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Change Accomplished

Posted on Aug 19, 2010
White House / Pete Souza

By Eugene Robinson

This is a radical break from journalistic convention, I realize, but today I’d like to give credit where it’s due—specifically, to President Barack Obama. Quiet as it’s kept, he’s on a genuine winning streak.

It’s hard to remember that the inauguration was just 19 months ago. Expectations of the new president were absurdly high. If Obama had done back flips across the Potomac River, when he reached the other side he’d have faced probing questions about why it was taking him so long to cure cancer, solve the Arab-Israeli conflict and usher in an age of universal peace and prosperity.

But look at what he’s accomplished in just the past few weeks. Let me highlight four recent headlines:

Last U.S. Combat Troops Leave Iraq. Obama campaigned as an early and vocal opponent of the Iraq War, calling it a distraction from the more important conflict in Afghanistan. When he took office, there were about 160,000 U.S. troops in Iraq on the heels of George W. Bush’s combat surge. Obama said he would bring our combat forces home and he did—ahead of schedule.

Before dawn Thursday, the last U.S. combat brigade crossed the border into Kuwait, effectively ending the military misadventure that Bush named “Operation Iraqi Freedom.” About 50,000 American military personnel remain in the country to train Iraqi government forces, protect U.S. installations and conduct special forces operations. We leave behind a messy, uncertain political situation, which the Iraqis will have to sort out. We also will have to deal with the most disturbing geopolitical consequence of Bush’s elective war: The theocratic dictatorship in Tehran, its ambitions no longer checked by Saddam Hussein, is much closer to its goal of making Iran a nuclear-armed regional superpower.


Square, Site wide

But Obama did as well as anyone could have with the situation he inherited. Even his scorched-earth Republican critics, by their silence, are acknowledging that the president has fulfilled his campaign promise to be “just as careful getting out of Iraq as we were reckless getting in.”

General Motors to Launch Stock Offering. One of the many crises Obama faced when he took office was the imminent collapse of an iconic industrial giant. The demise of General Motors would have wiped out hundreds of thousands of jobs in the company and its supply chain, and, it’s safe to say, would have been a mighty blow to the nation’s psyche.

Obama ended up pouring $50 billion in the company, acquiring a 61 percent ownership stake. Critics complained about the advent of “Government Motors” and raised the specter of bureaucrats in Washington holding public hearings to redesign the Corvette. But now, after making more than $2 billion in profits so far this year, the restructured company is confident enough to sell stock on Wall Street—and begin repaying the government’s investment.

The company was saved, workers kept their jobs and taxpayers are going to get their money back. That’s nice work.

Gulf Oil Spill Contained. When BP’s Deepwater Horizon well went rogue, the Obama administration was criticized for being slow off the mark. Some of the criticism was justified—the initial response did seem unfocused. But the administration managed to turn things around and quiet any talk of “Obama’s Katrina.”

Obama convinced BP to put up $20 billion as a guarantee that the Gulf Coast residents whose livelihoods were damaged or destroyed by the spill would be compensated. Republican critics who called this a “shakedown” were quickly shushed—by other Republicans. Meanwhile, the administration ramped up its response operation and found effective ways of keeping oil from reaching the shore.

The administration’s claim that three-quarters of the oil was disposed of—by nature or by human intervention—before it could despoil the environment looks overly optimistic to some researchers. Moreover, serious questions remain about the long-term effects of the chemical dispersants that were used in unprecedented quantity. But a few months ago, who imagined that the president and his family would so soon be able to enjoy a day on the beach and a meal of Gulf seafood?

And finally: President Wades into Mosque Controversy. Yes, I’m serious. Supporting the mosque in Lower Manhattan didn’t score any political points. But Obama saw his duty to uphold the values of our Constitution and make clear that our fight is against the terrorists, not against Islam itself. Instead of doing what was popular, he did what was right. 

He still hasn’t walked on water, though. What’s wrong with the man?

Eugene Robinson’s e-mail address is eugenerobinson(at)
© 2010, Washington Post Writers Group

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By ofersince72, September 12, 2010 at 2:28 pm Link to this comment

By Ardee on

Ardee,  I couldn’t agree with you more!!!!!!!!!!!

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By Leefeller, September 12, 2010 at 8:35 am Link to this comment

It seems most if not all organizations, groupies or governments levitate to a few opportunists taking over the helm sort to speak. Such seems politics of human nature and opportunism!

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By ardee, September 12, 2010 at 8:16 am Link to this comment


MoveOn.Org began as a group of three multi-millionaires bored by early retirement. It quickly descended into a much larger group manipulated by the same three who had come to love the limelight and the access to the powerful that the multitudes who followed them guaranteed.

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By Sodium-Na, August 31, 2010 at 6:17 pm Link to this comment


And why bother travelling that far where the temperature reaches less than -250 degrees Celsius,just to be kissed by somebody?

You read it correctly: less than MINUS 250 degrees Centigrade.

It may be bad for your health,bodie!!!!!

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By ofersince72, August 31, 2010 at 4:42 pm Link to this comment

Sodium Na….I kinda like you

But MoveON.Org…..........can kiss me where the sun
                  don’t shine.

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By Sodium-Na, August 31, 2010 at 4:14 pm Link to this comment

Re: Anarcessie,August 30 at 5:29 pm.


If there are any actual political organizers or workers here,of any ideological color,I’d like to hear from them. I’m curious as what they ‘er running into out on the street.



If you mean by the word “here” what you read on the various threads of Truthdig,I am afraid you will end-up wasting your time traveling on Sarah Palin’s “Bridge of No Where”,meaning that you will not get near of what in mind. However,the following suggestion comprised a series of steps that may lead eventually to what you have in mind:

(1) Join MoveOn.Org. It is easy to join: just google the following words: and fill the short application and you are in as a member of a non-profit organization run by persons whose hands are clean and whose minds are for the interest of the middle class and the poor of America-I dare say Ralph Nader like,but cooperate as much as they can with the Democratic Party,but when there is a disagreement,they act and run their policy independently.

(2) After you join,expect to receive from them occasional update about the important events of the day,week or month. They do ask their members to contact their representatives and senators to express their views about the issue in question,or sign a petition.  Sometimes,they may ask their members to write short letters to the editors of the newspapers published where their members live. They provide all necessary information to do what they ask their members to do.

(3) For extremely important issues,they may ask for volunteers from their members to host meetings in his or her housees to discuss the issue whether it is the presidential or congressional election or appointment to the supreme court,economy,wars,etc…

(4) To the vast majority of their members,they encourage them to attend a meeting in one member or more who volunteered to host a meeting for the members who live in the vicinity of the host’s residence. They provide the addresses and phone numbers of the volunteered hosts for such meetings.

(5) Attending or hosting a meeting as described in step (4) is the place where one may be surprized at the variance of the kind of people one may meet and find common ground with. I highly recommend never to miss such meetings. If one is looking to participate in GRASS-ROOTS activities MoveOn.Org may satisfy one’s interest.

Well,Anar,think it carefully over. You may find what is in your mind in step (5) above.

Whatever you decide to do,I can only say: GOOD LUCK.

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By Anarcissie, August 30, 2010 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment

Sodium—it’s probably too late to do anything about the November elections.  A year ago I suggested that it might be time for progs to start organizing primary challenges or third-party candidacies, but of course I wasn’t speaking to activists and nothing happened (as far as I know—the only challenger of my Democrat Congresswoman is apparently a corporate shill from Wall Street).  A demonstration, if big enough, my stir the pot a little, however.  I think much of Mr. O’s supposed base is very disappointed with his conservatism and they might break out a little if offered an opportunity that didn’t require much work (unlike supporting an insurgent candidacy).

If there are any actual political organizers or workers here, of any ideological color, I’d like to hear from them.  I’m curious as to what they’re running into out on the street.

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By Sodium-Na, August 30, 2010 at 11:33 am Link to this comment

Re: Anarcessie,August 29 at 11:47 am.


I am pleased to inform you that I tried hard to find loop-holes in your above Re and totally failed. Therefore,I have no choice except to inform you about such a failure of mine,meaning I agree with the content of your above Re with no reservations,but an additional enhancement to a good post:

(1) Let both over-hauling the Democratic Party and starting a third party that can win presidential elections go-on simultaneously,hitting two birds by one stone.

(2) Your suggestion for the Green Party recruiting some members of the Democratic Party to spur the Democratic Party to reform itself from within is an EXCELLENT suggestion. I hope the Greens read this and starting doing so.

(3) As to Mr.O,I am committed to refrain from making negative comments,at the present time. My commitment will expire in the last part of January,2011. If you have time,please check my post of August 28 at 2:14 pm,addressed to ocjim,on the comments thread that followed the column entitled,“Fox and Friends Trying to Bully and Buy Their Way to Power” by Bill Boyarsky. It has been published recently in the Report Section of Truthdig.If you do check it,you will get a good idea as to how I feel about the man.

(4) Anti-war demonstrations are fine,but I am affraid they are unsustainable without a good military DRAFT with no loopholes for clever lawyers’ manipulations.

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By Leefeller, August 30, 2010 at 8:01 am Link to this comment

When one looks back in time, intolerance of differences has always been.  Persecution by hateful people like McCarthy of the past for example, remind me very much of hateful people of the present, like Beck, Limbaugh, Palin and others, supposedly self proclaimed from the conservative right. Intolerance dost not only come from the right, especially from my observations of posters here on Truth Dig.

My contention is, labels are used to build intolerance not tear it down. Always seems drawing a line in the sand is used to create differences of one sort or another, religious, political, race, economic and if these are not enough, half baked contrived differences will do!

In the end divisiveness is used to take focus off real issues and so it is,  manipulations and deceptions are preformed as smoke and mirrors by special interests,....... so hate is new?

How about just different targets now, but the same damn script.

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By BR549, August 30, 2010 at 7:50 am Link to this comment

Re:  Sodium-Na, August 30 at 5:36 am

I really wasn’t wavering, since I did state that ITW’s previous post ALMOST said
it all.

I don’t wish to pick nits over that issue; what I did wish to express, though,
was that the Republican philosophy, as more originally reflected prior to to the
demise of the Federalist Party, was in representing the common farmers and
laborers through the education, wisdom, and experience of representatives of
the Republican faction of the Democratic Republican Party at that time. The
Democratic faction, on the other hand, represented those that did not wish to
have their representatives making broad reaching decisions that were beyond
the scope of its constituents’ level of understanding.

What that basically says is that our current Democratic party has become the
older Republican faction, and the current Republican Party has assumed the
fear and hoarding positions of the Federalist Party.

