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I fully understand that as of this day, June 16, 2014, there are no declared candidates for the Democratic nomination to run for president in 2016. There's a good reason for that, it's far too early. Those declarations are a good 6-8 months away now, and in the interim there is a mid-term election, which deserves our attention.
  However, plans are being made at this point, and it would be interesting to see where people stand in their preferences at this moment in time.
  I understand of course that such a poll is unscientific in nature, as is every other poll published here or on any public website. Be that as it may, the results will still be of interest, no matter how many grains of salt each person chooses to take them with.


Whom do you prefer to be the Democratic nominee for president in 2016?

4%10 votes
24%59 votes
35%85 votes
2%7 votes
2%6 votes
16%39 votes
7%18 votes
1%3 votes
6%15 votes

| 242 votes | Vote | Results

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On Monday night Senator Elizabeth Warren and Dr. Thomas Piketty sat down for a discussion presented live on The Huffington Post. The interviewer was a surprisingly knowledgeable Ryan Grim, and was conducted in front of a live and enthusiastic audience at the Old South Meeting House in Boston. Here is the link to the
 Senator Warren and Dr. Piketty essentially discussed the main themes from their respective books. In A Fighting Chance, Senator Warren discusses the rigged nature of the current system, with an eye on an attempt to level the playing field.
  Dr. Piketty shows in Capital in the 21st Century how the economic system of Capitalism distributes income in a perversely unequal way, that taxes on incomes and wealth are required to allow the system to function in an equitable manner.

  The discussion is too long for me to reproduce here, but the crux of it can be best summed up in Senator Warren's remarks about the failed theory of "trickle-down economics." First she points out that the best characterization of the theory came from George H.W. Bush when he called it "Voodoo Economics."
    She went on to sum it up quite nicely when she said that "...wealth does not trickle down, it trickles up. It trickles from everyone else to those who are already rich."
   Dr. Piketty pointed out the need for a graduated wealth tax. We have an existent wealth tax in property tax, but this is levied at equal percentages for all, no matter the value or the equity of the property, and must be substantially expanded.

   They discussed a range of issues, such as (spreading the benefits of) free trade, the importance of Labor Unions, not just as a practical matter of workplace fairness, but as an historical force for good in issues like Social Security, Medicare, and Civil Rights, just to name a few.
  Also discussed in quite a unique way was the issue of Global Climate Change, which Senator Warren posited to be part of the same dynamic as the economic issues, pitting the haves , who benefit from polluting, against the have-nots who suffer from the effects.
   My favorite line from Senator warren was her advice to Dr. Piketty about how to handle the flood of criticism. "Hit back," she said.

   Also, quite notably now, Senator Warren was asked about all she could potentially accomplish related to this discussion if she would run for president. The crowd was very loud and enthusiastic in voicing approval. And NO DENIAL was forthcoming from the Senator, which is a departure from how she's answered this question before.
   Does this mean she's going to run? In the words of Stephen Colbert, "I'll take this as a probably!"


 Why do I love Krystal Ball so much? Because she's intelligent, beautiful, solidly progressive, an obviously loving mom, etc. etc.?
   All of those things, to be sure, but she recently won my heart with an editorial about why she wishes that Hillary Clinton would not run for president in 2016. She thinks the times are wrong for another president with such strong corporate ties, when what we truly need is a populist president, a game-changer. Someone say like Elizabeth Warren. Well, to be more precise, Elizabeth Warren herself.
    Ms. Ball went on to say that of course she'd back Hillary against any Republican, and against many Democrats as well, but that she wants Senator Warren, and that Hillary is likely to crowd the Massachusetts Senator out of the field, so better for us if Hillary doesn't run.
    Krystal Ball was on on "UP with Steve Kornacki" today, which BTW was an amazing show. She spoke of how anointing Hillary would lead to a great deal of disappointment among Progressives and other common folk who know in their bones that it NOW is truly the time for change we can believe in. And certainly Hillary Clinton is not the person who will provide us with that.
    Krystal expresses her concerns by asking that at this point as the country begins to recover the vital questions are what kind of country do we want, what kind of economy, what does the future of the middle class look like, and so on. She says that if Hillary is unopposed she will most certainly throw in with her wealthy backers and go off in that direction, while Warren captures the Progressive vision, and more importantly what the Country needs right now.

    Now, I do believe that Hillary Clinton will run, beginning just about a year or so from now, but that this nation would best be served if Elizabeth Warren runs as well, and we have the critical debate between these two powerful women that at this point the Nation needs to engage in:

Does the economy function on behalf of the People or do the People function on behalf of the economy?
 And is it time to start thinking about a Draft Elizabeth Warren Movement?
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This past Wednesday Laurence Lewis posted this diary here:, the main point being that SOCIAL SECURITY IS NOT PART OF THE DEFICIT!   And there it is. Those eight words are the very essence of our argument. Those eight words will scuttle this unwise proposal because cutting Social Security does nothing to reduce the federal budget deficit. SOCIAL SECURITY IS NOT PART OF THE DEFICIT so that even significant cuts to the program would not reduce the deficit by a dime. As simple as this is, it is the winning argument. There's no truthful answer to those eight words.


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 The U.S. Senate has taken the unprecedented step of filibustering a president's appointment to the position of Secretary of Defense.
   And so in less than 3 weeks Harry Reid's failure to reform the filibuster rule has proven to be a huge error in judgment. This error would seem less catastrophic had it not just happened in the last Congress, had the Majority Leader not admitted to his mistake in trusting the GOP on this one, and he not had a tremendous opportunity to bring functionality to the Senate at the start of the current session.

