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No, really. You are losing me, and thousands (maybe millions) like me who see our democracy in danger of collapse due to the actions and agenda of President Bush and the Republican Party. Why? Because you refuse to publicly acknowledge the danger we are in, and to take steps to condemn it.

More after the break . . .

Violations of the first amendment (arrests of peaceful protesters) go unquestioned. Violations of the fourth amendment (warrantless wiretaps) go unexamined. Voting irregularities, and outright voter suppression, in each of the last three national elections, always favoring Republicans, go unreported. Scientists who are supervised by GOP public relations hacks are told to keep quiet or they'll lose their funding and/or their jobs. Corruption in Congress is rampant where Republican politicians are bought and sold as if they were commodities on the open market.

We went to war in Iraq based on lies, and our government literally let New Orleans drown. An outright racist was appointed to the Supreme Court. And our President openly asserts that our laws only apply to him if he willingly chooses to accept their limitations; i.e., he claims that his power and authority as Commander in Chief during "this time of war" literally knows no bounds. Indeed, the practice of torture is now sanctioned at the highest levels of our Government, as is the unlimited detention of prisoners without any due process review by our Judiciary. The waging of aggressive war in violation of the UN Charter is now official US policy.

Gay men and women are demonized as evil and held up as scapegoats, and women's rights are under a constant and insidious assault. Liberal and progressive voices of dissent are called treasonous and marginalized in our Republican dominated and intimidated media. Whistle blowers are persecuted (and prosecuted) for disclosing the wrongs/crimes they see being perpetrated by the federal government at the behest of our Republican overlords.

Our national debt is increasing to astronomical levels with no end in sight, as is our trade deficit. Our schools are breaking, and our Army and Reserve forces are broken. Our veterans are ignored and their benefits are slashed. Wages and salaries for most Americans are stagnant or falling even as the wealthiest corporations and individuals profit all the more from government tax cuts and government largesse in the form of no-bid government contracts. Health care costs are on the rise, and more and more average Americans are without any health insurance coverage, living on the edge of disaster should a medical crisis hit their families.

Yet with a few notable exceptions (Senator Feingold and Representatives Murtha and Conyers please take your bows) most Democratic officials and their hordes of out of touch political consultants and staffers routinely sit quietly on the sidelines with only the occasional meek objection to the raw, naked abuses of power by the ruling Republican Party. Anyone with half a brain can see that Democrats should be shouting from any media platform they can about the corruption, the incompetence, the lies, the erosion of our rights and liberties and the open destruction of our democracy by Republican politicians bent on one party rule at all costs.

Yet, our so-called Democratic leaders keep their mouths shut, afraid to rock the boat, hoping that this time the Public will finally put them back in power if only they don't say anything that might be conceivably controversial. I got news for you, ladies and gentlemen in the upper echelons of the Democratic Party. You're headed for another round of election failure unless you come out fighting.

To make my point a little more clear, let's consider a hypothetical. In an alternate universe, say, one where Dems control the Congress and the Presidency. Where the Democratic President has lied us into war after war with no end in sight. Where government budget deficits are on the rise, and Democratic politicians are held in deep disdain by the majority of the country for their corruption and failure to respond to the needs of most Americans. A place where the Democratic President's approval ratings have been steadily declining, and are now in the lower 30's, heading toward the 20's.

In that hypothetical world, where Democrats rule America (rather than the real world where Republicans do) ask yourselves just one question: What would the Republicans do?

Would they sit idly by hoping that the Democratic Party would simply self destruct come election time, or would they be kicking the Democrats while they were down, harping repeatedly to the media about the failure of Democratic policies and Democratic leadership? Well, I think you know the answer to that question, don't you?

Republicans wouldn't just be seeking a censure resolution, they'd be demanding the impeachment of the President every chance they could get, in every speech and in every television appearance. They wouldn't threaten to shut down the Senate unless Congress investigated all the President's crimes, they'd do it. They wouldn't wait for good things to happen to them come the first Tuesday in November, they'd make them happen.

They'd be taking an active role to ensure that their candidates would be making victory speeches, not concession speeches. They'd be putting Democrats on the defensive, and the media too, with allegations of "liberal bias." In short, they'd be following the maxim that "God helps those who help themselves."

For over five long years this is what we, the political activists and concerned citizens of this country have been telling you to do. Stand up for your principles and forcefully attack your enemies, both in the republican party and in the media. Be proud of what your party stands for: civil rights, civil liberties, the rule of law and a concern for the welfare of all Americans, no matter how rich or how poor they might be. In other words, just stand up for the basic principles of a liberal democracy.

We aren't fire breathing lefties, folks. We aren't some weird fringe element of the party like your consultants claim we are. We're ordinary Americans who believe the same things you do. We have backed you with our dollars and with our activism. We've campaigned for you, registered new voters for you and taken them to the polls to vote for you, even though you have barely acknowledged our service on your behalf. Our advice to you on the issues we care about has generally been dead on. Yet, for the most part you have ignored our advice.

