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Democratic Corporatism Brings Reagan Back From the Grave

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Posted on Jan 21, 2010
Original: Reagan Library

By David Sirota

“After months of struggling to find their footing, it looks like the GOP has finally found an effective spokesman: Republican leaders have unveiled the reanimated corpse of Ronald Reagan (and) the undead former president has quickly emerged as the new face of the Republican Party.”—The Onion

This line from a recent satire perfectly captures the moment’s political zeitgeist—except for one detail: Republicans aren’t responsible for the revival of Reaganism. Democrats are.

That is the moral of Massachusetts’ U.S. Senate election this week. In a state where Democrats outnumber the GOP by a 3-to-1 margin, little-known Republican Scott Brown defeated Democratic Attorney General Martha Coakley with an ancient Reaganesque message demonizing the government and taxes.

Why did this tired old Republican tactic suddenly work? Because Reagan’s vote-eating cadaver is now stalking the land, thanks to Democrats’ odious new worldview.

In 2009, Democrats made clear that their idea of government is radically different from the one embedded in their legacy and campaign promises. They unleashed what The Nation’s Chris Hayes calls “corporatism”—an agenda that fuses public and private sectors, replacing Rooseveltian regulations and LBJ-esque social safety nets with taxpayer-funded bribes of rapacious business interests.

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Under Democratic corporatism, “government” is not what it used to be—it is not tough financial rules or public programs like Medicare. Instead, ”government” now means giving public dollars to private banking, insurance and drug firms, and then hoping (but not mandating) that such largesse compels those companies to change.

This public-private collusion, it must be noted, is not limited to one of the two parties—in today’s money-dominated politics, they both champion it when in power. Additionally, corporatism is neither “left” nor “right”—Barack Obama’s bailouts are no more “liberal” than George W. Bush’s corporate welfare bills were “conservative.”

The difference is that unlike business-affiliated Republicans, Democrats in 2008 explicitly pledged to fight such state-sponsored larceny, and America sees their subsequent betrayal as an unseemly attempt to feign concern for voters while enriching the party’s corporate donors.

The problem, of course, is that those are mutually exclusive constituencies. You cannot fix the financial system, punish Wall Street thieves and reform health care as the electorate wants while also preserving the same financial system, rewarding Wall Street thieves and strengthening the health care status quo, as wealthy campaign benefactors demand.

Trying to do both—i.e., refusing to answer the famous “Which side are you on?” question—birthed today’s Democratic corporatism and reanimated Reagan’s gangrene corpse. Now, even in its rotting and pulpy form, the Gipper’s pallid avatar is poised to mount a more cogent—and destructive—crusade than even his previous self.

In the 1980s, the living, breathing Reagan faced at least some obstacles in attacking a government of beloved New Deal and Great Society programs. Presently, though, Reagan’s undead carcass (whether rendered as Brown or any other Republican opportunist) is finding easier success because the moans that “government is the problem” vilify a government of rightly despised corporatism. Indeed, it’s no surprise that voters—including self-described liberals—are sympathizing with anti-Democrat, anti-tax and anti-government arguments at a time when Democrats are funneling tax dollars into executive bonuses and equating government with hated industries.

Incredibly, as clumsy as the Reagan zombie still is (and as hypocritical as formerly corporatist Republicans are), Democrats’ reaction to the onslaught has been positively inept. Only in the last week, when facing the Senate election loss, did the White House finally back a populist-sounding levy on the biggest banks—but that tiny proposal looked like desperate pandering.

As Massachusetts proves, Obama and his party will need to muster much more than hollow gestures to stop the election-hungry corpse they needlessly resurrected.

David Sirota is author of the best-selling books “Hostile Takeover” and “The Uprising.” He hosts the morning show on AM760 in Colorado and blogs at OpenLeft.com. E-mail him at ds@davidsirota.com.

© 2010 Creators.com



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By DBM, January 30, 2010 at 8:30 pm Link to this comment

Go Right,

I’m sorry, I can’t find the reference to “pretending” ... you’ll have to be more specific.

The people who can’t shop around and bargain are those who take advice from their doctors and / or may be suffering an emergency.

The “six health insurance companies” which offer nation-wide services are a fiction I hypothesised to make your position more understandable (and it wasn’t enough).

Regarding the $68Trillion ... we’ve been through this before.  I looked out a number references to numbers on this and the types of organisations that want to get them out there as accepted fact.  I’ll be happy to talk about costs when you can be confident that the country is spending more on healthcare than on the military ... then I’ll believe that there is a cost constraint that has to be considered.  Until then, it’s all about a choice of where to spend your resources.

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By DBM, January 30, 2010 at 7:58 pm Link to this comment

Go Right,

We continue to agree that the current healthcare “market” doesn’t work.  Call it oligopoly, call it cartels, call it local monopolies or just call it crony capitalism ... it is broken.  Where we differ is on where it should go and on how to get there.

You want to believe that the rest of the industrialised world has it wrong and that market forces are the best way to deliver the best healthcare for the lowest cost.  You may be right, but no-one else does it that way.  You could call the current model America’s attempt to deliver healthcare through the free market but then you’d have to admit that it’s an abject failure in comparison to other industrialised countries.  Trust me, when people travel to the U.S. as tourists, one thing that they take into consideration and talk about is that it is a DANGEROUS place and that if you get sick the main thing is not to get too sick to be able to get out to someplace where you can afford help.  For the richest country in the world that seems like a real problem with priorities.

I would suggest that the best idea for the U.S. would be to admit the failure of the current system and make steps to move to something new.  Your argument that the shareholders of parasitic medical insurers are “teachers unions, labor unions, plumbers and architects” is a classic.  If you’re going to use the usual talking point you should toss in “Fireman’s Fund”, I think it will have focus group tested very well.  Does this argument not sound familiar?  Does “too big to fail” ring a bell?  A decent fund manager will move those holdings before they become worthless but, yes, there will be losers.  There seem to be quite a few of those at the moment ... very few of them actually directly involved in the markets.  But that’s another story.

My point is that healthcare is different from car care.  When someone is too high a risk, they cannot drive.  When someone too high a medical risk, they still have to live.  There is very limited consumer choice at the time of consumption.  There is also a moral responsibility of a civilised society to care for its members but I suspect that takes us WAY out of your comfort zone.  You can read my previous comments about the incentives for private providers of healthcare and how they do not align with patients.

Lastly, you say that “Americans typically favor incremental steps to solve big problems rather than top-down, technocratic plans, which are far more common in France or Germany.”  I think you are making some very broad assumptions there about all three of the countries you mention.  I’m not sure Americans get much choice about how large problems are solved.  When there was a shortage of liquidity on Wall St a great big top down solution was delivered.  Arguably a much more technocratic approach would have been good (like:  Objective, avoid a depression through lack of liquidity; Solution, put money into the system where it will help - not for acquisitions and certainly not for bonuses).  The “let the market decide” approach to the bail-out has been less than wonderful.

I think with costs double that of comparable nations and no coverage (or under coverage) for 20% of your citizens you have a critical problem.  With large industries rendered uncompetitive by massive health costs and a health care industry whose profits have grown at more than double the national growth rate for years, you are headed in the wrong direction ... fast. 

It appears that both your viable political parties are in full support of the status quo.  A pity ... incremental might not be enough ...

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By Go Right Young Man, January 30, 2010 at 9:09 am Link to this comment

DBM

You say we are pretending?  Why?

Who are these people who are in no position to shop around and bargain?

Which six health insurance companies offer nation-wide services?

Have you yet devised a plan for how to pay for the $68 Trillion in unfunded liabilities for Medicare before we expand the health-care system to your liking?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 30, 2010 at 8:34 am Link to this comment

DBM,

Right now, the U.S. does not have a national market for health insurance. It has 50 separate state markets. Erecting walls around each state means less competition and higher prices for consumers. There’s not even one market for the Chicago area. If you live in South Holland or Calumet City, your insurance options could be completely different from your Indiana neighbors in Hammond or Merrillville. What sense does that make?

The easiest way to see how insurance competition benefits consumers is to look at auto insurance. That’s a huge, nationwide market and companies compete intensively for a share of it. Some stress their low prices, others customer service, whatever gives them an edge in the marketplace. Geico and Progressive have been especially aggressive in touting cost savings. State Farm and Allstate certainly compete on price, but they stress service after an accident.

Other companies, like SafeAuto, focus on drivers who want only minimum coverage to meet state license requirements. In short, auto insurance companies compete vigorously to provide what different consumers want, and they tell them so in national advertisements. Life insurance companies do the same thing. There are even companies that specialize in comparing policies for customers. Competition drives down excess profits and means better, cheaper options for consumers.

Ever see an ad touting health insurance? They are rare because the markets are small and companies don’t need to compete aggressively on price or service. Introducing such competition would be good for consumers, wouldn’t require another Washington bureaucracy and could be done quickly.

Obviously, small changes like this wouldn’t solve the myriad problems with America’s health-care system. But modesty can be a virtue. In fact, Americans typically favor incremental steps to solve big problems rather than top-down, technocratic plans, which are far more common in France or Germany.

-

Your stated reasons for the disparity in private vs institutional cartage costs were solid and well reasoned, however, you must know your list fell far short of the mark. 

According the U.S. Postal Inspectors Office systemic waste and fraud account for 28% of the cost of postage today.  With a sense of light-hearted humor I submit that I am almost certain you willingly omitted this aspect of the equation.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 30, 2010 at 6:36 am Link to this comment

DBM:

I have to agree with you to some extent.  Summers and Geithner were bad choices, but nobody would take the job until Geithner agreed.  Still, it was a COLOSSAL error of Obama’s to put Summers and not Volcker in charge.

BTW, only the mega-firms on Wall Street are back paying the big bonuses—and the BIGGG ones are only going to the top execs—again. So Goldman, JP Morgan, AIG (!) are the one paying the big bonuses.  The smaller, 2nd rank firms are NOT paying the big bonuses and are struggling and one, that only a year ago was seen as a leader of the up-and-coming, is about to die.

I also notice that whenever regulation INCREASES, the economy seems to do better.  But whenever the right-wing-nuts get their de-reg wishes, the economy seems to nose-dive. If THEN, they get MORE de-reg and less taxes (which they always demand to “be more competitive”) the nose-dive turns into a fall off a cliff—as we saw start in 2006 and peak in early 2009.

It’s counter-intuitive but I’ve noticed that in general regulation and progressive taxation HELPS the economy, and de-regulation and regressive taxation hurts it time after time after time.

A theory can be shown to be true a thousand times but only needs to be shown false once to fail. And the de-regulation, lower-taxation mantra has failed EVERY time it’s implemented.

I can’t yet explain the mechanisms but I know they aren’t simple (as the Marxist types here think it is) because motivations of billions of individual human beings are tough to describe and explain as much as we try to over-simplify.

Damn! now I’m beginning to sound like Tao Walker and I can hardly ever figure what the HELL that guy’s ever talking about.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 29, 2010 at 10:33 pm Link to this comment

“The regulars on this Web site hold opinions that roughly make up the opinions of 8% of the nation.”

Clear to you perhaps but what do you call us exactly? Since my own identification doesn’t read in your own mind. So how about some clarity? My comprehension is first rate however your writing in this isn’t. Be specific. I can’t wait to find out my peer group!

You truly need a course in reading comprehension.  Perhaps if you worked on extruding your ugly and harmful bigotry you could better comprehend others points of view without inject what you THINK others may be saying and writing?”

I would ask the same of you and your own small minded bigotry as is displayed in your writing. Take some courses so you won’t sound so small minded and argumentative.

I would like to know what “bigotry” you think I have? About whom? Do disagreements count?

“You should strike up a conversation with Ardee on this site.  The two of you have a great deal in common.  You two can congratulate each other and commiserate on how smart you feel.”

Don’t mean to attack your intelligence it isn’t why I write. Sorry if I hurt you in some way. I just put what I think. Don’t you? Ardee and I agree on some things and not on others. So?

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By DBM, January 29, 2010 at 8:58 pm Link to this comment

ITW,  I think you are rather kind to Clinton ... he did heal the economy but also made a deal with the Devils of Wall St removing the vestiges of legal restraint agains moral hazzards which still remained after Reagan and Bush I.  What Dubya did was to cripple the regulatory bodies so that they could not even enforce the remaining shreds of legal control ... Hello Crisis.

But your main point is correct ... the problems didn’t start on 20 January 2009.  Still, I would say that with Summers, Geithner et. al. as Obama’s advisors, it is unlikely that Wall Street will have to stop sending trucks to fetch cash for their bonuses any time soon.  As far as they seem to be concerned that is “recovery”, done, dusted ... all better.  If Obama wants to show some backbone, he’ll get Elliot Spitzer on the job (with a special watcher to keep an eye on Spitzer’s expense account!).

In the meantime, the gist of this article is correct.  The Dems are a party of by and for corporate America.  IMHO the Republicans are even worse but what a “Hobson’s Choice” ...

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By Inherit The Wind, January 29, 2010 at 7:22 pm Link to this comment

See if you can follow a simple thread:
Jerry Ford, a nice, fairly honest, but moderately inept President was left, by Nixon, with a complicated rising inflation and he was unable to act to stop it.

