couldn’t get any labor or union rights legislation
through with a filibuster proof Senate, big House maj.
and dem pres.
Then blame repubs, how lame.
they are cheaters, liers, murderers, and thieves.
vote for that if you care,
many are not.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 1:13 pm Link to this comment

The Democrats record in Civil Rights stinks….
and more blacks are recognizing this.

ask all the black men and women in prison the the
democrats are just as responsible as Pubs for putting
there.
the Dems couln’t even get D.C. voting rights.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 1:06 pm Link to this comment

I might add

reformation of the Democrat Party from within the Party
is impossible.
  Senate 80 - 13   pro war
  House 356 - 65   pro war

you can’t overcome those odds, you are kidding yourself
if you believe that our fradulent primary system is able
to.

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By garth, June 19, 2010 at 1:03 pm Link to this comment

JDMysiticDJ gets to the nub of the problem with his following statement:

“To me the overriding issue is our militarism.”

There are so many issues whirling around in this never-never land that it makes one’s head spin.  But when you stop to think about, it’s those goddamn wars.

Pat Buchanan on the Mclaughlin Show on PBS had the temerity to say that this country should go back to be a Republican and give up its empire to restore peace.  Monica Crowley started to froth at the mouth and came back with the stale claims that they attacked us becuase they hate out freedoms and our Democracy.  Sounded like old times under Bush.

I stooped and thought of those poor peasants in Afghanistan sitting aroud a hookah saying, “You know what, Abdul, I hate those freedoms in Amerca. Let’s hop a bus, grab some planes and fly them into the tallest buildings we can find in NY City and the flattest building we can find in Washington DC.  What d’ya say?  Are you with me?”

I agree JD, stop the war, stop the madness.

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By ardee, June 19, 2010 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

JDmysticDJ, June 19 at 3:23 pm

Show me a viable Social Democratic Political Party; show me a viable Green Party option, and I’ll give my utmost in support, but until there is a viable alternative to the reactionary, extremely dangerous Republican morons, I’ll continue the struggle within the Democratic Party. At best, it may only be a holding action but, as of now, it will provide the best vehicle for continuing the struggle.

You fail to recognize two important points, in my own opinion, and I will enumerate them here;

point one, the Democratic Party is as culpable as the GOP, as responsible, and as guilty. Obama is Bush 44, nothing less and certainly nothing more. With the assistance of his party ( the one you seemingly naively put all your hopes in) he has broken his promise to end rendition and torture, he has escalated a sordid and illegal war, he has sold his soul and this nation to the corporations. That includes, by the by, the Health Care industry with that abominable joke of a reform bill.One that assures only the continued profit of the Industry and the continued deaths of thousands each year.

Where, one wonders, especially with a large majority in both Houses ( Bush had, at most, 53 Repugs in the Senate yet managed quite nicely to pass his own agenda) are the prosecutions, where is the justice, where in fact is your own common sense and vision of the truth of this political reality?

I will also continue to be critical of those who fail to see political reality, and become enablers of the most dangerous elements of our political system.

The most dangerous enablers in this nation are simply those like you, which brings me to point two;
You call the emerging third party politics in the nation as not viable. You ignore the simple and eloquent fact that a party comes into power when a sizable portion of the electorate votes for it.

You thus portray a self fulfilling prophecy, and ,hopefully, you will drown because of your refusal to understand the corrupt nature of this Duopoly system and the fact that the emerging third parties are the only hope we have.

I see, in point of fact, nothing whatever wrong with remaining within the democratic party if your chosen goal is the reformation of that party. But your slam of third party politics betrays your real motivation, to calm the slaves and make them satisfied with the status quo. You do not seek reformation only continuation, you fight a losing battle.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 12:48 pm Link to this comment

Your rationalization for being a conservative isn’t
worth the time to write a response.
Lucky for us, most see them for what they are and not the
myth of the past.

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By ofersince72, June 19, 2010 at 12:30 pm Link to this comment

Thats why, the DP is not viable, hasn’t been for decades.
That vehicle ran out of morals a long time ago.
With your rationalization, Why not vote Republican, they
were the party or Lincoln. The Democrats can hardly take
credit for Civil Rights Leg., speaking of which, the Dems
are more responsible for the demise of Acorn than the Pubs

not to mention they are cheaters, liers, murderers, and
thieves…. go vote for them,happy you can live in an
ancient myth.

not me
i was going to take my time and write a good line but
its laughable to argue this.

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 12:25 pm Link to this comment

Not One More

Thank you for the thoughtful post. I admit to being conflicted on this issue. To me the overriding issue is our militarism. Personally, I have long been aware of the economic injustice that has governed our economic life. I personally look with disdain at those who perpetuate economic injustice, but economic success has never been one of my primary motivations, I don’t need much, and I am proud of having supported myself through honest labor. I have sought to point out economic injustice over the course of my life, and I consider economic justice to be an important issue, but it pales in significance to the horrors caused by our nation’s military and covert activities. These horrors have been on-going since the birth of our nation. Our nation’s history is replete with war crimes, and I believe that Obama is a war criminal.  Enlightened, informed, people realize that our current military   activities, and foreign policy actions, are nightmarish in their reality. The question becomes, what do we do to bring our current military atrocities to an end?

Your quotation from Frederick Douglas about struggle is truly inspiring, but let me offer this bit of history regarding Douglas and his grasp of political reality, and the method of struggle.

“In spite of the seeming pro-slavery policy of the Lincoln administration, Douglass was earnestly working in the President’s support.”

I am very much aware of the history of the U.S. labor movement and Eugene Debbs is an individual I have great admiration for. To me, Eugene Debbs is the person in history who made the best argument for the morality of socialism. Debbs was elected to political office while being in prison. His Pullman Strike was very successful, which accounts for his being imprisoned. However, I don’t see Debbs as a deity whose advice must always be followed. The idea of wasting ones vote, as a matter of principle, seems foolhardy and counter productive to me, especially when wasting that vote has the potential of enabling an even more sinister and moronic political entity.

I personally would like to see the left wing of the democratic party put forth a primary candidate to challenge Obama in 2012, if only to bring progressive issues to the forefront of debate. I believe that doing so would move the Democratic Party to the left, without providing automatic victory for a Republican Candidate.

I was an early opponent of the Viet Nam War, and I paid my dues opposing that war, but I supported Lyndon Johnson because of his War on Poverty, and Civil Rights Agenda.

His opponent was Barry Goldwater,

“As an opponent of federal civil rights laws Goldwater was highly critical of the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson. He also favoured a more aggressive approach to the Vietnam War. Nominated as the Republican Party as its presidential candidate in 1964, he upset many of his potential supporters by voting against Johnson’s Anti-Poverty Act (1964).

His extreme anti-Communist views also frightened the American public. In one television interview Goldwater explained that he would be willing to use nuclear weapons against communist forces in Vietnam. Although his views on civil rights made him popular in the Deep South…”

For a more in depth examination of the real Barry Goldwater, one only needs to do a simple search. He was a supporter of Joe McCarthy, endorsed by the John Birch Society, basically, a right wing wacko, in spite of what revisionists would have us believe.