And that's okay. We don't want recognition, and we don't crave rewards. We simply want you to represent us like you said you would. We want you to advocate the policies and political principles that drew us to you in the first place. But be warned. If you won't fight for us, we'll abandon you. And that could come sooner than you think, my friends, much sooner.

Because we are fed up with your mealy mouthed excuses and your wishy washy public personas. We are tired of your concern that challenging this ludicrous President will make you appear weak on national defense. Most of all we are tired of voting for Democrats who, once safely in office, turn around and parrot Republican talking points, claiming that we, your most faithful and loyal supporters, the very people who got you elected, are a fringe group of leftist agitators that don't represent the Democratic Party.

Well, that's a lie, and you know it. Because the truth is, we are your base, like it or not. If you lose us, you will lose, period. And I don't just mean the elections this year or in 2008. I mean your status as a major political party.

So it's on your shoulders, Ms. Clinton and Mr. Obama, Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Reid, and all the rest of you. Come out swinging. For starters get behind Senator Feingold's Censure resolution. Then shut down the Senate until you get real investigations of the administration's illegal surveillance programs and its misuse of intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war. Use the word impeachment in every other sentence that comes out of your mouth. Let America know where you stand.

Because if you don't, I'm warning you, you'll lose more than just this year's elections. You'll lose all of us too.

Originally posted to Steven D on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 09:10 AM PST.

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  •  Tip Jar (323+ / 4-)
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    Hidden by:
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    Also posted in green for you frog lovers.

    "I just had the basic view of the American public -- it can't be that bad out there." Marine Travis Williams after 11 members of his squad were killed.

    by Steven D on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 09:09:52 AM PST

    •  I don't think they want to represent us. (46+ / 0-)

      I noticed one lovely individual troll rated this.  How do you troll rate, am I not cool enough for that option?  All I see is recommend.

      BTW, great diary.  I believe it needs to be more of a discussion on this site about how the Democratic Party is simply not standing up for this.  I don't think it's because they are stupid, just don't get it, or have different ideas of how to win an election.  They are not doing what we want because they don't want to.  They are doing what their bosses tell them, and we are not their bosses.

      You all have to admit, if all the crazies were not around life would have less purpose

      by genethefiend on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:36:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Just Curious (24+ / 3-)

      Are you a precinct captain?

      Does your county party have monthly meetings?
      Do you go?

      Do you know the phone number of your county chairman?
      Do you know his/her name?

      If you answered no to these questions then the reason our party sucks is because people like you.

      You have the fire in your belly, but don’t participate.

      It is maddening to read screeds like this and know that the majority of people that read it will never help out more than to vote.

      Our party will not change until we change ourselves.

      •  Couldn't Agree More (6+ / 0-)

        Argh!  For anyone pissed but NOT taking part on the local level...

        GET INVOLVED!

        http://www.dccc.org/... - find local races.

        Bloggin' with a bar of soap and my car window IMPEACH -8.75 / -6.10

        by Alegre on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:42:31 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Whig Chairman to A. Lincoln (fictional) (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          zentiger, Brian Nowhere, deep6, joesig, corvo

          Dear Mr. Lincoln,

          I know you're not happy with recent stands of the Whig party. We are not speaking out enough or taking action in Congress against President Polk's illegal war against Mexico. We have not taken a strong enough stand against slavery in the territories.

          But, may I say Mr. Lincoln, that I question whether you have done enough to promote change yourself. Are you working to promote local Whig candidates? Are you serving on your local Whig committee?

          It is so easy to say the Whigs are out of touch, but what are YOU doing to change that? You could work harder to make the Whig Party to be the way you wish it to be. Or you could join the chorus of third party advocates and go nowhere.

          The choice, Mr. Lincoln, is yours.

          "... the laborers still form an incoherent mass scattered over the whole country, and broken up by their mutual competition."

          by Valtin on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:48:56 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Local Races (0+ / 0-)

          There are plenty of good Democratic candidates out there running their asses off and the party acts like they don't know who they are if they aren't running for the "visible" races.  Personal experience is an ugly teacher in this regard.

      •  I do (28+ / 0-)

        I AM a Dem precinct chair, as well as a member of the State Central Committee and a delgate to our state convention. I feel the same way as the author of this diary.

        Working via DFA-Democracy for New Mexico's Meetup, other grassroots activists and within the Party, we've been trying to inject a modicum of accountability, transparency and strength on the issues. We are fought and maligned every step of the way.

        There is massive dead wood within the Party and it must be cleared out. You are right, however, that everyone needs to BECOME the Party by participating and running for Party offices.