Jimmy Carter came in facing it, brought in Paul Volcker who instituted draconian measures to heal the economy, but sadly for Carter, the worst of the measures came too close to the election.

Ronald Reagan came in trumpeting deregulation and tax cuts, got them just as Volcker’s Carter-based policies started baring fruit, yet not enough—employment didn’t rise and Reagan was forced to raise taxes (for which he blamed Democrats).  But Volcker’s policies worked and Reagan got a 2nd term and put in Greenspan…and things, while not seeming to, began to get bad.

Bush I came in and tried to avoid the draconian measures necessary…postponing the inevitable.  It cost him the 1992 election “It’s the economy, Stupid!”

Clinton found ways to actually heal and improve the economy.  The worst quarter of jobs growth under Clinton was better than the best quarter of jobs growth under Dubya.  But near the end of his term, Greenspan, Reagan’s man, decided he needed to show the Dot.Coms who was boss, and the bubble broke, kicking us into a mild but easily weathered recession.

Then Bush came in and rather than treading gently to let things heal, he attacked the foundations of stability with his chain-saw. Irresponsible tax cuts, re-instituting a budget deficit, a MAJOR deficit, removing ALL controls on corporations and banking, and starting unnecessary wars, emptying not only the treasury, but the future.  In 2006, the collapse was on its way with the sub-prime catastrophe.  Bush did nothing but demand MORE tax cuts—and it got worse until, at the WORST possible time (for the GOP) the banks collapsed in Sept 2008.

That began the REPUBLICAN-SPONSORED bailouts, that were tainted to protect Goldman, Sachs, it’s biggest borrower, AIG, and to KILL Golman’s worst rival: Lehman Bros.  All typical Bush.

Then Obama came in and had to face the WORST mess since the Great Depression.  And now, SOMEHOW, this whole mess is Obama’s fault because he couldn’t wave a magic wand and fix FORTY YEARS of Republicans pushing for all the WORST POSSIBLE actions for the economy.

Finally, finally, more controlled bailouts are actually working.  This Exxon Valdez of a ship of state is FINALLY slowing down and beginning to turn and FINALLY is slowing down the amount of oil it’s spilling.

But, GRYM will naturally find ways to explain that EVERYTHING was fine on Jan 19, 2009, and only went bad since then….

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By DBM, January 29, 2010 at 7:01 pm Link to this comment

Go Right,

Ok, a minimum of 6 health insurance companies to choose from country-wide.  That would tough to achieve from where you’re at but let’s pretend.  Now, they’re in competition so you’ll get lower costs right?  Or are they going to compete for young healthy customers and try to exclude those more likely to need healthcare?  I think you know the answer to that one.

So, what next?  Regulation?  Force them to cover everyone?  How about if one or two of them specialise in higher cost higher risk health insurance ... “sub-prime insurance” if you will ... will that work?  Maybe you put everyone they won’t cover on Medicare?  How do you decide who gets Medicare?  Age 60?  Watch them shun the 50-60 age bracket.  Age 50?  Watch them shun the 40-50 customers.

A health insurance company is NOT there to provide health care.  They are there to avoid providing health care while collecting premiums.  It doesn’t matter how many there are.  Similarly, the difference between a government single payer and an HMO is that the government body, however efficiently, is tasked with delivering healthcare.  The HMO is tasked with delivering profit.


BTW - couriers and parcel companies are cheaper than US Post?  Oh, you said lower “costs” not price.  Well, it sounds a bit like the health insurers.  You let the taxpayer handle all the non-profitable stuff while making money on the good stuff.  Without all those birthday cards to deliver for 50 cents I’m sure the costs are lower.  I’m not against courier companies but you have to be realistic about when a market will work and when it won’t.  Take away the U.S. Postal Service entirely and see how well you are served by private companies alone ... I don’t think it is too hard of a thought experiment to realise that that’s not a good option.


Our fundamental difference is that I do like competition and markets when they work.  I don’t believe that every industry or area of trade can be a free market.  Whenever there is an attempt to make it so, you end up with mountains of regulation to try and simulate some sort of marketplace.  This is a corporate lobbyists dream ... with years and millions they set about tilting the regulations exorably away from the consumer and towards themselves.  Eventually, you end up with Enron ... or Aetna.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 29, 2010 at 10:44 am Link to this comment

DBM,

Why are cartage companies, both big and small, able to deliver packages at lower costs, and turn a profit, while the U.S. Postal Service performs the very same service with higher costs and at a loss?

What effectively happens when health insurance companies are locked, by the government, into doing business in a certain State? This allows people only two or three, sometimes only one single choice, for health insurance services (crony capitalism that only benefits industry and Washington/State capitals). 

Will costs go down or will there be a tendency to artificially keep prices high?  Will services feel a pressure to increase due to this lack of competition?  Or would services tend to, as they always do, increase with more companies competing for a larger sum of consumers?

What effectively happens when there is only one, two, or four companies, never any more, donating to gubernatorial or senatorial campaigns?  Does the constituency increase or narrow when there are only two large insurance companies in a politician’s district?  Or, in some cases, when there is only one company locked into a State?

Who benefits when there is only one insurance company in a state?  The consumer?  Or the State Senate and Governor along with that single insurance company?

Consumers should be allowed to buy any and all health insurance they desire.  Give consumers the power to decide who they purchase services from.  Give the individual the power to lower his or her costs when they wish it.  Give the individual authentic power to cut waste and fraud and watch how dramatically costs plummet and services skyrocket!  Take that power away from Washington and the corporations.

-

What happens when a patent expires on a drug?  In most cases there are other companies that can replicate that drug and offer it to consumers at a lower cost.  In numerous cases a tremendously lower cost.  What happens all to often, however, is that the large original producer, with deep pockets, will lower it’s prices below market values.  This effectively puts the new company out of business.  While the consumer benefits for a short time ultimately those drug prices increase to their former levels. This takes away the forces of the market.  Prices effectively rise to artificial levels.

We have laws against these types of practices that are not being upheld on the federal level.  More crony capitalism between Washington and industry.

Enforce the law and allow people more choices for more drugs.  Prices will dramatically fall.

-

If you think corporations will be eliminated by a single-payer health-care system you are butting your head against a wall.  Who’s going to tell the investor -teachers unions, labor unions, plumbers and architects?  Who’s going to tell the AARP that it’s members are shit out of luck on their retirement investments to the tune of tens of Trillions of dollars?

Those corporations are funded by investors.  Every day people make up a larger portion of investors than the “institutional” investor.  We can’t forget that those same “institutional investors” are made up of teachers unions, labor unions, plumbers and architects.  Is Washington going to tell them they’re simply out their money?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 29, 2010 at 9:12 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt, January 29 at 12:49 pm

You really need to learn to read.  I wrote nothing, whatsoever, about the democratic position reflecting 8% of the nation.  I wrote nothing about the progressive positions reflecting 8% of the nation.  I wrote nothing about the desires of many regarding the U.S. health-care system.  What I wrote was very clear.

The regulars on this Web site hold opinions that roughly make up the opinions of 8% of the nation.

You truly need a course in reading comprehension.  Perhaps if you worked on extruding your ugly and harmful bigotry you could better comprehend others points of view without inject what you THINK others may be saying and writing?

-

I can’t learn anything from you that I do not already get from the narrow minded Olbermann.

You should strike up a conversation with Ardee on this site.  The two of you have a great deal in common.  You two can congratulate each other and commiserate on how smart you feel.

Good luck to you.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 29, 2010 at 8:52 am Link to this comment

DBM

Part I

DBM, - “I use “Medicare for all” as an approximation which Americans would understand of the systems in Canada or the UK or France.  Clearly there are no medical insurers or HMO’s in these systems”

-

Britain and France, Germany and Denmark, have systems that are, by their very design and nature, humongous HMO’s. It’s what I’ve been trying to convey to you all this time. And you still herald these systems as viable and working when they are in fact not. They are going broke, however, every time that subject comes up you quickly change the subject and then later return to the fallacy that these systems work well.  I repeat. These systems you hold up as examples are going broke. They are “broken”. Not unlike our current system of HMO’s, Medicare and Medicaid.  The very systems you desire to expand upon are shown, quite conclusively, not to work everywhere it’s been tried. You have yet to share a single example of how the system you advocate actually works. I hate to repeat myself, however, you keep pointing toward systems that are very quickly going broke. 

Or do you think what I write must be untrue because you’ve never heard it before?

-

We could have cheaper drugs tomorrow if large pharmaceutical companies were held to the law. A butt load of very good laws concerning unfair trade and predatory business models. Models, it so happens, that are held up by the government.  And you wish to expand and strengthen that alliance.

Look at what the “government” just did in regards to insurance companies and trade unions. Large political giveaways and a mandate that everyone now purchase products from the insurance industry. Everyone, that is, less the politically connected. That is what government gives us.  Exactly what we are both against. The examples of this very thing are so numerous it’s literally impossible to count them. You want everyone to trust that by effectively expanding and strengthening that system that it will somehow, like never before, miraculously benefit individuals and not corporate/government cronyism? 

What is it you have in mind? You think American insurance companies are going to fold and that the U.S. is in a position to loose tens of $trillions in assets and productivity in order to move to a single-payer system that does not work anywhere it’s tried? (it does not work if they are going broke)?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 29, 2010 at 8:52 am Link to this comment

DBM,

PartII

You Write: “as long as healthcare comes from for-profit corporate providers to people who are in no position to shop around or bargain, there will be excessive cost.”

Who are these people who are in no position to shop around and bargain? And why ignore one fundamental truth? Choice always lowers costs and raises quality. It works every time it’s tried.  You wish to completely kill choice and all incentives people have to lower their costs and raise their quality with a single-payer system.  A system, if I haven’t said it enough, that simply does not work anywhere it’s being tried.

Politicians and corporations have proven, time and again, more times than not, to be the last we can turn to to work in our favor. But individuals will always work in their own favor. Individuals will, necessarily, lower their costs and raise their quality of service if you get out of the damn way.

-

DBM, It should be more than clear to you by now that I don’t “try to misconstrue” your positions. I sincerely try to understand your positions. We simply arrive at our conclusions from two different points of view. 

I remain struck by the dichotomies in your positions. Particularly when it comes to complaining about government/corporate America while simultaneously heralding, what WILL in effect be, a strengthening of that very system we both complain about.

-

Uphold the law. Give all who need health insurance the ability to purchase that insurance. End the practice of the government deciding which insurance companies people can utilize. Allow for tax payer funded catastrophic coverage. And, for pity’s sake, give the individual the power to determine their own courses of action, freedom and choice. Cost will go down and services will increase.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 29, 2010 at 8:49 am Link to this comment

“Childishly referring to the Tea Party crowd as “Tea baggers”, as chuckling 5th graders do, will never further the agenda of the Progressive set.
LOL….it will only get one ridiculed by the majority - the adults.”
GoRightYOungMan

But as was pointed out they called themselves that. So LOL for you which means they are the childish ones in your description of themselves! Early on they called for teabags to be sent as a sign, and referred to themselves as “teabaggers” later amended to “Tea Partiers.”

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/01/30/sunday/main4765027.shtml

A New York Times/CBS News poll released last week shows, yet again, that the majority of Americans support national health insurance.

The poll, which compares answers to the same questions from 30 years ago, finds that, “59% [of Americans] say the government should provide national health insurance, including 49% who say such insurance should cover all medical problems.”

Only 32% think that insurance should be left to private enterprise.

Yep you got me it wasn’t 72% after all. I am wrong.
But it is still much more that 8% isn’t it?

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By DBM, January 29, 2010 at 7:28 am Link to this comment

I’m not that keen on expanding any part of the American system in isolation.  I use “Medicare for all” as an approximation which Americans would understand of the systems in Canada or the UK or France.  Clearly there are no medical insurers or HMO’s in these systems.  Neither of those institutions have a place in a single payer system.

As we’ve discussed at length elsewhere, cost is the major issue but as long as healthcare comes from for-profit corporate providers to people who are in no position to shop around or bargain, there will be excessive cost.  Markets work for some things.  Health is a special case.

I know we don’t see eye to eye on this one but it is disingenuous that you fail to understand my position and try to misconstrue it.  I think I get yours: Market competition is the best way to bring down cost so let’s make the market work properly.  I just don’t see the current vested interests ever letting the market work properly.  Better to get rid of them and go single payer.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 29, 2010 at 5:51 am Link to this comment

DBM,

Thank you for the informative link.

Yes costs are the issue.  That’s why I call for a market oriented system to bring down costs.  A system that is not in practice today. 

In practice today is Medicaid, Medicare, and HMO’s.  Very little of that have anything to with the system I advocate.  The bulk of the system the U.S. works under today is the system you desire to expand.  Why?

Again, the dichotomy in your positions are glaring.  You say the system doesn’t work and is too expensive.  But yet you wish to expand it?  You want expanded Medicare?  Expanded Medicaid?  Expanded Health Maintenance Organizations?  You want more low level bureaucrats to make the decisions that you should be making concerning your medical care?

Believe me when I write that I am truly trying to understand your position on this.

-

An alliance of Pharma-government collusion regularly practice unfair trading and unlawful predatory business models.  This needs to end.  You are trying to expand it!

