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View Diary: Obama and Dems may have just lost their most stalwart supporter with this Obamacare ruling (568 comments)

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  •  hey, he got to sign a piece of paper (13+ / 0-)

    with the words "Health Care Bill" at the top, with a big flourish, in front of a lot of cameras. No other president has ever done that.

    That's all he wanted and he got it. The rest can go hang.

    "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

    by limpidglass on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 02:18:31 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  I wonder, if all the plants on this site (12+ / 1-)

      suddenly disappeared, how much the number and intensity of rox/sux pie fights would go down. Probably by at least 70%. I absolutely believe that most of these fights have been driven by them, so we can't have honest and open discussions about how progressive Obama & Dems are even within the constraints of today's politics, and thus be more effective advocates for genuinely progressive reform, not Potemkin reform.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 02:25:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  we have gone so long (15+ / 0-)

        without genuine leadership that Potemkin reform seems like the second coming of FDR and Lincoln rolled into one. And don't think Obama didn't know that and take full advantage.

        As an aside, the funding for those insurance co-ops was cut in the "fiscal cliff" bill. There was a lot of noise about how those co-ops would replace the public option, so shut up you critics who pointed out that the loss of the public option would mean that private insurers would be free of competition from the government.

        Well, now the money for expanding those co-ops is gone. There will be no funding for new ones. And...crickets from those who touted the virtues of the co-ops and blasted the critics.

        Death by a thousand cuts, and no one is bothering to pay attention to those cuts.

        And I keep wondering how people can watch Obama keep repeatedly talking about deficit reduction and think he will agree to anything that requires more government spending.

        "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

        by limpidglass on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 02:46:41 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Which is why they were planted here (6+ / 0-)

          To shut down serious discussion and debate about what's ACTUALLY going on, and not what they want us to think is going on. To be honest I often wonder why I'm still here, since it's obvious that anytime there's a chance that we're going to have a real consensus on an important issue that differs from what the ruling elites would like us to believe, the plants move in to shut it down. It's just like how they dealt with OWS, only using words and not batons and spray. And the site lets it happen, with at most both "sides" being told to cut it out, when there's only one side being genuinely trollish, and deliberately.

          To the site's credit, though, it's hard to know for sure who's a plant and who's just a centrist Dem or apologist effectively doing their work for them. This site has certain ideological leanings, but it's not "ideological", meaning any and every opinion representative of some faction of the party is allowed, even the stupid and horrible ones. So long as you don't go too far right and aren't too dickish, you can stay. Better plants know this and are expert at not crossing any lines. I bet that those who've been banned are mostly not plants, or not good ones.

          I have no proof of any of this, of course, but this is how politics works, and this is a politically influential site, so there's no way they're not doing it here.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 03:21:14 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I wonder how many there are that can be (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            shaharazade

            counted on to rec up a party line diary on any give issue. 300? More? Less?

            The frog jumped/ into the old pond/ plop! (Basho)

            by Wolf10 on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 03:47:58 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I have no idea (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Wolf10, shaharazade

              I'm guessing that it just takes a few to gin up others, who aren't plants, just ignorant and gullible. I'm sure that a lot of genuine (if excessive) Obama adulation was expertly exploited in the past. A bit harder to do that now but it's still here. On all sorts of issues from finreg to health care to FISA to debt talks. Wherever there are powerful interests, it's all but certain to happen.

              Incidentally, Mark Penn, Hillary's former campaign manager (or top adviser) made a name for himself for, among other things, being an expert at and offering his services in astroturfing, which is basically manipulating blogs via plants. It only takes a few who know what they're doing to make it work, I'm sure. The site has strict rules against this, of course, but it's really hard to enforce without being intrusive on peoples' real world IDs, a no-no here.

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 03:59:16 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  Tell me, how did all those "real progressive" (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Quicklund

            presidents before Obama do in getting anything called a "health care bill" signed? How did Bill Clinton - who somehow people on this site remember as some great progressive even though he got through regressive conservative legislation that Dubya would have been proud to have done - do on that one?

            When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

            by PhillyJeff on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 02:22:43 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  That is all true but irrelevant (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              limpidglass

              When universal health insurance finally passes, that is precisely when it needs to be done right.  You are not likely to get another bite at the apple, because people who have health insurance already are mentally checking it off the Right Things to Do list: "okay that's taken care of now".  And as many comments on this diary illustrate, if the people who fall through the cracks are mostly adults who are not elderly and not disabled and not pregnant, then it's difficult to get very many people exercised about it.  But wasn't that the profile of most noninsured people to begin with?

              -9.00, -3.69 "The purpose of a campaign is not to answer their attacks, but make them answer our attacks." - Paul Begala

              by SlackerInc on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 11:08:25 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  I have always been on the "rox" side (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Wolf10, shaharazade, irmaly, PhilJD

        And I mean ALWAYS: check my UID and comment history.  But this SUX.

        -9.00, -3.69 "The purpose of a campaign is not to answer their attacks, but make them answer our attacks." - Paul Begala

        by SlackerInc on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 03:48:51 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  "Plants"? Really??? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SlackerInc, sethtriggs, Quicklund, MGross

        You made me log in during my lunch hour when I meant only to lurk because it just drives me crazy when people play this tune -- and especially when it from someone who I might disagree with at times, but who often says very interesting and thoughtful things.

