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  •  Bullshit. Utter, pure, unadulterated bullshit. (12+ / 0-)

    As Troubador said he is not the asshole whisperer.

    Some people just like to watch the world burn and the GOP are serial arsonists.

    There is nothing Obama can do to "lead" such a group of fuck ups

    Tax and Spend I can understand. I can even understand Borrow and Spend. But Borrow and give Billionaires tax cuts? That I have a problem with.

    by LiberalCanuck on Fri May 03, 2013 at 09:09:22 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Which is precisely why Mr. Obama should give up (42+ / 0-)

      even trying to "lead" the Thugs...

      and begin to threaten them instead.

      When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

      by PhilJD on Fri May 03, 2013 at 09:12:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed. (14+ / 0-)

        But it would require the President to find the courage of his convictions--along with some high-level convictions--and that doesn't seem to be in the cards.

        I'm not a Socialist because I want what's yours. I'm a Socialist because I want what's mine, and because I want other working people to have what's theirs.

        by MrJayTee on Fri May 03, 2013 at 09:20:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It really seems that he sees bipartisan consensus (14+ / 0-)

          as worthwhile for its own sake, not as a tactic to achieve political goals. He may well view "comity" as the highest possible good.

          The problem with that approach is that its desired endgame is a peaceful body politic, rather than a healthy one.

          When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

          by PhilJD on Fri May 03, 2013 at 09:30:08 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's hard to believe someone that intelligent (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BroadwayBaby1, Mr Robert

            Is that determinedly stupid, but it's a possibility.

            My perspective is that the President dislikes gridlock to the extent it keeps him from trying to save corporatism from itself, but not to the extent that it keeps him from fighting corporatism, since he himself is manifestly a dedicated corporatist.

            The idea in some parts that the President is either a victim of Wall Street, etc., or their hired man, is puzzling to me.  He never needed to be intimidated or bought.  He wouldn't have gotten anywhere near the Presidency if he had.

            That's who he is.  He's not just one of them, he's the leader of the liberal faction of "them".  Apart from issues of political hygiene, gridlock is a tool to extend the interests of his and the Democratic party's patrons.

            I'm not a Socialist because I want what's yours. I'm a Socialist because I want what's mine, and because I want other working people to have what's theirs.

            by MrJayTee on Fri May 03, 2013 at 09:53:09 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  wouldn'cha just love to see his full hand? (0+ / 0-)

              "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

              by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:17:00 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I've already seen it. (0+ / 0-)

                I'm not a Socialist because I want what's yours. I'm a Socialist because I want what's mine, and because I want other working people to have what's theirs.

                by MrJayTee on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:42:24 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  So. You're that certain? (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Deep Texan

                  You've seen all the cards?

                  What about Matthew 7:1?

                  "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

                  by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:52:39 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  There is a difference between using your judgment (0+ / 0-)

                    And being judgmental.  I take Matthew 7:1 to be about being judgmental, not simply using one's head.

                    Is there another perspective you had in mind?  

                    I'd also like to know what significant cards you think are up the President's sleeve, which is what you seem to be implying.  

                    I'm not a Socialist because I want what's yours. I'm a Socialist because I want what's mine, and because I want other working people to have what's theirs.

                    by MrJayTee on Fri May 03, 2013 at 12:07:26 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  well, if I had actually seen ALL the cards (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Deep Texan

                      the president has been dealt, then there might be cause for judgment (even in the biblical sense)

                      but I haven't

                      and neither have you

                      "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

                      by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 12:12:44 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Like what? (0+ / 0-)

                        We don't know ever single "card" there is, so we can't point out what's in front of our eyes?

                        Is there, for example, some big secret "card" that changes a friend of big money into a friend of the working person?  

                        ?????

                        I'm not a Socialist because I want what's yours. I'm a Socialist because I want what's mine, and because I want other working people to have what's theirs.

                        by MrJayTee on Fri May 03, 2013 at 12:29:00 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

            •  Herbert Hoover was an extremely intelligent (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ferg, ichibon, MrJayTee, PhilJD

              man of very humanitarian intentions who was intellectually hamstrung by his ideology.  PBO's ideology is less obvious because it's the intellectual ocean that almost all the Beltway and media VSP's swim in -- bipartisan neo-liberal capitalism.  (Hell, he apparently even takes Friedman & Bobo seriously.  What does THAT tell you?). As he himself has said, his policies are basically those of an old-fashioned moderate Republican.  So is his ideology.  What you get is what he sees through those ideological spectacles, even if they sometimes seem to be invisible.  