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 12:16 pm Link to this comment

Not One More (Cont.)

Regarding Bertrand Russell, I’m sorry to say that I give no credence to Russell, he was a moral reprobate, and he seemed to become deranged as he aged.

“… on 20 November 1948, in a public speech[3] at Westminster School, addressing a gathering arranged by the New Commonwealth, Russell shocked some observers with comments that seemed to suggest a preemptive nuclear strike on the Soviet Union might be justified.”

Back to the issue at hand, to say that we face a serious dilemma is a gross understatement. Our democracy has already been subverted. I believe that we are currently ruled by Corporate Fascism, and that we have been for some time now. I don’t want to exaggerate, but I see the Tea Partiers, and their ilk, as being a vanguard movement towards totalitarian Fascism. These people would be easily duped into supporting totalitarian Fascism, if a greater national crisis were to occur, this hatred of government, though seemingly justified, presents a serious threat to the ideal of democracy. Chomsky’s comments about the collapse of the center, in reference to the fall of the Weimar Republic should be instructive to all.

Don’t misunderstand me, I don’t believe that we are immediately confronted by the possibility of totalitarian Fascism, but I do believe that avoiding that possibility is of the utmost importance. When confronted by the real quantifications of death, misery, and injustice that have resulted from our foreign policy actions, a thinking person must come to the conclusion that ending these horrors, and this folly, must end. How to achieve that end becomes the question.

Some will argue that because of the magnitude of horrors and injustice violent revolution is justified, but I am of the belief that violent revolution would not only be a strategic failure, but would increase the horrors, and hasten the onset of total tyranny. In the remotest of possibilities that such a revolution would be successful, I believe the resulting new government would be as repressive and violent as the old, if not more so.

I would love to wake up tomorrow to the announcement of a new paradigm; an end to the militarism and a withdrawal of U.S. forces from foreign soil, but that is not going to happen any time in the near future. Now is the time to reread Frederick Douglas’ comment on struggle. The struggle to end racism has taken centuries, and still continues. After our nation’s revolutionary war, it took 30 years before the common man got voting rights. It took decades longer to provide women with the right to vote. The Viet Nam War raged on for eight years - Let me point out that Johnson, the Democrat, resigned office because of the war, while Nixon, the Republican, escalated the war, which resulted in the deaths of additional millions, and the destabilization of Indo China, which added significantly to the death toll.

The struggle for social justice has been an endless one, and has continued through the ages, there have been advances, but they came after much struggle, and were beset with reactionary opposition and setbacks, and were often accompanied by, in retrospect, unnecessary violence.

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By garth, June 19, 2010 at 12:06 pm Link to this comment

JDMysticDJ,

I agree with you 100%.  I support those Democratic leaders who are willing to stand up and, at least, speak the truth in support of a free democratic society.

I am sick of these welchers.  I am aware that anything that comes out of a Republican’s mouth is a lie.

Jim DeMint of South Carolina, for example, might’ve had a run for his money if a viable candidate were selected.  DeMint was the first Senator to come out in support of Bush’s Social Security Privatization plan.  It was right after he won a close election in SC.  Maybe they thought that South Carolinians would soon forget.  I think they didn’t and that they were going to send him back to wherrever he came from.

But I can’t stand being lied to and treated like I’m a goddamned dummy.

Get all the money out of the races.  But if we can’t, then in the meantime say what is on our minds, and in most cases what is obvious.

I Massachusetts, we’ve got Scott Brown running for Senate.  Now here’s a pol who separated himself from the pack by wearing a barn coat and driving a pick-up truck and claiming to be the 41st vote.

And Charlie Baker, of Harvard U. running for Governor.  He was head of Harvard Pilgrim Health Insurance and they are ones who wouldn’t pay for rabies shots because the primary physician was on vacay. tells you what kind of leader he’d be.

When no one is willing to grab the bull by the horns, so to speak, and when the only word that best describes Obama’s Presidency is lackluster, especially in this time of great political fervor, then we are in deep shit.


As a study one should watch the width of the faces of the political hacks who’ve made it.  Like Pinnochio’s nose grew with each lie, the faces of politician’s faces get fatter.

Look at Mitt Romney.  His face used to be thin and angular.  Now he’s a regular fat faced pol.

Nevermind getting a dog.  The pols nowadays rely on their appetites as friends.

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By JDmysticDJ, June 19, 2010 at 11:23 am Link to this comment

Not One More (Cont.)

The Democratic Party, over the last century, has been the vehicle for providing social justice in this country, and has been the home of progressive politicians. Obviously, the Democratic Party has been plagued by reactionary elements, over the decades, but progressives within the Democratic Party have been the instruments for providing social justice in our society. Listing their accomplishments is unnecessary. It’s true that the cause of progressivism has suffered a serious setback over the last thirty years, and the obstacles that face progressives seem insurmountable, but now is not the time to withdraw support for progressive politicians, and hand victory to the most reactionary elements in society. Show me a viable Social Democratic Political Party; show me a viable Green Party option, and I’ll give my utmost in support, but until there is a viable alternative to the reactionary, extremely dangerous Republican morons, I’ll continue the struggle within the Democratic Party. At best, it may only be a holding action but, as of now, it will provide the best vehicle for continuing the struggle.

I will also continue to be critical of those who fail to see political reality, and become enablers of the most dangerous elements of our political system.

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By garth, June 19, 2010 at 8:41 am Link to this comment

Call it malaise, call it the funk, I suggest that nothing stirs up the tired blood more than the truth.  And that’s what we ain’t getting from anywhere in the American media.

Forget about ABC, CBS, NBC, that is at best partial news.  Forget about Fox and the cable news, that ‘s unless you want your brain to rot.

But vying for the worst stb in the back are C-SPAN’s Wahington Journal and DemocracyNow!

For the past couple of weeks, C-SPAN’s Washington Journal seems to be circling its wagons and allowing on only right-wing loud mouths, Government Smurfs and Newspaper bimbos.  (Today, it was Ylani Mui Financial Reporter for the Washington Post, who came to talk about the Credit Card Law.  She sounded more like a spokesperson for the credit card companies.  Oh, yeah, someone please tell Ms. Mui that in English, when something is not possible the word is “impossible” not “unpossible.”)

Yesterday, DemocracyNow had on Robert Rreich and someone named Englehard to talk about the wars in Iraq and Aftghanistan.

Reich went off on the BP Crime in the Gulf and said BP ought to be put into Receivership.  Nothing wrong with that untill you realize he was the one who came out aftter Obama’s speech to the nation about a public option in the health care bill and told everyone how simple and straightforward the public option was and how it would work.  Reich who stands about 5 feet tall can now stand with William Bulger, the ex-Senate President of Massachusetts, in the Corrupt Midget Hall of Fame.