        If people disagree with you, they disagree with you. While they might be part of organizations you distrust (OFA, I'm thinking), they are every bit as sincere in their beliefs as you are in yours and are, I'm sure doing so for free. Frankly, almost everyone here who's posted at any length has probably been accused of being someone's shill, it such a constant -- and constantly annoying -- complaint.

        I understand that sometimes there are attempts to "organize" Kos by getting a lot of people to come here, and it comes from all sides of the liberal spectrum, but that doesn't mean the people who here are "shills" or insincere. They have as much right to be here as anyone else.

        In other words, if you find yourself outvoted on certain matters or priorities here, I'm afraid you're going to have to live with the idea that people on the Internet are sometime (in your view) wrong.

        Now residing in Van Nuys, but "LaBobsterofVanNuys" isn't funny and besides, Van Nuys is really part of Los Angeles

        by LABobsterofAnaheim on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 03:49:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You really think there are no plants here? (8+ / 0-)

          You really think that special interests would pass up on a chance to manipulate opinion on the left, and/or that the site is equipped to weed them out? Really?

          I didn't say that most people who supported the party line were plants, just some. That's all it takes. You never heard of the astroturfing services people like Mark Penn offer to clients? You think that the obvious manipulation that goes on in the media doesn't infect every part of the internet?

          You really think, for example, that all those people who argued against tough finreg or prosecuting banksters were sincere Dems who genuinely believed in this, as opposed to either actual plants put here by Wall St., or self-shills looking out for their own high-paying gigs on Wall St.?

          Obviously a lot, most likely most, people arguing this or that here are sincere, whatever the quality of their facts and logic. But that there are no plants here, pro or amateur, is simply silly. Even the admins know they're here. It's just really hard to prove that they're plants in the instance.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 04:10:49 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think it would be a tremendous waste of money. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MGross

            I think these interests are much to smart to waste it to pay people to have piefights here. Really and truly, I would be stunned.

            Now residing in Van Nuys, but "LaBobsterofVanNuys" isn't funny and besides, Van Nuys is really part of Los Angeles

            by LABobsterofAnaheim on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 06:02:58 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  This place has a lot of influence on the left (0+ / 0-)

              A lot of people get their ideas, information, links, opinions, etc., here. People who vote, volunteer, donate, protest, rally, organize, petition, write letters, call politicians, etc. It's not just a place to talk political trash, the political version of sports blogs. So it only makes sense to try to shape consensus and shut down dissent. It's what I'd do if I were a soulless corporatist looking to get any edge I can getting outcomes favorable to me.

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 07:52:45 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't personally know any dKos plants (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SlackerInc, Quicklund

              But I have met two people who are paid a decent full-time wage to anonymously defend the reputations of particular companies online. Each of them controls well over 100 distinct usernames on a large variety of sites, and carefully rebuts criticism of those companies, pimps whatever product they are asked to pimp on any given day, trash-talks competitors (especially a large one that is named after a fruit) and their products, and just generally tries to improve the reputation of the company in question at the expense of everyone else.

              I have heard some estimates that there are thousands of these people out there.

              Personally, I have to admit, I find it very hard to believe that this same thing isn't being done on political blogs too. In fact, I'd have to say, I find it nearly impossible to believe that it isn't happening, especially given some of the full-time right-wing trolls that I have found hanging around some sites, people who literally seem to spend twelve to fifteen hours a day just repeating right-wing talking points, and never seem to have to (e.g.) work. But I don't have any actually evidence of that.

          •  Why spend millions to fund... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kareylou, Fogiv, Kickemout

            ...a bunch of plants on a website to uncertain return on investment when you can simply buy a senator up in Washington DC, and be much more assured of your outcome?

            Conspiratorial thinking is often too occupied with the thought that direct opposition- that is, some guy looking to shut YOU down in particular, defeat YOU in an argument, deprive YOU of the proof of what you believe, is how your rival really works.

            But we see, in the actual healthcare debate, how it really works.  It's not those plants, if they exist, who deny you the public option, or who make it more favorable for the insurance companies.

            It's the lobbyists.  It's those idiots on the right you failed to take seriously, turning the mood of the country against Healthcare Reform, thus depriving many Democrats in Congress of the services of their spines.

            You folks get outmanuevered because you continue to fight an in-party fight, rather than realizing that your biggest problem is with the way business distorts the political sphere, and with adversaries who haven't yet allowed you the luxury of fighting without the necessary numbers.

            Simple question: In the years since Republicans successfully urged the disempowering of workers and unions in the Midwest, what has happened to those states economies?

            by Stephen Daugherty on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 07:20:49 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Millions? (0+ / 0-)

              This would be part time work at best to a relative handful of people per issue. I seriously doubt that it would come close to anywhere near a million. Shilling is the bottom feeder level of the lobbying world.

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 07:49:35 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Probably minimum wage (0+ / 0-)

                or slightly more.  There are over 6 million Americans still unemployed, so its not like they would have a hard time finding some contractor to handle it.

                Democratic Leaders must be very clear they stand with the working class of our country. Democrats must hold the line in demanding that deficit reduction is done fairly -- not on the backs of the elderly, the sick, children and the poor.

                by Betty Pinson on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 09:16:45 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Probably a bit more (0+ / 0-)

                  You want some talent and motivation so as to not defeat the purpose or give up the lie, and that costs something. I'm guessing $12-$18/hr to start.