   Senator Reid needs to bring back the issue of substantial filibuster reform and put it to a majority vote, or he needs to hand over leadership to someone who can deal with the Republicans in a realistic way.

    This is too important an issue to play around with any further.
    Get tough Harry or get out.

   The final vote was 59-39, so the motion to proceed DOES NOT CARRY!
   Just in case there's any confusion, that's 59 votes FOR the Hagel confirmation!  Where else does 39 votes beat 59?
   And the Senate is on recess next week. Another vote is almost 2 weeks away, after the NATO summit, which Hagel will therefore not attend.

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 The answer is we don't know , or as anastasia p commented in the diary currently on the rec list:  What "cave"? (2+ / 0-)
Where's the new news?

This appears to be more of the typical deciding something is absolutely 100% true while it's still out there and could go either way. We pre-defeat ourselves. It's this diary that is throwing up the flag of surrender and helping to decide that we won't win on this. Thanks for nothing, purity progressives.

Jon Husted is a dick.

  Right on both counts: Jumping to conclusions on the basis of one report is unwise, particularly in a situation like this one where reports change on a daily basis (at least).
    And Jon Husted is indeed a dick.

Will meaningful filibuster reform pass

15%15 votes
1%1 votes
38%37 votes
19%19 votes
24%24 votes
1%1 votes

| 97 votes | Vote | Results

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Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:09 PM PST

It's the Filibuster Stupid!

by elwior

 Here on Inauguration Day it's a good time to reflect on the tremendous hope we felt four years ago.
   Not only was Barack Obama inaugurated as our 44th president, but we also had nice, solid majorities in both Houses of Congress. If you recall the agenda back then, it included a nice big stimulus package, major health care reform (to include a Public Option), the Employee Free Choice Act to help foster growth in the Union movement, Firm action on Global Climate Change, passage of the Dream Act and comprehensive immigration reform, and so on.

  But precious little of that agenda occurred, mostly owing to Republican obstructionism. And what they used to obstruct was the filibuster rule in the Senate.

   More over the fold


I will call/e-mail/tweet Harry Reid and/or my Senators to demand meaningful filibuster reform

30%4 votes
30%4 votes
7%1 votes
15%2 votes
7%1 votes
7%1 votes

| 13 votes | Vote | Results

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 Full-scale extraction and transport of the Canadian Tar sands would lead to a massive increase in the production of the nastiest, filthiest oil to be used as a energy source. The amount of CO2 put into the atmosphere by this fetid product could well lead us to the tipping point and beyond in our effort to save Human habitat on our planet.
  But this dirty oil produces another, more immediate danger to human beings. From carcinogens to acid rain, tar sands development is raising levels of industrial pollution across the north, according to this article in today's Scientific American:
    More over the fold.

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  For those of you who may not have heard, Indiana Senatorial Candidate Richard Mourdock said this during last night's debate:

"....I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is that gift from God, and I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape that it is something that God intended to happen."
   Mr. Mourdock wants to impose this point of view on the women of America for this generation and for generations to come. He isn't really so different in his position from most Republicans policy-wise, but when he expresses it in this way, which most GOP politicians are able to avoid, it's shocking, distressing, and off-putting to the vast majority of Americans, particularly American women.

    The funny thing is that presidential candidate Mitt Romney has endorsed Mr. Mourdock enthusiastically, so much so that he made a TV ad on Mourdock's behalf, the only candidate he has done this for.
     What should Mr. Romney do now?

  According to former N.J. (Republican) Gov. and Former EPA administrator Christine Todd Whitman:


"Mourdock's comments damage all Republicans and especially Romney as the fight for the woman's vote intensifies. This could be a defining moment for Romney and he should immediately denounce both Mourdock and the comment."
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  In June of 2012, President Clinton hosted the second convening of CGI America, an annual event focused on finding solutions that promote economic recovery in the United States. This working meeting brought together leaders from the business, foundation, NGO, and government sectors to develop solutions that address unemployment, prepare Americans to be competitive global citizens, and rethink current models that shape our economy and society.

  At present, I believe there is an opportunity to expand this initiative with the active participation of the (second) Obama Administration to make this a public/private  and powerfully synergistic partnership.

   More over the fold.

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 Let me start by saying this is not a doom and gloom diary. So long as we keep working at it, President Obama will be re-elected come Nov. 6th.
   But neither is this a message delivered through rose-colored glasses. While it does no good to wallow in the muck and mire of disappointment and rumination, it does a great deal of good to look honestly at mistakes made and to correct them going forward.
   Folks here, Progressives everywhere felt let down by last week's presidential debate for one very good reason. Last week Mitt Romney was on the ropes, and the president had the opportunity to put him away. And he got cautious. He went into the "prevent defense," the strategy of sitting on a lead and trying to run out the clock.
   As a fan of the New York Giants in the late 1970's, I can tell you that the prevent defense is most often a losing strategy in that it kills momentum and enthusiasm. Also, it's extremely frustrating to watch, and it speaks to a lack of confidence in what your team is made of.
   Was an opportunity missed last Wednesday night? Absolutely.
   Can momentum and enthusiasm be fully restored? Easily.

    Let's huddle up on the other side of the fold.

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Yes, this year's campaign truly is a horse race, and a very specific horse race at that: The 1973 Belmont Stakes.
    Follow the link to watch the race. It's a sight to behold! And then follow the commentary over the hurdle, and see if you agree with the comparison!

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