If Ron Paul can still call himself a Republican (and why not), what is to keep
others within the current party from seeing the same light? The important thing
to glean from this is that these are just party names; that’s all. These party
names are just standards, like SPQR, for citizens to rally around in their
philosophical thinking. What else does the common man have to rally around?
If we had a Constitutional Party tomorrow (which we do need), I’ll bet you
dollars to doughnuts that both the Reps and Dems would be in trouble

Both of our parties are in trouble, not JUST the Republican Party. They’ve BOTH
lost their sense of values; BOTH of them, and I would still strongly assert that
you can no more reform the Democrat Party than you can dispose of the
Republicans. The problem is one of the human conscience and all this
discussion about party this or party that only serves to fuel the same level of
social disconnection that allowed our current situation to emerge. You can’t
just make the Republicans (Federalists) go away. Even if the Democrat Party
reformed itself and, through some miracle, they all decided to grow a spine and
become conscious, you’d still have the energies of those homeless Federalists
wandering in the background, waiting for their next chance to get back what
they thought was theirs all along.

So, the bigger question is how to reconfigure the system, not just one Party.
Again, if Ron Paul (and there are a few others) can still adhere to older school
Republican values, others can do the same. You just haven’t been able to
convince me that the Republican Party is beyond repair; certainly no more than
the Democrat Party.

This issue comes down to personal integrity. If the Federalists were busy
supporting business interests and the Crown, then they weren’t busy
supporting their newly formed country. At present, that social sickness is
rampant in BOTH parties ......... IMHO.

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By Steve E, August 30, 2010 at 3:37 am Link to this comment

History repeats itself and the fascists are organizing. As before certain groups
of people are becoming lightning rods for persecution, muslims, hispanics,
immigrants, with the communist faction replaced by the liberals or lefties. The
Corporate Media Barons are in this up to their eyeballs. The climate is perfect
now for civil disobedience. With all our problems, financial, and environmental,
and with ongoing imperialistic wars, with a corrupt government that has
hijacked the judicial system, the daily news has decided to put “teabaggers”
with muslim and racial issues in the forefront, agitating the masses. To watch
Palin and Beck is like watching an age old rerun of a fascist uprising. I didn’t pay
much credence to these nut jobs during their rise to media prominence. Now, I
think we all better pay strict attention because the powers that be are going to
use these losers for their devious ends, you betcha. I thought maybe they
would attack Iran or Korea to take our minds off all our country’s other woes, or
maybe stage another 9/11 to make us rally again for blood and vengeance. Why
do any of that when you have the perfect duo to cause rioting and destruction.

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By Sodium-Na, August 30, 2010 at 1:36 am Link to this comment

Re: BR549,August 29 at 10:44 am.


I read your Re referred to above more than once just to weed out the irrelevant from the revelant to my original post of August 28 at 7:51 in which I quoted comments or rather an assessment about the Democratic Party and the Republican Party made by ITW on other tread 8 months ago. The assessment made by ITW is the crux of my exchanges of views with you.

In order to avoid losing sight of the relevants in the details of the irrelevants,it is necessary to outline the exchanges that took place between you and me in steps:

STEP ONE: The assessment made by ITW of the two major parties was quoted by me as the foundation for my communications with you and I repeat quoting the assessment for your convenience:


The Democratic Party is corrupt,fractured,weak and full of major problems that need over-hauling,or even replacement.

But the Republican Party is now the American Fascist Party,closely approximating the policies and tactics Mussolini’s Italian fascist government of the 1920’s. It is as much Christo-Fascist as it accuses unnamed Arabs of being “Islamo-fascist.” The Republican Party is now beyond saving.


Based on the above quote,the Democratic Party can be over-hauled for the better,while the Republican Party is beyond repairs. Hopless.

STEP TWO: You have agreed with ITW’s assessment as you explicitly expressed in your Post of August 28 at 10:10 pm,addressed to me and I quote your agreement here below:


ITW’s quote really does say it all,almost perfectly,well almost.


It is quite abvious that you have agreed that the Democratic Party can be over-hauled while the Republican Party is beyond saving.

STEP THREE: The distillate of your Re specified above,(RB549 of August 29 at 10:44 am),is the following comment of yours:


The problem with our governance is in how BOTH parties manage themselves and how BOTH parties’ representatives have become disconnected from their constituents.


It seems to me that you have changed your mind from your agreement as indicated in Step Two,which is really your prerogative I do respect inspite of the fact that I agree with ITW’s assessment about the two parties. That means that I consider the Republican Party is, indeed,beyond saving because of the following reasons:

* The Republican Party has been hijacked by the neoconservatives and extreme Right-Wingers of the Rush Limbaugh varieties.

* The moderate Republicans of the Dwight Eisenhower’s varieties no longer exist in the party structure.

* When an aggressive bigot like Rush has practically become implicitly the boss and even the scholar on conservatism,it is,indeed,the Republican Party beyond saving.

* When well known and highly respective moderate Republicans such as Susan Eisenhower,the grand daughter of President Dwight Eisenhower and President of Eisenhower Institute in Washington DC,and former Congressman James Leash of Iowa appeared on the platform of the Democratic Party National Convention in Colorado in the 2008 Presidential election and publiclly declare their support to candidate Barack Obama,the party is indeed beyond saving.

* When the Republican Party allowed an incompetent Republican President to go to war the reason of which was based on lies and in the process destroyed a functioning society like Iraq,the Republican party was/is indeed beyond saving.

I can go on and on but I have to stop here due to Truthdig rule-no more than 4000 characters per post.

Last words: I have no objection to give the same treatment equally to both parties,inspite of all of the above unpleasant reasons I have just finished listing above about the Republican Party,if the possibility of over-hauling or reforming it exists.

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By Anarcissie, August 29, 2010 at 7:27 pm Link to this comment

ofersince72, August 29 at 9:13 pm

I have expressed the following thought on several posts
and believe it to be pertinent.

Without a plan for post-war/post-military complex economic
employment system, no matter what we want or do, we will
have more of the same only worseing conditions for the
public evolving all the time. ...

There have been suggestions that, should the U.S. call the war off, it could initially divert ‘defense’ funds and personnel into physical and social infrastructure.  I don’t think people think or talk about it much because no one thinks anything short of total bankruptcy or some other catastrophe will get the U.S. ruling class off its current war-and-imperialism kick.

There is a similar problem with the War on Drugs.  Suppose the light of reason dawned and the War on Drugs was discontinued.  We’d have about a million poverty-stricken, angry people coming out of jail, and hundreds of thousands of people now employed by the illegal drug industry out of work.  What would they do?  Things might get ugly.  But not to worry….

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By the worm, August 29, 2010 at 5:41 pm Link to this comment

Yep, Obama is sure on a roll.

The President’s three priorities have already been achieved:

1. Bailing out Wall Street with middle class tax payer dollars (telling the public
‘trickle down’ will eventually ‘turn the economy around’)

2. Extending the ‘war’ to provide the military/mercenary complex with
promotional and profit opportunities (telling the middle class we ‘can win!’)

3. Increasing the revenue stream for health insurance industry (telling the
middle class they must be purchase or face fines).

With all this “change accomplished”, the President may simply want to step
down - his place in corporate history is likely complete. Or maybe he’ll want to
sell the Democrats on cutting Social Security, corporate tax rates and some
more ‘free trade’. How about expanding the War on Terror again!

Like Clinton, he can set up his successor with a ‘smaller government’, a surplus,
etc. Just so the Republicans can come in and trash it again. Turning the whole
thing to disaster….. Just in time for the next Democrat to eat it.

Regardless, for the sake of the Democratic Party, Obama should not run in
2012 and, if he choses to, I hope there’s a challenge by a Democrat, a true
alternative, maybe one with ‘change you can really believe in’.

If Obama doesn’t want to step down, perhaps, he could run on the Republican

But, by staying on the Democratic ticket and, if he could get re-elected, Obama
could get his wish for ‘bi-partisanship’!

But who would have dreamed Obama would sacrifice the Democrats to get in
order to get ‘bi-partisanism’?

Poor Americans.

Their Government sends $ 4.300,000,000,000 in guarantees, loans and
bailouts to the financial industry and bankers, using the citizen’s tax money and
citizen-covered debt, beggaring the middle class, driving up their taxes,
breaking the government and assuring higher taxes to service debt and payoff
the bankers. Banks are running record profits, and the middle class is
unemployed, watching their assets decline and losing their nest eggs. But , hey
!, the banks are doing great !  Another great “change accomplished”, I guess.

Next, their government sells the citizens on the message that their Social
Security should be cut.

And, everyone needs a tax cut, to ‘motivate’ them to really really work.


Well, the ruse goes on and the citizens just eat it up, and the President, “He just
lay low”.

Apparently, Obama will realize his dream of ‘bi-partisanship’ in the coming

The public and the Democrats will have paid the price for voting for someone
who called himself a Democrat, but whose “principles” (if you’ll pardon the
expression) are purely Republican. We’re living with the results.

Pity America. Pity the Democrats: sacrificed by a nominal Democrat to the goal
of ‘bi-partisanship’.

Question: Why don’t the people who voted for Obama in the first place come to
his defense ? Support him? 

Answer: Obama has backed policies that are essentially ‘un-supportable’ by
those who backed him: (1) Continuing meaningless, wasteful and immoral ‘war
on terror’; (2) Non-reform of health care (with citizens now ‘mandated’ to pay
15-20% more than the health care services actually cost); (3) Bailing out the
financial industry ( with the largest transfer of wealth from the middle class to
the wealthy in our nation’s history ).

That’s why. The list is “just” the major insults.

Pity America. Pity the Democrats. Pity the middle class.

Change Accomplished !

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By ofersince72, August 29, 2010 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment

I have expressed the following thought on several posts
and believe it to be pertinent.

Without a plan for post-war/post-military complex economic
employment system, no matter what we want or do, we will
have more of the same only worseing conditions for the
public evlolving all the time.

Since our whole eCONomy revolves and depends on this
system, does anyone really beieve that there is any desire
whatsoever by the Democrat Politicians to stop this?

You know the answer, admit it or not.
For one, the politicians hands are tied, they are
blackmailed, threatened, or have ties to the owners of
our debt.  So we are really not doing them a favor by
keeping them in there.
Every politician, even the first termers have enough
crap on them to do what they have done to Maxine Waters.
So without an exit plan…..forget it!!!  !!!  !!! !!! !!!

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By ofersince72, August 29, 2010 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

Putting the philosophy aside for a minute…

Our immediate problem is how we go forward from here.
We don’t have any concise plan to do so.  I am one that
believes there is no reforming the Party from within.
For one, the math doesn’t add up. And there is the
structure of the Party that makes this impossible.

Until the general public understands that the political
process that we had is completely broken, that our
legislature and pres is totally controlled by the owners
of our debt, and that the airwaves and media are in
collusion with the owners of our debt to keep the status
quo…....all will remain the same, Democrat or Republican

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By ofersince72, August 29, 2010 at 4:34 pm Link to this comment

By BR549,

That was one of the best posts on the net I have ever read

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By Sodium-Na, August 29, 2010 at 11:01 am Link to this comment

To: BR549 and Anarcessie,

Will respond separately to each one of you in due course,since I have to attend,right now,to other obligations.

Please be patient. Thank you.

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By Anarcissie, August 29, 2010 at 9:59 am Link to this comment

I don’t think a contest for power is going to enhance anyone’s virtue.

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By truedigger3, August 29, 2010 at 9:26 am Link to this comment

Re: By BR549, August 29 at 10:44 am

Excellent insightful post.