Government is not currently upholding the laws when it comes to pharma.  But you believe this will happen by strengthening and expanding that system?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 29, 2010 at 5:23 am Link to this comment

ITW - “It means that whatever crap the GOP ultra-right deems to be its position, you’ll find a way to defend it, no matter how illogical and inane it is.”

-

Yes.  I understood that part.  What has this got to do with you driving various vehicles?  What has that got to do with me?  Cognitive dissonance about you test driving cars?

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By Inherit The Wind, January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 28 at 2:18 am #

Inherit The Wind,

I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.
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By Inherit The Wind, January 28 at 2:10 am #

I gotta admire you, GRYM.  If the GOP and Limbaugh said the Chevy HHR was a more comfortable, better handling, and faster car than a BMW 335i, you’d be out there arguing VEHEMENTLY why all those things were true.

Now I’ve DRIVEN an HHR (as a loaner) and it was simply the WORST POS car I have EVER driven in nearly 40 years of driving. It was designed by incompetent idiots who had to have been deformed to find this torture chamber comfortable.

And I’ve driven a 335i many times and it’s a dream to drive, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a more comfortable car, too.

But if Rush, Sean, Glenn and Fox Noise said the HHR was the superior driver’s car, Ol’ GRYM would be quoting a thousand Fox “statistics” to prove it.

As Chico Marx said: “Who you gonna believe: Me, or your own eyes?”
****************************************************

Wow!  100 Proof Cognitive Dissonance!

It means that whatever crap the GOP ultra-right deems to be its position, you’ll find a way to defend it, no matter how illogical and inane it is.

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By DBM, January 28, 2010 at 5:57 pm Link to this comment

You are correct Go Right ... we are agreed that the corporate influence is a problem.  I shouldn’t have lumped you in with my standard point of difference with libertarians.

However, you have also missed my point about the polls.  You ask if I’m saying that NBC (a large corporation and not particularly progressive), the Wall Street Journal (similarly a large corporation and not progressive) have skewered the poll results to a single point of view.  No, I said that the polls you quoted were asking people if the liked the “Obama and Democrats’ Healthcare Plan”.  I’m amazed that the favourable numbers were approaching 40% ... I can only assume these are people who find the current system so intolerable that they cannot imagine a change for the worse.  Personally, I’m not sure they’re right.  I think they underestimate the appetite of large corporations for profits and executive bonuses.

Also, you repeatedly bring up this idea that Britain, Canada, France, Australia, Denmark, et. al. are each attempting to inject more market forces into their healthcare systems to bring down costs.  And I reply again, that in all countries the rules around government programmes and market regulations are always being tweaked and there are always proposals for change.  Special interest groups and PR companies can cherry pick from these to give the gullible the impression that there is a desire to be like the U.S.  However, any genuine moves to bring healthcare more in line with the U.S. model would be political suicide.  You must remember that when these countries are trying to bring down costs, we are starting at half the costs Americans pay with comparable or better outcomes and service.  We’re not stupid and, though we get advertising and lobbying, we don’t get the saturation mis-information about healthcare that appears to be the case in the U.S.

I know how you like sources so here’s one of many which show that the U.S. system forces Americans to pay more for less:

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/indepth_coverage/health/healthreform/july-dec09/chart_08-18.html

... but hey, if you’re a pharmaceutical company executive, this is nothing but good news ... my apologies to you. grin

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By Go Right Young Man, January 28, 2010 at 11:33 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt - “I only see you criticizing MSNBC but never Fox or Limbaugh or the other…...”

Then you are either dishonest or you don’t know how to read.  Which is it?

-

“It sounds like [Mathews] was saying Obama became just like anyone else and his appearance for a time wasn’t important”

Oh yeah!  There it is!  That’s it!  In your own words! 

Here’s you’re clue, Night-Gaunt.  OBAMA IS LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE, you bigot!  I can see you will have no idea how insulting you are with that type of racist, Olbermann/Mathews-like, narrow-minded thinking.  Disgusting!

According to you Olbermann has every right to call Sen. Brown a racist for much less BUT, Mathews is merely being “post racial”? 

-

Not interested in your massive rationalizations.  We’re all still waiting on any information which illustrates that the majority of Americans desire a “single-payer” health-care model.

Do you or not have something concrete to share with us on this issue of single-payer?

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By Night-Gaunt, January 28, 2010 at 10:21 am Link to this comment

Seems to me I read it differently from you. To you even the pitiful Public Option scores high, single payer was exed out by our Conservative president in the first place! So if Public Option scores so well, and the Republicans are fearful of it being a lead in to Single Payer, then what is your point and how am I wrong in its popularity? Once all those 85% get shafted by their insurance company they will go to the gov’t option won’t they Go Right Young Man? Wouldn’t you? With an average 273 dying every day from no coverage I wonder how many of them are with insurance when it bailed on them? They are allowed to do it and are unrepenitent about it. Do you like that? Does it agree with your philosophy? It doesn’t mine.

Yes the numbers you quote I hear on Beck‘s & others shows on Fark News. If they are accurate then the country truly is lost to the extremists. That’s not a good thing is it Go Right Young Man? You do see that Olbermann isn’t in any way analogous to those on Cluster Fox is he?

I only see you criticizing MSNBC but never Fox or Limbaugh or the other hate filled racists on the corporate owned air waves. Why is that?

“Chris Matthews approvingly says ‘I forgot he was black’ of Obama’s speech
Los Angeles Times - ?8 hours ago?
Well, at least he didn’t say President Obama doesn’t speak with a Negro dialect. That phrase, of course, got Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev. ...”

Does that make him a racists or post racial? It sounds like he was saying Obama became just like anyone else and his appearance for a time wasn’t important in our racist society. (It is still so but getting better in some places, not in others.)

Was Harry Reid‘s assessment racist or correct of others views of Obama? If taken as racist then it was Harry Reid talking about his own perceptions of Obama and not his views of what others were seeing Obama as. An important part of politics is the selling of the brand.

Heads up; bigots carry out their negativisms in society, others just have those ideas.

Here is a small sampling, the rest you can read for your own edification. Please get back to me with the criticisms of him and his Nazi/KKK brethren out of costume will you? Just remember Limbaugh “...isn’t a racist, racists just like listening to him.” (I wish I knew who said that.

For some racist quotes that haven’t hurt Limbaugh in the least;

http://newsone.com/obama/casey-gane-mccalla/top-10-racist-limbaugh-quotes/

“Have you ever noticed how all composite pictures of wanted criminals resemble Jesse Jackson?”

Source (the site link)

“No, but I’ve noticed that all racist bigots think like Rush Limbaugh. Comparing a respected black politician and minister to common criminals is Jim Crow racism. Maybe all black people look alike to him, but I’ve never seen a picture of a wanted criminal that looks like Jesse Jackson. A serial killer that looks like Rush Limbaugh on the other hand.“By Casey Gane-McCalla October 20, 2008 9:45 pm

3. “Look, let me put it to you this way: the NFL all too often looks like a game between the Bloods and the Crips without any weapons. There, I said it.”

4. “The NAACP should have riot rehearsal. They should get a liquor store and practice robberies.”

5. “They’re 12 percent of the population. Who the hell cares?”

6. [To an African American female caller]: “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back.”

You can go to the site and then tell me who is the real racist here. Quotes from those you dislike are wanted to show me equivalency.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 28, 2010 at 9:34 am Link to this comment

All should feel free to check me on this.

Last Tuesday Glenn Beck’s 5P program witnessed several million viewers.  This is still drive time on the East Coast, dinner prep time, shuttle the kids time and happy hour.  People are still at work on the West Coast.

Last Tuesday Keith Olbermann’s Prime Time, 8P, sitting and watching television slot witnessed roughly 800,000 viewers. <—A minuscule number, and falling, in a population of roughly 360 million.  Ouch.  Dayum that’s a wicked hurt!

Many will think I’m a “Beck defender”.  Those would be the one’s missing the point. 

FYI.  Beck’s 2A rerun does better than Olbermann live.  Incredible in a Left of Center nation!

Watup, Night-Gaunt? smile

-

Chris Mathews last night after the State of the Union speech.  Wholly cow!  Is it obvious how this “Liberal thinker” thinks in terms of skin color?

How to Make Chris Matthews Forget You’re Black
Huffington Post (blog) - ?27 minutes ago?
Chris Matthews has a long history of giving spontaneous voice to the Village attitude that black people are icky and not “normal” like white folks. ...

Chris Matthews on Obama: `Forgot He Was Black’
ABC News - ?41 minutes ago?
AP President Barack Obama gestures on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2010, after delivering his State of the Union address. ...

I Just Remembered Chris Matthews Was White
Atlantic Online (blog) - ?47 minutes ago?
I was trying to think about who he was tonight. It’s interesting; he is post-racial, by all appearances. I forgot he was black tonight for an hour. ...

Chris Matthews approvingly says ‘I forgot he was black’ of Obama’s speech
Los Angeles Times - ?8 hours ago?
Well, at least he didn’t say President Obama doesn’t speak with a Negro dialect. That phrase, of course, got Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev. ...

Context:  I saw this surgeon perform an operation once.  My goodness he was good.  For a minute I forgot he was BLACK!

-

Can we just imagine Limbaugh saying the same thing?  Wholly shitzksy how the Olbermann bigots would lose their collective minds!  Olbermann would bust a capillary trying to get on the air to report what Limbaugh said.  And he would report it with willful and uncontrollable glee!

Will Olbermann call Mathews out as a racist?  Stay tuned….. smile

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By Go Right Young Man, January 28, 2010 at 7:23 am Link to this comment

DBM - “You go on as if there are only two types of economic entities:  Individuals and the government”

-

You must have missed how I wrote: “You voice great regret and disdain (in which we share) for how the U.S. Government, along with lobbyists and special interests/corporatism runs America.” 

You also forgot the Stossel piece I shared with you a few weeks ago which spoke of the alliance between government and the corporate world.

-

You write: “Stats are so easy to manipulate ... especially when it comes to the interpretation of statistics.’ - ‘They also pay their PR firms to put out bogus interpretations of statistics gleaned from carefully loaded poll questions.”

Aside from not enjoying the poll numbers you see what, exactly, are you saying?  Are you suggesting that NBC (progressive) and the Wall Street Journal (conservative) paid a polling aggregate company to skewer both the polling questions and the poll results to illustrate one desired point of view?  Are you saying that every poll conducted for a Democratic caucus is designed to produce the same results as every poll conducted for a Republican caucus? 

Are you attempting to suggest that President Bush may very well be extremely popular amongst the American people, however, the polling aggregates are covertly leading people to believe otherwise?  Can you explain how this works and how you know all this?

You write: “Medicare for all, or some variation of it, would make a big difference if the experience of every other industrialised country could be emulated in some way.”

And you ignore, again, that Britain, Germany, France, Canada and Denmark are each attempting to inject more market forces in order to bring down costs.  Costs that are, as we speak, moving each of the above toward bankruptcy.  How do you so willing ignore the obvious in order to keep to your ideological goals?  If I did that I would loose my job within a week.

You write: “No-one asked if they lived in fear of a low-level clerk in an insurance company incented on denying them that quality care or of maxing out their coverage and going bankrupt.”

I whole-hardheartedly agree.  That’s why I was very clear when I wrote: “Insurance reforms, expanded law enforcement, and an expansion of coverage for the 15% who go without insurance would sell in America very quickly.”

Health-care - your doctors, your medications and your surgery quality is a separate issue from Health Insurance.  Most people like their own personal care in America but have a terrific disdain for the insurance industry. 

If you truly wish an honest and productive discussion on these issues don’t we all have to find a way separate these issues before you conflate them?  Most people can do this very well.

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By DBM, January 28, 2010 at 5:26 am Link to this comment

Go Right ... we’ve been through this before.  Stats are so easy to manipulate ... especially when it comes to the interpretation of statistics.

85% of Americans were happy with the QUALITY of their healthcare.  No-one asked if they lived in fear of a low-level clerk in an insurance company incented on denying them that quality care or of maxing out their coverage and going bankrupt.  As you say, cost is the problem and the current “solution” doesn’t address that at all.  Medicare for all, or some variation of it, would make a big difference if the experience of every other industrialised country could be emulated in some way.


As for suggesting that I was claiming some sort of “mind control” by corporations ... no, more like “wallet control”.  You go on as if there are only two types of economic entities:  Individuals and the government (individual good - government bad).  There is a fairly important 3rd entity which is large corporations.  These corporations fund politics to control the government, have the legal rights of individuals and legal impunity which neither can match.

They also pay their PR firms to put out bogus interpretations of statistics gleaned from carefully loaded poll questions.  It does you no credit to keep on parroting them as if they made sense.  Another time when I challenged your statistics you posted a link to a Ruder Finn paper purporting to re-analyse three studies to show that the conclusions which each of the original study producers had come to was completely backwards!! 

These people are not trying to use poll stats to find out what people think, they just spin words and numbers to make the points they are paid to make.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 28, 2010 at 4:54 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt

Read the first four paragraphs and report back what you find…..LOL

New Poll: 77 Percent Support “Choice” Of Public Option
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/08/20/new-poll-77-percent-suppo_n_264375.html

You and others may also be interested in the 6th paragraph—

“While arguments about what type of language best describe the public option persist—“choice” is considered a trigger word that everyone naturally supports—it seems clear that the framing of the provision goes a long way toward determining its popularity.”

