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September 3rd, 2009
Since January 20 of this year – which was more than eight months ago – we’ve been handed some rather clever lines of defense for the things Barack Obama is NOT doing with his executive power, with his supermajority in the Senate, or his eminently workable majority in the House. Things we the voters gave him in the first actual electoral mandate of the 21st century last November. We voted for change. We haven’t gotten any.
We’ve been told Obama’s “got this” because he can shoot hoops in the WH basement with skill, and grab flies out of the air like a Kung Fu master. We’ve been told Obama’s playing “multidimensional chess” with his opponents by continuing every single one of the illegal and anti-democratic policies of his Neocon predecessor. And now, with the health insurance reform debate gone all Town Hall during recess, we are told we don’t really need health insurance reform, single payer health care, or even a public option to facilitate the expected mandate we’ll be handed that forces us to pay more money than we’ve got to the murder-by-spreadsheed for-profit industry.
We still have “state secrets” privilege on who’s lobbying in the Oval Office. We still have DADT in the military. We still have two illegal wars going, a new third front opened in Columbia, off-the-books deficits accumulated by the fact that there’s twice as many paid mercenaries in those war zones than U.S. soldiers, we’re still rendering and torturing “detainees” who haven’t been charged with any crimes and haven’t been afforded the status of POWs, and we’re still bailing out Wall Street gamblers to the tune of multiple trillions while not even beginning to address reinstating necessary regulations.
A plethora of Democratic/Progressive activist groups have sprung up to pressure Congress and the White House on these issues as well as health insurance reform, letter-writing campaigns, calls and emails to representatives and senators, mass demonstrations… You name it, it’s being done. And what we get from the WH is insults and dismissals as those of us anywhere to the left of center are repeatedly told to STFU.Balance of Power, Barack Obama, Class War, Corruption, Debates, Democrats, DNC, Elections, For-Profit Insurance, Health Care, Legislation, Outrage, Party Platforms, Policy, Protests, Torture, Universal Care, War Crimes | Comment (0)
November 18th, 2008
ARGH!!! So now that Democrats will in January have the White House, the House and the Senate, Joe Lieberman (Lieberman for Lieberman Party-CT) gets to keep his Senate committee chairmanships as if he were a Democrat. This after Lieberman campaigned for Republican John McCain and several other Republicans for Senate.
Now, far be it from me to try and define regular, ordinary words for politicians, who don’t seem to understand the meaning of regular, ordinary words. Words like “Party” and “Loyalty” and “Procedure” and “Majority” and “Governance.” Politicians don’t want to know these things, preferring instead to make things up as they go along.
During these past couple of years when Democrats didn’t have an actual majority in the Senate, Lieberman has been allowed to be a Republican mole in the Democratic Caucus, reporting to his puppeteers and financial backers every move planned by members. He has been allowed to hold several committee chairs, including Homeland Security, where he has steadfastly refused to enforce subpoenas, investigate illegalities of the Bush administration, or even to investigate FEMA’s horrendously inadequate response to hurricane Katrina.
So Lieberman has been rewarded with a pass from the now-actual Democratic majority, encouraged to do more of the same obstructionism that has made him so immensely unpopular outside of Israel.
One day soon, as the public wakes up to realize the Republicans are now a fringe party of right-wing wackos and religious nuts and the Democrats are what the Republicans were before they purged everyone with any sense, there will be a new Progressive Party for the “rest of us.” And it will, within 8-12 years, be electing more than a handful of representatives and Senators, way more than the fringe Republicans, Greens, Libertarians, Communists and Nazis can ever manage.
Sigh. The more things “Change,” it seems, the more they remain the same.Filed under Appointees, Caucuses, Coalitions, Democrats, Hypocrisy, Outrage | Comment (0)
August 29th, 2008
The Democratic National Convention wrapped up last night with the most inspiring, detail-filled, well-delivered acceptance speech ever, and I can remember all the way back to Ike’s. Obama looked, as usual, cool and collected as he ran down the list of what needs doing, while hitting hard on the past 7+ years of failed leadership, insane paranoia of the American people, legalized torture, and their bid for a third term with Lt. Commander McMansions.
Presuming that readers wouldn’t have missed it for anything, the speech needs no quoting here. I’d just like to remind everyone that on the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s I Have A Dream speech, Barack Obama amply underlined his soaring rhetorical skills in front of 84,000 people in Mile High Stadium and millions worldwide. The Repuglicans are right to be afraid of him. The dream lives on, might even become a reality in November.Barack Obama, Campaigns, Conventions, Democrats, DNC, GOP, History, John McCain, Presidential Candidates, Sarah Palin, VP Candidates | Comment (0)
August 28th, 2008
Bill Is Still The Godfather
I’ll admit I was a little worried that Bill’s baton-passing might be as empty of discernible passion as Hillary’s, or that he just might express his personal pique at Democrats’ rejection of his wife’s bid for power. So I was greatly relieved to once again experience Bill Clinton’s utter mastery of the art of political rhetoric – his legendary ease with the forum, his self-assured ability to speak his heart effectively, and his sometimes magical talent for drawing trust and confidence from his listeners. Best speech of the convention so far, though John Kerry hit some righteous points as well.