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By Anarcissie, August 29, 2010 at 7:47 am Link to this comment

Sodium-Na—if the overhaul of the Democratic Party is one of those long journeys that begin with a single step, rather than something doable in the near future, then I would rather go for something more ambitious than the Democratic Party.

But even if you want to go for mainstream electoral politics, why not try building up alternative parties?  If the Democrats see substantial numbers of their adherents migrating to the Greens or some other party, they’ll change fast enough.

At this point there is really no reason for Mr. O to do anything but continue his conservative policies; his base, which includes the progs who complain here so much, appears to be passive and locked in.  You’re not doing anything (with a few notable exceptions), so he’s not doing anything. 

I have heard there is going to be a big set of demonstrations in October about the war and jobs, so maybe that old monster, the People, is once again beginning to stir.  No mention of it around here of course.

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By BR549, August 29, 2010 at 6:44 am Link to this comment

Sodium-Na, August 29 at 2:17 am

While I respect your views on attempting to reform the Democrat Party, I do not share your views about the Republican Party, and I think it is here that many people still fail to see what has been happening.

Perhaps the problem is ours in the U.S., perhaps it is worldwide. It could be exacerbated by population numbers, communications technology, or both, but what I see is a meltdown of virtues, particularly of personal integrity. Is it
because we have become so detached from our own social roots within our community and lost as individuals that each of us is left having to grovel for ourselves? I’ll bet the elitists are just waiting for that phase to wrap up, but then, they too would have been victims of the very same disease.

Any form of government could work, even a dictatorship. I was reading one piece yesterday that stated that a tyrant need not be tyrannical, which didn’t make much sense to me unless we abandoned its etymology. I think what the author was indicating, though, was that whether we have a monarchy, oligarchy, plutocracy, democracy, communism, socialism, or what have you, each and every one of these forms of rule or governance are ripe for failure when human virtues are abandoned and the leadership sees itself as somehow better than those they govern.

The Republican moniker assumed its reputation only after the demise of the Federalists and it took another 50 years or so for the myriad of micro-parties to resort the pecking order. The Federalists now have a new home in the Republican Party. The problem with the Federalists wasn’t necessarily in big banks or off shore governance, it was that the people behind the party had lost their moral compass. This is biblical stuff, here, although I don’t mean to bring religion in.

We’re right back to the temple priests and the golden idols thing, here. Druidic priests sought to finally extricate the population from the exclusivity of Stonehenge III and that was their undoing. The one thing they thought would bring them more power was the first thing that destroyed them; their arrogance. It was that last attempt to wrest final control that brought their system down.

The Roman Empire is a bit more complex and it took hundreds of years for it to fizzle out, but the human spirit is what it is and each and every attempt by a few to constrain it has always met with failure; each and every time. It just is not nature’s way to constrain consciousness, yet rather than find ways to embrace it, we always seem to find these dysfunctional members of society who aren’t happy unless they are hoarding everything for themselves.

To say that the Republican Party can no more grow a conscience and help govern under a sense of noblesse oblige is no different than assuming that the Democrat Party only needs to “reform” itself in order to work. I submit that the same forces that could succeed in making one party work, would also, out of necessity, make the other party work. As long as we assume that one party is capable and the other is not, we miss the target altogether and are never able to focus on the problem. The problem with our governance is in how BOTH parties manage themselves, and how BOTH parties’ representatives have become disconnected from their constituents.

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By BR549, August 29, 2010 at 4:48 am Link to this comment

Re:  Night-Gaunt, August 28 at 11:01 pm

With respect to Kucinich, Paul, Gravel, and Nader, my point was that they represented the Democrat, Republican, Independent, and Natural Law Parties. Libertarian Bob Barr was also for pulling us out of NAFTA.

All of these candidates, in five different parties (well, six), opposed NAFTA. Had it been that NAFTA was heavily discussed during the debates, I might have said that they were just five less popular candidates, but with the discussions on NAFTA being next to nil, I suspect media manipulation; as if that was anything new.

Had the public been able to be properly educated about what NAFTA would have done to this country, and the other Republican and Democrat candidates had stuck with NAFTA, I think we would have seen significantly large support for those five candidates.

Perot warned us and no one was listening ..... or maybe I should have said, “no one was ALLOWED to listen.”

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By Sodium-Na, August 29, 2010 at 4:22 am Link to this comment


JAMES MCMURTRY’S piece sounds disturbingly sad.

That’s what incoptenent leadership mixed with wars do to the sole superpower in the world and its people.

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By Sodium-Na, August 29, 2010 at 3:28 am Link to this comment

Re: Anarcessie,August 28 at 11:57 pm.


Sodium-Na-How are you going to get massess of people into the Democratic Party if they’er not already there? I mean what masses are available for this purpose?



I am glad it is you who has asked the above quoted questions because you and I know how to communicate constructively with one another,without ending up calling each others names.

Chairman Mao Dezong once said,and I quote,“A trip of one thousand miles starts with one single step”.

I have just quoted Mao,not because I admire him,(I do not),but because his statement makes a great deal of sense in relation to what I intend to say below in the following two examples of precedent as from where and how to get masses of people to help in throwing the bums out of the U.S. Congress whether they are corrupt Republicans or corrupt Democrats,by injecting masses of people into the Democratic Party for the sole purpose of over-hauling it from within:





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By ofersince72, August 29, 2010 at 12:17 am Link to this comment

Vietnam Vet with a cardboard sign
Sitting there by the left turn line
Flag on the wheelchair flapping in the breeze
One leg missing, both hands free
No one’s paying much mind to him
The V.A. budget’s stretched so thin
And there’s more comin’ home from the Mideast war
We can’t make it here anymore

That big ol’ building was the textile mill
It fed our kids and it paid our bills
But they turned us out and they closed the doors
We can’t make it here anymore

See all those pallets piled up on the loading dock
They’re just gonna set there till they rot
‘Cause there’s nothing to ship, nothing to pack
Just busted concrete and rusted tracks
Empty storefronts around the square
There’s a needle in the gutter and glass everywhere
You don’t come down here ‘less you’re looking to score
We can’t make it here anymore

The bar’s still open but man it’s slow
The tip jar’s light and the register’s low
The bartender don’t have much to say
The regular crowd gets thinner each day

Some have maxed out all their credit cards
Some are working two jobs and living in cars
Minimum wage won’t pay for a roof, won’t pay for a drink
If you gotta have proof just try it yourself Mr. CEO
See how far 5.15 an hour will go
Take a part time job at one of your stores
Bet you can’t make it here anymore

High school girl with a bourgeois dream
Just like the picures in the magazine
She found on the floor of the laundromat
A woman with kids can forget all that
If she comes up pregnant what’ll she do
Forget the career, forget about school
Can she live on faith?  Live on hope?
High on Jesus or hooked on dope
When it’s way too late to just say no
You can’t make it here anymore

Now I’m stocking shirts in the Wal-Mart store
Just like the ones we make before
‘Cept this one came from Singapore
I guess we can’t make it here anymore

Should I hate a people for the shade of their skin
Or the shape of their eyes or the shape I’m in
Should I hate ‘em for having our jobs today
No I hate the men sent the jobs away
I can see them all now, they haunt my dreams
All lily white and squeaky clean
They’ve never known want, they’ll never know need
Their shit don’t stink and their kids won’t bleed
Their kids won’t bleed in the damn little war
And we can’t make it here anymore

Will work for food
Will die for oil
Will kill for power and to us the spoils
The billionaires get to pay less tax
The working poor get to fall through the cracks
Let ‘em eat jellybeans let ‘em eat cake
Let ‘em eat shit, whatever it takes
They can join the Air Force, or join the Corps
If they can’t make it here anymore

And that’s how it is
That’s what we got
If the president wants to admit it or not
You can read it in the paper
Read it on the wall
Hear it on the wind
If you’re listening at all
Get out of that limo
Look us in the eye
Call us on the cell phone
Tell us all why

In Dayton, Ohio
Or Portland, Maine
Or a cotton gin out on the great high plains
That’s done closed down along with the school
And the hospital and the swimming pool
Dust devils dance in the noonday heat
There’s rats in the alley
And trash in the street
Gang graffiti on a boxcar door
We can’t make it here anymore

JAMES MCMURTRY…........from CD…Childish Dreams…....

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By Sodium-Na, August 28, 2010 at 10:17 pm Link to this comment

Re: BR549,August 28 at 10:10 pm.


That said,why are we here posturing,when we should be mending our fences and planning against a common enemy that has desiring for us to be arguing with each other all along.



Sorry,I am the wrong person to address your honest,sincere and straightforward comment quoted above to.

It should be addressed to those who have great talents for never stop complaining and never stop criticizing and meanwhile never proposing anything constructive to reform what,at least,vulnerable to reform.

I do not believe,for a one single moment,that the Democratic Party is like the Republican Party beyond saving. It can be over-hauled,if there is a will. To start with,kick out the “BLUE-DOGS” from the party as well as the “Reagan Democrats?”. How could a Democrat be a “Reaganite?”?. It just does not make sense to me.

And start all over again for the long-run.

I will attempt to answer the question raised by Anarcissie. I hope you and others will read it with open minds.

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By Anarcissie, August 28, 2010 at 7:57 pm Link to this comment

Sodium-Na—How are you going to get masses of people into the Democratic Party if they’re not already there?  I mean, what masses are available for this purpose?

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By Night-Gaunt, August 28, 2010 at 7:01 pm Link to this comment

I get two things from that response; one, that, like Nero was playing the fiddle during the burning of Rome,BR549

Just to be accurate he would have used a lyre, and he actually wanted to put out the fire.

I have no faith that either party is salvageable because they both lack the same level of integrity and a spine. If Kucinich, Ron Paul, Gravel, and Nader, actually have more in common with each others platforms, and they represent a wide spectrum of parties, what does it say about the direction that their supposed parties had been headed in?BR549

Their voices are too few, the Democrats are run by the same kinds of crypto-fascists as the Republicans and both parties are hermetically sealed from every failing no matter who mummified they become. The only difference is that there aren’t yet as many as in the Republicans just yet. But they will in time.

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By BR549, August 28, 2010 at 6:10 pm Link to this comment

Re:  Sodium-Na, August 28 at 7:51 pm

Thank for pointing out ITW’s quote (obviously in response to another article). That said, why are we here posturing, when we should be mending our fences and planning against a common enemy that has been desiring for us to be arguing with each other all along?

ITW’s quote really does say it all, almost perfectly, well almost. Personally, I do not see the distinction between the two parties except to say that the hard core ideologues on both sides somehow still believe that, with enough toilet paper, they can prevent the ship from sinking as long they follow their party’s
guidelines. The Democrats keep arguing that they should use Charmin, while the Republicans insist they use Cottonelle, and while each of the parties’ members are futilely busy trying to caulk the seams, the traitorous members of both parties that colluded to send the ship to the bottom, have secretly slipped away into the night in the few lifeboats that they didn’t earlier sabotage. That’s where we differ, ........ I believe.