We never even got clos to a Public Option.  Even though it would’ve helped only a few.

Well, The CM went on to urge Obama to use the oil spill as a teachable moment to pass a carbon tax.  We’ll be paying for the sponsors of the financial meltdown till the cows come home.

He said NAFTA helped the peso, (and I might add the 14 oligarch families of Mexico.

But check out the footage of the Afghan mineral find that was run on the show.  reminded me of Chalabi’s marketing footage when he tried to build up support as the heir apparent to the Iraq Presidency.

He had a bunch of Iraqis (about 15) dressed as soldiers running around him in a circle as he walked toward the camera.

The footage of the mineral find showed two Afhans pounding on rocks while sitting on a wall and coming up with what looked like Emaralds.

They were then shown carrying their find back to a shack with an emblem of some type over the doorway that said in English, “Geo Survey.”

It doesn’t get much better that this
We didn’t

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By FiftyGigs, June 19, 2010 at 6:13 am Link to this comment

We need a new law.

When people use the public airwaves—as Rush
Limbaugh and Glenn Beck have recently done—to
mock, demean, satirize, or in any other way use
minors as content for their craft without the consent
of the child’s legal guardian, they should be
considered guilty of child abuse, their license to
broadcast on public airwaves should be revoked, and
the owner of the license should be fined all the
future profits of the show.

Republicans want to protect family values? Let’s help
them.

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By Not One More!, June 19, 2010 at 12:35 am Link to this comment

I despise articles like this, and yet they get published regularly on supposedly progressive websites, which is a sure indication that this isn’t a progressive website, just posing as one for the purpose of promoting the democratic party even as they act like the republican party, or should we say, the corporate party.

Yes, the economy ‘rebounded’ for the few that got the trillion dollar bail out; the war got better for those willing to get a trillion dollars in minerals from Afghanistan.

But for the rest of humanity that gives damn for peace, justice and truth, it is just a continuation of the corporate policies that were brought to the forefront by Reagan, continued by Clinton, crudely promoted by Bush Jr, and now has Obama as the ‘nice’ empty rhetoric spokesperson.

Our policies are killing people, killing the environment. Obama is a war criminal, most corporations steal their ‘profit’ at the expense of people and community.

And still people like this author have the audacity to write this kind of crap. And you know why? Lies work. The more bold faced the lie, the better it works. The majority of the people will read it and say, oh, that was a health bill that people have wanted for the past 60 years so things must be getting better. BS. I guess the author forgot that most people want single payer health care.

I read some of the comments that still say that the democratic party is the right party that will help people. I want to shake them and yell “WAKE UP.”

I was kicked off from commondreams for supporting Nader and saying the the democratic party was a bunch of liars. And I say it again.

support republican policy
vote for a democrat

so it goes

“The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.” Bertrand Russell

“I’d rather vote for what I want and not get it than vote for what I don’t want, and get it.” ~ Eugene Debs

“If there is no struggle, there is no progress,” declared Frederick Douglass in 1857, in response to those who suggested that the great abolitionist was pushing too hard for an end to human bondage. “Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may be both moral and physical; but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”

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By ofersince72, June 18, 2010 at 8:11 pm Link to this comment

Matter of fact,  voting for criminals kind of makes
  you party to it, aiding in criminal activity.

  Not Me!!!!

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By drum4one4all, June 18, 2010 at 7:57 pm Link to this comment

yep..that’s right Dems are voting IN Republican policies. 

We have two Corporatist parties period disguised as 2 different parties.

But Not really.

What EJ Dionne and JDMystics and all else who are spewing out “oh how different are these parties…

The healthcare reform that was past IS/WAS a republican policy.  It is currently being used in Massachussettes with Romney.  Romney the Republican.  Our two headed hydra gets to now pretend that it is a “liberal” “Left” “Dem” party policy, because now the Republicans can all vote against it federally, because they know the Dems out number them, so they can afford to keep up the appearances of being against it even though they are absolutely for it and pushed it in Mass.  I bet at some point it was on the Heritage FOundation website of a way to really screw AMericans is to force them to purchasing insurance vs healthcare.  Now the Dems….who are squarely rightwing corporatist, now they get to Pretend it is a liberal policy, which it is NOT, and now they push it through…and oh how dramatic the whole charade was.

But “YOU BETCHA”, the dems passed a republican policy. 

But lets put alllllll that aside.  Let’s be clear.  Each party is a corporatist party.  We DO NOT have a labor or people party.  Green is as close as it gets…but they are not even registered in all states…or maybe they are now.

ANy person who is unwilling to catagorize correctly that REPUBS and DEMS are EQUALLY CORPORATIST, keeps us stuck in this quagmire of false democracy.

The Green Party, Socialist Democratic Party, are much better than anything that dem or Repub have to offer.

MLK was a Democratic Socialist.  I will not vote EVER for a corporatist party.  No way.  Obama is a corporatist pushing corporate repub policies with the backing of the Corporate Dem party pretending they are left.  The Repubs are getting everything they want.  ANd they even get to keep their obstinance.  Cause the Dems are covering for them.

Oh, how sweet.

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By ofersince72, June 18, 2010 at 7:43 pm Link to this comment

All a feel “feel good” liberal is,

  is a   closet conservative.

  that at times lets their conscience

  disturb them.

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By Laudyms, June 18, 2010 at 7:39 pm Link to this comment

“The truth about American politics is this: disguised by the theatrics of squabbling Democrats and Republicans, Washington governs according to limits prescribed by a fixed and narrow consensus. The two main parties collaborate in preserving that consensus. Doing so requires declaring out-of-bounds anything even remotely resembling a fundamental critique of how power gets exercised or wealth distributed.”
-Andrew Bacevich

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By ofersince72, June 18, 2010 at 7:34 pm Link to this comment

You have it all wrong JD..

  It’s all Nader’s fault again??????? OH, my, my

  It’s your fault!!!!!!!!!!

  we could have already taken and reformed the
  Democrat Party if it weren’t for the type of
  rationalization you put forth.
  NO NO   NO   these thugs will never get my vote !!!
  and there will be plenty more that aren’t see through
  your lesser of evil scenario….

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By JDmysticDJ, June 18, 2010 at 7:05 pm Link to this comment

By Laudyms, June 18 at 5:54 pm #

“Continuing to accept choices limited to Tweedledum and Tweedledee has gotten us where we are today. Wake Up!”


Seeing as how you claim to be so wide awake and alert, I would appreciate your alerting me to other “choices.”

Right wing policies have gotten us to where we are today. You may claim to be awake, but your eyes are tightly closed.

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By Laudyms, June 18, 2010 at 1:54 pm Link to this comment

Continuing to accept choices limited to Tweedledum and Tweedledee has gotten us where we are today. Wake Up!

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By JDmysticDJ, June 18, 2010 at 1:42 pm Link to this comment

Those who authoritatively state that there is no difference between Democrats and Republicans are guilty of intentional and willful lying, and they know that they are.