        •  dean's 50 state (0+ / 0-)

          doorknock on 4/29 is good.  its what we need to do.  we can tell people that without them doing their part, nothing good can happen, and that the democratic party doesn't
          own them, that its just the opposite.

          we'll stand him up against a wall and pop goes the weasel /rufus t. firefly

          by 2nd balcony on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 08:02:25 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  I would (5+ / 0-)

        But Democrats support offshoring. I can't agree with that at all. A lost career can't be fixed with cheap, plastic crap and empty promises.

      •  I suppose the idea is to paint me as a hypocrite (62+ / 0-)

        if I don't know all these things, so let me explain who I am.  I'm that mythical independent swing voter  the Dems and Repubs are always supposedly fighting over.  I voted for Anderson in 1980, and Perot in 1992.  Otherwise I've mostly voted for Democrats, though I would have voted for McCain in 2000 had he been the nominee (a mistake I'm now glad I wasn't forced to make).  I've never been registered with any party, nor was I politically active until 2004 after seeing the catastrophe that was Bush's first term.

        I began by contributing money to various Dem candidates for Congress and to the Kerry campaign, as well as to Moveon.  I still send a small contribution each month to the DNC as one of their regular contributors.

        In 2004 I volunteered for the Kerry campaign in Ohio (I live in NY) and for ACT and for Election Protection.  I spent Election Day in Cleveland as a legal volunteer helping to monitor polling places and record the voter suppression efforts of the GOP that was rampant there).  This was all new for me.  In 2005 I began posting to Daily Kos.

        I'm still registered as an independent, but I have been planning to change my registration to Democrat and offer my services as a volunteer to whomever runs against my incumbent GOP Congress critter.  What I can do will in part be determined by my health.  I have varous autoimmune disorders of my gastrointestinal tract, skin and joints that limit what I can do on a daily basis.  At present I'm retired from the practice of law because of my condition.

        If that resume isn't enough to satisfy you, too bad.  I feel I've don a lot for the Democrats since I've emerged from my political cynicism of the 80's and 90's.  Sure, not as much as someone who's been politically engaged that whole time, but as much as I have been able to do since my "enlightenment."  You want to slam me for not having done more, or for not doing more than I am now, be my guest, but I don't think such ad hominum attacks do anything to effect the basis of my argument regarding the insipid leadership of the Dems at the National level, and particualrly among dem Senators and Congressional representatives.

        "I just had the basic view of the American public -- it can't be that bad out there." Marine Travis Williams after 11 members of his squad were killed.

        by Steven D on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:10:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, whatever you do (8+ / 1-)

          you might want to register as a Democrat.

          Particularly if you are going to make a claim that the party is "losing" you.

          If you are not even a member of the party, how can be lost by them?

          Seriously.  I understand the need for the Democrats to reach out to independent swing voters, but it's somewhat disingenous to say they will "lose" you when they haven't "had" you from the beginning.

          If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

          by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:30:28 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have a different take on this (15+ / 0-)

            We need all the swing voters and independents we can get!  It sounds like Steven was making a pretty good, involved Democrat.  I don't think someone has to be a registered Democrat for the party to loose them.  

            If any American were considering voting Democrat and changed their mind because the party is not supporting us right now, the we lost them!

            The Christian Right is neither Witness Every Day

            by TXsharon on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:39:16 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No offense to the diarist... (6+ / 2-)

              but I'm not keen on taking political advice from someone who admittedly wasn't politically "active" until 2004.

              He's right to be pissed. We all are. And yes, the so-called "swing" voter is one the Democrats should be reaching out to.

              But I've seen little evidence, outside of the diarist, that the way to reach the so-called swing voter is to utter "impeachment" every other word as he suggests.

              And my point is that you can't threaten with no leverage.  This voter/activist has no leverage of being "lost" by the party if he's not a member of the party.

              That's the way I look at it, as a registered member and activist WITHIN the party, and that's the way most people WITHIN the party would look at it, I'm afraid.

              If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

              by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:50:33 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  You are wrong! (5+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                SarahLee, cotterperson, beemer, gmb, blueoasis

                As a registered member and activist WITHIN the party.  I'm glad that most people WITHIN the party do not see it your way.

                No offense.

                Do the RIGHT thing!  IMPEACH

                The Christian Right is neither Witness Every Day

                by TXsharon on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:01:01 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Well, think what you will (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Mary Julia

                  but I live in a "swing" district myself, and I can pretty much guarantee that if the Democrats "platform" for '06 was "if you elect us to Congress, we will impeach the President" is not a winner.

                  It would embolden a depressed Republican base to turn out at the polls, just like it emboldened Democrats in '98 during Clinton's impeachment.

                  It wasn't a winner in '98 for the Republicans, and it isn't a winner now.

                  It's the right thing to do, yes.

                  But sometimes the right thing to do from a governing standpoint is NOT the right thing to do politically.

                  If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

                  by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:06:29 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  DailyKos meets the Pond (23+ / 0-)

                I realize this is a strictly partisan Democratic blog, and Steven D's regular home at BooMan Tribune is anything but.  But I've found Steven D to be insightful and thoughtful in his writings.  He's more of a Democrat than most registered Ds I know.