              "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

              by Oliver St John Gogarty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:59:01 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  oh, so then we're not questioning his courage (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Deep Texan

            or his convictions, either/or

            afterall

            "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

            by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:15:34 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I think that Obama (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MrJayTee

          does have the courage of his convictions.  The problem is what his convictions actually are.

          Arrrr, the laws of science be a harsh mistress. -Bender B. Rodriguez

          by democracy inaction on Sat May 04, 2013 at 07:05:35 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I have gotten what I want easier and quicker (10+ / 0-)

        historically, when I have pounded my fist on a table, raised my voice and become threatening ("Do this or I will come across this desk and pull out your teeth with my fingers" I told one man who promptly gave me waht was mine to begin with.)

      •  Hard to do when they are your most important (5+ / 0-)

        constituent.  I mean he wouldn't treat those in his own party badly.  (Ahem)

        The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

        by accumbens on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:07:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Like this (10+ / 0-)
        On the other hand, President Obama could make this a real fight. He could put forward nominations for every single vacancy and then make daily noise about how those nominees are being blocked by Republicans, and how that is making government not function. And blame it, every single day, on the Republicans. The only thing that will make Republicans stop their obstruction is if they have to pay a bigger political price for it. And the only way to make them pay that price is by shining a bright light on how destructive they are.

        When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

        by msmacgyver on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:13:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Uhh.. that would be leadership (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        3goldens, JVolvo

        fighting for something and threatening to win is part of leading.

        We have a president floating through history hoping he doesn't have to make any hard decisions.  See: Syria for a perfect example.

      •  Exactly,a (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mr Robert, tb mare, 3goldens, JVolvo

        We are not talking about leadership here, more like having a will to resist.  I'm not sure Obama has what it takes for that.  Too busy being nice to everyone I guess.  Unfortunately, in life there are times when one can't be nice to everyone and expect to get anything of importance done.

        Perhaps he is just biting his tongue just a little longer and letting the tension build, so that he can really whip up the fervor with a round the nation campaign in 2014.  If so, then he better hurry up and start spending his time 1) building the democratic warchest and 2) figuring out ways to block and make the life of republican politicians as difficult as possible, as time is rapidly running out.

        But honestly, with this new Justice Department Plan B request for retrial and the foot dragging on the Washington and Colorado Marijuana issues, and now the failure to make noise about the embassy security post in the face of the faux Benghazi crisis and I know longer have a clue as to what is actually behind the inertia in the White House.  Maybe a secret deal is in the works and soon we will all be sold downriver.

        If its this bad a few months into his second term, just think of what its going to be like after 2012, when the GOP smells blood in the water.

      •  Yeah, He Should Take Them Hunting And Shoot Their (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tony Situ, NedSparks

        Faces off, right?

        Seriously, what should he threaten them with?

        Politicized DOJ investigations? What?

        This belief that Obama has some magic power to issue threats that will force the GOP to do his bidding is truly infantile.

        This post is dedicated to myself, without whom, I'd be somebody else. Though I'd still be an asshole. My Music

        by Beetwasher on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:00:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Threaten with what? (0+ / 0-)

        IRS audits or the like?  They'd immediately tell Politico, the msm would bash the president for "abuse of power", and the threatened repub would vote against the president and be praised in his district or state for standing up to WH dirty tactics.  This ain't the 60s anymore.  Threats not only don't work, they actually backfire and do more harm than good.

        If the threat you have in mind is the president personally campaigning against them tm their districts, well that won't work because they come from ruby red districts that hate the President's guts.

      •  Indeed, what happened to the bully pulpit? (0+ / 0-)

        If all this timidity is due to Obama schmoozing with one group of dickhead republican senators after another and his attempt to score a grand bargain, and he doesn't want to sour relations (yeah, like none of them wouldn't cut Obama's throat in a heartbeat, politically speaking), then it's inexusable.

    •  Ministry of Truth (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TomP, Nada Lemming, MeToo, anonevent

      Though, oddly, the expression could have come from Troubadour, too.