All one needs to do is check the record of recent congressional votes to see that there is a clear and distinct difference between Democrats and Republicans.

I won’t go into further discussion about how Democrats need to be more progressive, that is obvious to the politically astute, but that is not a political reality at the present time.

Tea Partiers and others who lack political acuity serve the interests of our corporate masters, while leftists and radicals who advocate abandoning the Democratic Party also serve the interests of our corporate masters.

Apolitical independents, who determine election outcomes, are bombarded by criticisms of Democrats from:  The right wing media, the corporate owned media, and from leftists and radicals whose criticisms are indeed cogent, but indecipherable by apolitical independents.

When the right returns to dominant power in our government, leftist and radical nihilists will bare as much responsibility for that return to power as will the right wing media, the corporate media, and the Tea Party dim-bulbs.

These leftist and radical nihilists, who advocate abandoning the Democratic Party, are short a few watts of being illuminating bulbs, in their own right.

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By Laudyms, June 18, 2010 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment

Get real! Obama has moved 180 degrees from what he advocated before his election. The DLC may be happy but the people were betrayed….again. That in fact is what the Democrats are good at, and little else. Give-aways to Corporate vultures are hardly anything to rejoice about.

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By Jimnp72, June 18, 2010 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

I guess if one is constantly bashed about every single thing one would become
discouraged and paranoid.
This has been the repug way for as long as I can remember. bash everyone and
everything in their way regardless of morals or principles.

I wish they would get the hell out of here and form their own country,
preferably on another planet.

those of you constantly condemming the anibush Obasma-get a life and a
brain as well. he is the best president we have had in several generations. At
least the man thinks, sinks input from implacable endemies (the repugs) and
has made more major changes for the benefit of the common person than a
whole generation of repub presidents.
maybe you should go with the repugs to form your own country if you hate this  
one and Obama so much.
it does take courage to overcome obnoxious loudmouths. he is showing this
finally as well.

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By Gordy, June 18, 2010 at 10:25 am Link to this comment

Garth:

“If the current brand of Libertarianism were to hold,
there’d be about 7 or eight people on Earth:  the
butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker, the
banker, the investor, the manager and the company
worker.

They wouldn’t need their fall-back position of
Charity.

A worker who didn’t satisfy the needs of the
localized economy could be shamed out of the
community.  For lack of productivity or some such
euphemism.

Unfortunately, for those Ayn Randian Trust fund
babies, the world economy is a lot more complicated
than they seem to be able to comprehend.”

Yup! 

America - the place where Ayn Rand and Jesus occupy
the same idiot’s bookshelf.

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By garth, June 18, 2010 at 10:07 am Link to this comment

A few days ago I got a call from the Republican Scott Brown campaign for Senator in Massachusetts.  He was urging state Democrats to get behind him and help him stand up against the Republican Party. 

No word of a lie. 

He wants Democrats to help him stand up against the onslaught of his own, the Republicans.  Stand up to the Republican enclaves, the wealthy of the North and South Shore, the Insurance executives of Concord and Dover, the self employed who drive trucks and wear barn coats, and the high tech workers who consider themselves wealthy.

What in the world is that all about?  Is he saying please help Scott from himself? 

I think the toilet plunger is the tool that would work best in this situation.

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By gerard, June 18, 2010 at 9:43 am Link to this comment

“—have a self-confident sense of purpose, and to act boldly in its pursuit”

For at least 50 years the American people have been taught not to act boldly.  Instead they have been spoon=fed on fear and propaganda and virtually disenfranchised by deceit, threat of punishment for nonconformity, mediocre schooling, and the deadly poison of American exceptionalism.

The only difference these days between Dems and Repubs is that Repubs are more likely to make some silly fuss at the grass roots, egged on by media manipulators and reactionary preachers of dubious repute. Dems, on the other hand, suffer from internecine wrangling, disillusion and indecision.

Answers, anyone?  Well, the unwashed millions still hold a great deal of latent power—and something’s gotta give.  The BP disaster plus Afghanistan ought to just about do it.

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By garth, June 18, 2010 at 7:38 am Link to this comment

Read “call me roy.”

His argument exempifies the call to the simple minded rabble.

Reality check:  If your ticket was cancelled for an event, then you’ll receive the notational amount just like everyone else. 

If you want to pay lower taxes than the little people, follow Warren Buffet’s path—become one of the richest men in the word.

He pays a lower rate than his secretary.  He admitted it.

But then check out his dealings with furniture factories in North Carolina.  In one case, he bought one and laid off all the emplyees and sent the jobs overseas. 

He talks out of both sides of his mouth, but, then again, the super-wealthy can do that with impunity.

When roy brings up his polluted version of the Ten commandments, does he want to imply anything about Creationism.  If Creationism, Intelligent Design, were true, then there’d be no need for any commandments, now would there?

If the current brand of Libertarianism were to hold, there’d be about 7 or eight people on Earth:  the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker, the banker, the investor, the manager and the company worker.

They wouldn’t need their fall-back position of Charity.

A worker who didn’t satisfy the needs of the localized economy could be shamed out of the community.  For lack of productivity or some such euphemism.

Unfortunately, for those Ayn Randian Trust fund babies, the world economy is a lot more complicated than they seem to be able to comprehend.

Ironically, you attack unions when unions might be the saviour of your brand nincompoop Capitalism.

It’ll soon be over, though.  Imagine yourself in a choke hold and you refuse to say “uncle.”

In the end, no one will miss you.  The Scott Brown’s, the Charlie Bakers, the whoe kit and kaboodle. 

Good riddance to bad rubbish.

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By Gordy, June 18, 2010 at 7:25 am Link to this comment

tedmurphy41:

He’s not and never intended to be a liberal Democrat
though.  He wanted to be the captain of the ship; he
got his wish and the ship has a predestined route; it’s
too big and unwieldy to change course; it has a
schedule to keep and big business won’t tolerate any
deviation or delay.

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By tedmurphy41, June 18, 2010 at 6:37 am Link to this comment

The problem with your Democratic Party is that it want to be loved by everyone.
A saying comes to mind that goes something like this:
You can please some of the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.
It’s about time President Obama started to assert himself as a liberal Democrat and let the Republicans shoot themselves in the foot, which seems to happen on a fairly regular basis.

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By Gordy, June 18, 2010 at 4:54 am Link to this comment

“Democrats should feel a lot better than they do.
They enacted a health care bill that had been their
dream for more than 60 years. They pulled the country
out of a terrifying economic spiral. They are on the
verge of passing the biggest reform of Wall Street
since the New Deal. The public has identified enemies
that are typically seen as Republican allies: oil
companies and big bankers.” 

You’re dreaming!  I’m amazed that anyone even
believes in this false polarity any more!  The
differences are superficial; Obama’s doing much the
same as Bush even though we thought they were night
and day intellectually and ideologically.  It shows
that a machine is in charge, not human values. 

You really take this Healthcare bill seriously?  You
do know it’s a massive cop-out, right? 