How in the world did you miss ALL THAT, Night-Gaunt?  Where do you see the words “Single Payer”, Night-Gaunt?  Why are you sharing information here which so clearly contradicts your position, Night-Gaunt?  Where did you learn reading comprehension, Night-Gaunt?

Thank you.  Thank you so much for helping to prove my point!

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By Go Right Young Man, January 28, 2010 at 4:39 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt - “Yes I was talking about Single Payer - Sorry I couldn’t find the 72%, just found 76% & 77%.”

-

Yet you can’t seem to produce a source that others can study or verify.  Interesting.

The Huffington Post article you linked to below clearly reported that 77% desired a “public option” as one of many “CHOICES”. 

The Huffington Post article you shared, but failed to comprehend, clearly went on to report as follows—

“after pollsters for NBC dropped the word ‘choice’ from their question on a public option, they found that only 43 percent of the public were in favor of ‘creating a public health care plan administered by the federal government”

Can you detect that, not so subtle, difference? LOL…..

-

You mentioned blowing air?  I remain keenly interested in any information which illustrates that the majority of Americans desire a “single-payer” health-care model.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 27, 2010 at 10:57 pm Link to this comment

Yes I was talking about Single Payer not the present Frankenstien’s monster that is presented right now which does more for the corporate health care system than the people. So far I’m not a supporter of them either. Can you detect that difference?

Sorry I couldn’t find the 72%, just found 76% & 77%. But that is for single payer not what is offered right now. Seems a tad pedantic of you to want that number I quoted specifically over the higher numbers found. Petty are we? Or just more dissembling to ignore the reality?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 27, 2010 at 10:18 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind,

I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 27, 2010 at 10:10 pm Link to this comment

I gotta admire you, GRYM.  If the GOP and Limbaugh said the Chevy HHR was a more comfortable, better handling, and faster car than a BMW 335i, you’d be out there arguing VEHEMENTLY why all those things were true.

Now I’ve DRIVEN an HHR (as a loaner) and it was simply the WORST POS car I have EVER driven in nearly 40 years of driving. It was designed by incompetent idiots who had to have been deformed to find this torture chamber comfortable.

And I’ve driven a 335i many times and it’s a dream to drive, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a more comfortable car, too.

But if Rush, Sean, Glenn and Fox Noise said the HHR was the superior driver’s car, Ol’ GRYM would be quoting a thousand Fox “statistics” to prove it.

As Chico Marx said: “Who you gonna believe: Me, or your own eyes?”

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By Go Right Young Man, January 27, 2010 at 8:45 pm Link to this comment

DBM,

Prior to the 08 election every major polling aggregate showed us that 85% of Americans felt “very positive” about their own quality of care.  Care, or “health-care”, has never been the issue for Americans.  The issue has always been about costs. That IS, whether you are comfortable with it or not, the context for 85% of Americans.  In each of those polls I mention above the vast majority polled wholly and gladly accepted expanding something like Medicaid for all who are in need.  85% of Americans felt no need to disrupt their own forms of personal care.

85% of Americans are now feeling a terrific anxiety about government disrupting their lives even more than it has been over the last 18 months of loosing homes, loosing jobs and loosing 30% or more of their investments.  That is the nature of what you are up against when you butt heads with most Americans on the issue of health-care.  It has nothing to do with “corporate-pharma-health industries winning a battle of manipulation or subtle forms of mind control. - That is if I understand you correctly.

-

You often suggest that most Americans are too simple and cannot do for themselves or know the things that are in their best interest.  We always bump heads on that.

You voice great regret and disdain (in which we share) for how the U.S. Government, along with lobbyists and special interests/corporatism runs America.  But while you do that you insist this same system should now be applied to health-care and control an 1/7th greater chunk of the U.S.  economy.  Effectively putting more in the hands of special interests and government/corporate power structures.  Effectively taking that same control away from the individual.  The dichotomy just seems so glaring to me.

-

Insurance reforms, expanded law enforcement, and an expansion of coverage for the 15% who go without insurance would sell in America very quickly.  Not your dreams of “single payer” or government run medical care.

Americans do have an uncanny ability to know, inherently, what is good for them.

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By DBM, January 27, 2010 at 5:45 pm Link to this comment

Just guessing, but I suspect that the reason for a paucity of polling data regarding the public’s position on an extension of Medicare to the whole population is that the Healthcare industry won that battle before it was even fought (back before those polls that are being quoted).  All your numbers are telling us is that the options on the table suck and people think so!

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By Go Right Young Man, January 27, 2010 at 5:29 pm Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt,

Did you take note of how the July 09 Huffington Post article, using NBC/WSJ polling data from June of 09, runs completely counter to your perceptions in regard to Single-Payer?  The poll you wanted me to take note of clearly indicates that a large majority in the United States desire many and varied CHOICES. 

It’s also fascinating, don’t you think, that you couldn’t find a more recent piece extolling more recent polling data.  For example the latest NBC/WSJ poll regarding “Obama and Democrats’ Health Care Plan”.

NBC News/Wall St. Jrnl   1/23/10 - 1/25/10—
Favor 31 Against 46 - Against/Oppose +15

Or

NPR - POS/GQR   1/20 - 1/23
Favor 39 Oppose 55 - Against/Oppose +16

Or

CNN/Opinion Research   1/22 - 1/24  
Favor 38 Appose 58 - Against/Oppose +20

Rasmussen Reports   1/20 - 1/21
Favor 40 Appose 58 - Against/Oppose +18

USA Today/Gallup   1/20 - 1/20
Favor 39 Appose 55 - Against/Oppose +16

-

I remain keenly interested in seeing your source(s) of information regarding the 72% of Americans in support of single-payer health-care.  Would you be kind enough to share?  Conversely you mentioned something along the lines of “Blowing Air” without benefit of substance?

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By DBM, January 27, 2010 at 4:12 pm Link to this comment

You know what?  I’m quite a fan of Keith Olbermann.  Back when the entire television media spectrum was reporting in lock-step with the criminal Cheney / Bush crew, Olbermann was one who stood up and said in unequivocal terms that what was going on was wrong.  He called out the administration for lying.  He denounced the removal of civil rights including the pivotal habeus corpus rights.

But his list of explanations regarding his comments on Brown are pretty lame apart from the facts that Brown is an ex-nude model (for whatever difference that makes) and is involved with the Tea Bag movement. 

The whole diatribe is misplaced.  Brown is not the problem.  The fact that Massachusetts Democrats and Independents don’t have an overwhelmingly more attractive option than Brown is the problem.  How easy would it be to get someone elected if the voters actually thought that he or she was going to battle with corporate America on behalf of the middle class and the poor?  It may be a rich state but you’ve got to know that the vast majority are not in that 1% that actually benefits from corporate bailouts, healthcare oligopolies, military adventurism, off-shoring of production, hiding corporate profits from the IRS and environmental destruction.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 27, 2010 at 3:45 pm Link to this comment

How about these? And you ;have yet to give me anything concrete. What you have said before is just aspersions, not definite information.

Obama Boost: New Poll Shows 76% Support For Choice Of Public Plan
Jun 17, 2009 ... New poll numbers from NBC/Wall Street Journal produce two major ... We NEED a public option now, personally, I prefer the single payer plan. ...
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.../obama-boost-new-poll-show_n_217175.html - Cached - Similar
#
New Poll: 77 Percent Support “Choice” Of Public Option
Aug 20, 2009 ... The ultimate goal IS single payer, but it can’t happen this early in the game. .... If the poll numbers on health care reform were bad, ...
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.../new-poll-77-percent-suppo_n_264375.html - Cached - Similar

Unlike you I give it to you to see. Now how about you? Oh no you won’t complete your task. You have nothing to back it up, you just attack with…what? You call him names, then beg off because “you are not interested in doing so.” If you weren’t interested in the first place then why start this folderall by calling him names you can’t prove he really is? Usually you must back up your allegations. I do but you do not because you cannot.  Just a balloon, only air no substance. Enough said about you.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 27, 2010 at 2:05 pm Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt - “How is [Olbermann] juvenile? Shallow? Small minded? An idiot? Come on he’s a talker, and thinker so it should be simple to access a few or even one of each. Please? Otherwise you are just blowing air.”

-

I’ve answered those questions in detail (see below).  You’re not about to goad me into this inane topic….LOL

It’s curious that you felt the need to post Olbermann’s words after I wrote that I’d seen that very thing live. (?)

Olbermann’s “special comments” take such fantastic leaps in logic it’s almost unbearable to watch once.  You can be certain I didn’t read past the first sentence here today.

You may post all you wish on Olbermann.  I may or may not read them.  I have no interests in talking about the man.  I get quiet enough, and all I need to know, from his nightly program.

FYI - I don’t watch Hannity for the same reasons I find Olbermann so hard to ingest.  I watch Olbermann, by and large, to see how and what people like TruthDig regulars are thinking and watching (the 8% I wrote of previously).

I don’t listen to Rush all too much.  He no longer does his program in “Good Cheer” as he once did.

I tune into Beck from time to time 1. He makes me laugh 2. He and O’Reilly are viewed in such massive numbers it’s a good way to see what the majority are tuning into. - O’Reilly, at the very least, daily airs opposing points of view while it’s a VERY RARE occasion with Olbermann.

I do not tune into any of the above for my “news”.  I mean no offense, however, I find that behavior, using any of the above for news and context, truly odd. 

I am deeply saddened by the Dumbing Down of the news today.

-

I am a great deal more interested in seeing your source(s) of information regarding the 72% of Americans in support of single payer health-care.  Would you be kind enough to share?

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By Night-Gaunt, January 27, 2010 at 12:40 pm Link to this comment

“You asked a direct question and I replied with a direct answer.  I am not the least bit interested in discussing the small minded idiot on MSNBC.  I get enough of that juvenile hypocrite 3-5 nights a week.”GoRightYoungMan

That is how you discuss him by not doing it. Just cast unsubstantiated attacks on him. So much of nothing. How is he juvenile? Shallow? Small minded? An idiot? Come on he’s a talker, and thinker so it should be simple to access a few or even one of each. Please? Otherwise you are just blowing air.

His “apology” was that he left out one thing else wrong with Mr. Brown—-

OLBERMANNWe stay with the Massachusetts special Senate election for tonight‘s first “Quick Comment.”

Here‘s the real takeaway from the election of Scott Brown.  If the far right disagrees with it, it‘s a lie.  The latest is from an assistant editorial page editor at “The Dallas Morning News” named Michael Landauer who writes that I, quote, “smeared Brown all night, sort of correcting the record in one rant, dismissing the responses to lies he had told earlier and coming back with more name-calling.”

Mr. Landauer is writing on the Internet, and thus, in theory, has an infinite amount of space and time to fill, that was it.  No refutations, no specifics, just the word “lies”—as if designating them were Mr.  Landauer‘s exclusive right.

I said Mr. Brown was irresponsible.  Specifically, he swore at a hall full of high school students in 2007.  Last night, he paraded his daughters out and told the nation they were quote, “available.”

I said Mr. Brown was homophobic.  Specifically, in 2001, he said that two women having a baby together was, quote, “not normal.”  And in 2007, he voted for a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage.

I said Mr. Brown was racist.  Specifically, in September 2008, a fellow guest in a TV interview noted Barack Obama‘s mother was married when he was born.  Mr. Brown returned to the oldest racial stereotype of them all when he said, quote, “Well, I don‘t know about that, ha-ha.”

I said Mr. Brown was reactionary.  Specifically, that is defined as extreme conservatism opposing political or social change.

I said Mr. Brown was an ex-nude model.  Specifically, in the June 1982 issue of “Cosmopolitan” magazine.

I said Mr. Brown was sexist.  Specifically, nine years ago, he said a woman Massachusetts state senator had, quote, “alleged family responsibilities.”

I said Mr. Brown was teabagging.  Specifically, as recently as recently as the second of this month, Mr. Brown was the star of a fundraiser with the Greater Boston Tea Party group at Westborough Mass.

Then I said Mr. Brown was a supporter of violence against women and against politicians with whom he disagrees.  Specifically, this past Sunday, when a man at a Brown rally shouted they should, quote, “shove a curling iron up Martha Coakley‘s butt,” Brown responded by answering, “We can do this.”  Or, if that remark was unconnected to the shout, he never refuted, condemned, nor disassociated himself to the call for violence and even sexual assault.

Scott Brown is an irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, sexist, ex-nude model, teabagging supporter of violence against women and against politicians with whom he disagrees.  And all the rabid right-wing howling about that only helps prove it.  The response to lies is to offer the truth.  The respond to truths you don‘t like is to simply call them lies. Enough said.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 27, 2010 at 8:24 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt, - “you are supporting those self same people. How about that?”

Can you show me where I’ve written in support of Beck, Limaugh or O’Reilly?  My point was in regards to the U.S. being so clearly Right of Center and, just as clear, how the mass majority reside in the center.  TruthDig regulars, I write, make up the minuscule minority.

You write: “The “clear majority” (72%) want a single payer system.”

If that is correct then I am wrong.  May I be privy to your source(s) on that number?