                  "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                  by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 09:19:03 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Who says they have to be paid? (0+ / 0-)

              I could think of 5 right off the bat that are definite buzzkillers and naysayers. Do I think they are paid? No. I think they are believers and they are quite comfortable and like the way things are. They comment with the soft bigotry of low expectations and complacency. They frequently derail either with inane BS or subtly. They are dismissive and combative. I wish there was an ignore button.

              •  That's not what I view as a plant (0+ / 0-)

                Although, if their aim is to promote policies that are good for them and only them and only because they're good for them, and block policies that are bad for them and only them because they're bad for them, and lie about such motivation, then they're functionally the same, but still technically not plants, who would have to be paid or otherwise "planted" here by some special interest, be it Wall St., the NRA or People United for Freedom Fries.

                I would still distinguish both from actual true believers (or, true followers), who truly believe (or believe they believe) in what they write, and not because it may or may not favor them personally. Which, in a general sense, is perfectly fine. I'd like to believe that you and I truly believe in what we write, and aren't just trying to get a rise out of others or kill time. And just because someone genuinely believes in something that you and I might passionately disagree with doesn't invalidate their right to advocate for their beliefs.

                It's those who are not genuine in such beliefs, but act as if they are, whether to advance some undisclosed special interest's cause, or their own interests, or to "protect" some leader they idolize against any and all criticism no matter how well-grounded, or feel relevant, or perhaps just be a jerk, who don't belong here. But, since we can't get into peoples' heads or intrude into their personal lives, for the most part, it's impossible to find out who is who, and do much about it. We have to assume that every person we argue with here is for real, even if sometimes, our BS detectors say otherwise. But BS detectors are not a recognized legitimate means of calling someone out.

                I think we need to drop this discussion. It's not productive, just venting that can and will go nowhere and obviously pisses some people off. I'm sorry I ever brought it up. It's ultimately unhelpful meta best kept to offline discussions.

                "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:18:04 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  I think you are a plant Kovie (0+ / 0-)

            Not really, just making a point. How does it feel to have your opinions dismissed as corrupt?

            A: Nice

            B: Icky

            Funny thing though, in your scenario 100% of the "plants" are here to support Mr Obama.

            How naive.

      •  I agree, but technically it's a bannable (0+ / 0-)

        offense to suggest anybody's a plant. (sigh) Just letting you know...

        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 04:10:06 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Anybody specific, not in general (3+ / 0-)

          Although I realize it's dangerous ground either way. I just get pissed off whenever some obviously crappy bill gets lauded here as not only the best possible bill, but the best bill, period. I smell a rat every time that happens.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 04:23:37 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's possible (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SouthernLiberalinMD

            but mostly it seems a lot people are unable to come to grips with anything other then the Republicans are teh evil and the Democrat's are good. They believe the double speak and believe the kabuki, it's some kind of delusion. Winning is all that counts and once we win whatever policy or agenda is implemented is either necessary or they had to because..... or it's better then the RW maniacs..,.

            On the other hand the amount of effort spent vilifying, marginalizing and silencing people who don't buy the party line and demand real Democratic/democratic policy does make me sometimes think I smell a rat....  

               

            •  There's much less of it these days (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SouthernLiberalinMD, shaharazade

              The damage has already been done, with all the weak-assed stuff that passed for FDResque reform in Obama's first term. And many of Obama's critics have softened a bit since then (myself too). So they don't need to be here as much as before. And maybe the admins quietly got rid of a bunch, or asked them to leave. There were a number of people I suspected back during the sux/rox wars who seemed to have left around the same time. So I don't think there are as many plants here now, at least active ones. I think they did their work and moved on. If something big comes up, they'll be back.

              Ok, I should shut up now. This is CT territory even if I'm not naming names. Any minute now I expect one of those "Repent ye sinner and click on this now or your ass is banned" warnings. If I'm gone, this is why. :-)

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 08:24:39 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  *I* haven't softened up (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                kovie, PhilJD, shaharazade

                I'm just waiting to see what happens with Medicare and Social Security, Keystone XL, and that rotten Asian Free Trade treaty.  I don't expect good news on any of those fronts, not really, but I see no point in ranting about it here before the fact. If I thought we could lobby Congress to do the right thing on any of those issues and actually get somewhere, maybe I'd be ranting here as part of an effort to stir up a lobbying action, but I believe the only thing that's going to sway policy our way at all is activism at the level of civil disobedience, massive boycott, or Occupy-style "I'm parking my ass here and I ain't moving until you change things or you move me."

                Going in and having nice, polite conversations with staffers on the Hill, while I like doing that, has become, er, more of a hobby for people who enjoy talking to staffers on the Hill than anything else. As Jerry Brown said, "My job is to say no." The job of the people on the Hill is to say no to populist concerns in a way that won't bring you out with torches and pitchforks. In fact, that's more or less what the Democratic party is for, at this point.

                if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

                by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 07:23:10 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  There's always been a tension on the left (3+ / 0-)

                  (as on the right) between being loyal to, or at least trying to work with and through, the official, or at least formal and establishment-approved, organs and organizations of the left, be it the Democratic party, ACLU, NAACP or various labor unions, and promoting policies and ideas that one believes are the right ones even when they're not fully if at all supported by these groups. I don't believe that you can accomplish much good by being exclusively one or the other. Or, at least, it's not the most effective way of bringing about positive progressive change. You have to do both, and balance between the two (which is why, btw, I think that people like Glenn Greenwald are erring in basically refusing to work with the former).