The economic patterns have a life of their own and it
seems ridiculously early anyway to talk of Democrats
pulling us to safety, even assuming they did have
that ability, which they certainly do not. 

And I will believe in these ‘massive’ banking reforms
when I see them.  Meantime, business as usual.

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By FiftyGigs, June 18, 2010 at 4:44 am Link to this comment

Every heard the “fool me twice” thing?

Well, it’s hard at work now. That’s the chatter
coming from the “enlightened” among us who want US to
believe THEM when THEY say not to believe what the
other guy says.

Right. *wink* SURELY, I’ll vote for your idea of…
of… what exactly? Something different, you say?

The anti-Democratic Party folks and the I’m Apathetic
Too folks are not the cure. They’re part of the
problem.

Unity is not the same as identical. Okay?

Secondly, when a majority of Senate Democrats favor a
good idea, that’s not indicative of Democrats not
having a plan.

So, why are you Self-Enlightened Ones supporting the
40 Republican seditionists????

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By drum4one4all, June 17, 2010 at 10:19 pm Link to this comment

What a stunning lie and misrepresentation of truth is EJ’s 4th paragraph, stating, democrat’s should feel better than they do.  That’s as far as I had to read.  I’ve said it before and will restate it again. I wil not read any more articles by EJ Dionne.  He/she/it/whatever is far out of touch with reality it’s unbelievable.  An Obama apologist.  Sickening.  And NOT truthful.  Hello? Truth Dig? 

I may have to stop supporting this site if this untruthful crap keeps getting spun…EJ Dionne.  Malaise EJ?  How about…some of us, unlike you, were not ever hood winked to begin with and we are downright pissed.  What EJ does not get, is how the Dem base is shifting.  That’s not malaise EJ, it’s called fed up.  Idiot.

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By G.Anderson, June 17, 2010 at 9:23 pm Link to this comment

To be cursed by the Devil is to truly be blessed Blue Punk…

I suppose now you’ll keep on chiding Mr. Obama to follow your plan for his and our salvation…

However whether Ram comes or goes, cosmetic changes are all we’re going to get…in the end.

Becuase, Republicans and Democrats are fundamentally the same, just like millions of pieces of candy corn, it’s hard to tell any difference at all without a microscope, sure here and there is a dud, that failed to be kicked out by the computer when it was being packaged, that looks a little different….

Still I’ll say it again..

It just doesn’t work anymore.

The Republicans create the victims while the Democrats institutionalize that victimization for generations.

But the fundamental political and economic mechanisms are never delt with, and never will be, as long we have a one party government, mis identified by two names.

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By greenuprising, June 17, 2010 at 8:50 pm Link to this comment

‘And: “By 57 to 37 percent, voters in these 60 Democratic seats believe that President Obama’s economic policies have produced record deficits while failing to slow job losses.”’

Well?

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By garth, June 17, 2010 at 6:47 pm Link to this comment

call me roy reminds of me Frank Fontaine’s character, Crazy Guggenheim, in the Jackie Gleason Show.

Craze would always say that his father called him Roy.

Craze and call me Roy make about the same amount of sense.

And to think some people believe that gobbledy gook.


Evolution?  No way.  It’s more like devolution.

Just a poem by Crazy Guggenheim about the Russian Communist takeover of the US to scare you call me Roy.  Think of yourself as Algie.  Here comes the bogeyman.

Algie saw the bear.

The bear saw Algie.

The bear was bulgy.

The bulge was Algie.

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By Peetawonkus, June 17, 2010 at 6:41 pm Link to this comment

call me Roy
Man, I love Rightie math. And their jokes are funny, too. As for me, I’m gonna bake up a big batch of cookies, put ‘em on a plate under the Corporation Tree with a glass of frosty milk and wait for that Free Market to come down the chimney.

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By FiftyGigs, June 17, 2010 at 6:41 pm Link to this comment

The liberal hysteria is getting embarrassing. Even on
television.

Maddow interviews some east coast academic about a
plan to build sand barriers, sets him up with a
question about whether it’s a good idea, to which he
predictably replies no, and then proceeds to babble
until he admits he doesn’t know what the plan
actually is. Deep on-mic sigh from Rachel. Deeper
off-mic sigh from me.

Meanwhile, Brother Keith (congrats on a well-deserved
award) has Robert Reich critiquing the President’s
speech, and OMG I can’t keep up with the list of
things they say he should have tackled, starting with
the escrow and all the other stuff Obama’s garnered,
then ordered cap ‘n trade, tackled some other huge
things. Oh, and evoke a la Glen Beck. And, uh, I
guess look Presidential. It got ludicrous.

Listen, we need to focus a wee bit more tactically.
Here’s what’s happening.

The Deep South is in the clutches of rabid
conservatism, dedicated to the literal demise of you,
me, Maddow, and Brother Keith. Government in the Deep
South has stuck its hands deep into Big Oil’s pocket,
deep enough to reach all the way to James Watt. The
Deep South has been hit with an environment and
economic catastrophe. The Deep South Republicans are
wholly unprepared to do anything. They made no plans
in preparation, and they have no ideas now. All the
gripes against Obama could just as well be pointed at
the Republicans in the South.

So, if you want to fix the REAL problem in the Gulf
of Mexico, I suggest the LAST thing you consider is
focusing nonsensical criticism at the one person in
the entire world who has so far managed to accomplish
something tangible, and instead focus on the true
source of failure, Republican conservatism in the
Deep South, so that Southerns might possibly come to
the conclusion that we’re not complete idiots.

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By call me roy, June 17, 2010 at 4:56 pm Link to this comment

Tax Cuts – As Explained By A Democrat
If you don’t understand the Democrats’ version of tax cuts (and you are not alone), maybe this will help explain it:

50,000 people go to a baseball game, but the game was rained out. A refund was then due
The team was about to mail refunds when the Congressional Democrats stopped them and suggested that they send out refund amounts based on the Democrat National Committee’s interpretation of fairness.
After all, if the refunds were made based on the price each person paid for the tickets, most of the money would go to the ticket holders of the most expensive tickets. That would be unfair and unconscionable.
People in the $10 seats will get back $15, because they have less money to spend. Call it an “Earned Income Ticket Credit.” Persons “earn” it by demonstrating few skills and poor work habits, thus keeping them at entry-level wages.
People in the $25 seats will get back $25, because that’s only fair.
People in the $50 seats will get back $1, because they already make a lot of money and don’t need a refund. After all, if they can afford a $50 ticket, then they must not be paying enough taxes.
People in the $75 luxury seats will have to pay another $50, because they have way too much to spend.
The people driving (or walking) by the stadium who couldn’t afford to watch the game will get $10 each, even though they didn’t pay anything in, because they need the most help (sometimes known as Affirmative Action!).
Now do you understand?
If not, contact Representative Nancy Pelosi for assistance.