-

You asked a direct question and I replied with a direct answer.  I am not the least bit interested in discussing the small minded idiot on MSNBC.  I get enough of that juvenile hypocrite 3-5 nights a week.

I am, however, interested in one thing in regards to Olbermann.  According to Howard Kurtz Olbermann apologized on air for, what Olbermann reportedly referred to as his, “over-the-top” comments of late.  Do you know if that is indeed true?  I must have missed that last week. - I saw his faux apology regarding Sen. Brown.  But this seems a different matter.  From what Kurtz stated last Sunday it appeared as though Olbermann offered some sort of sincere apology for his “over-the-top” comments.

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By DBM, January 26, 2010 at 10:37 pm Link to this comment

Hmmm ... Atilla says:

“By Atilla, January 26 at 4:06 pm #
Bravo GoRight…an extremely cognizant description of the viper Keithly. It is a shame that the 8%ers will not even take the time to digest your truthful comments. Trying to hold an intelligent debate with them is like herding cats. “

Quite true, I suspect.  Strangely it seems that to be properly conservative in the Limbaugh/Hannity mold one must be in lock-step on a fairly long list of “litmus test” issues and there is very little room for dissent.  They spout the same talking points on a daily basis using the same language.  But the point is that in this strange “left-right” argument, the “left” is basically everyone who fails any of the litmus test loyalty tests to be conservative or, as has been pointed out elsewhere on this site, fails to properly “denounce” anyone who isn’t loyal to every cause.  It seems a pretty pointless exercise but it does leave a large like-thinking mass of people who keep each other loyal to their “conservative” causes ... and these are the people who watch Beck, Hannity, O’Reilly et. al.  They amount to about 20% of the population.

People with some “conservative” views abound amongst the remaining 80% ... but they aren’t the sheep that would be attracted to Fox News.

That “the left” is not in lock-step and does not agree on everything is true enough ... but hardly a criticism.

You might gather that I’m not a fan of the whole “left-right” continuum as a concept!

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By Night-Gaunt, January 26, 2010 at 5:57 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man a bigot carries out their hatred of others he doesn’t stop anyone from being hateful or small minded, he just points them out. You seem to be blind to it since you are supporting those self same people in their racist and hateful ways. How about that?

Where was he wrong on Joe Brown whom Keith Olbermann pointed out in each case where Joe Brown acted in a disgusting & small minded way? Please tick them off to me. You can find them at his web site. I am anticapatorialy waiting for that! If you can that is. So far you cast empty aspersions with no backup—Keith Olbermann does do it. The ball is in your court. Make it good.

The “clear majority” (72%) want a single payer system. Like Bush, Obama is against that and made sure it wouldn’t even be on the table. Very smart for him and his ilk of elitists in the reich wing camp still very diligent in the wealth transfer from us to them. They may be only 10% of our society but they have 75% of the USA’s wealth and on the world stage in toto they have $30 trillion dollars worth of power between just them over us. How does that sit with you? Obama has at least $4 million so he is in their camp. Are you? I’m not.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 26, 2010 at 3:17 pm Link to this comment

BruSays,

So you don’t agree or like the polling data found all over the nation and you wont even consider that Glenn Beck has five simultaneous NYT Best sellers, or the fasted growing cable program in history, or that his 5P.M. show aired 4 million veiwers last Friday (again never been done before) so, what is it exactly that leads you believe the nation is Left of Center?

The fact is the links you supplied were actually contradictory to your opinions?  Did you fail to take the time to read them yourself?

-

I have clearly stated that I do not consider “entertainers” like Beck and Limbaugh to be practicing journalism.  But we are all smart enough to understand that it matters not one iota what you or I think or feel in regards to Beck, Limbaugh, O’Reilly, or FOX News for that matter.  What’s most telling, as you are well aware, is who draws the bigger single audience(s). 

You can twist and turn all you desire but that does not mitigate the facts.  More people tune into conservative leaning radio and cable news than any single source in their respective mediums.  And it’s Glenn Beck, for the first time in history, that has five simultaneous Best Selling books on the market today.

-

On to where it matters most of all.

There is not a single major issue proposed by the Congress or the President that is currently supported by the majority.  If you can find one clear example feel free to share it with everyone so you can prove your point.

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By BruSays, January 26, 2010 at 2:18 pm Link to this comment

Xntrk…keep up the good fight. I’m with you.

GRYM,

You’re all over the map on statements and retractions with more twists and turns than in a bag of pretzels.

But you “jumped the shark” with this:

“...if polling data is not to your liking then I’ll ask; where do the majority of Americans willingly and daily choose to obtain their television and radio views and news? 

“Fox’s conservative Bill O’Reilly (1072) beats the pants off of the “progressive” MSNBC Olbermann (406) by a HUGE margin!  O’Reilly reruns draw more viewers than live Olbermann, Maddow and Mathews viewers combined!”

Your comeback that Americans choose to get their “news and VIEWS” from those shows STILL doesn’t support your Center/Right claim!

Once again, it’s ENTERTAINMENT. It’s not real news. It’s not even real views. It’s about throwing out juicy, over-simplified, easy-to-sound bite “controversial” topics and tossing in their own, typically extreme opinions in an effort to gain ratings. Limbaugh and Beck do this far better than others, as their ratings attest. 

Sadly, it works; and it works most every time. Pressing the fear button brings in more far more viewers than a deeper analysis. It’s exciting, it’s riveting…sometimes it’s even fun. But it’s not news. So skip the “ratings” game. It just doesn’t work.

(Still, if you must rely on the ratings game, chew on this: FOX considers itself alone as the “fair and balanced” maverick, placing all other mainstream stations (CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS, MSNBC) as left-leaning friends of the Liberals. So, if we agree, and mainstream America’s viewing habits are barometers on their political positions as you’ve submitted, then let’s add it up. Bingo! America is a LEFT/CENTER country because more watch the stations FOX labeled as “left-wing” than FOX!)

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By Atilla, January 26, 2010 at 12:06 pm Link to this comment

Bravo GoRight…an extremely cognizant description of the viper Keithly. It is a shame that the 8%ers will not even take the time to digest your truthful comments. Trying to hold an intelligent debate with them is like herding cats.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 26, 2010 at 8:31 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt, - “How is [Olbermann] hateful and bigoted?

-

Olbermann’s “special comment” last week regarding Sen. Brown was over-the-top, hate-filled, and outrageously bigoted to the extreme. “Truth” played absolutely no part in that ugly diatribe. 

Olbermann’s “special comment” regarding the latest 5-4 Supreme Court decision on campaign finance.  Justice Kennedy wrote the majority opinion, however, MSNBC’s resident bigot laid the entire affair at the feet of Justice Roberts.  Nothing regarding reality or “truth” played a part in that bit of twisted and small minded fear mongering.

Every time Olbermann looks at the camera and refers to all who fail to see the world as he does as “idiots”.

Olbermann referring to protesters, who’s only offense is in not seeing the world as he does, as “poor, dumb, manipulated bastards”. - “Those people”, as he refers to them.

The disdain and clear hatred that drip from the man’s lips when he speaks of any republican of any color or flavor has nothing, what-so-ever, to do with “speaking truth” and everything to do with his disgust with people unlike himself.

The five nights a week Olbermann ran his infamous “Bushed” segments outlining every systemic governmental problem and placing the blame at the feat of President Bush but will not today run an “Obama’d segment outlining the very same systemic problems. - One example of hundreds: Olbermann once blamed Bush in one of these segments for a 1997 Ohio EPA regulation that Olbermann took exception to.

The five nights a week Olbermann irrationally and intolerantly referred to all conservatives as “Neo-Con’s”.  Not, by the way, unlike a common small minded bigot would use the “N” word to describe all dark skinned human beings.

-

Bigot describes Olbermann to a tee:

1. Irrational suspicion or hatred of a particular group. 

2. Stubborn and complete intolerance of any creed, belief, or opinion that differs from one’s own.

The man is a small minded, hate-filled, disgusting and, so far, unrepentant bigot.

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By Anoosh Hambarsumian, January 26, 2010 at 1:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What happened to my adopted country?  My country has become the slave of all corporations.  We vote in the politicians and they serve themselves.  I am truly disappointed, but still love this country.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 26, 2010 at 12:23 am Link to this comment

Truth can be ugly and it is Olbermann who brings it out about others. How is that hateful and bigoted? He points out those characteristics of the likes of O’Reilly, Beck, Limbaugh aud nausem. Where has he been such? Let me know about that please.

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By Gordy, January 25, 2010 at 11:40 pm Link to this comment

@ the worm:

Interesting point about Obama’s agenda but you remind
me of something I’ve often wondered - why do
Americans usually grieve over any decision that hurts
the ‘middle class’ and say little or nothing about
the poor?  As a Brit I find it odd that you seem to
talk of a ‘middle class’ but not an ‘upper class’ or
‘lower/working class’.  If we’re talking about
injustice and inequality here then the truly poor
should have even more attention that middle-class
people who now must buy a cheaper second car or go on
only one holiday per year.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 25, 2010 at 4:21 pm Link to this comment

Atilla, - “I completely agree that O’Reilly, Beck, and Limbaugh are not journalists; just as Blitzer, Sanchez, Cassidy, Maddow and that snake Olberman are not journalists.”

I wholeheartedly agree, Atilla.  None of the above practice “journalism”.  Olbermann, however, is one of the most offensive, hate-filled, bigots that has ever been my displeasure to come across.  The man despises and disrespects all who fail to think as he does.

I am filled with a sense of pride in American sensibilities upon witnessing his septic tank ratings.

I’m no fan of O’Reilly’s style, however, it remains telling that Factor reruns do better than Olbermann live.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 25, 2010 at 2:42 pm Link to this comment

One group isn’t like the other by far. Easy to say harder to prove. What makes the brainiac Olbermann such a “snake” in your eyes but not the likes of O’Reilly, Beck, Limbaugh, van Sustern are not? He speaks truth to power they speak ideology in its defense of power.

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By Atilla, January 25, 2010 at 2:32 pm Link to this comment

I completely agree that O’Reilly, Beck, and Limbaugh are not journalists; just as Blitzer, Sanchez, Cassidy, Maddow and that snake Olberman are not journalists.

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By Anarcissie, January 25, 2010 at 12:23 pm Link to this comment

If the Left is in the majority, it’s not doing it’s job. 

If we waited for the majority, we’d still have Jim Crow.  In fact, we’d still have slavery.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 25, 2010 at 5:50 am Link to this comment

ITW - “GRYM’s intellectual back flips to try to “prove” that the extreme right-wing agenda is (somehow) the center of American opinion.”

-

I made no such claim.  I simply pointed out the most obvious.  I claim only that the U.S. is Center/Right by nature.  It’s the center, however, that make up the vast majority of Americans. 

Would you be kind enough to point out where I claim the the “extreme right-wing agenda is (somehow) the center of American opinion”?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 25, 2010 at 5:30 am Link to this comment

Oh for pity’s sake, learn to read.

Learn to read what people write in these posts.  I asked the question; where do people get their news and VIEWS?  On both counts it’s FOX News network by OVERWHELMING numbers!  It’s Glenn Beck and O’Reilly by OVERWHELMING numbers!  It’s Rush Limbaugh over Air America by OVERWHELMING numbers!

Take particular note of how I never claimed that Beck was a journalist.  Hell, Beck himself makes it clear that he is not a journalist….LOL (apparently you have a strong opinion of Beck without benefit of listening to him). 

Time to take those heavy blinders off, my friend, and learn to read the links you share.  By and large you’ve either misread or chosen very carefully what you take from the your own sources.

Chevy vs Mercedes.  If the majority choose one vehicle over another it means people have CHOSEN one vehicle over another.  How you turn that into an issue of quality is twisted.

-

Oh, and, if you want to prove a point on health care you should use a few recent polls and not information that’s SEVEN MONTHS OLD!

For example:
Updated 3d 2h ago
USA TODAY/Gallup Poll

“WASHINGTON — A majority of Americans say President Obama and congressional Democrats should suspend work on the health care bill that has been on the verge of passage and consider alternatives that would draw more Republican support, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds.”

“An overwhelming 72% of those surveyed Wednesday say the Bay State result “reflects frustrations shared by many Americans, and the president and members of Congress should pay attention to it.”

-

For pity’s sake, learn to read.  If the majority are so solidly supportive of the “public option” the House and Senate could have passed legislation months ago.  They would not have had to bribe several DEMOCRATIC Congressman to pass DEMOCRATIC legislation on health care.  If the majority were supportive of the legislation it would not have been killed by a single Senate race last week.

I’ve read your opinions here.  You are part of the minute minority.  Learn to deal with it and move on with yourself.  And, for pity’s sake, learn to read.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 25, 2010 at 4:51 am Link to this comment

Brusay makes a fine point between consumption and opinion polls.
As he points out, the Fox critics aren’t journalists, they are entertainers.  To give them a modicum of undeserved respectability, they are CRITICS, which means they have opinions they voice.  And they attract people who agree with them.

But Nilson ratings and public opinion have NEVER moved together.  Neither do brand selection and opinion scores.

He’s simply reversing GRYM’s intellectual back flips to try to “prove” that the extreme right-wing agenda is (somehow) the center of American opinion.  Which it is not.

BTW, the Beetlejuice Reagan pic is really kind of creepy.  I detested Reagan but still am not amused by this.