      I'm not a Socialist because I want what's yours. I'm a Socialist because I want what's mine, and because I want other working people to have what's theirs.

      by MrJayTee on Fri May 03, 2013 at 09:17:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  or Booman (5+ / 0-)

      Knowing What is Broken

      summarized (my bold):

      Of all the things that are broken in our political system, the president cannot be counted as one of them. He's the one thing we've got going for us. His administration isn't perfect but it is performing as it should.  His agenda is broadly popular and reflective of the will of the people who elected him.

      You want to know what is wrong in Washington? Look elsewhere. Look at the gerrymander. Look at the state of campaign finance reform. Look at what right-wing media has done to the brains of millions of Americans. Look at Mitch McConnell's strategy of no, and John Boehner's inability to strike a deal that his own caucus will back. Look at any number of things. Presidential leadership is not the issue.

      ... too "centrist" for many, no doubt

      oh, & Booman included a good chart in that diary also

      "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

      by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:11:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  an agenda is meaningless if it is never (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bdop4, Mr Robert, 3goldens, JVolvo

        instituted.  Republicans are playing that game.  Use it against them.

        Oh...btw-Booman doesn't have a good track record...check the analysis of the sequester in real time after int passed on 2011.  It isn't pretty.

        "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

        by justmy2 on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:32:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  well y'know, that may be (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Deep Texan

          I'm not always 100% behind MoT either, but he sure smacked the nail on the head here

          goes without saying, nobody gets it right every single time - even krugman wavered early-on about c'CPI

          "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

          by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:35:23 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Booman makes some good points (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tony Situ, Deep Texan, Nannyberry

        But after Sen. Toomey's latest confession of the  GOP agenda,  something clicked for me the way it never clicked before.

        It isn't just  that the Repubs want to sabotage Obama's progressive ideas.  So  much policy that Obama has pushed  for had Repub  authorship on it anyway.  And it isn't that they want to prevent Obama from having another term - he can't have a third term.

        There is a dark skinned man in the White House.  There is a man in the Whiite House that wants social justice for people of color, LGBT and others.

        The Repubs HAVE to pull out all stops to shred Obama's credibility and legacy.  If history writes the dominant narrative of the Obama presidency as an intelligent man of color who not only governed as leader of the free world but did it far better than his predecessors, their bubble world implodes.  Their "natural  order of things" disappears.

        Better to destroy the country in the hopes they can retake power in the chaos than admit the fear, hate and ignorance they nurture in their hearts.

        I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

        by Satya1 on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:45:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I guess my point is (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Tony Situ, Deep Texan

          We as liberals should not underestimate the forces that Obama is up against.  This is primal stuff that hasn't seen this level of expression since the period before the Civil War.

          I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

          by Satya1 on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:55:20 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not sure that I ever underestimated it, (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            3goldens, JVolvo

            but it sure as hell looks like PBO did.  Don't ask for as large an initial stimulus as is needed to really get the job done because you can always go back and get more later if the first proves not to be sufficient?  Are you shitting me?

            "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

            by Oliver St John Gogarty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:51:25 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  um...with all due respect (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Deep Texan, Satya1

              "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

              by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 12:26:45 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't know ANYONE (0+ / 0-)

              that  predicted the extent of blocking Repubs have been willing to do or the extent of damage to this country the Repubs have been willing to inflict.  This has gone way beyond the Gingrich shutdown.  Early during Obama's administration the prevailing CW among progressive analysts seemed to me to be that the Repubs wouldn't go there again.  

              There might be some predictions on the right, after all it is something they're open to and even planned on to some extent.  One can find websites on the right that are promoting far worse.

              I know that is a popular view of the stimulus at DK, but I never bought into all the elements that led to that conclusion.  Looking at Sybil's link below it looks like I am not the only one.

              I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

              by Satya1 on Fri May 03, 2013 at 03:27:27 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Absolutely. "black-man-in-white-house" (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Tony Situ, Deep Texan, Satya1

          that was never gonna fly with those people

          We pretty much knew that after the republicans
          plotted their obstructionist strategy before Obama's first inauguration ceremonies were even over.

          Nevertheless, we-the-people elected him, duly elected him, not once, but twice.

          "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

          by Sybil Liberty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:25:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Oh we knew it (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DSPS owl

            but the depths of the amount of destruction and hardship they are willing to unleash on the American people?  The unprecedented dept ceiling hostage crisis?  The sequester?  The solid brick wall on appointments?  Nullification in some states?  The eagerness of Repub pols to turn their back on the wishes of their constituents on gun safety?  All the impact that has on people struggling to get by during the worst financial crisis in 70+ years?  