                  There's a place for voting for, donating to, helping out and even working in or with such groups, especially during elections and on specific issue campaigns (e.g. blocking Social Security privatization). But there's also a place for working independently of and even in opposition to them, e.g. OWS (or, its far more benign online version, what some of us do here, and elsewhere in the blogosphere, e.g. Glenn). You have to do both, I believe, to accomplish change.

                  Funny how even the most conservative founders knew that, but not all of us here do. Madison and Hamilton understood the dangers of concentrating power in any one body or person, so they split up government among competing branches, and further recognized the need for yet more conflict coming from outside government, thus freedom of the press and petition, and at least some measure of suffrage, however inadequate at the time. And yet some here simply won't abide any but the most minor of criticisms of the party, lest we empower the other side. Sheer and utter crapola IMO.

                  "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                  by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 07:48:48 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I agree with you mostly (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    shaharazade

                    and have been concentrating for over a decade on within-the-system answers.  I love the inside/outside game, and would be delighted to play it, under ordinary circumstances.

                    But the "inside game" methods have been delivering, shall we say, steadily diminishing returns over the years, and the returns have taken a nosedive over the last 3 years. At some point, I've got to look at ROI.

                    The left really needs to draw within itself and seriously consider why our current methods are failing and what needs to be done to change them. But it's very difficult thing to do when lots and lots of people refuse to admit that the returns are diminishing, and practice kinds of doublespeak and goalpost-moving that used to be the provenance of the Republican party. If we're not going to be honest about what's happening, we're not going to get anywhere. And if we are going to be "pragmatically" content with anything the Democratic party leadership doles out, we might as well strike our tents and put our energy toward something else. The Democratic party doesn't need activists if all that's going to happen is the party leadership deciding on something and informing those below of what's going to happen in DC.  That's not being an activist; that's the epitome of passivity.

                     

                    if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

                    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:24:35 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I agree (3+ / 0-)

                      It's never a perfect 50/50 thing, and changes with time and per issue. There were eras when working with and within the party was probably the best way of enacting change, and times when working outside and in opposition to it was the best way. Right now I think the balance continues to be towards the latter, but certainly not completely so.

                      Put another way, I think that one must always, if not individually then at least collectively, have one foot in each, leaning more towards one side or another depending on the era and issue. Today's party is so powerful, centralized and dominated by special interests and self-interested power brokers that it's foolish to expect much progressive change to come from having a seat at the table. They'll let us in the door and sit at the table, but just barely listen to what we say. We have to push from outside, in ways that are sometimes embarrassing or threatening to the party (which is the POINT), to make that seat at the table more useful and powerful. The more we push from the outside, the more we'll be taken seriously on the inside.

                      Which is why I don't necessarily believe we need 3rd parties to get things done. We just need to be more respected and have more power within the existing party, which is more an always shifting coalition of special interests than an ivory tower monolith. We just have to become one of those special interests, one of the more powerful ones at that. And that can only come from outside action, in terms of organizing, protests, etc.

                      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                      by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:35:53 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Frankly, I'm OK with both-and (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        kovie, shaharazade

                        third parties by themselves are not usually enough, b/c it's hard for them to achieve media penetration. But they can be part of a successful, shall we say, motivating strategy for a party that is certain that its liberal base has no where else to go.

                        Something must be done to deal with that basic political calculus or it will be very hard to convince them they should listen to us. If we have to support them, if we have to stay, they will take us for granted.  That dynamic must be disrupted.

                        We should talk more about this.  Are you interested in continuing the conversation?

                        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

                        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:41:04 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Ah, where the rubber meets the road... (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          SouthernLiberalinMD, shaharazade

                          I think it's perfectly legitimate and permissible to discuss ways of pushing and pressuring the party to be more progressive that involve actions outside and even in opposition to the party, on this site, in diaries and comments, so long as they don't undermine the party. E.g. discussing protests, rallies, OWS, etc. But not discussing 3rd parties, even as ways of pressuring the party. Not because it's not legitimate, but because site rules don't allow it. Any such discussions would have to be offline, even if only in the comments.

                          I'm frankly not entirely sure how to best specifically pressure the party to be more progressive. But I am, myself, convinced that for now, trying to effect progressive change is best done via the party, be it within or from outside the party (both, of course, and these days more the latter than former, as I've written), and not via 3rd parties. And even then, not because I think 3rd parties are wrong, but because I don't think they're viable in our mostly winner takes all political system. Even Socialist Bernie Sanders is effectively a Dem.

                          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                          by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:50:31 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                  •  Generally, I agree. (0+ / 0-)

                    And I can't stand Glenn Greenwald. But boy, am I disillusioned by what has happened here.

                    -9.00, -3.69 "The purpose of a campaign is not to answer their attacks, but make them answer our attacks." - Paul Begala

                    by SlackerInc on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 11:54:22 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Glenn is certainly not for everyone (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      shaharazade

                      Whatever you think of what he says, how he says it can be hard to take.

                      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                      by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 12:04:26 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I actually like how he says (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        kovie, SouthernLiberalinMD

                        it because he is an outside voice, albeit an arrogant one at times. What I like about him is he is a true net roots warrior, his journey and the motivation for his activism has common ground with mine and yet differs as we all do. He is willing to get down and dirty with the Democratic loyalists and those who imo have no respect for the democratic processes that keep the wolves from the door.