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By call me roy, June 17, 2010 at 4:54 pm Link to this comment

While all of the intellectuals are talking politics:
The 2011 Food Crisis Means Financial Armageddon

Over the last two years, the world has faced a series of unprecedented financial crises: the collapse of the housing market, the freezing of the credit markets, the failure of Wall Street brokerage firms (Bear Stearns/Lehman Brothers), the failure of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, the failure of AIG, Iceland’s economic collapse, the bankruptcy of the major auto manufacturers (General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler), etc… In the face of all these challenges, the demise of the dollar, derivative markets, and the modern international system of credit has been repeatedly forecasted and feared. However, all these doomsday scenarios have so far been proved false, and, despite tremendous chaos and losses, the global financial system has held together. The 2011 Food Crisis is different. It is THE CRISIS. The one that makes all doomsday scenarios come true. The government bailouts and central bank interventions, which have held the financial world together during the last two years, will be powerless to prevent the 2010 Food Crisis from bringing the global financial system to its knees. Financial crisis will kick into high gear. So far the crisis has been driven by the slow and steady increase in defaults on mortgages and other loans. This is about to change. What will drive the financial crisis in 2011 will be panic about food supplies and the dollar’s plunging value. Things will start moving fast. Dynamics Behind 2011 Food Crisis
Early in 2009, the supply and demand in agricultural markets went badly out of balance. The world experienced a catastrophic fall in food production as a result of the financial crisis (low commodity prices and lack of credit) and adverse weather on a global scale. Meanwhile, China and other Asian exporters, in an effort to preserve their economic growth, were unleashing domestic consumption long constrained by inflation fears, and demand for raw materials, especially food staples, exploded as Chinese consumers worked their way towards American-style overconsumption, prodded on by a flood of cheap credit and easy loans from the government. Normally food prices should have already shot higher months ago, leading to lower food consumption and bringing the global food supply/demand situation back into balance. This never happened because the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), instead of adjusting production estimates down to reflect decreased production, adjusted estimates upwards to match increasing demand from china. In this way, the USDA has brought supply and demand back into balance (on paper) and temporarily delayed a rise in food prices by ensuring a catastrophe in 2011.

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By call me roy, June 17, 2010 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment

The Progressives’ Transformation of the 10 Commandments
President Barack Obama promised during his campaign and inaugural speeches that we would witness a fundamental transformation of America. To be sure, his idea of a transformation is more akin to Karl Marx or Hugo Chavez than to Jesus Christ and the Holy Trinity.
Perhaps we should be grateful that, so far, President Obama and his progressive cabal are fixated on health care, cap & trade, climate change and other big government projects. With so much on his plate, Obama hasn’t had time to fundamentally charge the very basis of our legal system—the 10 Commandments, as given to the prophet Moses by Yahweh on Mount Sinai.

But rest assured, there will be many—gay activists, atheists, hard-core leftists, etc.—who will eventually get around to fundamentally transforming God’s 10 Commandments.
I. I am your leader, Obama. When I and my minions are around, who needs God?
II. Obama, Pelosi and Reid must be exalted with carved images throughout the nation.
III. Prayer will be banned in public, but praise, song and poetry honoring Obama will be constant.
IV. Remember the Sabbath Day. Don’t observe it, simply remember it.
V. Honor thy mother and thy father if they love Obama; otherwise, call child protection services and claim they’ve abused you.
VI. Thou shall not kill or abuse terrorists or criminals, but unborn babies may be killed right up to the moment of their birth.
VII. Thou shall marry anyone or any creature you wish with the full protection of Obama.
VIII. Thou shall steal from those who work and save and give such bounty to those who are slothful, irresponsible and non-productive.
IX. Thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbor, unless they refuse to accept Obama as their god and their leader.
X. You shall covet your neighbor’s house. When Obama is done transforming America you will have it.

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By call me roy, June 17, 2010 at 4:42 pm Link to this comment

“The most fundamental fact about the ideas of the political left is that they do not work. Therefore we should not be surprised to find the left concentrated in institutions where ideas do not have to work in order to survive.”

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By Tumblingweed, June 17, 2010 at 3:04 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Seems to me the only people who can be enthusiastic about Obama are those who are comfortable with our presence in Iraq and Afghanistan, comfortable with reduced habeas corpus protections, comfortable with health care run by the insurance industry, comfortable with a tax code that lets the rich get richer and the rest of us struggle, comfortable with high unemployment, unimpeded foreclosures, little in the way of a safety net for our disadvantaged, comfortable with spiraling education costs, a compromised environment, ineffective regulatory efforts, corporate media, NAFTA, globalization, Citizens United, compromised electronic voting and a completely screwed up manner of electing politicians who willingly or unwillingly whore after the corporate dollar.

But those people would be more comfortable with an avowed libertarian, someone who proudly aligned him or herself with the Reagan/Bush way of doing business (or being done by business) rather than someone who promised “change we could believe in” and then basically failed to deliver. 

That leaves the rest of us faced with the disappointing obligation to vote for more of the same in order to prevent further loss of control to the true believers.  The true believers have a way to channel their anger, self destructive though it may be, against government.  We, on the other hand, have no outlet for our frustration and betrayal except to vote for the very people who are disappointing us. Not a recipe for a high turnout.

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By Big B, June 17, 2010 at 2:42 pm Link to this comment

I was reminded by “Hulks” comments of what I had said about the 1976 election on more than one occasion, and that is that the repugs intentionally threw that election, full well knowing of the pending post Vietnam, post oil embargo ressesion. They knew all about americans short memories and that eventually Jimmy Carter would be blamed for everything from Vietnam to the Lindberg kidnapping. “I’ll bet Carter was one of the guys that broke into the Watergate, too!”

Jebus, are we this dumb.

Hell ya!

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By justin4545, June 17, 2010 at 2:25 pm Link to this comment

obama always give a good speech. It is how he won the election.

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By ardee, June 17, 2010 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment

Democrats should feel a lot better than they do. They enacted a health care bill that had been their dream for more than 60 years.

Ill let you know when the damn thing takes effect in 2014. The bill is a compromise that really doesnt solve our problems in that area.


They pulled the country out of a terrifying economic spiral. They are on the verge of passing the biggest reform of Wall Street since the New Deal.

Has anyone noticed? Foreclosures are continuing, jobs scarce and Wall Street is flourishing grandly, bonuses galore.

The public has identified enemies that are typically seen as Republican allies: oil companies and big bankers. And given the Republicans’ past policies, the Gulf oil spill is at least as much their problem as Obama’s.

The public might be beginning to understand that the seven hundred fifty million Obama raised came with many strings. That spill is in Baracks lap,period! Especially as he just called for additional deep water drilling, what, minutes before the damn explosion?

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By garth, June 17, 2010 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment

An example of what previous posters claims is that six Democrats sided with Republicans in defeating the extension of the payment to unemploeyed workers.

Recently a right-wing, smart-ass economist from the University of Marylan, long known for its erudition (Yuk, yuk), named Morici said, on C-SPAN, in one sentence that there were no jobs in this economy and in the next breath said they should cut unemployment payments to force the slackers back to work.