I have no faith that either party is salvageable because they both lack the same level of integrity and a spine. If Kucinich, Ron Paul, Gravel, and Nader, actually have more in common with each other’s platforms, and they represent a wide spectrum of parties, what does it say about the direction that their supposed parties had been headed in? If you wanted a few guidelines to test the candidates on, the first one would have been on NAFTA, and because all of the above were opposed to NAFTA, they were systematically ushered off the debate stage, all the American public got to hear about was either Terrorism or Hope and Change. Any discussion was carefully avoided by the corporate owned media, political contribution and lobbying reform was never discussed, and once again, our system slid yet one more step into the corruptive abyss, while all the top politicians smugly sat by and one by one, let the country they swore an oath to slip quietly into the briny deep.

Meanwhile, that “man behind the curtain” was needing the smoke screen of terrorism to do a bait and switch maneuver on the American public in order to ram NAFTA down our throats ...... and BOTH parties were responsible for that, not just Bush41 in his condescending and syrupy speech for a New World Order. Clinton ever so obligingly signed it into being and then Obama refused to talk about his position on NAFTA during the debates.

The whole issue is really about integrity and what ever happened to it that so many individuals in the country felt it necessary to throw their fellow countrymen under the bus, all the while reaping some short term gain that wasn’t going to serve their long term interests in the first place. How did so many citizens and, more importantly, so many politicians become so socially disconnected from their own country of birth that they would sell out their soul and their own grandchildren to the highest bidder?

And what about the motives of Kucinich, Paul, Gravel, and Nader? I would contend that if either of them were in office, and we had flushed all the $5,000 suits out of Washington and sent them to the same detention camps they had so eagerly been authorizing for the rest of us, I would suggest that ANY of the parties’ philosophies could then be used to bring this country back into its own. The problem is that integrity is not politically “en vogue”. It’s considered some naive virtue that politicians “in the know” use to enlist the efforts of the offspring of less informed parents, as those parents send their loved ones off to fight “for Freedom”. So, while some fat asshole like five-time draft dodger Dick Cheney is sitting back here draping himself in the American flag, he, as well as politicians on both sides of the aisle have no misgivings in sending our children into battle to protect our oil interests.

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By Sodium-Na, August 28, 2010 at 3:51 pm Link to this comment

To Whom It May Concern:

The following two quoted paragraphs were embodied in a post written by Inherit The Wind on January 11,2010 at 10:04 am:


The Democratic Party is corrupt,fractured,weak and full of major problems that need major over-hauling,or even replacement.

But the Republican Party is now the American Fascist Party,closely approximating the policies and tactics Mussalini’s Italian fasist government of the 1920’s.
It is as much Christo-fascist as it accuses unnamed Arabs of being “Islamo-fascist. The Republican Party is now beyond saving.


I applauded ITW,then,because he came close to the “truth” as much as the human senses and sensibility could reach. I have felt he was true to himself and the readers as well.

The point I am after is the following point which is totally based on the content of the two paragraphs quoted above,re-read them carefully,if you will:

Since it does not look like that a third party is going to win any presidential election in the feasible future,what the average citizens and the poor of this country do to protect their fundamental right and interest?

Possible Answer:

Masses of caring citizens join the Democratic Party and over-hauling it from within,since the Democratic Party is not beyond saving yet.

I said all of the foregoing because I am NOT a Democrat,but I am one of those average citizens who believe that the country has been delibrately harnessed harnessed,since 1980’s,into the wrong direction. To put it bluntly: It has been harnessed against the poor and middle class by the obvious push to dismantle what is left of the “NEW DEAL” of FDR and “Great Society” of LBJ.

Pity the nation/people who allow such a harnessing to start,in the first place!! And I am NOT a socialist either-Just an average citizen who wants to live and let live decently.Period.

Please think it over of over-hauling the Democratic Party by pooring into it new blood. Thank you.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 28, 2010 at 5:24 am Link to this comment


Yeah, I’m fiddling, between my thumb and forefinger, on the World’s Smallest Violin, and it’s playing a sad, sweet song, just for you and your crackpot paranoia.

There’s a difference between justifiable paranoia and the crackpot variety….the tune is playing…

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By Money is funny, August 28, 2010 at 2:52 am Link to this comment

If it is all determined by the rule of law then why should anything that happens matter? The rules are set in stone according to the problems facing the authority ages ago.

Arguing about the details of former scripts is useless and insulting to the people and problems that face people who are actually present now.

or something.

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By BR549, August 27, 2010 at 10:07 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 28 at 12:46 am
“BR549: All I can do is laugh in incredulity at your absurd contention that Gore’s appointments to the SC would be no different than Bush’s.”

I get two things from that response; one, that, like Nero was playing the fiddle during the burning of Rome, you’re oblivious to what is really happening; and two, that you picked on the less significant of the topics I had discussed to try to dismiss the whole argument. And I suppose you had no problem with the phony carbon tax issue; guess you really didn’t understand that one either.

So, fiddle away, my friend ........

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By Inherit The Wind, August 27, 2010 at 8:46 pm Link to this comment

All I can do is laugh in incredulity at your absurd contention that Gore’s appointments to the SC would be no different than Bush’s.  When was the last time a Democrat appointed ANYONE who thinks like Roberts and/or Alito?  Maybe FDR’s appointment of Hugo Black? Nah….  Or do we have to go back to the 19th century?

You might as well vehemently contend that 2 + 2 = “Crabapples” for your lack of logic.

I’m not naive. I just don’t live in a world of self-delusion and paranoid fantasies.

Naturally, TD3 agrees with you!  ROFLMAO!

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By Night-Gaunt, August 27, 2010 at 8:20 pm Link to this comment

Yes, more ominous signs that something is going on behind the scenes that just isn’t being talked about, or dared to be talked about. I have my analysis but it isn’t positive but in fact fit into the “conspiracy theory” (really hypothesis) that would be knocked down as being absurd because such ideas have been nurtured to be absurd. Which works well as a cover when there really is one going on.

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By BR549, August 27, 2010 at 4:49 pm Link to this comment

truedigger3, August 27 at 2:47 pm

During my tour in the 60s, we had guys from a number of countries over here. Some were attending academic training, while others were receiving combat related training. Then there was the whole School of the Americas thing which I’m not going to get into here. This isn’t what I was talking about earlier.

There was the whole issue around just how “approved” the Swansboro NC exercise in 2000 (under Clinton) actually was. The authorities say one thing; many of the residents say otherwise. Now, I’m not sure which town it was in, but I think it was around that same period, where a sheriff’s deputy actually shot and killed two marines or army personnel who had attempted to disarm him during one of these “so-called” exercises. I didn’t believe it myself until I actually read the news transcript (I think it was an AP article). I saved the link here somewhere.

The whole point is that, when this is coupled with the Twentynine Palms questionnaire about marines firing upon US citizens if being ordered to so do, and seeing how so many of our fighting age and fighting strength citizens (now military) have been ferried off to the far corners of the Earth, and as LRADs and Raytheon’s Silent Guardian are being tested more and more OFF the battlefield, it begs one to ask the question, “What the hell is going on?”

I wish it really were as simple as benign training missions. I really do.

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By Night-Gaunt, August 27, 2010 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

ofersince7 good post, kudos.

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By truedigger3, August 27, 2010 at 3:17 pm Link to this comment

Re: By Night-Gaunt, August 27 at 5:52 pm

I agree with you 100%. There is no difference between the Democratic and Republican parties. The difference is only in style, slogans and words.
I think the middle class is in its way to extinction!

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By truedigger3, August 27, 2010 at 3:06 pm Link to this comment

Re: By ofersince72, August 27 at 5:22 pm

Excellent insightful post.

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By Night-Gaunt, August 27, 2010 at 1:52 pm Link to this comment

Dems or Repubs, not much difference in what they support. The few who do not in the Dems party have little power and not too many voices. Our only hope?

We are very close to collapse as a Republic and it has been engineered to do that by those oligarchs who despise democracy and the existence of a middle class. 1945-1980 was the best for it then it has been in steady decline. Our wages rose from 1820’s-1970’s than stopped even though we work much more now. Instead of pay hikes we were given loans, with interest.

This is the change, the total transformation we have been promised, even if that isn’t what they told us. Beck knows and he is all for it. Which is why he never talks about it being a problem any more than the Koch brothers, and other millionaire & billionaire families and corporations that fund his side of it.

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By ofersince72, August 27, 2010 at 1:22 pm Link to this comment

C H A N G E   A C C O M P L I S H E D…eugenerobinson

And Robinson is right….it is complete…

For in 2006 and 2008, Americans were coming together.
There was little race talk, little muslim tolerance talk.
Not a whole lot of blame the slave Mexican talk.

Starting in the 2006 elections, the American Public, for
the first time in years, had common goals and recognized
the powere of unity…......
This REALLY, REALLY , scared the bosses, it threatened
their power.
So , in just a year and a half time, through the politics
of divide set down by the bosses corporated media,
they succeded in dividing the country once again…
now it is time to get the Dem base back again , so
make it look like Obama is arguing with the gernerals,
a remake, he will be the peace president now (only in words of course, not in deeds, but that is all the
Dem supporters need, just “feel gooder” words, they will
be back, they found an exuse.

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By truedigger3, August 27, 2010 at 10:47 am Link to this comment

Re:By BR549, August 27 at 10:54 am


Good post, except when you wrote:
“Now, they’re everywhere, along with our training with countless other UN troops in civilian neighborhoods”

Many “friendly” countries, periodically send members of their armed forces to train in tactics and how to use and maintain the US weapons they had bought.
So, those foreign looking personnel, seen in and around some bases, are these people. They ARE NOT members of stationed UN force intended to be used againt the US citizens. If the need do arise for that, there are ample US troops that will do the job!.

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By BR549, August 27, 2010 at 6:54 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 27 at 12:07 am
“You know as well as I do that if Gore had become President there never would have been a war in Iraq, nor would there have been a Patriot Act.  Nor would Roberts or Alito be on the Supreme Court.”

I knew people were naive, but this just blew me away. OK, technically, we might have someone else beside Roberts or Alito on the SC, but those someone elses would have had to pass muster with the same higher ups that approved Roberts and Alito. So what’s the difference?

As far as not having a Patriot Act, no, we would have have had a “Minutemen Act”, an “Independence Security Act”, or some such nonsense. The point is that in order to whittle down the Constitution, the people’s “fences” had to be tested to see how much they would tolerate. Bush41 eased us into the language of NAFTA; Clinton droved the NAFTA nail home. Clinton monkeys around with the wire tapping, and in stages, both Bush43 and Obama drive that nail home.

The big issue was that we could not procedurally repeal Posse Comitatus without a state of war and Bush had to get us into a war, whether anyone had wanted to fight us or not. This doesn’t take a lot of rocket science, here. The part of Posse Comitatus that is relevant here pertains to NOT allowing a standing army to be based on home soil ready to be used against the civilian population. If the PC’s repeal was some casual oversight, why then did we immediately have a force of 51,000 troops at the ready in Georgia? Now, they’re everywhere, along with our training with countless other UN troops in civilian neighborhoods. The videos are out there, but as long as people refuse to see them and run and hide and believe that they don’t exist, those people might as well be sheep.