                        He has no interest in lending either side validity or equivalence and calls them as he sees it. Some times I disagree but mostly I know deep down that what he is saying is what is at the core of this bamboozle. It's just  wrong and it is so horribly wrong that getting lost in partisan politics is at this point a smoke screen that obscures the heart of darkness we are dealing with.    

                        I've come full circle in the last 14 years from a flaming idiotic liberal outside the system to active grass root local Democratic and then net roots to once again disillusionment with partisan electoral politics that just run people around to extort their ratification of Axelrod's 'world as we find it'. I'm still a registered voting, fighting Democrat but I see the value of coalitions with those outside the party machine.

                        At this point I haven't a clue as to how to pry the Democratic party out of the hands of what and who they have morphed into. I'm stuck in limbo, one foot in the knowledge that the reality we face is not being addressed in any way by the Democrat's and yet realizing pragmatically we the people really have no other choice. So my only solution personally is to play it as it lays inside and out of the party, anyway that looks to move us to a better democratic place.

                        Thanks Kovie I always appreciate your insights and presence here. Like Greenwald, we may differ in approaches, language and methodology or even ideology but you help me keep the faith in our ability as people of good spirit to reach common ground and deal with what we face.    

                           

      •  WTF? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fogiv, Quicklund

        I thought accusing people of shilling was verboten here.

        HR'd for that, however lonely my HR might be.  I'm open to being convinced otherwise.

        This place has gotten wacky.  I'm really waiting for people to wave around papers talking about how they have names of Obama supporters on them.

        "The first drawback of anger is that it destroys your inner peace; the second is that it distorts your view of reality. If you come to understand that anger is really unhelpful, you can begin to distance yourself from anger." - The Dalai Lama

        by auron renouille on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 11:23:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  kovie did not accuse a specific person. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kovie, PhilJD

          There's a difference between calling someone a shill and saying that shills exist. And it's naive to think that they don't exist here. That doesn't just apply to the roxers. It's possible (likely?) that some of the suxers are right-wing astroturf.

          Perhaps you should consider removing your HR.

          If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

          by HairyTrueMan on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 06:33:10 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I actually wasn't thinking of the "suxers" (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HairyTrueMan

            But you make a valid point. I think that both types have been present here, and will always be present here so long as there's a perceived political interest to be served by it. I've actually been accused of being, if not a RW plant, then a RW troll, because I've dared to harshly criticize Obama for things that, when Bush did them, we all piled on him for. It's both laughable and sad.

            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 07:13:16 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  No he didn't (0+ / 0-)

            But he did accuse one side of the pie war of hoarding 100% of the paid shills. Whereas you rightly point out, online paid shills exist for every imaginable side.

        •  I accused no one of being a plant (0+ / 0-)

          I merely claimed that they've long been here, for obvious reasons. Planting is a well-known (and obviously contemptible) tactic used by some special interests to promote their agendas. People like Mark Penn specialize in it and proudly say so. And given how influential this site can be, it's simply logical to assume that they're here, plugging this or that viewpoint or policy or trying to suppress dissent or debate on some issue that's unfavorable to them.

          Case in point, during the bailout and Dodd-Frank debates, there were actually people here arguing that bailouts with no strings attached was a good, proper and necessary thing and that D-F shouldn't be too restrictive lest the banks lose any incentive to invest in the economy. Given how rich and powerful banks are, how much was at stake for them here, how obviously amoral they are, and how crazy and anti-progressive such ideas are, it seems the height of silliness to believe that none of these people were plants.

          You really think that banks were willing to remain passive in their quest to stay unregulated and unrestricted, and that all of these people were genuine members, on a site that when Bush was president we were almost all united in opposing such policies? I find that impossible to fathom.

          One of the unavoidable drawbacks to open discussion is that some people will exploit it to serve hidden agendas (as opposed to being made use of, quite legitimately, by people whom one might disagree with but who have no such agendas). It's impossible to fully prevent, and in no way a reason to not have open discussion. But it happens, and will always happen.

          Btw, plants have been outed here, and dealt with, in the past, so it's an indisputable fact that they do exist here. You're just not allowed to accuse anyone of being one without cold, solid proof.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 07:35:17 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  and it says "Affordable" (15+ / 0-)

      he said, pushing for the extension of the tax cuts under x amount of dollars, that turned out to be $400,000 but hey...

      anyway, he said folks can't afford to pay $2,000 more a year in taxes. But apparently we'll figure out how to pay $10,000 a year for bad insurance, or pay a penalty, leaving us worse off (as everyone else notes!).

      •  You know (7+ / 0-)

        I really liked the inaugural address, at least the words. But it didn't really MOVE me, because my gut told me that he didn't really mean much of it, and would fight for even less. It's like he enjoys punking us. It's like he has this weird passive-aggressive need to piss certain people off.

        The kinds of people he came from, making it all the weirder.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 02:41:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Yep. Barack Obama: Sociopath to the core (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fogiv

      Well, there's really nothing to be done about ODS seen in the Immortals who post among us. But we mere humans will labor along, bearing the knowledge that as mere humans we do make errors. Such a badly worded sections in large complex laws. The Immortals of course, get things right first time out.