Douglas Holtz-Eakin of Obama-world said, yes, the unemployment payments keep workers out of work longer owing to the fact that they are looking for the perfect job.

Yeah, right.  I’d like to see the perect job.

Are McDonald’s (Do you want fries with that?), Home Depot’s (Watch your head!), or WalMart’s greeters at minimum wage our jobs of the future.

This is rubbing our noses in it.

More and stronger Unions is the answer.

The war on civilized America will continue until the war-weary republic stands up and says, “That’s all I can stands.  I can’t stands no more.”


I look around my neighborhood, the mostly densly populated in the US and wonder why am I not seeing chaos.

The answere is that we have police.  That is their job.

Overwhelmingly, most Americans live in relative peace.  It’s the crimes of humanity that are committed on us by those of wealth and power with their ulterior motives that go under reported or mis reported. 

It’s beginning to seem like childhood.  The people on TV look like us and talk like us, but they are no longer of us.  They are not human.

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By Peetawonkus, June 17, 2010 at 12:06 pm Link to this comment

One way of looking at it might be that the Democratic Party, in its national outlook and goals, is a little hard to tell apart from the Republican Party. They both talk the talk of being on the side of the common person. But they walk the walk of bribe takers who accept corporate money and do their bidding. Individual Democrats are varied and principled people. Many are progressives who had high hopes for the Obama Administration. Increasingly, however, his appeasements of the Right and the Corporations, breaking of campaign promises, etc, reveal the hollowness at the core of his presidency. What Democrats feel is that depression that sets in when you feel forced to defend someone you no longer believe in. This “malaise” is the sinking feeling that Obama identifies with the ruling class and its institutions, not Main Street USA. The Democratic Party will never put up its dukes and fight. They’ll leave that to the Lefties and Progressives. And then, when the battle is won, they’ll swoop in and shove everything back to the “center.” Exhibit A: Health Care Reform, anyone?

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By Hulk2008, June 17, 2010 at 11:19 am Link to this comment

The media, and even Mr. Dionne is not immune, is suffering with a raging fever that prevents them from distinguishing what’s good for some political party with what’s good for the US. 
    A truly “smart” political party would have taken an intentional dive during the last Presidential election and should probably do so again in the mid-term 2010.  The problems left behind by Bush-Cheney et al are so massive that no intelligent person would want to be associated with trying to “fix” things.  The Repugs and their bastard offspring Tea Partiers have set themselves up as the know-it-all do-nothing outsiders; they are expert at all forms of sniping and griping and need not be expert at repairing ANYthing.  By contrast the Dems took the reins at a most inappropriate point in history and will suffer blame - blame which should certainly tar the Repugs as well, but won’t. 
    Conservatives are the sandlot bullies who take their turn at bat and when they strike out, can’t bear to surrender a time at the plate.  They want five strikes and five outs instead of three.  When they fail (and they DID it at a global and national level) they want to say “I didn’t mean to swing .... it was just practice”. 
    But the country cannot afford practice swings - we are stuck with real history.  Who cares whether Obama properly arches his eyebrows in a crisis ?  Who cares if a speech excites the audience or not ?  Who cares if the press feels “malaise” ?  Obama is properly holding BP’s feet to the oil conflagration, along with a minimum guarantee of $20B and millions more for displaced fishermen.  The financial reforms are being put in place and we took a stab at Health reform.  And we are taking some baby steps toward alternative energy (... we should be following Bill Gates and friends’ suggestions about tripling energy R&D). 
  By contrast, I do care that Obama has not seen the light at the end of the tunnel in Afghanistan - that light being a freight-train of history rushing toward the US at top speed.  We should be out of that hell hole at the earliest possible moment, paint a smiley face on the map, and stay the heck-outta-Dodge.  There is NO “win” available there - just more angry shepherds and poppy-growers.  If we got out quickly, we would stop the monetary and military hemhorrhaging and the Afghans would probably forget where the US even is in a few months.  Let’s buy off the warlords and take a hasty hike.  Worst case is that the US would be added to the long list of “powers” that came and went.  We surely don’t want to cover China’s rear end while they mine away all those newly-mentioned oil and mineral treasures. 
  But that’s my wishful thinking - the Libs won’t get another turn at bat for another decade or so.  Maybe Al Gore (minus Tipper) will still be around then….

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By felicity, June 17, 2010 at 10:54 am Link to this comment

On finishing the book “Bush’s Brain” How Karl Rove made George W. Bush Presidential, I was verging on a sudden onset of Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.

Rove, or at least his long-term game plan, is in full swing to this day.  If the Republican Party isn’t destroying the Democratic Party (Rove’s “final solution”) then set up the Democratic Party to destroy itself.

You may hate the guy, but face it, Obama is all we’ve got.  Most of us gave up on Congress years ago, but to give up now on Obama is an indulgence we can’t afford.  Don’t let Rove win.

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By ofersince72, June 17, 2010 at 9:56 am Link to this comment

Hey Truth Dig , I hope you aren’t paying E.J. for
his drivel…

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By Hammond Eggs, June 17, 2010 at 9:29 am Link to this comment

“Democrats should feel a lot better than they do.”

Oh, yeah?  Why does Truthdig run this insulting drivel?

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By Winston Smith, June 17, 2010 at 9:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

‘They pulled the economy out of a terrifying economic
spiral’

Please explain to me how going further into debt
solves the debt crisis? It doesn’t. All it does is
buy time but when the reckoning can’t be put off any
longer the consequences will now be even worse.

‘They enacted a health care bill that had been their
dream for more than 60 years.’

This is the bill Liberals have been dreaming of? No,
and you know it.

‘They are on the verge of passing the biggest reform
of Wall Street since the New Deal’

You mean AFTER all the money they gave to Goldman
Sachs and other banksters? I don’t think many will
trust this bill. Even if it is a good bill.

For stepping up the war in Afghanistan and now drone
attacks that are killing many innocent people I think
its safe to say he is losing a lot of support from
progressives on this issue as well.

And for the government’s half-hearted response to the
oil spill ....

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By garth, June 17, 2010 at 8:21 am Link to this comment

Correction:

I meant to say that Tony Hayward is the Lou Costello of the Svanberg- Hayward team.

I confused the identities of Abbot and Costello, when they were active on the comedy scene.  The name, Bud Abbot, seemed to sound more like the fall guy.

Of course, I am Itralian.

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By rudyspeaks1, June 17, 2010 at 7:53 am Link to this comment

Crap! Another article attempting to explain politics within the perspective of
celebrity culture. It’s the “People-Magazining” of political discussion.  Once again
we are told that our problems are caused by psychological problems. Obama is
“petrified, uncertain and hesitant”, the Repub.s “are full of passionate intensity”.
Yikes! Sounds like we need a psycho-analyst, not a revolution. Here’s a counter-
narrative. People pursue rational policies that favor their interests. People with
large amounts of money do it more effectively. Both parties work for those rich
meddlers, the Repub.s as articulators of their malign designs and the Dem.s as the
safe, toothless alternative, existing only to draw off the public’s dissatisfaction into
activity that will never challenge the real program of upper class profits. This is a
perspective that better explains why “it so often seem that Republicans are full of
passionate intensity while Democrats lack all conviction”.