Gore was just one more in the line of socially and philosophically dysfunctional flunkies that was more than willing to throw his countrymen under the bus to save his own ass. At the time, I thought he was an OK guy ....... and I actually bought right into his global warming bit. (I still think we have a problem there,
but all he was doing was posturing himself and his ilk to profit handsomely yet again off of a problem that their corporate greed had created in the first place.)

No, if Gore had gotten in office, we’d be on the exact same track as we are now and had been under Bush the Idiot. A few names might have changed, the legislation titling may or may not have even been the same, but the outcome would have been identical ........ and THAT is what everyone is getting at.

Just like the PNAC documents having come from what we believe is the Right’s think tank, why is it that under both Clinton and Obama, we’re still following through with the PNAC objectives? Answer that one!

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By ardee, August 27, 2010 at 2:24 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 27 at 12:07 am

I would answer this nonsense but truedigger pretty well summed it up. How many will have to tell you that you do not debate, only act like a wounded water buffalo when your beloved party is criticized, before the light shines into your dark and dreary corner?

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By Leefeller, August 27, 2010 at 1:39 am Link to this comment

This what if crap, must kind of get into the soft spots in the brains of some people.  Predicting something that never happened dost seem like the Twilight Zone arguing about it as absolute fact seems beyond the Zone, reminds me of religion.

Let me try it!..... If Gore had become president, we would never have had to endure the embarrassing Mission Accomplished horse and pony show, nor would we have had to look at that Smirking mug for 8 years! and the National Guard would still be just like it was, when Vietnam evader Bush was in it!

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By truedigger3, August 26, 2010 at 11:02 pm Link to this comment

Re: Inherit The Wind, August 27 at 12:07 am

ITW wrote:


Cut the crap already. You know as well as I do that if Gore had become President there never would have been a war in Iraq, nor would there have been a Patriot Act. 
Nor would Roberts or Alito be on the Supreme Court.”


You are the one who should cut the crap.
If Gore was elected, there would have been no difference, whatsoever, in the course of events, from W Bush.
During the Clinton/Gore time, Iraq was bombed almost daily and was subjected to one of the cruelist embargos in history that resulted in the death of half million Iraqi children, and Madeline Ulbright admitted the figure and said “it was worth it”.
Clinton attacked Yoguslavia.!

The Patriot act would have been enacted too. Clinton Passed the anti-terrorism act of 1996 which authorized the death penality in Federal courts for the first time.
Do you think Sotomyer and Kagan are different from Roberts and Alito. Both Sotomyer and Kagan are corportate lawyers against the common people, but they are hiding behind a thin phony liberal veneer.!
Ardee had very good questions and points. Why didn’t you answer them instead of calling names and throwing fits of artificial anger??!!
Take off your partisan blinders in order to see the facts that are right in front of you and are almost touching your face.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 26, 2010 at 8:07 pm Link to this comment


Cut the crap already. You know as well as I do that if Gore had become President there never would have been a war in Iraq, nor would there have been a Patriot Act. 
Nor would Roberts or Alito be on the Supreme Court.

To continue to argue that there’s no difference between the parties in the face of THAT is simply disingenuous. And that disingenuous position is the one espoused by Nader.

Stop pretending you have some high moral ground.  You’ve proven NOTHING I haven’t already stated about the shabby performance of Dems since 2000.

But that doesn’t change the fact that Roberts and Alito were the keys to making this the most dangerous Supreme Court since Plessy/Fergusson.

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By Night-Gaunt, August 26, 2010 at 6:26 pm Link to this comment

Is it Nader‘s fault the system has been configured to exclude him from every having an even chance to win?

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By ardee, August 26, 2010 at 3:00 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 25 at 10:10 pm

Of course you dodge this issue, through the use of anger and childish epithet hurled at Nader, only because you know I respect him and his efforts. You have been given, time and again,by myself and by others, lists of Democratic Party blunders, bungles and similarities to Bush’s blunders and bungles. You post with your outrage but not with your intellect. Not once in my memory have you posted specific refutations of the charges leveled..

Prove me wrong with cuts and pastes if you choose, or don’t. But do not insult the intelligence of all who might read these exchanges by claiming what you are not entitled to claim, legitimate debate on an important issue.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 25, 2010 at 6:10 pm Link to this comment


I don’t dodge issues. I simply don’t accept your reasoning as valid and have shown the holes in it repeatedly. That’s it.  Deal with it. Stop reacting like a religious fanatic who has had his dogma challenged.

Ameisha:  Save your pop psychology for those who buy into that bullshit.  I don’t.

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By ardee, August 25, 2010 at 4:04 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 24 at 11:18 pm

This last post is just as beneath you as are every damn one of your reactions to the listed failures of your party. You are not angry that I “insult you” you are intolerant of the truth about the party to whom you have given your misguided loyalties. You gotta grow up sometimes ....

I have , time and again, and yet again, listed my reasons for believing as I do that neither major party is worth a tinkers damn. Yet you post angry retorts that manage to avoid dealing with what I noted, retorts that serve only to avoid precisely what I want from you, honest and factual reasons to support the damn Democrats.

You diminish Nader, but not with fact and logic, only with petty spitefulness. You post that Gore would certainly have been better than Bush but that is not within your ken to know, only speculate.

While you speculate why not ask yourself why Clinton refused to campaign for Gore, an act that certainly might have assured Al of being President Al. It is so easy to say that a speculative future would have been a better one than what we have now, but now is what we have.

Speaking of now I listed a few items in a rather longish list of Obama failures which you chose to ignore or replace with anger towards me. You have a longish history of reacting like that, not only to me but to anyone who dares be critical of your party and your blind loyalty towards it.

I think you know, deep down under the silliness, that we share very similar goals for this nation and our world. I think you should understand that my continued efforts to bring you “into the light and woo you from the dark” is a complimentary act that shows plainly my thinking you a potentially valuable asset and ally.

If you are sincerely a democrat then deal with the very real questions and criticisms. For heavens sake stop dodging the issue with bullshit angry sidestepping.

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By firefly, August 25, 2010 at 3:39 pm Link to this comment

Good article. I think it’s time to give Obama his dues.
He’s up against a lot and infinitely better than anyone
in the GOP line-up. God help the entire planet, if the
the GOP get into power.

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By REDHORSE, August 25, 2010 at 11:10 am Link to this comment

NIGHT-GAUNT: Thanks for the ZOMBIE analogy—and YES WE DO WANT THE PEOPLE IN THE DRIVERS SEAT!! Is it actual powerlessness or fear of the responsibility and consequence of personal power that fuels so much defeatest babble?

  I like fat ladies and she ain’t sung yet.


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By Night-Gaunt, August 25, 2010 at 8:44 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

WTF are you anyway?  Another pipe-dreamer of “revolution” and putting “the people” in the “driver’s seat”?

Yes we want “the people” in the driver’s seat. A pipe dream? Maybe. But we still do even if the colossal powers of the oligarchs (top 10%) are against us and have been winning since 1980 to do it. You either have given up or have sided with the PTB on it. Why not, they are the winning team aren’t they? John Carpenter’s allegory “They Live” shows it with the oligarchs as cadaverous aliens but it holds even more true now than in 1988. You are either bought off or get pushed around by them, mostly by their own kind in the police and gov’t. Not much different from the dystopia we live in now and its hardly finished changing. What is bad for us is good for them so they are transitioning our country into a haven and utopia for them! Just one catastrophic event (like attacking Iran) away from them privitizing almost everything and removing the “Bill of Rights” from existence. When it comes down they will be the only ones standing and their corporate-Christian storm troopers will be the ones given us a helping hand into their living parody of what we use to know. Most will take it because they prefer what we have now (minus the rights) to living in a nightmare of chaos and roving gangs of starving people without order or electricity. The one constant you find in authoritarian regimes of all kinds is that crime is non-existant when the one gang rules the country.

AMeisha “imbecile” is a medical term, “moron” came about during the height of the eugenic years in the USA, and “insane” is a legal term, not medical.

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By AMeshiea, August 25, 2010 at 8:06 am Link to this comment

You are right, I probably should have said “insane”
rather than “an imbecile.”
I have your gran’s attachment to the word.

ITW. Once again with the call to lack of seriousness
with accusations of smoking dope (much like the
recent press secretaries similar feelings towards the
unhappy progressive base). I’m not sure how
“revolutionary” it is these days to seek a
representative democracy through the auspices of alternative candidates or third parties. If you mean
that’s just not serious than you are simply a
defeated progressive, and that is sad since its time
to push behind real alternatives not war-warmongering
corporate profiteers.

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By Leefeller, August 25, 2010 at 7:49 am Link to this comment

AMeshiea, Imbecile defined is “a stupid idiot”,,,,,, the reason I know this, my loving grandmother when I was a little kid growing up, used the word imbecile with regularity while she was reading the newspaper, and I remember, during special occasions and family events.

So when I grew older, several years ago, I looked up the definition of the word Imbecile and found out after all these years, it was not necessarily a complementary word. So now I know what my grandmother’s real feelings were towards the political figures to whom she referred to as….. Imbeciles. 

Growing up these many years, my list of friends seemed small or limited, this may explain why.

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By Leefeller, August 25, 2010 at 7:10 am Link to this comment

Finding a cause then ignoring reality or the truth becomes so easy for fanatics, this makes it so easy,  fanatics believe they are right because their cause is right, well in the mind of a fanatic (only?) but then that makes everyone else wrong which is the important thing.

So this is why I decided to become a card carrying fanatic and what is so nice once I joined, it made everyone else a moron, wow ..... being a fanatic is so much easier, these damn blinders really arn’t so bad, I think they help, and at meetings everyone is so nice, it feels so great because what I believe is what everyone else believes, we have so much in common.  Now I do not have to think for myself anymore, no decisions,  if only I could find some religious blinders this fanatic thing could be the cornucopia of bliss!

Only downer is washing this dang white sheet especially after cross burnings, then it almost looks to me like one of those Arab beekeeper Burka things.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 25, 2010 at 4:36 am Link to this comment

Thanks for the psycho profile Ameisha.  I guess I won’t need those expensive therapy sessions I was planning—does the new health policy cover them. 

WTF are you anyway?  Another pipe-dreamer of “revolution” and putting “the people” in the “driver’s seat”?

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By AMeshiea, August 25, 2010 at 3:20 am Link to this comment

It’s clear that ardee is being proven again correct
in assuming that ITW is being a little bit precious
and lashing out personally under critique of his
claims exposing a failure to confront anyone’s
specific criticisms of Obama case by case. Doubtless
he is a knowledgeable person and smart, but he seems
to be caught in some kind of bind between a desire to
be a political realist and a progressive. So,
frustrated that both desires cannot, by any measure
of observation, be both satisfied simultaneously, he
chooses to rail against anyone who fails to see the
“impracticality of their approach” (ie; working
within the system) rather than consider that there
may and should be an attempt to seek better options
(a third way Nader etc)..