                If we dismiss everyone who became active in the last couple years, woe to us.

                Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

                by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:03:40 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'm not dismissing him (0+ / 0-)

                  from the party per se.  If he wants to join the party, I welcome him with open arms.

                  I DO dismiss, however, him giving lectures on political strategy when he hasn't been all that active in politics.

                  Or active in the party.

                  If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

                  by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:07:56 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I welcome him (19+ / 0-)

                    whether or not he registers as a Democrat.

                    I live in a state where the majority Party is now "Unaffiliated."  Many people are simply not "joiners," and many people are understandably disgusted with both sides.  My goal is to get these folks to vote for progressive Democrats.  Trying to entice them to join today's Democratic Party is largely a futile exercise, in some part because they don't see Democrats doing anything but going along with Bush's disastrous joyride.

                    I understand you take this youngster's strategic advice skeptically.  I'd simply say that veteran Democrats don't have much of a record to boast about either, and that we all need to listen to each other, because we all do share a goal.

                    Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

                    by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:20:47 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I'm not exactly an 'old timer' (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      wader, Sam I Am, libertarian soldier

                      I'm 34. Since he voted for Anderson in '80, he's actually older than I am.

                      But I've been around the block a little. And while I'm open to new ideas, and new energy, I'm free to disagree with those ideas and energy if see it as nonproductive.

                      And beating an impeachment drum eight months from Election Day seems nonproductive to me. Particularly when the Republican base has no reason to turn out this fall.

                      Perhaps because the diarist wasn't politically active in 1998 he forgets what happened when the Republicans beat the impeachment drum and lost seats in the House because Democratic activists and base voters like myself were fired up to turn out.

                      Again, I ask...why give the Republican base a reason to turn out?

                      This is what I mean by doling out these idle threats.  The diarist isn't a member of the party, doesn't have any political experience, has not done much to try to learn about political tactics in the past 20 years, and yet has the temerity to lecture the amorphous "leadership" about how they should act politically. And if they don't do as he says, he's taking his ball and going home.

                      Is he right about what the Democrats should be doing from a GOVERNING standpoint? Absolutely.

                      But I'm not sold on the political reasoning.

                      If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

                      by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:32:25 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Well (14+ / 0-)

                        They lost seats because Clinton was being impeached for a blow job, not for breaking the laws and illegally wiretapping US citizen, torturing innocent people, detaining people in violation of the Geneva Conventions, lying to Congress about the need to go to war in Iraq, paying journalists for propaganda in the US, outing a CIA covert operative, etc, etc. etc.

                        Not to mention Clinton's approval rating then versus Bush's now.

                        I think the circumstances are vastly different my friend.

                        But as a first step, all I want them to do is grow a spine and support Feingold's censure motion.  Is that so much to ask?  And if it's really so politically risky why are the Repubs fighting it so hard?  Not to mention how hard they're fighting to keep Congress from investigating any of the other scandals (NSA, Itaq intelligence) that Dems should be demanding.

                        "I just had the basic view of the American public -- it can't be that bad out there." Marine Travis Williams after 11 members of his squad were killed.

                        by Steven D on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:47:07 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Censure, especially now. New story out: (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Sonicreducr

                          Bush Shuns Patriot Act

                          (this was 'nearly missed'. No one picked it up when bush signed the patriot act march 9th... and made another signing statement. I am too fit to be tied to do a diary on it.... I am sure someone else will pick it up.  It's absolutely STUNNING.)

                          WASHINGTON -- When President Bush signed the reauthorization of the USA Patriot Act this month, he included an addendum saying that he did not feel obliged to obey requirements that he inform Congress about how the FBI was using the act's expanded police powers.
                          Article Tools

                          The bill contained several oversight provisions intended to make sure the FBI did not abuse the special terrorism-related powers to search homes and secretly seize papers. The provisions require Justice Department officials to keep closer track of how often the FBI uses the new powers and in what type of situations. Under the law, the administration would have to provide the information to Congress by certain dates.

                          Bush signed the bill with fanfare at a White House ceremony March 9, calling it ''a piece of legislation that's vital to win the war on terror and to protect the American people." But after the reporters and guests had left, the White House quietly issued a ''signing statement," an official document in which a president lays out his interpretation of a new law.

                          In the statement, Bush said that he did not consider himself bound to tell Congress how the Patriot Act powers were being used and that, despite the law's requirements, he could withhold the information if he decided that disclosure would ''impair foreign relations, national security, the deliberative process of the executive, or the performance of the executive's constitutional duties."
                          (snip)

                          http://www.boston.com/... /

                          So much more in the article.....

                          LetsFight. re handle: Fight the radical right is the sentiment!

                          by letsfight on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:32:30 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                  •  Respectfully disagree (6+ / 0-)

                    After losing all three branches of government, I think the Democrats have to start listening to their natural constituency that is so disaffected.