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By garth, June 17, 2010 at 7:39 am Link to this comment

“Malaise.”  Sounds like Jimmy Carter.  Rhymes with mayonnaise, and everyone knows or will soon learn you don’t leave mayonnaise out for too long in the noon day sun.

Truthdig should start a regular blog called, “Keeping up with the News” 

If your bloggers are also journalist then a simple compiling and reporting of the latest news events with a twist of snide comment shouldn’t be all that hard.

For example, consider General “Milton Berle”  Petreaus’s prat fall in front of the Senate.  He missed his breakfast and at around 9:00 AM he keeled over.  (They used to ridicule schoolchildren for acting out because they didn’t get breakfast.  Are the Army guys really man-tough!)

Now doesn’t that send a message to Afghans.  Blow up all falafel trucks, or use the Maxwell Smart, “Bomb in the snack truck trick.”

Back on the White House lawn, the Man-boy Obama announced a pledge by BP of 20 billion dollars. It is to be in a fund to restore the Gulf of British Petroleum.  (It looks like they’ve trashed the Beyond Petroleum alias.)

But just as the words 20 billion dollars were coming out of his mouth, Tony Hayward, the Bud Abbot of BP’s Svanberg-Hayward team started to reach in his pocket.  Fortunately, Svan, the Golden Swede, grabbed Tony’s arm and avoided further embarrassment.

Svanberg, I think his name is, is the absolute head of BP, was redeeming himself from previous remarks he made about “small people.” Remarks that rekindled the sentiment that was felt against Lenora Helmsley of New York Hotel fame, who said, “Only little people pay taxes.”

What Svan and the rest of these birds don’t know is that there is a connectedness to Life on this planet.  And you’ve fucked with Mother Nature.

I think of how LBJ would’ve handled this.  He was only beholden to Brown & Root, but just as much so to his sense of Right & Wrong.

Obama, a well educated person, but not all that bright, sheds a dim light on this country’s future.

Robert Caro points that LBJ was a genius.  He thought and mulled and planned and schemed, but that was in him.

Obama is an opportunist.  He wants to return to his tower where all those he picked to surround him are reinforcing that belief.

But one of the saddest parts of this political scam are the black callers into C-SPAN who back Obama no matter what because he represents a black face.  What a cruel hoax. 
Obama has more in common with Timothy Geithner than he does with any other black person of black politician in the U.S.


He was made and manufactured.  We might as well call him “Big Baby” Obama, the affectionate name given to the Celtics center, Glen Davis, here in Boston where the news is all Celtics all the time.

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By Louis Proyect, June 17, 2010 at 6:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Why does it so often seem that Republicans are full of passionate intensity while Democrats lack all conviction?

—-

That’s easy. Their progressive rhetoric is intended to win votes but once they are in office they listen to the corporate bosses whose trough they feed at. No better example of that is the pig that occupies the White House, who is effectively carrying out Bush’s 3rd term.

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By balkas, June 17, 2010 at 6:36 am Link to this comment

But the root cause for ?all ills remains: a minorty of people are OK and majority are not OK.

By OK, i mean ?all americans shld equally participate in managing the country. All children shld be also OK.
All shld receive equal dental care, education, medical care.

And, then, let there be one party as is the case now or 10 parties.

People whom the ruling class proclaims ^by word and deed^ that they are not OK must be told: Hey, we are all OK!

Of course, i am not suggesting we try to be pantisocratic ^all people ruling equally^. This not possible. Enough people wld do.But certainly more than as it may be now with ab 1 to 10% of the people ruling, tho scalary, the country and 90% of the people!

But it ain`t gonna ever happen if u just ask for their OK of u. No, not ever! Econo-political-educational action is necessary to better one`s insignificance! tnx

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By FiftyGigs, June 17, 2010 at 4:50 am Link to this comment

Right word, wrong target.

A huge high-five to E.J. for nailing the ethos, but
it isn’t a problem with the Democratic Party. It’s a
problem with our democracy.

Look at it in the context of voter turnout, which is
by all accounts pitiful. Otherwise good Americans are
satisfied to “participate” in this country by
watching television and pontificating about what the
President should do. All they want to do is sit and
consume. And that’s exactly what’s delivered to them.

Meanwhile, Congress fills with—ahem—
representatives, who think dinosaurs walked with man,
that science is subordinate to biblical facts, and
... well you get the idea. I could go and on and on.

The result? The result is as predictable as the why.

Cons participate, and wind up running government
agencies to their benefit. Who else will? Everybody
else doesn’t think government works! In fact,
government works very well. Just not for you, because
you ... don’t ... have ... any ... ideas ... about
... what ... specifically ... to ... do.

The thieves have a VERY specific plan. You don’t
spend $80 million to obtain a government job because
you have $80 million to throw away. You’re going to
get that back, and more.

Media isn’t absolved in any of this. Press
conferences, in which citizens stand inside the White
House speaking as directly to the President as most
anyone on earth, become questions about “how do you
feel about The Daily Shows bit last night”. What
tha…?

Can not ONE of those jokers come up with any
questions pertaining to solutions? How about: “Mr.
Gibbs, my Aunt Martha would love to scoop up oily
sand at Gulf Beach. Would that be okay?”

Is that too much to ask?

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By eir, June 17, 2010 at 3:48 am Link to this comment

There is an economic recovery for Wall Street courtesy of the suckers who were sold out by “their” politicians. 

Obama has done virtually nothing real about this vast national disaster other than TALK about it, as usual.  He should be working for BP, if he isn’t already.

Ready for a real Revolution that shows punk Democrats and punk Republicans that we are tired of being played?

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By Mike, June 16, 2010 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

A healthcare bill that forces people to buy crap insurance, a financial reform bill that enshrines “too big to fail” , a country still mired in a depression, 2 wars with a dubious exit strategy, the national security state expanding as we speak. Whats not to like?! Go Obama Go!

PS. If you really want to get depressed, check out this diary from dailykos but don’t criticize Obama or you will make their “enemies list”.

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/6/16/876637/-Come-and-get-me,-trolls!(With-poll)

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, June 16, 2010 at 9:44 pm Link to this comment

It just doesn’t work anymore.

The Republicans create the victims while the Democrats institutionalize that victimization for generations.

Both parties are the flip side of the same record. Sometimes the Republicans are the B side, sometimes they are the A side.

Right now the Democrats are supposed to be the A side.

But it’s still it’s the same old tune, the Plutocracy Rag.

What the Deems have done is much less than spectacular. From down here it looks more like taking the only deal they could get. So too early to pat yourself on the back yet.

They will just never get it.

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