Offersince72 and many others hear aren’t asking the
hypothetical question of whether Gore would have been
better than Bush, the point is completely moot, a
distraction. More important is the FACT that Obama
has PROVED himself to be no better, and in some cases
WORSE than Bush, points that ITW has repeatedly avoided addressing directly preferring instead to attack the poster and deflect with hypotheticals. This is especially glaring in the
area of the growing police state, secrecy , and
general lawlessness that Obama has been backing in
foreign as well as domestic policy (and treatment of
whistle blowers: see Greenwald’s many pieces on
this). His failure to hold his predecessor account
for all his legal transgressions paved the way for
Obama himself to extend them. So since we KNOW that
Obama is regressive, voting incumbent democrat, or
voting for Obama in the next primary (if we get one),
would be the definition of insanity for any
progressive. So ITW’s general argument just doesn’t
make sense, anymore than the article that we read by
Robinson makes any sense. Its just a really old
tactic by today’s mainstream and corporate dems to
try and debunk and delegitimize any progressive
strategies by accusing them of lacking seriousness.
Since progress necessitates change, calling for an
extension of an already regressive system, means that
that person simply isn’t progressive (a trolling
shill), or he is progressive but pathologically
incapable of seeing that his/her solution is part of
the problem (an imbecile).

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By ofersince72, August 24, 2010 at 7:56 pm Link to this comment

To make such an ignorant statement….

“Nader’s pretend land”

shows that you are either an ungrateful corpocrat,

or an extremely ignorant citizen that has no idea

of the legacy of Ralph Nader.

Neither of which would be suprising in this country.

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By ofersince72, August 24, 2010 at 7:37 pm Link to this comment

“Nader’s pretend land” ?????

I don’t believe you have read or listened to Ralph
if you believe that! ! !

  So what is the difference??  Please tell us about it! !

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By Inherit The Wind, August 24, 2010 at 7:18 pm Link to this comment

Agreeing to disagree is a polite way of saying that you have no defense for your seemingly blind loyalty to a party that you yourself criticize ( when pushed to do so).

Ardee:  You need to actually read what you write and then take responsibility for it when it generates a reaction you don’t like. It’s time to grow up and recognize that if you can’t take and can’t be responsible for your words, then you shouldn’t dish it out.

Yeah I WAS trying to be nice, and you spat in my hand. (see the above quote)  So why are you surprised that I stopped trying?

You want to live in Nader’s pretend land that “there’s not a dime’s worth of difference” and convince yourself that Gore would have done the same as Bush, well, I can’t stop your fantasies any more than I can stop “Die Hard Wannabee”‘s right wing nut case dreams.

Enough is enough. You’re like a Republican, only left wing.  Take away the context of the policies you each espouse and there’s not a dime’s worth of difference between you and them.

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By ofersince72, August 24, 2010 at 6:33 pm Link to this comment


There ain’t no change you lieing piece of shit ! !! ! !
Just a stupid debate bout a church in NEW YORK CITY.

And the “feel gooders” get to feel oh so good now. Ain’t
I tolerant.

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By ofersince72, August 24, 2010 at 6:22 pm Link to this comment

Maybe if I were given an example of how our

federal vote counts, I wouldn’t be such a cynic.

Lets see,  the “progressive caucus” circled the wagons

around incumbents to make sure no real progressives made

it through the primaries. Even the beloveds did this.

Sanders voted for Iranian Sanctions and to militerize
the border,  as did Feingold.

And, as the previous decade has proved,  when we turn
our back on slaughter, it does eventually effect us.
We skimmed during the starvation of Iraqi during the ninties, and the genocide in Central America in the eighties.  We weren’t real affected by Central African
policy in the seventies and eighties.  Everyone was tieing
yellow ribbons during Desert Storm, they knew it wouldn’t
affect them. AND ON AND ON AND ON.
However, everyone of these actions DID effect the public.
It made them immune.
When you let this type policy pass and not be held
accountable, of course it is at one point going to effect
you.  If you believe that those criminals inside the
beltway give anymore of a rat’s ass about you than they
do of the ones they are dronning,  you need to pull your
head out of the sand.
(and get ready for the coming food and water shortages)

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By ofersince72, August 24, 2010 at 4:34 pm Link to this comment

in the end,

  with the facist in full controll,

we are left with a party that is somewhat more honest
than the other…..they say “your screwed, we are in
control….we are all for ourselves, screw the rest.

and the other party,

which is very dishonest as their mouthpiece
They say “We are your friends, here to protect you.”
as they carry out the same policy as their good buddies
of the other half of the duopoly.

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By ardee, August 24, 2010 at 4:32 pm Link to this comment

Oh ITW so sensitive:

So ends an attempt at civility.

I find nor meant no incivility in that post you dismiss rather than refute. Perhaps you find my rebuttal unappealing but there was no personal insult, only an amazement that one so smart can be so blind.

Your fear of Republican leadership fails abysmally to see that Obama is providing Republican leadership. Under the Democrats:

we are still in Guantanamo,
we still engage in rendition for the purpose of torture,
we still give our children’s future to the very wealthy while ignoring the needs of the majority of our own people,
We still give billions to corporations and crumbs to working families,
We are still engaged in endless war..and don’t even try to say we are leaving Iraq. You will know when we leave because there will be a deluge there.

When the heck are you going to see that what you are afraid of is already with us? Democrat or Republican, it doesn’t matter, the policies are the same. The best one could muster about your dear party is that they are too incompetent to get a bill passed when they had a filibuster proof majority, too incompetent to get over 100 Obama appointees to federal judgeships through Congress…etc.,etc.,etc.

All you can do is make cracks about Ralph Nader, a man you are too small to even comment upon. I doubt those who vote for him, myself included, do so with any hope that he will gain office, nor does he run to win. Nader runs to keep real progressive agendas before the public, I vote for him as a protest against the stupidities and policies of both Duopoly Parties.

Stop getting mad because you see the truth but are trapped in your loyalty.Stop killing the messenger and listen to the message.

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By ofersince72, August 24, 2010 at 4:10 pm Link to this comment

Because Redhorse, during the three decades leading up

to 911, everyone was happy, happy since U.S. belligerency

wasn’t directly affecting them.  This was also the time

when our votes might have made a differnce. During this

time, while the public was being pacified, our political

system was being destroyed.  No one woke up politically

until after all the damage was done and affecting their

pocketbooks.  By this time it was too late, the airwaves

were controlled,  elections a farse, and the public

unaware of just how we arrived here.  That is why they

still support the Parties.  There were many voices with

warnings, they were ignored. Everyone was fat and happy.

We will putter along as we are now in deterioration.

It will be food and water shortages that we will be

concerning ourselves with.

P.S…...We will never know the real numbers and I still
don’t believe diaz del castillo.

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By REDHORSE, August 24, 2010 at 1:57 pm Link to this comment

No matter how many times I click mt heels together LJL, the reality remains the same. Corporate feudalistic fascism and perpetual war, supported by a propagandist press and, the Constitution and Civil Rights subsumed, by the Patriot Act and Homeland Security. Please tell me this Cheney/Bush political/financial no-mans-land is my imagination. I’d like to wake up.

      I suspect TRUTHDIG posters are pretty small political potatos. Still, PEETAWONKAS paranoia about “shills” may/or may not be justified. I have to reality check my own on a frequent basis. It’s hard to contain the political rage most here express and it often gets projected into some strange imagery. If as OFER and BALKAS feel, the VOTE is meaningless, what is the alternative? GERARD is correct, we are politically and socially rudderless and adrift. She and others encourage personal political action. I’m for that!!!, not violence.

      BR549 (HeeHaw?) is reaching for something I’m trying to understand myself. What are the forces that hold us frozen in inaction? The reality seems clear as day, but “We the people—” remain unable to effect postive change, even when we VOTE our hearts.

      I hear the anger, see and experience the political/social/economic chaos and note the cultural disintegration. Like AMeshiea I desire progress, but WHAT holds not only “We the people—” but our political leadership in thrall. Is ignorance and greed too simple an answer? Can our humanity save us when humanity is under such direct attack?

      New thought on the Americas says there were 25 to 40 million Native Americans when Columbus sailed, some New World cultures being as old and as advanced as Sumer. Smallpox and other European diseases reduced them to less than a million. Europeans that carried the disease, though they exploited it, only knew it was a factor subsequently. Native Americans nor Europeans planned it, and no one saw it coming.

      We’re past the tipping point. GCC,  world population, continued destruction and the fight for natural resources now shapes the future. America needs to put its’ house in order or perish. Could it be that order is no longer a possiblity? Is it still possible to believe our leadership holds concern for anyone or anything except themselves? Remember the famous Norwegian Rat Study. This could be biological, not political.

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By Clint, August 24, 2010 at 11:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The withdrawal of ‘combat troops’ is a farce. The
military immediately acknowledged that the remaining
troops would have a combat role and that new ‘private
security guards’ (mercenaries) were being flown in as

Also, Obama didn’t support the ‘Mosque.’ He said it has
the right to be built - something that even a majority
of its opponents agree with.

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By AMeshiea, August 24, 2010 at 9:07 am Link to this comment

Reply to
By gerard, August 24 at 1:53 am

You are totally correct. There is nothing that gets
up my nose more than the ITW types that want to
lambast the progs that worked there ass off and now
are not just bitter but completely shut out of the
very revolution that they thought they were making in
tandem with candidate Obama. These hollow calls by
Obama to be forced to do what “we” want, are sick
jokes that have destroyed the mobilized progs and
left behind only a bunch of shrill “its Dems or bust
you loony lefties or it will just get worse”

It reminds me of the scene in Gladiator when the wise
old Marcus Aurelius tells his evil little son that,
the faults in Commodus as a son are the faults in him
as a father only to get smothered to death be

I’m with those like BR549, ardee, offersince72,
peetawonkus anarcisse and the others that posted here
and are fed up with this two-party joke. The network
that was OFA/MoveOn etc needs to be reassembled along
with Unions and Black caucus to forcefully back a
third party candidate, or at the very least, ensure
that we get more of Ron Paul or Kucinich ticket then
the Clinton-Bush royal families and their various

Case and point:

“The most intriguing part of Melber’s report is the
section featuring the comments of former Obama
campaign staffers. They are quoted anonymously, but a
powerful theme emerges: the Obama White House is not
as interested in grassroots action as the Obama
campaign was. Melber reports:

Most interviewees stressed that OFA’s current
structure, within the DNC and reporting to the White
House, put significant constraints on OFA’s
activities. In this narrative, while the campaign
operated as a single, holistic strategic entity, OFA
is now inevitably subsumed in a sprawling
organizational matrix, including the White House,
Congress and party infrastructure. Thus it can be
easily outranked. “It’s very, very hard, because
you’re being led around by the White House, which has
shifting strategy and different political concerns,”
noted one former staffer. The organizational chart
makes it hard to quickly answer practical organizing
questions, this person observed, or even settle on
the right “political rhetoric” for communicating with
supporters. This former staffer was also concerned
about the commitment to a robust OFA at the White
House, a view echoed by other campaign staff.

