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View Diary: Partisan? You bet your ass we're partisan. (204 comments)

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  •  "Ultra-left"? Being a non-corporatist progressive (5+ / 0-)

    in a tradition that goes through Henry Wallace and George McGovern to Bernie Sanders is "ultra left"?  Who exactly constitutes this "Far Left"?  Anyone critical of PBO?  Paul Krugman?  Stiglitz?  Charlie Pierce?    

         I've never voted for a Republican, have canvassed for Dem candidates from Gene McCarthy to John Kerry, and have donated to candidates from McCarthy to Elizabeth Warren.  Back in the day, I told people in the anti-Vietnam-war movement that they were being idiotic if they thought that electing Nixon would bring on some "revolutionary" revulsion among the public to the repressive policies he was sure to follow.  Following my own advice, I held my nose and voted for Gore instead of Nader in 2000.  And, despite being hypercritical of PBO, I just voted for him even though I live in the least swingy of states.  

        So IMO my bona fides as a Dem is at least passable.  But I don't see why that should stop me from criticizing PBO for, to take just two examples,  appointing mostly corporate shills to his economic team (Geithner, Summers) and negotiating with Republicans in his first term as though he were either one of them himself  or trying to channel Neville Chamberlain.  Then there are his failure to prosecute the banksters (unlike FDR), his failure to help mortgagees as well as mortgage owners, his drone wars, his continuation of some of the worst of the Bush "security" tactics that violate civil rights, etc., etc., etc.  He did get the mess called Obamacare through and a stimulus that prevented a depression, both of which were significant if somewhat limited and flawed accomplishments.  Other than those (I.e. after 2009), what exactly did he do that, AS A DEMOCRAT, I'm supposed to be enthusiastic about?  

    As for the influence I'd the "far left," does anyone really believe that PBO's move to a much more populist stance in his campaign wasn't enabled in part by OWS?  And what would he have done just  now if the "far left" hadn't immediately shot down his trial balloon about agreeing to raise the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67?

    In fact, IMO the only thing keeping the current Democratic party from turning into the modern equivalent of Eisenhower Republicans is the so-called "far left."  Self-styled Democratic "partisans" should be glad they've got us.

    •  hmmmm (19+ / 0-)

      you held your nose?

      You comment is too long to respond to point by point, right now, since I have to get back to work on something but I'll just say this.

      I guess you didn't really understand this diary.

      Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 10:38:28 AM PST

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    •  i'll take you at your word here, and reiterate (17+ / 0-)
      So when the naysayers drone on about holding our elected officials feet to the fire, that is fine but DON'T BURN THEIR FEET OFF!
      That is my take on the point of this post.  And.. as a Democrat, I am enthusiastic about many of the things listed here.
    •  So can you provide a list (9+ / 0-)

      of those Democrats who are pure enough for you to vote for?  Because PBO damn sure isn't perfect, but you talk like he's no different than the alternative.  So I'd like to find some of these pure Democrats that I can support next time around, because clearly I unleashed a terrible evil by voting for Obama.  In Ohio!

      •  Evidently, (0+ / 0-)

        you did not read the comment closely. Did you notice where is says, not "Obama is different than the alternative", but "despite being hypercritical of PBO, I just voted for him even though I live in the least swingy of states."

        The commenter said nothing about applying a purity test to candidates. He did point out that it takes pressure from the political margins to push politicians in the direction we want them to go. And for the past 30+ years, almost all the pressure has been coming from one direction, the right.

        Without pressure from the left, politicians stay within the comfort zone that the right allows them, and that has come to mean, a little farther to the right than they happen to be at any given moment.

        "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

        by sidnora on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 09:16:56 AM PST

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        •  I think he lost the group with this kind of (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Hedwig, khloemi, raina

          rhetoric:

          And what would he have done just  now if the "far left" hadn't immediately shot down his trial balloon about agreeing to raise the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67?

          In fact, IMO the only thing keeping the current Democratic party from turning into the modern equivalent of Eisenhower Republicans is the so-called "far left."  Self-styled Democratic "partisans" should be glad they've got us.

          That is exactly like the comments that are coming from the self-styled "saviors of us poor benighted partisans". We don't know any better!! We are running around with our heads in the clouds, smitten with Obamabottiness, nay Obamadottiness!!! And unable to learn what our betters are here to teach us.

          Wrong.

          Those people and that blockquote are what is wrong. The president did not put raising the Medicare eligibility age on the table and then take it away because the far left pitched a fit. It sits on that table because it is not very smart negotiation to tell your opponent where your line in the sand is. Congressional Democrats had already signaled that it would be unacceptable ... it did not hurt for him to just leave that, and a hundred other things that will never be part of a deal, lying there.

          That is the difference between we pragmatic progressives and those who choose to call us partisans as though there is something wrong with supporting the only party that gives a damn about us.

          We choose to work from within, sitting at the table, providing support. They choose to work from without, throwing bricks to "wake up those damn Democrats" (and many of them bragged about withholding their votes ... unconscionable).

          In the parable of the north wind and the sun, the warmth of the sun does more to effect change than the harsh winds.

          Oliver and his friends did not "force" President Obama to do anything. They rattle their keyboards and are content to talk in their own echo chamber.

          The real work was done by those he sneers at as partisan: in GOTV and real life activism and promoting voter enthusiasm.

          Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

          by JanF on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 01:46:03 PM PST

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          •  Sorry, but I must civilly disagree. (0+ / 0-)

            I would say that the commenter's tone could use some improvement, but not his substance.

            I am neither a "suxxer" nor a "roxxer". I believe that both partisan support and external pressure are necessary to achieve political progress, and I do both as I think the moment dictates. Trust me, I have done a lot more than "keyboard rattling" to make change, and to get Democrats, including the president, elected. I would be happy to supply a long, long list of specifics if you feel you need them.

            I believe that work gives me the right as a citizen to disagree at times with the way he is governing, publicly but civilly. And I believe that criticism can be constructive.

            What I will not do is march blindly in anyone's parade. And even though some of the commenters in this thread are good friends of mine IRL, the overall tone here was making me acutely uncomfortable in its one-sidedness. That's why I felt the need to defend the comment above. I probably shouldn't have hung around this diary at all.

            "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

            by sidnora on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 08:59:43 AM PST

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