      And then there is Barack Obama, standing above the clash of Immortal and Human, fists clenched against hips, his head tossed back to the darkening sky as he let;s out his belly-laugh of diabolical evil.

      "BWAH-hahaha! Who cares for Human or Immortal both? For I, Barack Hussein Obama, have my photo op! BWAH-hahahaha!"

      Yep, the political acumen displayed on this website is downright brilliant. I'm off to find my shades.

      •  Not a sociopath so much as an enabler of same. eom (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        limpidglass

        The frog jumped/ into the old pond/ plop! (Basho)

        by Wolf10 on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 03:51:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Oh stop it already, this is just juvenile (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TheMomCat, Shahryar

        If you can't handle the criticism, stick to OFA.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 05:23:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Oh the irony, hurts head (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Quicklund

          Sigh

          When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

          by PhillyJeff on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 02:25:07 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The only irony here (0+ / 0-)

            Is in how some people cannot bring themselves to criticize Obama for doing the exact same things they criticized Bush for, because they lack the honesty.

            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 06:07:47 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  What a load of ridiculous nonsense you spin... I (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Quicklund

              was not about to comment since the diary was written yesterday and most people had made their views known, but to stay on here accusing people who support a Democratic president (on a website for Democrats) of being plants is absolutely mind numbing.

              Your resentment of Barack Obama is quite obvious through many comments you have made in the past, such as accusing him this time of punking "us" during his inauguration speech. Who do you define as "us"? I hope you realize that your voice is part of the fringe, much like the voices of some on the far Right who obsessively display their dislike of this President. It certainly does not represent the opinion of a majority of Democrats who have shown their enthusiastic support of this President through two elections.

              Yes, these are all plants I guess. They are being paid as you intimated by corporate evildoers to show their support for Barack Obama. You have jumped the shark here, even beyond your usual jumping of the shark, which for you seems to be an easy thing to do.

              •  No, I was claiming that there have been plants (0+ / 0-)

                here, not that everyone who supports Obama is a plant. You folks ALWAYS misinterpret that, and you probably do it knowingly because it makes things easier for you. And you ALWAYS make it some Orwellian thing about one either blindly supporting Obama or hating him, and ALWAYS make it about ad hom, not substance. Frankly, I find you folks to be quite ridiculous, because you never argue about substance, always about personality and motivation.

                Even here, all you do is attack me, personally, without addressing any of the actual points I've made. All that matters to you is that I'm not a full-throated Obama supporter. You're actually doing to me what you claim I'm doing to you, reducing me to pure blind emotion without substance. And you do it all the time. You've appointed yourself one of this site's knee-jerk Obama defenders, probably believing that it serves some purpose besides making yourself look silly. And an authoritarian follower. Which you are.

                I pity people like you.

                "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 07:07:20 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I am happy, let me check that, proud to be a (0+ / 0-)

                  supporter of this President, enthusiastically so.... After all, his accomplishments through his first term alone, has already cemented him as one of the greatest Presidents in the history of this nation, so I guess that makes me look SILLY. Well "silly" has now become one of my favorite words, and I should also point out that I'm happy to be described as "You Folk". I really do.

                  I have from time to time refer to many of the President's habitual and eternal detractors as "You Folk" and there is nothing wrong with the term, it is just an issue of which of the camps the "You Folk" belong, the camp that says that "Barack Obama has done more for the Democratic Party in four years than most other Presidents have done in eight", my camp… or "Barack Obama is a lying corporate shill, who hasn't accomplished anything of note and is the cause of much of the nation’s ills", which is your camp.

                  Your claim of plants was directed to many of the President’s staunch supporters, despite your protestations, whom you are in opposition to, and the reason I say this is because you offered no evidence or facts to support your claim. It is purely based on what you perceive as the level of support offered to this President.

                  In closing, I just would like to point out that, according to official estimates, there were at least a million people who braved the cold of an early Washington D.C. morning, this past January, to see this President once again be inaugurated...

                  In reading your statement about plants, I wonder how many of those million strong individuals would also be considered plants in your estimation, not to mention, how many of the 65 million who voted for Barack Obama in the last election would be considered plants.

                  Let me divest you of your misapprehension, this President does not need to pay anyone to fervently defend or support him on daily kos or any other website. He has millions of willing volunteers.... Your statement, however way it is couched, is patently ridiculous....

                  •  You're either dense, or pretending to be (0+ / 0-)

                    I never made any such claims. Rather, I claimed that some people pretending to be his supporters were actually here shilling for this or that policy or goal. If anything, strong supporters of Obama should be most upset with a few people pretending to be one of them to push some ulterior agenda. No different from someone pretending to be a legitimate Obama critic, who's actually just a troll or RW plant. I have as much of a problem with those too. As I do with people I view as being unfairly critical of Obama (a definition we obviously disagree on).

                    If you want to believe that there were never any plants here, then that's your right. I suggest that that's naive and silly, and in fact disproven by the facts since the site HAS uncovered and banned some plants in the past.

                    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                    by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:42:07 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  "People pretending to be his supporters (0+ / 0-)

                      were actually here shilling for this or that policy or goal."

                      Uh-huh....

                      •  Yeah, all those people aggressively (0+ / 0-)

                        arguing against bailouts with strings, tough finreg or prosecution of banksters were genuine Obama supporters and Dems. ALL of them. Every last one.

                        Also, the ones defending FISA and arguing against prosecuting telcoms who participate in illegally spying on citizens.