                    "Control of the initiative is control of the battle. In the alley, at the poker table or in politics. One must raise." David Mamet

                    by coral on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:33:57 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  You know as a lawyer (and I am one too) (8+ / 0-)

                    That the nature of our business makes us far more political than the average Joe.  I don't think you have to have Democratic bona fides out the ying-yang just to make a valid argument.  So I would not sell Stephen D. short.

                    He made a far more interesting and cogent argument than I normally see on this board, even by other lawyers.  He is obviously up to snuff with what is going on and he senses the frustration that many of us do who have been Democrats for a long long time.

                    I have made the point several times now that I feel like I have been standing on the same spot of the beach for thirty years now and the tide has gone out and left me stranded.  But I never went anywhere.  I am not any more liberal than I was thirty years ago but the country is vastly more conservative and corporate.

                    We do what we can and we should do what we do well.  Obviously Stephen does very well at expressing the state of affairs of our country and what he wants our representatives to do.  He wants them to represent us.  That is not a great deal to ask of them.  

                    What did Thomas Paine do other than write?

                    So, I don't think it is fair to criticise Stephen for not having been more of an activist.  That charge could probably levied at nearly everyone of us.  We could all be out working instead of pounding our keyboards.  But maybe, like Thomas Paine, guys like Stephen can make a bigger difference with the words they write when their words inspire than they ever could out on the streets pounding the pavement.

              •  Frankly, I'm more inclined to ignore ... (5+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                SarahLee, gmb, DriftawayNH, TexH, blueoasis

                the advice of anyone who was politically active before 2004. You've made quite a mess of things, now, haven't you? Maybe it's time for new people & new ideas. I certainly wouldn't dismiss them out of hand as you do.

                "The danger of civil war is definitely receding.... And yes, as a matter of fact, I DO have a plan...." -- Abraham W. Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, Nov. 1863.

                by Shiborg on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:19:27 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Excuse me, (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  lulusbackintown, Sam I Am

                  but I have been in politics most of my life. I have been a Democrat all of my life.  And we didn't make a "mess" of things, that I can see.

                  In the last two Presidential elections, our candidates would have won if the election had not been stolen in 2000, and we came awfully close in 2004.  As for Congress, that changed in 1994 with Newt Gingrich and the "Contract with America".

                  I have no idea what you people want of the Democrats in Congress. We are NOT IN THE MAJORITY.  Russ Feingold might have had a lot more support for his censure resolution if he had ASKED his colleagues for support BEFORE he introduced it on a Sunday talk show, and then unveiled it on Monday.  At the very least, he could have asked Reid.  I think the censure resolution was introduced the way it was because he wanted to nail this base (US) for 2008.  And, boy, he's got you guys, hasn't he?

                  NOBODY is going to get impeached until we have a Democratic Congress. You want impeachment? Then get off your rear ends and work for Democrats this fall.  Or, as the diarist says, pick up your ball and go home.  Don't vote for a Democrat this November.  Don't put us in the majority. But, please, don't come back here and whine if the Repubs still own the Congress.

                  Face it, people, if you want to put some brakes on the Republican train, the Dems are the only game in town.  It's that or Montreal.  Take your pick.

                  We do not rent rooms to Republicans.

                  by Mary Julia on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 07:22:51 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Hummmmmm (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    corvo

                    impeach bush and you get......Cheney.

                    Thanks but no thanks.

                    Censure is good for me

                    Russ did good!

                    If you want me to go back to the place I was born , tell your corporations to leave my country (Leon Gieco)

                    by chenico on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 09:38:09 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  Bravo Mary! (3+ / 0-)

                    Some of us have been active for decades.
                    Some of us were out there protesting the Vietnam War and doing it a few times a week, between classes, after classes, and on weekends. Amd I mean every week, every month for years on end. No need to schedule some of these sit ins and protests as they really never ended, someone was usually there. WE Never Let up ..for years and years! Nixon and LBJ woke up to anti War chants Daily..I mean Daily !!!!!!!
                    Many of us fought in that war or served as Nurses, Doctors, etc..in that godforsaken Jungle. And there was the DRAFT..you went whether you wanted to or not. I think our Generation paid its goddamn dues. And don't even think about insulting the FDR/Truman ERA Democrats or they will still kick your butt no matter how old they are. I call them the Feistiest, Take No Prisoners Generation.

                    March for Civil Rights in the Segregated South with threats, bottles thrown at your head, people punching and shoving and the Police letting it happen with a smile on their face and then Blame the Democrat activitists who came before you.