Here are some particularly good quotes from the speeches thus far that definitely should be replayed regularly in You Tube viral clips, in television and radio ads, and in print campaign literature through November…
Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid:
“For over a quarter of a century, the Republicans have sold their magic beans with a promise of a giant beanstalk and gold over the horizon. Look what they’ve done to our country. Look what they’ve done to our planet.”Barack Obama, Blogosphere, Campaigns, Conventions, Democrats, DNC, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Presidential Candidates | Comments (3)
August 27th, 2008
Hard-Hearted Hillary Made Me Cry
It has continually struck me quite odd ever since the DNC started that the also-ran got so very much nervous attention. Why so many big-wigs worried about whether she’d actually help the party’s nominee in this very important election, or whether she’d stab him in the back in a fit of leftover pique over losing what she (and the entire Republican Establishment) believed was her “rightful due.” As if OUR country, OUR leadership somehow became during the 1990s a monarchy instead of the Democratic Republic the founding fathers established.
Sure, the Bush “dynasty” did make it seem just like that monarchy, and God knows George Junior certainly has treated the position as if he has some sort of divine right to rule in flagrant disregard for what the country wants or needs. Yet that’s precisely what Democrats are running AGAINST in this election, not something Dems need to affirm when their turn comes around again. Maybe it’s a creeping mental illness, a delusional state easy to fall prey to in an era of Bush family totalitarianism. But the Clintons were better than that.
Oh, she gave a strong, spirited speech. She repeated her support for Obama and Biden several times, and came down hard on why the country absolutely doesn’t need another Bush (disguised as John McCain). But I saw no warmth, no genuine enthusiasm, and too much playing with the power she supposedly wields over a bunch of Republican plants whose jobs were to get her the nomination because that’s who the Republicans were determined to run against – because that’s who they could beat.Barack Obama, Blogosphere, Campaigns, Conventions, Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Party Primaries, Presidential Candidates | Comment (0)
August 26th, 2008
Assassination plot busted, Teddy’s speech…
…and Michelle Obama’s home run to the nosebleed seats. Wow. What a way to start a convention!
In a bizarre twist, the DailyKos blogging team – DKos is the official host of the “Big Tent” blogger-space attached to the Denver Convention Center – somehow got bumped from their posh hotel suites at the last moment and ended up having to spend the night before the convention at a hotel in Glendale (where the Newsweek convention crew was also ensconced) before arranging better accommodations for the rest of the convention. But during that first night there was some big excitement when the entire Denver SWAT team staged a big meth bust of a room across the hall, rousting the crew and leaving them witness to some very exciting police action.
…only to find out that they had been bumped right smack dab into the very midst of serious political intrigue when it was announced that the bust was part of a possible Obama assassination plot! The SS, ATF and FBI are all involved in investigations of the busted conspirators, apparently a small group of wackos from the White Supremecist corner of the hard-right wingnut end of the spectrum. Updates state that “at least” four people are under arrest in connection with the plotBarack Obama, Blogosphere, Campaigns, Conventions, Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Party Platforms, Presidential Candidates | Comments (2)
August 25th, 2008
Stoopid Network Tricks and Dallying Dems
As I sit here listening to CSPAN pre-convention inanities and old speeches in the background while waiting for the kickoff (and a Teddy Kennedy cry-fest), I figured I’d go ahead and report the first Odd-News story of the ’08DNC. It certainly gave me a giggle.
The DNC pool coverage this year is being provided by… of all possible sources… Fox News. Just about 12 hours exactly from the opening, the sprinkler system in a Fox skybox was set off, flooding the downstairs concourse and club areas so badly the fire department had to suck it up with shop-vacs. The massive amounts of lighting and broadcasting equipment – and attendant wiring – had to be hastily removed to prevent electrical fire. The link is from KSUA-TV 9 in Denver:
Some immediate pointed asides occurred to me, so of course I perused the bored-as-me blogosphere to see what kind of speculations might be floating around. The best I’ve found so far for satirical or just plain humorous value are:
• Since it’s the Pepsi Center, was it Aquafina?
• Their pants were on fire.
• Pundit hairspray meets Limbaugh’s cigar.
• Hot air from Sean Hannity.
• Methane. Too much bullshit too close to hot lights.
On the fact that some fundamentalists were out front praying for rain…
• Proof positive prayer works.
• Proof that one needs to word prayers carefully.
Hahaha!!! Whew! Presuming Fox’s lighting crew figured out they can’t put those hot spots within a foot of the heat sensors for the sprinkler system, I’ve also been idly watching the interactions between people and groups of people wandering through the convention center. If you thought the YKos and NetrootsNation conventions were regular hotbeds of rampant pair-bonding (mostly temporary), the DNC has to take the cake!
I’m sure there’s an equivalent amount of close encounters that take place during the RNC, so I’m not saying only one side of the aisle is sexier. It’s just that at the RNC it’s mostly chemically-enhanced and happening in the men’s rest rooms. [rim shot]
Hehehe!!! Okay, I think I’m prepared to spend the next four days glued to all-day platform committee hammering, all-evening speechifying and all-night partying – on CSPAN, sans commercials. Should be fun!
Posts to the DNC Series:Barack Obama, Blogosphere, Campaigns, Conventions, Democrats, DNC, Joe Biden, Media, Party Platforms | Comments (3)