The White House is not only a bureaucratic hurdle,
according to some former campaign staff, it has
emerged as an intramural opponent with diverging
strategic priorities. Unlike the presidential
campaign leadership, one ex-staffer contended, White
House management is simply not very enthused about
grassroots organizing, or convinced of the potential
benefits of mobilizing OFA’s millions of members.”

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By Night-Gaunt, August 24, 2010 at 8:39 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

By Go Right Young Man,, August 21 at 7:33 pm Link to The president is a progressive.  A staunch progressive, in fact.  He’s simply not “progressive” enough for you.

Where exactly is he such a person? I haven’t seen him do anything really to prove that. Dennis Kucinich is such a staunch Progressive and you see what they do to him. Obama is no such animal, not in the least. Prove to me where he has fought hard for Liberal and/or Progressive causes. The healthcare socalled, was originated by Newt Gingrich in the mid 1990’s, implimented on a state level by <b>Mitt Romney and now threatens millions of us starting in 2014. Whose side is he on?

He like Clinton before him are right wingers and put through and bridge between the obvious others. Unforturnately both parties are run by crytpo-fascists who have hidden agendas as you can see if you enterpret the past 32 years from that angle. Try it sometime and see if it fits.

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By gerard, August 23, 2010 at 9:53 pm Link to this comment

My contention is that Obama’s “failures” and ours as well are due to the Democratic party advisors, the professional politicisans who steppped into the White House after the inauguration to “advised” Obama on all problems at all levels.  And he listened.
  If you remember, in his inauguration speech post election he was very clear on one point.  “Make me do what you want me to do,”—words to that effect several times over.  He was pleading with the people who had elected because he knew he would need pressure from below to do what he had promised.
  The Party at that time could have fed into the forces that elected him, telling them how to stay organized, how to keep contact lines open, how to build a people’s movement to achieve people’s goals, established a channel for popular access.
  The opportunity was lost and the (surprisingly?) sudden needs of the “financial sector” blew everybody away and carried Obama into concentrating on the needs of the rich.  He never got away from the sticky syrup and became a fly stuck on fly paper.
  Very sad—and really unexpected, so far as I can see. Why didn’t the Democratic party uphold the people who elected them?  Only one possible answer?  Campaign financing?
  Savage irony?  We need the rich as much as they need us—but we are made mortal enemies by short-signtedness, envy, mutual hatred and greed. Strong leadership could mitigate this situation with an injection of political wisdom. But absolutely nobody in this country’s leadership seems to go in for political wisdom at the moment.  We are adrift.

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By Shift, August 23, 2010 at 5:27 pm Link to this comment

Robinson is an Obama shill.  He dishonors his Prize by remaining purposefully oblivious to Obama’s loyalty to big business.  Obama lies to the public with such regularity that one doubts that has a soul.  He is definitely not a god fearing man and neither does he fear the people.  He is tripe in trousers and a shirt; yet, to Robinson, whose loyalty lacks veracity to the point of thinking that Robinson is quite possibly a racist.

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By BR549, August 23, 2010 at 3:44 pm Link to this comment

Money is funny, August 23 at 3:02 pm
Why don’t we just truncate your quote to:  “Don’t worry. El presidente will get
plenty of cancer ............

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By Peetawonkus, August 23, 2010 at 3:21 pm Link to this comment

Creep trolls from the Go Right camp keep talking here as if anyone is paying any attention to them. Lefties and progressives ought to take these forums as opportunities to analyze and critique the situation and find ways of moving forward…together. Responding to right wing filth and lies is a waste of time. You won’t (and can’t) change these clowns’ minds with facts or by pointing out their towering hypocrisy. They’re doubtless being paid as shills to come here and attempt to hijack the debate. The only thing more sad than that is watching otherwise bright people try to be the most pure and correct all the time, without room for compromise.

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By Money is funny, August 23, 2010 at 11:02 am Link to this comment

Don’t worry.

El presidente will get plenty of cancer money from his pfizer friends for the
dummy show and they will make a happy pill that really works some day.

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By Carl, August 23, 2010 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

Since the spinmaster from the WashPost can’t do research, I did some quick Internet checking, and here is some info about the new COMBAT brigades deploying to Iraq.

Final deployment: 3rd ACR ready for last mission to Iraq Posted On: Wednesday, Aug. 18 2010 10:53 PM

“The regiment will join Fort Hood’s III Corps in Iraq, and the 1st Cavalry Division’s 4th Brigade Combat Team will deploy soon after. While the regiment recently returned from a rotation to the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif., the 4th Brigade recently completed a rotation to the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, La.

The two brigades will be among the first to deploy in full advise-and-assist roles.”

Would Truthdig dare reprint this “truth”

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By Carl, August 23, 2010 at 9:29 am Link to this comment

My God! What a BS article! BP caused the oil spill and fixed it while Obama watched. Obama promised to pull all US troops out of Iraq within 14 months, yet we still have over 50,000 troops there, including five combat brigades.

The biggest lie out there right now is that we have no combat troops in Iraq. There are FIVE combat brigades there now, complete with hundreds of tanks and artillery. So why does “truthdig” insist on following the corporate media and reprinting these lies? Why does it continue to publish trash from this corporate hack?

Obama has done almost nothing, but spend more money. Yes, he really had to twist arms to get that stimulus package passed, as we know Congress hates to spend money. Obama has sent more troops to Afghanistan, raised military spending, increased the size of the Army, ordered assassinations, and continues warrantless wiretapping. He is to the right of Bush, just more clever. Yet we still have “loyal” Dems supporting him because they are spineless.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 23, 2010 at 3:48 am Link to this comment

ardee, August 23 at 7:19 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 22 at 10:51 am

“The boy stood on the burning deck…..”

Agreeing to disagree is a polite way of saying that you have no defense for your seemingly blind loyalty to a party that you yourself criticize ( when pushed to do so).

You seek to push the blame onto individuals within the party rather than accept that your rotten ship is beyond repair. Even if your assessments are correct you fail, yet again, to give any concrete steps you will take to rebuild your GOP-lite political allegiances.

You infer that supporting third parties is like diving into a cold and rough sea, yet remaining on board the corporate ship that is the Democratic Party fails your own ideology, fails this nations people and dooms you to being there when the ship hits the reef.

So ends an attempt at civility. I’m fully capable of showing the logical flaws of your pipe dream but I’m not having this argument again. You can live in your Ralph Nader-as-President fantasy land.  I’m not willing to give the Republic over to the GOP again chasing that dream.  They nearly sank it last time.  Next time they WILL end our Constitution system of government and create the Christo-fascist state they desire, their Christian version of the Iranian “Islamic Republic”.

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By ardee, August 23, 2010 at 3:19 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, August 22 at 10:51 am

“The boy stood on the burning deck…..”

Agreeing to disagree is a polite way of saying that you have no defense for your seemingly blind loyalty to a party that you yourself criticize ( when pushed to do so).

You seek to push the blame onto individuals within the party rather than accept that your rotten ship is beyond repair. Even if your assessments are correct you fail, yet again, to give any concrete steps you will take to rebuild your GOP-lite political allegiances.

You infer that supporting third parties is like diving into a cold and rough sea, yet remaining on board the corporate ship that is the Democratic Party fails your own ideology, fails this nations people and dooms you to being there when the ship hits the reef.

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By balkas, August 22, 2010 at 4:37 pm Link to this comment

Finally i read on TD about necessity of structural changes, but not yet about changing money management-distribution structure in which people at the till s’how-s’mwhen-s’mwhy get so much richer than a tiller, fisher, truck driver.
And is that an act of nature? Or god? Or god-nature or an act of a mafioso organization?
Clearly, and act of evil people!\

So, whatever changes one makes and does not change the structure of money management and/or governance all labor woul be in vain.

As a wise person had said: those who control symbols [money being a symbol for sefworth-power]will control you and no amount of revolution or evolution will even ease up the control let alone pass it to all people.

It should by now be noted that we all are rendered unsane and split asunder in million pieces; thus, twelve evil people can easily rule even 100 million such incapacitated and divided individuals.

We, of course, were not at a point in time pre-priestly rule unsane and divided but priests took care to make us blind, envious, fearful, stupid and ruling ever since that time became easy.  tnx

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By BR549, August 22, 2010 at 3:08 pm Link to this comment

The problem is one of social disconnection. Eisenhower’s push for a Pattonesque system of supply line interstate highways, while certainly helping to homogenize the population, also had the downside of fragmenting individuals’ connection within the smaller towns that helped them maintain a useful social identity.

Add to that the TV, which, while bring more information to the average person out in Toad Patch Arkansas, gradually led individuals to question the wisdom of their local elders and to tax their connection to family and community.

What we have is a country of lost souls, with too many people just out to save themselves at the expense of the larger group they were previously able to identify with. Case in point would be the video-orphans turned Predator Drone operators.

Thus, when we get anyone with even a smidgeon of charisma, such as Obama, they could easily hook an oceanful of gullible fish we have in our population who have been waiting desperately for someone with any degree of integrity. We’re not likely to find that soon, not until it becomes fashionable or profitable to be honest.

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By Go Right Young Man, August 22, 2010 at 1:20 pm Link to this comment

There was a time, not so long ago, when Congress—the House of Representatives especially—represented the views of mainstream Americans. That time has clearly passed. How might we bring it back?

Part of the problem is partisan and ideological. Democrats are more fond of government, less respectful of the rights and wisdom of ordinary Americans.

But there was plenty of corruption, big spending and disregard for the opinions of ordinary Americans when Republicans controlled Congress from 1995 to 2007.

So the problem is primarily structural, and will require structural fixes.

Most important, I think, are term limits. The longer a congressman or senator is in Washington, the less likely he or she will represent the views of his or her constituency in Washington, the more likely it is he or she will seek to impose Washington’s views on his or her constituents.

If lawmakers were restricted to 12 consecutive years in office, Congress might again become what the Founding Fathers intended it to be.

But we’d have to amend the Constitution to get term limits. Campaign finance reform can be achieved by majority vote.

Real campaign finance reform is essential because lawmakers these days are more attentive to special interest groups that give them money than to the views of their constituents.

The power of lobbyists has been magnified by faux campaign reformers who set low ceilings on the amounts individuals could contribute.

Serious campaign finance reform requires, first, that candidates for federal office be permitted to accept contributions only from citizens of the United States who are registered to vote in the state from which they are seeking election (no money from political action committees, corporations, labor unions, the minor children of wealthy people or out of staters) or from the political party to which they belong.

It requires also that the ceiling on individual contributions be raised from the current $2,300 to $10,000. That’s not nearly enough money for a single individual to “own” his own congressman, but high enough so an otherwise competitive candidate can raise the campaign funds he or she needs from among his or her constituents.

To keep special interests from burrowing in through the back door, we need to discourage political parties from taking their money. The parties can’t, under the Constitution, be forbidden from taking lobbyist money. But they could be bribed into eschewing it if Congress were to establish a $200 million annual fund, to be divided among the parties in proportion to their share of the vote in the last presidential election, provided the parties agree to accept additional contributions only from citizens of the United States who are registered to vote, in amounts of not more than $100,000 per year.