                    Some of us were there calling Nixon on his lies and corruption when  no one had even heard of the boy, Bush  who was lying in a ditch drunk and Daddy was bailing him out of jail.
                    Some were there to mourn JFK, MLK and RFK when it seemed there was no HOPE, no reason to go on ..and the most incredible sadness abounded in the party but the Democrats survived that. Now we are fighting Facism and the Destruction of our country..we just need to keep on our Democrats in office and hound them and get the deadwood out. But no Need to Insult We Veteran Volunteers and Activists of the Party

                    Some of us were out there when Jimmy Carter ran in 76 going door to door ..no internet then....knocking on doors through blizzards, sleet and hail..much like those of us did in 04...so we paid our dues, we did our job..but we did for DECADES..over 30 years for me!! Talk to us in 30 years and then see how you feel when the Newbies insult all the blood, sweat, tears, energy that you put in as a Volunteer!!!.

                    So please do not insult those who have spent decades active in the party as we have pretty much seen it all. Were we perfect and at times, were we blind..Hell Yes..No one is Perfect but to Blame Democrat Activists for Decisions of some in Congress Now is Ludicrous. We can hound our Public officials but we cannot Force them to speak out..all we can do is get Progressives on the ticket and volunteer.

                    Carry the battle to them. Don't let them bring it to you. Put them on the defensive and don't ever apologize for anything. - Harry S. Truman

                    by wishingwell on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:52:46 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Clever... (0+ / 0-)

                  And I see your point. But we might have made more progress before 2004 had we had more help.

                  that said... SteveD is spot on regardless of when he joined the fray. And what a fray it is!

                  LetsFight. re handle: Fight the radical right is the sentiment!

                  by letsfight on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:33:59 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Why should he register as a Democrat? (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                SarahLee, Simplify, Magnifico, blueoasis

                As someone who has been involved for more than a couple of years, I would very much like to know why it is so important to have a particular box checked on your voter registration card.

          •  sophism (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TXsharon

            -- E pur si muove.

            by asdfasdf on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:39:22 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Steven (13+ / 0-)

          I just want to thank you for your involvement!  You have done a lot more than most people do.

          The Christian Right is neither Witness Every Day

          by TXsharon on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:40:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  This is not directed just at you (14+ / 0-)

          But I can guarantee that several thousand people will read this and only a small handful will ever be active in the Democratic Party.

          Two Saturdays ago I was at a precinct chairman training provided by the North Carolina DNC representative (Thanks Howard Dean!) The trainer said something that really stuck with me.

          She asked what would you be willing to do to strengthen the Democratic Party and win back a majority?  Would you be willing to clean the toilets in the restaurant where we were meeting if you knew that it would help?

          I thought about it for a moment. I thought about all that the Republicans, the religious fundamentalists and George Bush have done to this country.  I thought about what damage they could still do.

          I answered of course I would be willing to clean the toilets if I knew it would help.

          But the great thing is you don’t have to do that.

          People don’t realize that by doing even the smallest task they can make a positive change in our party and our country.  

          Find out the names of your local party members. Volunteer to print labels for newsletter. Help write your local newsletter. Show up to meetings and let your voice be heard. But do it now, not just during election time.

          It is not that hard.

          Max Cleland didn’t let his injuries stop him from standing up for what he believes. He continues to work harder than most of us in the hopes of making a difference.

          We all have something to offer.  That is what make the Democratic Party my party.

          •  Can you imagine? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Wes Wing

            If every member in your community who is angry at what is happening actually showed up in one place to protest?  Every angry american write a letter to the editor or congress on the same day about X topic?

            It would put the kabosh on this whole horrible mess!

            We have the power.... yet so few will realize it.

            The most disempowered democracy in the history of man.

            LetsFight. re handle: Fight the radical right is the sentiment!

            by letsfight on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:38:25 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Not an accusation, rather fantastic direction (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee

          Although it does look a little harsh.  For the record you are doing your part.  Not all of us are.  I know I could do more.  For those who troll rated Wes Wing, I disagree with your diagreement.  I find Wes Wing's comment to be a quite nice list of things that one can do.  We all need a little direction sometimes.  Wes Wing has provided some.  If you want to know what you can do to help, look up to Wes Wing's comment.  As for me, I am printing it and using it as a to do list for the next month.  Mr. D, thank you for the Diary, Mr. (Mrs?) Wing, thank you for providing helpful suggestions around what we can do to make our country better.

          You all have to admit, if all the crazies were not around life would have less purpose

          by genethefiend on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:54:28 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Hear, Hear! (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Steven D, corvo

          It's not my damn job to get myself elected, just because NO ONE IN THE WHOLE GODDAMNED PARTY POWER STRUCTURE knows what it means to do your GODDAMNED patriotic duty.

          Everyone who represents me at every level knows EXACTLY where I stand on the issue of the RAPE of our country.

          It's party apparatchiks thinking "politically" instead of patriotically about how to save the country from oblivion that are destroying the Democratic Party.  Not me because I voted for Anderson or Perot.

          GOD this stuff makes me mad.  Now I know what good Germans must have sounded like in the mid-1930s.