                        Including the ones who for some reason no longer post here.

                        Uhuh indeed...

                        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                        by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 09:16:56 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You mean all those arguing the President's (0+ / 0-)

                          position on financial regulations--Dodd/Frank, which was co-authored by Barney Frank, an individual many Democrats are asking to take over John Kerry's Senate seat. I know Barney Frank is in it with the corporate interests. By the way, Elizabeth Warren also supported the financial reform bill.

                          You mean many who have supported the President on a slew of issues such as ACA, which is being picked apart in this diary, not by the diarist necessarily, but by those, such as yourself, who are ceasing on an opportunity to attack it and the President?

                          You didn't have to be a plant to argue the President's position on issues like the Dodd Frank bill.... Politics is not the art of the perfect it is the art of the possible, but if you insist on referring to unknown individuals as plants, maybe you should name names, so I can understand exactly the type of pernicious infiltration Obama and his "corporate overlords" have made into daily kos.

                          I wonder why Elizabeth Warren frequently offers such ringing endorsements of this "corporate shill” Obama.

                          •  You're arguing that there (0+ / 0-)

                            are and always have been people who support Obama's positions because they support those positions themselves. Or, alternatively, because they support Obama and want to be loyal to him. I have never claimed otherwise. But that doesn't mean that everyone who supports his positions does so for either of these reasons, and not for ulterior motives.

                            You're also implying that because people like Warren supported the final bill, it was the bill they wanted, or anywhere close to it. Which is patently false.

                            So your comment is yet another non sequitor. You're not arguing in good faith.

                            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 10:22:25 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Yes, I am arguing that there are many who, while (0+ / 0-)

                            not totally happy, with any legislation, would rather get the best deal possible, and as such agree with the President's way of thinking, even if the President was LBJ, FDR, or John Doe.

                            There are some, like myself who fervently believe that even though the ACA isn't perfect it will help millions of people and is worth getting through, unlike some on your side who wanted to see it DEAD DEAD DEAD.

                            The President can only get what is possible as opposed to some fantasy of what is not possible with a obstructionist Congress, which includes Republicans and some Democrats.

                            Of course Elizabeth Warren would have liked to have gotten more in the financial reform bill, but she understands that the politics of the moment made her desires unattainable. Of course, Bernie Sanders favors a Medicare for all healthcare plan, but he said this after the Supreme Court upheld the ACA.

                            "It is a good day for 30 million uninsured Americans who will have access to healthcare.  It is a good day for seniors who will continue to see their prescription drug costs go down as the so-called doughnut hole goes away. It is a good day for small businesses who simply cannot continue to afford the escalating costs of providing insurance for their employees. It is a good day for 20 million Americans who will soon be able to find access to community health centers."

                            Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders don't run around calling Barack Obama a sell out and a corporate shill...that is an important point.
                            65 million individuals who voted for the President don’t see him as such either, which places you and your fellow Obama detractors in a very small minority…extreme minority, making you almost akin to those in the tea party in terms of your extremist rhetoric as it relates to this President.

                            Many see Barack Obama as the best damn President they have seen in decades, and the rhetoric used by many on your side is not only rejected by these people, but by Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and if Teddy Kennedy were around, he would have rejected this notion too, and these individuals are frequently celebrated as “true” Progressives.  I think my argument is not only in good faith, it is quite sound.

                          •  You don't get to Sanders or Warren's level (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            PhilJD

                            by talking this way, but that doesn't make it illegitimate, or even wrong. That's not how the game is played. And you have no way of knowing what they really think of Obama and are just pretending that you do. You're basically telling me that there are appropriate and inappropriate ways to criticize Obama, and that you are the judge of which is which. I reject that. I've violated no site rules in my criticism, let alone accused him of actual corruption or anything blatantly unethical and wrong. I simply believe him to be excessively accommodating to the GOP and money and power elites, in ways that are both unnecessary and self-defeating. If you disagree, fine, but don't question my motives or character because of that, as you have no moral right to do that.

                            And also, I don't believe I've ever criticized Obama for not doing something that was beyond his ability to do, or for doing something he had no choice but to do, at least within the broader political reality in which he operates. Thus, I didn't criticize him for not getting the troops out of Iraq on day one, which was logistically and politically impossible, even though I wish he could have. But I did criticize him for the Afghan surge, which I believe was unnecessary and foolish. As for the ACA, I believe he could have gotten a better deal, which is why I criticized him on it, not because it failed to be as perfect as any sane person knew was impossible at the time. Whether or not that's true, it's what I believe, what many others believe, and a perfectly valid thing to believe even if you don't believe it. Why you can't respect that, only you know.

                            When you stop making this personal, about my alleged hatred of Obama vs. my stance on the actual issues and my take on Obama's stance on them, is when I will take you seriously. It's you who are making this personal, not me.

                            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 11:30:17 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  It doesn't bother me that you don't take me (0+ / 0-)

                            seriously. I say this with the deepest of sincerity. I have my stance and you have yours, and never the twain shall meet. In terms of not knowing what Elizabeth Warren believes in respect to the President.

                            Your words:

                            "And you have no way of knowing what they really think of Obama and are just pretending that you do."

                            Well, gee, I only have her own words. Let me get this straight, you are suggesting she may have a less than favorable opinion of the President, based on nothing...but I who have her own words as evidence of her opinion, you accuse of pretending to know what she thinks, huh??