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By christian96, January 24, 2010 at 9:31 pm Link to this comment

BruSays——You use the example of Chevys vs Mercedes
to prove a point that most is not always better and
then turn around to use examples where “most”
Americans favor an issue.  What are you talking about?

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By BruSays, January 24, 2010 at 5:19 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man,

Oh for pity’s sake, don’t put Beck, or Hannity, or O’Reilly or Limbaugh out there as News Journalists, much less claim their ratings are indicative of mainstream American views. By doing so, you’re truly sabotaging your position. Those people are entertainers! Do you really mean to suggest that because their ratings are high it proves they’re legitimate newscasters? Once again, they are ENTERTAINERS. They’re out there for the ratings and in no way carry any credit as news analysts or journalists. They’re roundly discredited by every serious news organization, save for their self-serving FOX NEWS, an equally-discredited news source. Let’s be real – it’s called “commercial television and radio,” Go Right Young Man. It’s about ratings, not truth or substance.

Oh, and guess what: Chevy sells more cars than Mercedes, therefore because more people buy them, they must be better?   

Fact 1: In 2008, Americans had a “Center Right” candidate: John McCain. They didn’t vote for him but instead, voted for the candidate who promised a different direction. Check out this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nj9iIPTrn1I
Perhaps it will help clarify things for you. The Republicans like to repeat, over and over and over again, that we are a “Center Right” nation hoping that if they say it over and over again enough, we’ll THINK we are. So we THINK we are. But the facts prove otherwise.

Fact 2: Check the polls. When asked if whether women should have the right to choose abortion (or not), the majority of American’s STILL were in favor of maintaining that choice. (Interesting to note how the responses move when only women are asked.)
Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/02/us/02abortion.html
Source: http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2007/06/wtprw_repro.html
Source: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114668092648642849.html (your venerable Wall Street Journal)

Fact 3: Check the polls. A clear majority of Americans favor the recognition of same-sex civil unions. This is quite amazing given the deceitful campaigns (churches forced to marry gays, teachers forced to promote same-sex marriage to students, etc.) conducted by the right. 
Source: http://www.pollingreport.com/civil.htm
Source: http://www.religioustolerance.org/hom_marp.htm

Fact 4: Check the polls. Most Americans support a public option for health care. Again, this remains surprising, given the “pull the plug on Grandma” and “death panel” lies fostered by the right. 
Source: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/06/19/opinion/polls/main5098517.shtml
Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/19/AR2009101902451.html

My point was, and remains, that the Center Right position of Americans is a myth. What’s more, it is a myth that the right continues to repeat and one that Americans continue to fall for – AND YET – don’t practice. I don’t doubt that the Dems are going to suffer this November or that the tide shifts right (as it likely will) and left (as in 2006 and 2008), but you remain incorrect.

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By the worm, January 24, 2010 at 4:50 pm Link to this comment

Why has the transfer of wealth accelerated under Obama just as it did under
Reagan? These are the key questions to ask and the factual answers.

Who are Obama’s ‘constituencies’? Follow the decisions , find Obama’s
constituencies, see where the money has gone and how voters and middle
class were left holding the deficit bag and will no longer support him.

1. Decision - Ignore previous Republican crimes, misdemeanors and profligacy
– tax cuts for the wealthy: Constituencies - Republican voters and Republican
Senators and Representatives he hoped would become ‘bi-partisan’.
2. Decision - Support a stingy stimulus that was half of what was needed and
included one-thirds tax breaks, increasing the deficit and further reducing the
stimulus to one-third of what was needed: Constituencies – Wealthy investors,
special interests.
?3. Decision - Kill the only option that would have slowed the cost of health
care & led to universal coverage – $ 753 Billions : Constituencies - Health
insurance and pharmacy industries.
?4. Decision - Accelerate the Bush bailout, $ 4.3 Trillions in bailouts,
guarantees and purchasing assets from the private sector at well above market
value: Constituency - Financial industry and banks.
?5. Decision - Escalate a meaningless and fruitless war, $600 Billions:
Constituencies - military and corporate mercenaries.
?6. Decision - Gut real financial reform and substitute finger wagging and silly
taxes and fees, while banking fees continue up, lending freezes and credit
tightens - $UNK Billions: Constituencies - financial industry and the wealthy.
?7. Decision - Not help people with bankruptcy and mortgages remediation –
accelerating middle class decline: Constituencies - financial industry, banks
and wealthy.
and ?
8. Decision - Fiddle around and not pass a jobs bill – accelerating middle class
decline (Already spent to much money, cut taxes and increased the deficit – so,
sorry, no money for the middle class and American voters): Constituencies:
Wealthy and Republicans.

Obama’s constituencies are the health insurance and pharmacy industry,
military-mercenary complex, the financial industry and banks, and the
wealthy.

Obama’s policies have continued to transfer America’s wealth from middle
class families to corporations and the wealthy.

Why has Obama lost the support of the voters? Based on the decisions Obama
has made, these appear to be the reasons for the lose:

1.  Republicans are better off with real Republicans, hence support Republican
voters is all but gone;
2.  Independents, who wanted change, see the status quo protected and
coddled, hence Independents have retreated from support for Obama and the
Dems;
3.  Democrats see a so-called Democratic White House and so-called
Democratic Congress working to continue and accelerate the transfer of wealth
from the middle class to the wealthy, hence they have no reason to support the
Obama and his allies in Congress. ??

Obama has made decisions that have hurt most Americans, and, he is either:

1. Oblivious to them,
2. Doesn’t care,
3. Surrounded himself with advisors who are up to their eyeballs in the status
quo and persuade him to subsidize it with tax money and deficit spending,
4. Erroneously assumed the military-mercenary, health insurance-
pharmaceutical, financial-banking industries and wealthy constituencies would
remain loyal and rescue him from troubles.

It is not difficult to understand why Obama’s ratings and his ‘agenda’ have been
rejected and Democrats no longer enjoy the support of the majority of voters.

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By Conservative Yankee, January 24, 2010 at 1:32 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

So now our choice is Xtian despotism under the Republicans, or Corporate dictatorship under the Dems.  Reminds me daily of why I became an Independent.

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By christian96, January 24, 2010 at 11:53 am Link to this comment

I spent my formative years in a West Virginia coal
mining town where my father worked 40 years in the
mines.  I worked midnight shift myself for 6 months
in the 60’s while attending college during the day.
Back then the perceptions of politicians was black
and white.  Republicians stood for the wealthy.
The democrats stood for the poor.  Now the distinctions have become rather gray.  It’s that
grayness that is confusing extant democrats who still
cling to the old sterotypes.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 24, 2010 at 11:33 am Link to this comment

BruSays - “The right offers most of the knee-jerk, name-calling childish rants you speak of.”

This is PRECISELY the challenge the Right has in presenting their positions. The “Left” loves to toss out labels and phrases (“knee-jerk, name-calling, childish, whacko, nutso and weirdo” come to mind right now) about all the Right-wing, whacko nutso weirdo beliefs.

Do you, by chance, have a mirror?

-

The simple fact is you failed to display any evidence which illustrates the U.S. is Center/Left of Center.  Aside from the few I’ve already displayed I can share with you several dozen legitimate and comprehensive polls which show you to be incorrect. 

Or, conversely, if polling data is not to your liking then I’ll ask; where do the majority of Americans willingly and daily choose to obtain their television and radio views and news? 

Fox’s conservative Bill O’Reilly (1072) beats the pants off of the “progressive” MSNBC Olbermann (406) by a HUGE margin!  O’Reilly reruns draw more viewers than live Olbermann, Maddow and Mathews viewers combined!

Air America is dead!  Next to no one was tuning in while, at the same time, Glenn Beck has the fastest growing cable television program in cable history.  Rush Limbaugh’s radio program draws, BY FAR, the largest audience (tens of millions) each and every week for the last decade.

Which newspaper has a dwindling national subscription base?  The New York Times.  Which newspaper has a growing national subscription base?  The Wall Street Journal.

-

When polled Americans in general say America is: Fair and Decent 74% - Unfair and Discriminatory 11% <— TruthDig regulars.

Sixty-two percent (62%) of voters believe it would be better for our allies to follow America’s lead more often. <- A solid majority.

Just eight percent (8%) now say it would be better for the United States to do what our allies want more often. <— TruthDig regulars in the minuscule minority.

-

It’s tough, I know, to learn that the far Left progressive opinions displayed on this Web site are largely discounted by the overwhelming majority.  But demonstrably true nonetheless.

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By BruSays, January 24, 2010 at 9:02 am Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man,

My response was exactly on topic. You wrote, and I quote, “The musings and rants on this Web site represent roughly 8% of the nation.”

What you call the “musings and rants” (that choice of words alone reveals your bias) on this website, while certainly left of center, reflect a far more mainstream position than the 8 percent you posited.

This is PRECISELY the challenge the left has in presenting their positions. The right loves to toss out labels and phrases (“musings and rants” come to mind right now) about all the left-wing, whacko nutso weirdo beliefs. They HAVE to use those labels because they HAVE to convince citizens that the left is alien to mainstream beliefs. But in fact, your statement that “The United States is solidly Right of Center” is a myth.

Americans love to think of themselves as plain folk: family-oriented, self-reliant, solid, moral, fiscally conservative. It’s part of our pioneer heritage. And yet, when evenly polled on the issues, they consistently stand center - or even lean left-of-center.

The right wing understands this so it is their need to twist the issues so that Americans vote against their own best interests. It is their need to label Single Payer health care as Nazi-brand Socialism. (Ignore that Universal, single-payer systms are less-expensive, provide equal or better care to more citizens or that the vast majority of first world nations use those systems and exhibit longer life-expectencies and lower infant mortality rates.) 

It is their need to tell Americans that the movement of millions of factory jobs overseas is good for them because they can save a few dollars on consumer goods. (Ignore the record corporate profits, CEO bonuses in the millions of dollars, deepening unemployment, vulnerability of our nation’s production capabilities, etc.)

Again, my response was exactly on topic. Your representation of the opinions on this website compared to those of mainstream Americans was wildly inaccurate.

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By Night-Gaunt, January 23, 2010 at 10:22 pm Link to this comment

Xntrk the lack of education fuels your complaint about “10,000 words with no point” only happen to the undereducated. Yes the intellectually retarded. I would almost say it was done on purpose for when you are that way propaganda works so much better. As we see from the dismal numbers that GoRightYoungMan so kindly offered us.

Short attention spans and limited vocabulary can produce shallow thinkers and easily persuaded populace. Get educated before it is too late. It is probably too late now. Our adversaries. the uber-rich* have been very busy to get us into this position. Think of Obama as a hostile witness in this case. Not naive, not fooled , not weak unless you count the sellout to them. (White racists who believe they are rich because they are blessed by their blue eyed god.) Most sellout and if not then marginalized and isolated or character assassinated like Kucinich was.

Reagan is just the most useful logo to use even though the ideas they promulgate were shown to be hurtful and wealth shifting to them over 100 years ago. What works for them is timeless and screws us big time. They are crypto-fascists, authoritarians (& their followers), Dominionists. They can’t have their Holy American Empire unless the USA is brought down. That could include the introduction of a new currency and say they will not pay the previous gov’ts debt. They already have the weapons a bases so…we are on borrowed time.

* They own at least 23 trillion in assets and are made up of the 1%-10% here.

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By C.V. Compton Shaw, January 23, 2010 at 3:56 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thank you for the original insightful and eloquent article with which I agree completely.
I was going to vote for Obama until he supported the “bail outs” for the financial interests. At that point, I knew that he was compromised. As a result, I voted for a third party candidate for President.
One can judge a political leader by the individuals with whom he surrounds himself. Subsequent to his election, Obama surrounded himself with a coterie of individuals who were overtly and covertly involved with the “monopoly capitalistic” practices which have resulted in our current financial tragedy thus confirming my suspicions.
What is “monopoly capitalism”?  In “Monopoly capitalism”, capital is exported from a nation instead of products produced by a nation’s own
citizens.
What is “capital”? Capital is money, labor, and industry.
“Monopoly capitalism” tends to concentrate both economic power and political power in a few individuals and entities.
“Monopoly capitalism” tends to impoverish the general citizenry. ‘Monopoly capitalism” tends to destroy “true capitalism”.
“True capitalism” is defined as possessing “competition” and “free enterprise.”
“True capitalism” tends to increase total wealth and distribute the same more equitably and widely amongst the general electorate.
“True capitalism”, also, tends to distribute political power more widely amongst the general population.
Economic theorists assert that “monopoly capitalism” is the last stage of capitalism before some form of socialism replaces the same.
If we are to maintain our personal freedoms and maintain our high standard of living, we must assertively and appropriately address the
evils of monopoly capitalism.
One of the other characteristics of “monopoly capitalism” is aggressive, illegal, and criminal foreign wars as a means to promulgate the aforementioned means and ends of “monopoly capitalism.”
It is rather unusual for true capitalistic democratic republican democracies to engage in wars of aggression.
One means to address the evils of “Monopoly Capitalism”, in my opinion, is to change our current “winner take all”, “Gerry mandered”, and “bought” form of electoral representation to some form of “proportional” electoral representation. The same would make it much more difficult for “special interest” groups to monopolize the political and economic processes. The USA, the UK, and Canada are the only world democracies that don’t utilize some form of “proportional” electoral representation.