          "...And bunnies would dance in the streets, and we would find life on Mars." -Peter Singer, Brookings Institution

          by zentiger on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:29:37 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  yeah (12+ / 0-)
        Yeah, as soon as we get a hundred million precinct captains, our troubles are over.  Blame anyone who's not one.  Great plan.

        -- E pur si muove.

        by asdfasdf on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:38:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  We love you <i>all</i> America... (10+ / 0-)

        ...as long as you're a Democratic Party precinct captain. (otherwise - get fucked, you loser!)

        Wes, you work on rebuilding a nation the way YOU want, and let others decide for THEMSELVES how they want to participate. Everyone does not have the same role to play, but that does not make them any less important. Being or not being a political apparatchik, does not necessarily a great person, or American, make.

        Big tent's the word...remember.

      •  You CAN make a difference (8+ / 0-)

        I too am a PCO, as of last year when I decided I better put my feet where my mouth was.

        Our local party was full of tired well-meaning old farts, who mean no harm but don't know how to play today's game. I'm no spring chicken, but I'm new and fresh - I'm one of a bunch of other new fresh folks who HAVE taken over the county central committee in one short year. Our new chair is a successful entrpreneur with a lot of technical and organizational savy.  

        Already our meetings have an air of excitement about them. One of our goals is to raise enough money that we can have a PERMANENT YEAR ROUND Democratic Party headquarters in our town. A visible presence. The other party has had one for years.  Gaaahhh.

        -7.38, -4.72 Progressive Voices Toastmasters - Learning to speak persuasively about things that matter [Here http://www.progressivetoastmasters.org/]

        by JoieDe on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:51:53 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  fair questions (9+ / 0-)

        i really have issues with the "Democrats are weak" meme.

        now before you Greens/not-so-blues rip me (oh, go ahead, you lovable backstabbing free thinkers! tongue & cheek there.  put away the knives.) - i actually think it would healthy if we have 3+ parties.

        i say this b/c we've see how dangerous it is to allow one party to go weak.  we'll keep having a swing back & forth & then a crisis when one side is all powerful.

        the founders (& mathematicians) were right it appears to trust the # 3 (think about it).

        but anyway, back to the "Democrats are weak" meme.

        I have a mixed response to the criticism.  I for one can't stand what some Dems do & the wimpiness we displayed before 2005.  

        i think there's a place for criticism but we NEED criticism that makes the party stronger.

        & i think Steven D actually did a good job in this diary of warning Democratic leadership.  he laid out what they need to change to keep him & warned them of the cost of not changing.

        ALL without saying "Dems suck" & all that other bullshit (correct me if I'm wrong).

        B/c that other bullshit doesn't make the party any better, hurts our chances in 2006 to hold the GOP & Bush accountable, and it is part of the GOP message.

        The GOP right now have traction with only one message:  We may suck but the Dems haven't offered any solution.

        We need to offer solutions but we also need to fight the meme that Democrats are weak & get more Dems into office so that we can impeach these fuckers in office.

        THEN may I suggest we can talk about improving the party & making it easier for 3+ parties to exist.

        Some of the comments downthread are unproductive.  I mean seriously what did you offer?  The equivalent of taking your ball & going home?  

        & I agree.  Scapegoating Nader is a losing cause & probably wrong.  

        I still think it was bad to run but Nader was not the reason we lost 2000 or 2004 - & he may have actually given the Democratic leadership the good kick in the ass to look really hard themselves.

        but at the end of the day, there is only ONE party today that can fight the GOP & we need to FIRST try to rebuild that party, take over the leadership & BECOME the party, before there's talk of starting another one.

        The party led by Howard Dean is not a party I'm ready to abandon.

        Otherwise, we'll be stuck with a ONE party system for a LONG time.

      •  They say the Democrats eat their young (14+ / 0-)

        and those of you who are harrassing Steve D are proving this saying right!

        I have been active for years, I vote in every election, I walk the blocks to knock on doors, I flyer at the local grocery store and subway stop, I sign petitions, I get signatures on petitions, I write my congressman (who thankfully is a great person with a strong positive record), I know who my county chairman is but have never called because I'll see him at the next meeting.

        I've done everything you list and more, and Steve D is still writing for me as well!

        I was an early Deaniac, I supported him beyond the bitter end, I support his 50-state strategy, I hope he turns the party around -- but it hasn't happened yet.  Why has MoveOn sent out emails asking everyone to write letters to editors in support of Feingold and I haven't heard a peep out of the DNC?  Why did Pelosi even hesitate to stand up with Murtha?  Why isn't Reid attacking the RNC for running the attack ads in Wisconsin?

        If you're a party hack with the 'my party right or wrong' attitude, I can see being a bit sensitive.  But if you were like me, just a regular citizen who's tired of Congressional Democratic leadership and the national party failing to stand up for the rule of law and against a misguided war for oil, you'd read Steve's "screed" and say AMEN!