                            Warren:

                            "President Obama believes in a level playing field. He believes in a country where nobody gets a free ride or a golden parachute. A country where anyone who has a great idea and rolls up their sleeves has a chance to build a business, and anyone who works hard can build some security and raise a family. President Obama believes in a country where billionaires pay their taxes just like their secretaries do, and—I can't believe I have to say this in 2012—a country where women get equal pay for equal work.

                            He believes in a country where everyone is held accountable. Where no one can steal your purse on Main Street or your pension on Wall Street. President Obama believes in a country where we invest in education, in roads and bridges, in science, and in the future, so we can create new opportunities, so the next kid can make it big, and the kid after that, and the kid after that. That's what president Obama believes. And that's how we build the economy of the future. An economy with more jobs and less debt. We root it in fairness."

                            These are her own words, and yet you will attempt to impugn this good woman's credibility by suggesting she would just say these things out of political opportunism and not really mean them. I thought the most appealing quality of Elizabeth Warren is her sincerity, the fact that she speaks truth to power?

                            You are attempting to destroy this notion because you desperately need political allies which you can point to and say, see...she also agrees with me and my cohorts that Barack Obama is strictly in it for the corporate interest, but on what do base this on?  Your ability to read her mind and make stuff up.

                            Stop the madness

                          •  I can't possibly take seriously (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            SlackerInc

                            Anyone who takes politicians at their word. The idea that anyone might is beyond incomprehensible to me. And it's not even about honor. To succeed in politics, you HAVE to lie, ALL the time. You really think that every time a senator says "My distinguished colleague and good friend from across the aisle", they really mean it? You really think Warren approves of how Obama's handled finreg just because she's said nice things about him in public? You really think she'd be senator and be able to accomplish anything if she trashed in in public or was honest about her views about him?

                            I'm amazed you even posit this, let alone believe it.

                            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 01:23:14 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  This exchange has (0+ / 0-)

                            increased my understanding of you much more than you will ever believe. She said a lot more than "my distinguished colleague." You folk will argue anything even when the facts are against you.

                            But ok, you win, we can't believe a word Elizabeth Warren says and Barack Obama is filled with self loathing, in fact, the girls and Michelle dislike him too, despite their pronouncements. We can't trust Obama on his place of birth either, these politicians all lie.

                            No wonder you all hold on to fantasies in terms of what is possible in government....

                          •  Again, you argue in bad faith and resort to ad hom (0+ / 0-)

                            I never said this:

                            we can't believe a word Elizabeth Warren says
                            I said that I can't believe EVERY word she says. Does she believe every word Obama says? Do you? Does Obama? I hardly think so.

                            As for your making this personal, well, that long ago told me everything I needed to know about you. Plus the bad faith arguments.

                            Let's just drop this. It's not helping anyone.

                            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 02:21:15 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  I was with you until yesterday. (0+ / 0-)

                    Just look at the diary I linked to in my last update.  But boy oh boy, is this hit I suffered testing my faith.

                    -9.00, -3.69 "The purpose of a campaign is not to answer their attacks, but make them answer our attacks." - Paul Begala

                    by SlackerInc on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 12:01:31 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

            •  When did I criticize Bush for ambiguous language (0+ / 0-)

              the President wrote into a new law oh wait PRESIDENTS DON'T WRITE LAW DO THEY?

              So take your time Kovie. Make good on your claim about me.

              Is in how some people cannot bring themselves to criticize Obama for doing the exact same things they criticized Bush for, because they lack the honesty.
              This was posted in a sub-thread directed explicitly at me. So show your work Kovie. Produce that support I had for George Bush. Chop-chop.
              •  When was I talking about you, specifically? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                PhilJD

                Why is this all about you? I don't get that.

                As for your broader point, one example is FISA, a chilling violation of the 4th amendment that both Bush and Obama signed into law. Are you saying that you opposed both president's signing of it, or approved of both? Because these are the only two intellectually consistent takes on this law. To have opposed it when Bush signed it and approved it when Obama did is the very definition of hypocritical. I'm curious as to your stand on this issue.

                "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 07:54:29 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  I'll think about that advice um no thanks. (0+ / 0-)

          Here's the OP

          hey, he [President Obama] got to sign a piece of paper

          with the words "Health Care Bill" at the top, with a big flourish, in front of a lot of cameras. No other president has ever done that.

          That's all he wanted and he got it. The rest can go hang.

          This describes a sociopath. A man who cares nothing for the people he is elected to lead - nothing - and whose only motivation is personal fame.

          that is the defintion of a sociopath.

          That is not criticism, Kovie, that is just one poster trying to write as deep an insult as he can muster.

          If you can't handle the pushback against this vile sort of shit, Kovie,  then stick to biographies of Hamilton.

          •  If that's a definition of a sociopath (0+ / 0-)

            Then every president was one to some extent. You think they give a damn about every bill they sign? What this person described is a narcissist, not a sociopath, and I certainly see narcissism in Obama. As I did in Clinton, Carter and LBJ. You don't get to their level without being at least somewhat vain.

            And I have to laugh at your snide remark about my interest in Hamilton. You're obviously nursing some deep wounds that have nothing to do with me, to be so obsessed with me and what I represent to you, and so defensive about what I post. Yet I'm the one who's making this too personal. OMG.

            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

            by kovie on Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 08:00:35 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

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