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By Vic Anderson, January 23, 2010 at 1:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

And His Bad Self has suicidally morphed into the BAracKA Bomber and his
DEMikazes off US’ starboard bow!

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By Xntrk, January 23, 2010 at 1:21 pm Link to this comment

BruSays comments that we will both be long gone before the demise of the Democratic Party. So? Does that mean I should do nothing, in the meantime? I was not assuming that a few computer sddicts on the TD site would accomplich a miricle. I was pointing out that if we are serious, it is time to look elsewhere, and not on the Republican side of the court.

Have you seen Znets remarks about the Fifth International, or taken their poll about it? The US is the last place I expect to see any relief from Corporatism or Militarism - But, I am looking for alternatives.

Oroborus, Thanks for the links, I will check them out. I must have a hundred supposed Left Sites that I check on fairly often. Most are pretty damn disappointing, frankly. Why do Left-Wing Nuts think talking like ivory tower intellectuals makes them appealing, or even understandable? U of Michigan had a site called ‘Chomskybot’ - I don’t know if it is still active, but it was great. They could do several paragraphs a’la Chomsky, that almost made sense… That was about 20 years ago tho. Today’s activist only understand Twitter and sound-bites, so these guys that go one for 10,000 words with no point, are not saying anything to anyone.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 23, 2010 at 11:10 am Link to this comment

cabinetmaniac,

You mentioned something in your post in regards to “ignorance” of where the country is at politically.  Might you have a mirror about you?

-

Poll: Voter anger fueled Brown victory in Mass.

The Associated Press
Saturday, January 23, 2010; 12:21 PM

WASHINGTON—Voter discontent with the direction of the government, economy and the health care overhaul helped send Republican Scott Brown to his Senate victory in Massachusetts, a poll says.

About 63 percent of Massachusetts voters in Tuesday’s election said the country is seriously off track, and Brown won two-thirds of those voters, according to the poll by The Washington Post, the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and Harvard University’s School of Public Health.

In contrast, Barack Obama had solid support from the more than 80 percent of Massachusetts voters in the presidential election who viewed the country as off-course in November 2008.

Nearly two-thirds of those who supported Brown over Democrat Martha Coakley said their vote was intended partly to show opposition to the Democratic agenda in Washington, including the health care overhaul. Still, rather than just blocking proposals, three-quarters said they wanted to see Brown work with Democrats to get GOP proposals into legislation in general; nearly half said that specifically about the health care legislation.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 23, 2010 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

cabinetmaniac,

My observations on the use of the term Tea Baggers throughout this Web site was just that.  An observation.  That I was complaining is pure invention on your part.

If you wish to put your poll numbers against mine feel free.

-

First:  Air America is filing bankruptcy for the SECOND TIME and has ceased broadcasting because next to no one was tuning in.  All while Limbaugh’s and Beck’s numbers sore!

Glenn Back’s television program is the fastest growing cable program in cable history.

Conservative FOX:  O’Reilly 8P Ratings 1072 - Rising
Progressive MSNBC: Olbermann 8P Ratings 406 - Falling
Bill O’Rielly: 1000 consecutive weeks as #1 in his time slot.
-

Huffington Post - Overwhelmingly Americans reject liberal leaning propagandized “news”.

“Fox News Channel may drive blood pressures to record highs among liberals but the right-wing cable channel just finished its best ratings year ever and easily tops CNN and MSNBC with viewers. - The only cable channels that do better than Fox News are entertainment ones. MSNBC and CNN aren’t even in the top 10.”

-

RCP Poll averages.

29% say U.S. heading in right direction
22% say 2009 was a good year.
53% see cost as biggest health care problem… they strongly oppose congressional plan
21% see lack of universal coverage as biggest health care problem.
81% say passage of health care plan will lead to higher middle class taxes… 68% say it will increase deficit.
Economic challenges: 58% fear government will do too much..
36% say US and allies winning War on Terror… down from 55% on Inauguration Day
Obama: Strongly Approve 25% Strongly Disapprove 41%..
Generic Congressional Ballot: Republicans 43% Democrats 38%..
58% Favor Waterboarding of Plane Terrorist
72% Favor keeping Guantanamo open
79% say another terrorist attack likely within year
22% of small business owners say conditions for their business getting better.

-

Rassmussen

Health Care Vote Puts Senator Ben Nelson 30 Points Down in Reelection Bid

Sixty-six percent (66%) of U.S. voters prefer a smaller government with fewer services and lower taxes over a more active government with more services and higher taxes.

63% of voters not affiliated with either major party like a smaller government better. Democrats are more narrowly divided: 54% favor a smaller government.

Sixty-two percent (62%) of all voters say tax cuts are a better way than more government spending to create jobs and fight unemployment. Only 21% say additional stimulus spending is a more effective tool.

Here is one extremely telling poll.  “Progressives” do not think kindly on American society as a whole, however, when polled Americans in general say America is: Fair and Decent 74% - Unfair and Discriminatory 11% <—TruthDig regulars.

Sixty-two percent (62%) of voters believe it would be better for our allies to follow America’s lead more often.

Just eight percent (8%) now say it would be better for the United States to do what our allies want more often.

-

Pew Research

Public skepticism about the officially promoted cause of global warming has reached an all-time high among Americans.

A new national survey finds that 50% of likely voters now believe that global warming is caused primarily by long-term planetary trends. - Just 34% say climate change is due primarily to human activity.

-

I have yet to find a single poll in which the majority of Americans support the domestic agenda of either the President or the Democratically controlled Congress.  Not even one!

I may have missed an issue I haven’t thought of.  But feel free to share your evidence that illustrates the U.S. to be anything but Right of Center.

I understand how hard it is to realize that the views documented here are representative of so few, however, true nonetheless.

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By cabinetmaniac, January 23, 2010 at 7:51 am Link to this comment

Excellent article David.

It has been apparent for some time that Corporatism exercises inordinate power in our ‘democracy.’

It is now undeniable that all three branches of government are firmly in bed with corporate interests.

The recent Supreme Court decision only reinforces the established order. I find it interesting that the strict constructionists on the court had no problem overturning a century of precedent while disregarding the fact that corporations are not mentioned at all in the Constitution.

The Democrats have the ability to move any legislation they wish through congress. The fact that they choose not to represent the people disgusts me. Can we even continue to call this a ‘democracy?’

In the past when the situation approaches the boiling point the powers that be toss the people a bone to quiet them down. I am hopeful that enough people are aware enough and angry enough that the bone has a little meat on it this time.

:-]

‘Go Right Young Man’ is complaining about the use of the term ‘Tea bagger.’ The word doesn’t appear in the post. The term is used in a couple of comments but not disparagingly. Yet he rants.

The fact that the term was coined by the Tea baggers themselves is lost on the ignorant.

Anyone who believes that the US is a center right nation leads a sheltered life. You are certainly entitled to your fallacious opinion but repeating it incessantly only works on those such as yourself with little knowledge.

Unless you have a factual, intelligent, well reasoned defense of your position I doubt you will sway many here with your rhetoric.

Pulling statistics out of thin air is a poor strategy as well, especially when you inflate the numbers so egregiously

Racism, misogyny, homophobia, economic exploitation, delusional religious belief and all the other ignorance and hate based premises of conservatives are failing and there is not a damn thing you can do about it except troll progressive websites and vent your poorly considered grievances.

:-]

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By Ouroborus, January 23, 2010 at 4:51 am Link to this comment

Xntrk, January 22 at 7:02 pm
Ever wonder who really runs these ‘Progressive’ web
sites?
========================================
Yeah, all the time. I’m close to done here.
Give this a try;
http://agonist.org/    or this one

http://www.ianwelsh.net/

Those will lead you to many others; that’s pretty
much where I hang out most of the time.

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By screamingpalm, January 23, 2010 at 1:42 am Link to this comment

I’m disappointed. You all seem to act like this was a defeat for the Dems. You can bet they breathing a big, huge sigh of relief right about now as they return to their lobbyists for donations. And what an act it was!

What? wasn’t all the pandering and “reaching across the aisle” in kind-hearted bipartisanship for the past year not enough to convince you?

Don’t kid yourselves… the Dems got exactly what they wanted. A scapegoat and an excuse. A decisive victory.

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By Alee, January 22, 2010 at 5:57 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I think when enough people realize that the decisions made by the President, Congress, the Sup. Court, the Fed, the Treasury, etc.. are not accidents or mistakes or ‘oooops’-didn’t-see-that-coming, but are the features and side effects of the plans of what the people behind the curtain want to happen then….I don’t know. What would you do then? Anything? Complain louder? Talk about revolution? Wake up and admit the mistake you made? Wish.

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By Bushfatigue, January 22, 2010 at 5:37 pm Link to this comment

Its unbelievable that Republicans promising tax cuts and complaining about the national debt could get elected after what they have done over the past thirty years.

George Bush came to office with a national debt of about $5.7 trillion, about two thirds of it accruing under the “trickle down”, tax cuts for the rich policies of Reagan and Bush 1.  When George ambled out of office eight years later, the debt was approaching $11 trillion, and the CBO estimated, a week or two before Obama took office, that based on the commitments already made by Bush, the deficit for f/y 2009, ending 9/30/09, would be about $1.2 trillion, which would drive the national debt to about $12 trillion.

Yet, in this amnesiac nation, and amnesiac media, the national debt is the Democrats’ fault, and the $1.4 trillion deficit as of 9/30 is Obama’s fault, and we have to vote these free spenders out of office. 

My friends, I increasingly believe there is no hope for this nation.

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By truedigger3, January 22, 2010 at 5:12 pm Link to this comment

An excellent insightful article, but the message will not get through to the DLC who will insist that the problem was that Martha Coackly ran ineffective campaign.
Anyway in the final analysis, there is no REAL difference between the Democratic and the Republican parties and both are nothing but two different masks for the same big moneyed corporations party.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 22, 2010 at 3:58 pm Link to this comment

BruSays - “Incidentally, MOST Americans favor a government-sponsored health care option…not 8 percent. MOST Americans favor equal rights for gays…not 8 percent. MOST Americans voted for Obama…not 8 percent.”

-

You are correct.  But I fail to see what this has to do with anything I’ve written here.  I didn’t opine on the issues above which I and most people do support.  Especially the last two - the first issue is solely dependent on how the question is asked.

I wrote of the opinions and attitudes on this Web site.  Which are represented by roughly 8% of the nation.  A minuscule minority.

-

dihey,

The same goes for your observations regarding your friend.  It depends on how the term is used.  On this Web site it’s largely used as a childish, derisive and bigoted adjective.

The term serves your friend very well.  But, if you use the term as it is used here, it will only serve to belittle your opinions and positions.  The majority, roughly 70%, will quickly dismiss you as a hate-filled, small minded, bigot.

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By BruSays, January 22, 2010 at 3:41 pm Link to this comment

Xntrk…

You and I will be pushing up the daisies and they’ll still be talking about the demise of the Democratic Party. That is, when they’re not talking about the coming death of the Republican Party.

Only 14 months ago they were talking about the factions within the Republican Party - how the extreme right-wing fringe of evangelicals was bringing down that party. Article upon article spoke of long-loyal Republicans unable to recognize the hate and extremism their party had taken on.

This too will pass. As long as politicians require millions to run for office their hands are going to be in the pockets of corporations. And what politician is going to campaign on behalf of campaign reform? What Democrat or Republican is going to campaign on behalf of reforms enabling a third party?

Nope…both the Democrat and Republican parties will be around a long time, and will likely sink along with the country.

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By Xntrk, January 22, 2010 at 3:02 pm Link to this comment

I strongly recommend this article on Counterpunch: http://www.counterpunch.org/jacobs01222010.html. It is saying the same thing, but in stronger terms - and absolutely rejects the concept of ‘reforming’ the Democratic Party.

As for the Democrats, I am faced with the same moral correction I faced in the Vietnam War. After being raised by FDR Democrats and Labor Union Democrats, it has been very difficult for me to accept that that today’s Party is no longer the Democratic Party of my youth. In truth, the Democratic Party I believed in existed only for a very brief time. Today’s Party has abandoned its members, in favor of the Corporations and graft. I owe them no allegiance.

Speaking of ‘Corporatism’, has anyone else noticed the demise of Haiti, Gaza, and Afghanistan in the headlines here at TD and elsewhere? We are definitely back to trial rehashes of the campaign in MA, and the latest scandal on the TV airwaves. Not even a eulogy to Air America which filed bankruptcy yesterday.

Ever wonder who really runs these ‘Progressive’ web sites?

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By dihey, January 22, 2010 at 2:54 pm Link to this comment

Sorry Go Right Young Man, one of my best friends is a supporter of the Tea Party. He refers to himself as a “Tea Bagger”. Is he childish too?

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By BruSays, January 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm Link to this comment

Give it a rest, Go Right Young Man.

There may be an argument in favor of informed, educated, articulate and “adult” conversations regarding our country’s woes, but right-wing pundits are not the ones to make it.

Tune in on ANY blog, this one included, and the majority of well-researched and well-formed comments are from the left. The right offers most of the knee-jerk, name-calling childish rants you speak of.