            Where does it stop and what limit will they reach before they begin to work for the country's welfare?

            I wonder if what they want is armed confrontation among citizens in the street.  They're  pushing every fear button the right has and goading them to buy more and more arms.  And it will be "Obama's fault".

            I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

            by Satya1 on Fri May 03, 2013 at 03:09:31 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  That's right. (4+ / 0-)

        It's all the Republicans fault.  President Obama and the Democrats have absolutely zero responsibility for the debacle that passes for politics these days.

      •  Wrote a diary on their other prime tactic. (4+ / 0-)

        Don't fund it.

        Unfunded: Panel on Health Care Workforce to Meet ACA Care

        One of the biggest threats to the success of President Obama’s health care law comes from shortages of doctors, nurses and other health care professionals. But a 15-member commission created to investigate the problem has never met in two and a half years because it has no money from Congress or the administration. Emphasis added
        The commission was created by the 2010 health care law, the Affordable Care Act. Mr. Obama has requested $3 million for the panel in each of the last two years, and some Democrats, like Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee on health, have supported the request.
        But, Republicans in Congress have been reluctant to provide money for anything connected with the law, which they opposed. Emphasis added
        Cuz, we all know throwin' money - AKA, Tax Payer Dollars- will not solve a problem. Only certified, for profit dollars will solve Any Problem.

        I just wish 99.14% of the billionaires would follow Zuckerman, Gates and Turner's philanthropic largesse. Maybe we could solve unemployment, health care bankruptcy, foreclosures, hunger, gun violence, climate change, teen pregnancy rates, increasing suicide rates, bullying, rape, discrimination...

        "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

        by Ginny in CO on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:52:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  No, but he could attack them relentlessly. Of (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Boogalord, mcmom, MrJayTee, 3goldens, JVolvo

      course, then he'd lose the respect of those whose opinion he apparently values--you know, like those towering public intellectuals like Tom Friedman and Bobo.  Jaysus wept!  

      "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

      by Oliver St John Gogarty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:18:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks for reminding us that (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PhilJD, 3goldens

      President Obama can do absolutely nothing except continue to try to negotiate with people who don't want to negotiate.

    •  kind of the point many of us have been making (0+ / 0-)

      for about 5 years now...

      "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

      by justmy2 on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:29:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  this argument became stale years ago (7+ / 0-)

      he's been playing patty-cake with the Republicans who want nothing more than to cut his throat. instead of picking them out of the gutter in 2008, dusting them off and legitimizing their worldview as something to compromise over, he should denounce them and their actions daily and whip the Democrats into the solid voting majority that they are.

      the alternative to that, is, well, what we've got right now. adoption of conservative policies, accepting their framework of looking at things and total capitulation.

      Banking on the American people to be able to sort all this out and declare the adult in the room the winner is a very big bet. -Digby

      by Boogalord on Fri May 03, 2013 at 10:31:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sadly this appears to be (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mr Robert, 3goldens

        the defining characteristic of the Obama presidency, which appears to mean that that progressive and liberals will finally only get what they want from the Obama administration when they decide to abandon him and start turning their attention to building and investing in their own leaders.  Seems ironic, but evidently this is how the game must be played in order to illicit a response.

      •  He made a huge mistake at the very beginning by (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        3goldens, DSPS owl

        not fighting for a larger stimulus when most of his economic advisors told him the one he eventually proposed was going to be too small to kick the economy back into a truly healthy recovery.  Instead of saying, "This is what is needed" and then laying the blame on R.'s when they refused to vote for as much as he said was needed, he started out by proposing only what he thought enough R.'s would go for without a big fight.  Then when the actual stimulus he had proposed worked only to the extent that his advisors had predicted, of course the R.'s wouldn't give him any more stimulus and stuck him with responsibility for the anemic recovery.  And the 2010 debacle came.  Maybe he should' e studied FDR and Truman more and Neville Chamberlain less.  

        "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

        by Oliver St John Gogarty on Fri May 03, 2013 at 11:09:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I would hold a press conference every Friday (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tb mare, jds1978, 3goldens, PhilJD

      and go over the ridiculous GOP shit that transpired that week. I would outline the clear consequences of GOP obstruction and how it affects the daily lives of Americans.

      I would also take every possible unilateral action that can be performed by the POTUS to make these mofos' lives as miserable as possible.

      The media loves a good fight and I would give them one.

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