If we reduce the time our representatives spend in Washington, and their dependence on special interest groups, our representatives might again become our representatives.

Last, but certainly not least, everyone here and elsewhere must denounce the hate which is spread on this and other Web spaces.  The same goes for the television and radio media. Hannity and Olbermann should be ridiculed for their smallness.

As soon as we hear or see some selfish idiot go on about how “those others” on the opposing side are all bad people, all evil people, all fascist liars who mean us no good they should be told to shut the hell up with that childish whining.  There is simply far too much bigotry and hate on this and other Web spaces.

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By LJL, August 22, 2010 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment

I imagine that there is only a minority of readers here who get upset by the tub-thumping psycho babble calling for the forceful overthrow of this or that institution and endlessly complains about the corruption of the media that only propagandizes for corrupt Democratic, Republican, Corporatist politicians.  Can these people who believe they are surrounded on all sides by evil conspiracies be sane or intelligent?  Of course, they think they are saner and brighter than the rest especially the unfortunate few who have achieved some political success . . . but what does that tell you about them?

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By balkas, August 22, 2010 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment

My apology for thinking that you said that voting matters.
To repeat, if i may, I have said that actually voting or even thinkig about balloting having any influence on US system of governance, exacerbates situation for aliens and in some manners some americans.

Since ca. 10 k yrs ago all the clerico-noble lowlife has ever done was to patch or ‘fix’ [reform-deform-regulate-unregulate {never form}]the same pants, or to make it clearer, system of rule.

The system of rule, in basics, appears similar in all asocialistic-inegalitarian empires and lands: at any cost, plutocrats, with help from clergy, must rule.

In such an iniquity, i have noted [just recently, tho] even cities are but a huge prisons; totally dependent on the whims and wills of a vast minority of people.

Furthermore even some lands are now open huge prisons of the US-nato olligarchy.
We can see this situation in afpak, iraq, palestine, israel.

In an equitous, idyllicly-structured society, cities would be much interdependent: depending and being dependent on all other cities and all people in a given country and its management.

Now that would be a life worth living. Perhaps younger generations would espy this revelation of the enormous value of being interdependent and would do s’mthing about it instead of just lament.
So let’s stop lamenting and start exulting about coming change: the change i believe in!
Mind you, most of the posters on TD don’t lament as much as waste everybody’s time! tnx

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By Justin Weleski, August 22, 2010 at 11:13 am Link to this comment

Faith in our nation’s government institutions in waning; time to crank up the
propaganda machine.  Heaven forbid we recover from the mass delusion that our
present “Establishment” is necessary to save us from an “ever-increasing array of
life-threatening perils.”  No, can’t have that.

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By ofersince72, August 22, 2010 at 10:47 am Link to this comment

Armed insurrection is exactly what is going on in

Mexico right now.  The media, (the whores) is describing

it as fights of the Drug Cartels.

In America it is going to take massive, highly organized
demonstrations to even think we are going to get a
political process back.  We can’t do that because you
need leaders and the media to do this.  We have no more
Martin Luther Kings that can rally massive support and
if we did we still wouldn’t have the media to help us.
SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM.  no matter how much the public
is against this,  the owners of our debt are going to
demand this.  They own us now.  They own our legislators
now.  We already have been hit with a twenty pound mall
over top the head, and still no one wants to accept this

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By gerard, August 22, 2010 at 10:44 am Link to this comment

How about this, people?  We haven’t been carrying our weight in self-government for a long time.  We have been electing presidents (or not) that media clattered about (or polls prophesied) were the most popular, had the most money behind them, won the most “debates” and managed to “uphold” what we were told are “American values”—which have largely consisted, for the past 50 years, in fighting wars for resources and enforcing political and cultural conformity to corporate standards.
  Now we see the results, and it’s painful.  But salutary in the end—provided that end leaves most of us standing and strong enough to shape up.
  Don’t believe me?  How many groups have you organized for progressive goals in the last 50 years?
How much political attention have you paid to corporate robbery and jail rape?  How many destitute people have you talked to seriously about their plight?  How many kids have you warned not to join the army because they will likely be killed or seriously injured for no adequate reason? Gay rights? Patriot Act? Drug “wars”? Where were you?
  This is what it will take—an awareness of what America really could be, a self-critical attitude, empathy for those who struggle against great odds, and sincere dedication to the future of the human race. We all know this is our job, and noone else can do it.

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By ofersince72, August 22, 2010 at 10:23 am Link to this comment

Redhorse, if your still there…

if empathy is the right word, that is what I have for all
those that feel their vote still counts, go for it.

I will repeat,  we got rid of the Rethugs.. it didn’t work

and it is never going to work…we don’t own this country

anymore, if we ever did.  Certainly the political process

is stone cold dead along with the vote. HOPEFUL and

WISHFUL thinking cannot undo fact. Besides the math
involved in doing what you say, doesn’t hold up, the
numbers will never, ever, be there.

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By Hammond Eggs, August 22, 2010 at 9:49 am Link to this comment

Look at the photograph accompanying this article.  Look at the fools out in the audience, on their feet, hollering, jumping up and down as if they were on “The Price Is Right”, while Obama stands before them with his sleeves rolled up as if he is “of the people”.

Someone down below commented that this is what America wants.  Absolutely right!  The problem is that the uncontrolled greed that rules this nation - and of which Obama is a major actor - has no end to it until it finally destroys us all.

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By carh8r, August 22, 2010 at 9:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

He’s retreated from more of his promises than he’s fulfilled.
Two of the biggest lies was how he was going to close Guantanamo prison and pass the Employee Free Choice Act.
Yea, he’s better than McCain but he’s still just another spineless Dem that lies to the people and does whatever big businees wants him to do once in office.
And just as a side note, after watching him campaign and his actions in office I think he’s a condascending douche bag.

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By REDHORSE, August 22, 2010 at 9:31 am Link to this comment

What a propagandist E.Robinson is!!

    BALKAS: I don’t think thinking voting makes no difference is a trick. But,what does? OFER: Why stop now?

    Again, other than organized armed revolt, I see no pathway, and no common ground for action other than the vote. Change is slow, but time will pass. Wipe out the Republithugs and start working on social change from the inside out. If it’s good cop/bad cop get rid of the bad cop.

    This has been a good thread—-you guys do get some wood on the ball.

    Catch you on the turn around!!

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By thetruth, August 22, 2010 at 9:24 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Presdient Obama and our current crop of Democrats have fundamentally failed to change the broken and corrupt systems that continue to rip people off and threaten the world’s economic security.

In both finance and insurance, absolutely nothing has changed fundamentally.  There’s been window-dressing and tinkering around the edges, with a plethora of self-congratulatory back-slapping amongst the progressive community for the “historic” nature of this fig-leaf reform.

Nothing has changed in the systems that redistribute the wealth of the middle class and poor into the hands of the wealthy.  In fact, there are strong arguments that President Obama has expanded and strengthened those systems and their stranglehold on our government.

Watching self-proclaimed “pragmatic” progressives twist themselves into pretzels justifying things like the health care “reform” bill when it was based upon the Republican health care bill of the 90’s is a farce worthy of the Marx Brothers.

Basically, today’s pseudo-pragmatic progressives are where Republicans were 15 years ago.  And they’re celebrating it.

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By truedigger3, August 22, 2010 at 8:42 am Link to this comment

ITW wrote:
“So the ship is leaky, out of date, inappropriate for the sea conditions and captained by cowardly idiots.  I may hate the ship but am not willing to dive overboard into cold, rough deep waters that are far from land, especially when there’s a pirate ship at hand ready to steal and destroy everything



This leaky ship , under these condition, will eventually sink in the very near future, unless something drastic and different is done which could be:
1) Outright muntiny where the Captain and his lietinants are put on a life boat and send adrift to be picked and sheltered by the pirates.
I will explain why later.
2) If a successful mutiny is not possible, then commandeering several life boats and makint it to a close by island to build and arm a better ship. This will take time but time will be in their side.
This is urgent because there are strong indications, that there is collusion between the captain and the pirates, and that the Royal Family initiated it, encourages it and loves it. That means people trade and goods will eventually will all be plundered and people will be paupers who have to work as slaves for the Royal Family to survive.

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, August 22, 2010 at 8:03 am Link to this comment

It doesn’t take much to demonstrate how low this country and it’s leaders have sunk.

Hope and Change was just another slogan, used in the same way that advertizers use cleverly designed phrases, to sell Soda, Beer, and detergent.

It was a new and improved version of Bush’s slogan,  Yes, America Can!, which became Yes We Can!

Under Obama, only the words have been re arranged, to cover the same old lies, misdirection, sleight of hand, and B.S..

There is no difference between the Republican Party and the Demoncratic party, because they serve the same masters, the plutocracy that pays them.

The Republicans, create the victims while the Democrats insitutionalize that victimization, for generation after generation, instead of preventing it in the first place.

Only the words have been re arranged under Obama.

Political delusions are like ulcers that reveal a deep pathology of thinking and feeling, writers like Robinson, are part of the “peak delusion”, that keeps the country sick.

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By ofersince72, August 22, 2010 at 7:47 am Link to this comment

For the Dems , it is just a matter of

what the definition of is , is.

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By ofersince72, August 22, 2010 at 6:59 am Link to this comment

The pirate ship won a long time ago.

The fear of the boggyman…....that is all the Dems have
to campaign with.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 22, 2010 at 6:51 am Link to this comment

We can agree to disagree on this.  However, I, just like you, am not happy with Schumer and Emmanuel’s emphasis.  However, I would say that Schumer doesn’t have the same influence as Reid and Pelosi.  I, too, was enraged that Dean, having won back both the House and Senate, was immediately discredited by what I think of as the Carville faction (Schumer and Emmanuel subscribe to Carville’s failed strategizing, which hasn’t worked since 1996—and barely then!)

Sooner or later the leadership of the Party has to decide which trend in the party is preferred by most party members.  I think the near-Dino-ness of the Webbs and Nelsons ain’t it, and the far-leftness of Kucinich ain’t it either.  The center of the party is more Left than the leadership, but not nearly as Left as, say, you are.

Still, what I TRULY hate about the Dem leadership is two things:
1) It’s tone-deaf to what Liberal and Moderate Americans want.
2) It’s spineless and cowardly, seeking to compromise with intransigent who refuse to bend an inch, so they keep moving Right to try to get SOME concessions—and they rarely do.

So the ship is leaky, out of date, inappropriate for the sea conditions and captained by cowardly idiots.  I may hate the ship but am not willing to dive overboard into cold, rough deep waters that are far from land, especially when there’s a pirate ship at hand ready to steal and destroy everything.

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By Inherit The Wind, August 22, 2010 at 6:37 am Link to this comment

Again GRYM tries to set up a straw man to deflect criticism from his flip-flopping hypocrisy—that GRYM applies a set of rules of morality to Democrats and Obama that he NEVER applies to Republicans and Bush.

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