Incidentally, MOST Americans favor a government-sponsored health care option…not 8 percent. MOST Americans favor equal rights for gays…not 8 percent. MOST Americans voted for Obama…not 8 percent.

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By BruSays, January 22, 2010 at 2:35 pm Link to this comment

Either the voters in Massachusetts are naive - or the voters in Massachusetts are naive.

They are naive if Democrats think that by staying away from the polls, they’ll send a message to their party that they’re sick of the foot-dragging and compromising on important issues. Instead, they put yet another Republican tool in the Senate.

They are naive if they think that by voting for Brown, they’ve elected a fresh face, a maverick, someone not beholding to the party line (sound familiar?). Instead, they put yet another Republican tool in the Senate.

Of course, either scenario sucks.

Message to Obama: Wake Up. Enough with the words, words, words. Kick some ass. Be unpopular. Don’t compromise. Threaten vetoes just like the Republicans threaten filibusters. Tell the bank executives and health insurance companies to take a hike. Go down in flames instead of irrelevancy.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 22, 2010 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

Childishly referring to the Tea Party crowd as “Tea baggers”, as chuckling 5th graders do, will never further the agenda of the Progressive set.
LOL….it will only get one ridiculed by the majority - the adults.

I will write it again and again.  The United States is solidly Right of Center.  The musings and rants on this Web site represent roughly 8% of the nation. 

It’s certainly understandable that the minuscule minority would feel extremely small and marginalized.  But the types of misdirected anger, bigotry and childishness here on this site will never serve the purpose of Progressives.  It only serves to turn the majority against your causes even more.  In other words; acting as a child will see one treated as children every time.  Standing as an adult will get one treated as an adult.

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By Atilla, January 22, 2010 at 1:02 pm Link to this comment

I agree with Mestizo Warrior. We definitely need a third party as long as it is the Tea Party.

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By DANIEL CATUSCELLI, January 22, 2010 at 12:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Mr. Sirota: When I discover your Writing, I find samebody that think; nobody can win a war if do not fight. DEMOCRATSARE OLD TYPE OF AMERICANS, (tHAT IS THE REASON WE HAVE A LON STANDOIND DEMOCRACY0; BUT, wHY NOBODY TELL THE NAKED TRUTH?. wE CAN NOT SUBTAINS THE ALL AMERICAN WAY OF LIFE. aqmericans need a 9/11 I9N HIS SIDE WALK CORNER TO AWAKE/. I,M VERY SORRY, SPEAKING i’m very fast, not writing. PLEASE CALL ME. my telephone i;ts 650-878-1415. DANIEL CATUSCELLI. CALIFORNIA.

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By dihey, January 22, 2010 at 11:48 am Link to this comment

When I read the sentence “Tens of millions of families that only two years ago felt affluent and secure are now anxious and impoverished” written by Oswald Spengler in Asia Times on Line. I immediately connected these words with the superb analysis of the rise of Nazism by Konrad Heiden, the first biographer of Adolf Hitler. He examined the causes for the meteoric growth of political extremism and violence in Germany. When Heiden scanned the lives of prominent Nazis he found a common thread. All had “failed existences” because of WW1 and the economic crash of 1928. Heiden demonstrated convincingly that becoming impoverished was not the main driving force for extremist actions but the sense of having failed, of having sunk on the ladder of social classification from, say, middle-class to the proletariat or from the proletariat to the rabble.
There is another interesting parallel with our country today. The Nazis rarely blamed the Kaiser and his clique for their failed lives but instead the so-called “criminals of November 1918” meaning the centrist parties, the socialists, the communists, and above all the Jews. Leave the Jews off and you find all the others in the slogans on the placards of the Tea Partiers. They do not blame Bush but “socialist”, if not “communist” Obama.
Throughout history, Marx’s “Lumpenproletariat” or Rag Proletarians have always been used by ruling classes to try to avert true, radical change. There is no reason to doubt that our ruling classes are behind the Tea Bag rebellion. What the rulers fear is that the Rag Proletarians may eventually turn against them if they do not get what they yearn for. If the Nazi leader Gregor Strasser had not resigned and run that might have happened in Germany.
The worst thing that can befall a nation in such times is a weak and vacillating “changer” such as President Obama. I am convinced that he wanted to bring some change but did not realize the powerful historic trends working against him.
There is a Dutch saying which, in translation goes like this: “soft doctors make stinking wounds”. Tea Baggers respect forceful even “hard” semi-dictatorial governance. It is not to be expected from Obama and his minions in Congress. Our country is in for very rough times.

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By Blackspeare, January 22, 2010 at 11:07 am Link to this comment

Scott Brown is the equivalent of a masculine Sarah Palin and about just as intelligent.  His remarks about the availability of his daughters indicate he is not too bright.

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By Jim Yell, January 22, 2010 at 9:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If the Republicans and even the libertarians get their way we have a fine example of what happens when a country has no regulations to speak of, a shrunken tax base with the rich insulated from civic responsibilities. That example is Haiti, the second oldest independent nation in the western hemisphere.

Hardly any infastructure, no discipline, no mutual aide amongst citizens. That is the result of giving the rich a free ride and ignoring the needs of the working poor and the socially poor.

Isn’t that precious?

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By Hulk2008, January 22, 2010 at 9:05 am Link to this comment

We already have the best government you can buy.
Now the Kangaroos have confirmed it in writing.  Welcome to the futuristic world of Rollerball.

Instead of parties and the balancing act of legislative branch vs. judicial vs. executive, we can have 3 competing super athletic teams ala the old James Caan movie. 

In ancient times, armies decided battles by having their strongest warriors duke it out to save time and lives.  Remember David and Goliath ?  Achilles and Hector ?  How about Keith Olberman v. Glenn Beck ?

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By reggiewhitefish, January 22, 2010 at 8:51 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Maby your best column ever! This column coupled with the comment from “mlb” accuratly explaigning the true meaning of our current governing philosophy (by both parties) brings the demise of U.S. representative government into sharp focus.

This, and the SCOTUS decision that just made unlimited corporate money legal for campaign propaganda and lies, has made the people’s job of saveing the republic both more clear and more difficult.

The good part is we, the people are wide awake now. If neither party will represent people over the wishes of the wealthy, a new one will! If the Dems can’t figure out that there is already a party representing the few against the many, makeing their current posture just a duplication, they will just have to go the way of the Wigs.

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By Anarcissie, January 22, 2010 at 8:18 am Link to this comment

It’s not correct to say Reagan has been raised from the dead.  Reagan has never gone away.  Among Republicans, he is constantly cited by name, and among at least the established leadership of the Democrats, by practice.

The odd thing is that the debacle of George W. Bush’s reign was prepared by Reaganism, as will be the similar debacle of Obama and company if they continue to follow the same policies and practices.  One would think the ruling class would be trying to move away from the worn-out zombie.  But they are stuck it.

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By bozh, January 22, 2010 at 8:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sirota is talking ab tactics [in error?]which do not damage the basic structure of not only governing but also the system of rule.
?All msm avoid to carefully examine the pants before deciding to patch it or get new one.
I think, that is the role media had been given; which is to keep entertaining people away from minding own store and bedazzle them with ‘glittering’ personalities [political-priestly ‘stars’]and language.

My language does not glitter. I do not read ab palin nor what she says. U don’t even read what OB says nor listen to what he says.
I do not listen to cooper, gergen, clooney, and other ‘glitterraties’ on king ‘show’.
And i hate meritocracy and enjoy all my typos; wrong syntax, etc., as long as the message i sent had been received.
tnx

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By Mestizo Warrior, January 22, 2010 at 7:51 am Link to this comment

The facts as stated by Mr. Sirota along with yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling on corporate bribes… ooops I meant campaign funding should make the American people do some serious soul searching!
We should be seriously considering whether or not to continue our committment to a corrupt two party system that benefits no one except the corporate elite. We should be giving serious consideration to forming a third party alternative, one that is free of corporate influence and control.

Our electoral system is similar to flipping a coin where TAILS they win, HEADS we lose! Don’t you think it is time for us to get out of this Twilight Zone and face reality? The United States of America is now the United Corporation of Amerika! And I for one do not accept this! Got RESISTANCE?

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By Marlene W. Ross, January 22, 2010 at 7:41 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Indeed, those in Massachusetts who voted for Scott Brown did so in protest, albeit they cut off their noses to spite their faces. Independents voted Scott Brown into the U.S. Senate, yet polling suggests that these same voters wanted a far more progressive national health reform bill. Was it that Scott Brown didn’t readily identify with the Republican party during his campaign and spoke of himself as an “Independent” that misled Independent voters into electing him? For shame! Did anyone check his state voting record? 96% of his votes went with the Republican agenda. And,  for those who believe Scott Brown wants a “better” health care reform bill as he campaigned on…how ‘bout the one he voted for in MA. that mandates everyone have health insurance with no reform to the insurance industry. Brown voted to give more business to big insurance, that’s his plan for the nation. Seems Scott Brown was for health insurance reform before he was against it, or as long as his buddies in big profit-making are taken care of first and foremost.

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By omygodnotagain, January 22, 2010 at 7:06 am Link to this comment

Obama lacks practical savvy, he really believes you can negotiate with criminals and financial terrorist.. they took him for a ride because he is naive.. hopefully he will show some steel and start slamming these Wall Street Con-Artists, forget the Republicans they were bought and sold by Wall Street years ago..
Work for the American people

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By mlb, January 22, 2010 at 7:06 am Link to this comment

The article is generally on track, but Brown didn’t win by demonizing taxes! (Republicans always do that.)  He won by not being a Democrat.

The Democrats thought in 2008 that because the country was so disgusted with the Bush Republicans that they could win by just not saying too much.  They were right.  They thought that once they were elected they could continue Bush’s rightwing policies to keep their corporate masters pleased, while employing rhetoric pretending that they were doing just the opposite to keep the people mollified.  They were wrong.  Massachusetts voters saw through them.

But I hope that Democrats all over will understand that not voting or voting for Republicans because the corporate Democrats are so bad is cutting off our noses to spite our faces.  The right approach is to beat corporate Democrats in primaries and elect progressives (whether they’re Democrats or independents).

...

It’s probably best to use the word “corporatism” because it doesn’t sound so alarming, but we should not forget for a moment that corporatism and fascism are synonyms.  The brown shirts and black shirts and radical Right in the US are not fascism; they are a side effect.  Neither is a police state or a violently repressive government the essence of corporatism/fascism.

The core of fascism is the merging of corporate and state power.  That power arrangement produces many predictable effects:

When corporations collude with the State, policy always favors corporations - to the exclusion of the public good. 

When power is shared between corporations and government, the people have no power and democracy cannot function. 

When corporations run the government, the people don’t like it.  In past fascist regimes that problem was addressed with violent repression.  In the more sophisticated more advanced and more successful version of fascism employed in the US, consumerism, distraction, misinformation, and the illusion of democracy and a free press are used to keep the masses in line.

When corporations have control over government, they use the nation’s military for business purposes, to open up and secure markets in other countries, as the US empire is doing now in the Muslim Middle East.  Militarism is an inevitable byproduct of corporatism.

Fascism is evil.  It is cold, dehumanizing, venal, vicious, and cruel - and it wears the smug, boring just-a-regular-guy face of the Wall Streeter, the corporate executive, and the corporate Democrat.

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By clxgid, January 22, 2010 at 6:59 am Link to this comment

No David, you are wrong in your assumptions, Ronald Reagan, Newt Gingrich, Dubya or Cheney were not anywhere to be seen in the public face of Scott Brown’s campaign. He came across as an cute, eager and excited Jack Russel terrier and even cuddly, gently mouthing only the gist of now cliched tax and spend homilies. It was very understated as to Hard Right Triumphalism. Despite the strawman of ultra-libralism that the media tries to construct over Massachusetts, our Republicans have never been totally out of power or influence. We are the third richest state in the union and anywhere there is money there will be plenty of Republicans. I think Scott Brown was a surprised as anyone that he actually won last Tuesday, the wet cold snow and expectations of a Martha romp probably kept enough dems at home for Scott’s smaller but wildly determined core voters to make the difference. One thing that is very important, you can tell because no one in the corporate media is allowing it to be mentioned, is that Brown will have to run again in only 2 years.

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By KISS, January 22, 2010 at 6:40 am Link to this comment

Glider pretty much got the message, David.
One must never forget Amerika has but one political party, and citizens are excluded.

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By bogi666, January 22, 2010 at 4:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Reagoon was the greatest con man in the history of the world.  He conviced Americans that debt is prosperity and they believed him so personal and government debt exploded. He convinced American that the Nicaragua Sandnista Army was going to march across Mexico, invade Texas and burn down Was.,DCa goood idea. Reagoon lead the charge to dumb down America starting as Governor of Calif., and it worked Americans didn’t even have a clue he was a con man.

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By glider, January 22, 2010 at 2:24 am Link to this comment

Right on assessment Dave Sirota.  I hope your simple clear explanation starts catching hold in the MSM and replaces the “fair and balanced” teabag baloney.  One bit that needs to be added is that the Democrat Corporatism is anti-capitalist and anti-freemarket.  Which is something a number of independents find objectionable.  It is nearly entirely focused on subsidizing near monopoly sized companies.  Small businesses need not apply.

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