      •  Its good to have the debate (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mary Julia

        Are you a precinct captain?

        Yes

        Does your county party have monthly meetings?


        Charter

        I don't know of anything at a county level except for the candidates district coordinators. We have town and city committees and caucuses. My son lets me know what I need to know about whats going on at the state level.

        Do you go?

        Sometimes

        Do you know the phone number of your county chairman?

        I know the phone numbers and emails of the people in the three towns that comprise my State rep's district, and who's with us and who isn't in those towns.

        Do you know his/her name?

        Yes

        If you answered no to these questions then the reason our party sucks is because people like you.

        You have the fire in your belly, but don’t participate.

        It is maddening to read screeds like this and know that the majority of people that read it will never help out more than to vote.

        Our party will not change until we change ourselves.

        I'm not so sure about that. I sort of admire people that are finding new ways to do politics, freeway blogging and such. I think that represents change.

        Me, I just do pretty much what I'm told. I collect  my petitions, do my visibilities, attend my events and go to my convention and vote like I'm expected to. I'm undoubtedly taken for granted and so are my towns and state.

        I see the KOS as about the same, people sign petitions, write letters make phone calls, its all good.

        I might be on a first name basis with my politicians but I'm not at a level where I can sit down and policy wonk with them. I understand politics to include a lot of wheeling and dealing that goes way over my head such as who gets what committee and what photo op and what Federal funds spent in their town.

        Whether its the Federal Budget or the State Budget or the Towns Budget or the Departments Budget what money translates to is jobs so thats the bottom line.

        There are about ten different worthy causes and five not so worthy looking for every dollar thats out there.

        I share peoples frustration with Democrats who won't take a stand and Democrats who have no spine, but I take into account that political power is the ability to persuade.

        Sometimes people promise to do a thing if you will do a thing. Then you do your thing and they don't come through. That's the politics I know.

        Usually there are about five or six different chains of such promises all linked conditionally and interactively and dependent on a lot of weird science that nobody expected.

        The way I figure things are going now people are being patient. Bush is so far down in the polls we stand a good chance of taking back the Congress.

        Nobody wants to rock the boat by creating an issue that lets them get off the defensive and go on the attack.

        After we win the Congress back then its a different story.

        Live Free or Die (-8.88 -9.49) IMPEACH

        by rktect on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 07:01:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, but... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        corvo, letsfight

        If you do go, are you treated by your party's leadership like you have no right to espouse traditional Democratic principles like the minimum wage, equal pay for women and equal rights for African Americans and women?

        When you try to get a group started within your Party to recruit and elect young people, minorities, and women, are you told by people who run your party that you should sit down and shut up, because you might threaten someone's power base?  And that because you haven't been around for the last 35 years, you have no right to participate?

        When you run for a delegate position to the national Convention (or even your state's convention), are you totally shut out of even a fair shot at one of the positions, because they're all already sewn up by people who've been involved with the Party since before you were born?

        Are all the positions for which your state elects members to the DNC filled by people who vigorously defend 'turf', and who are 80 years old, and don't even go to DNC meetings - yet won't step aside and let someone else have a chance?  Are you angry that those 80 year olds don't seem to have much clue about recent methods of message crafting, the Internet, or anything that isn't 'the way we've always done it'?

        Are you angry that out of the 400+ members of the DNC, fewer than 40 are filled by people under 40 years of age?

        Are you also tired of criticism by people who tell you you're somehow disloyal for feeling that dissent is the highest form of patriotism?

        I feel no urgent need to defend a sclerotic, unresponsive, bureaucratic Party more dependent on corporate cash infusions than committed to doing something about the mass abuses of civil rights and American principles taking place in George Bush's America.  This party told us during the first Bush term it was saving its firepower for Supreme Court appointments.  It then totally rolled over for not one, but two of those appointments.  Now it's showing signs of doing nothing more than whimpering as Roe v. Wade, bedrock of this party's constituency, is ruled into oblivion.

        What would have happened to the civil rights movement had James Lawson, Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King decided they were too afraid to rock the boat?  How would we have anything resembling the labor laws that have ruled this country for the past century if activists hadn't challenged the corporations that made life a living hell for decades?

        By not challenging the current rule, we are allowing the conditions to exist that very well may lead to abuses considered nearly unimaginable two decades ago.  Are y'all ready to read about how the Bush Administration plans to slap Wal-Mart on the wrist for working 14-year-olds too many hours?  When are the Republicans going to bring back Jim Crow?  What if they decide to enact the death penalty for women who choose to get abortions?

        People who think like me aren't idealists out of touch with reality, we're people who love this country and are TIRED AS HELL of not being able to look to ANYONE to stand up for its principles.  If the leaders of this party won't lead, they need to get the hell out of the way. If things continue as they stand, these folks aren't going to have a choice for too many more years.

        How long? Not long, because the arm of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice - Martin Luther King, Jr., Montgomery, Ala., 1965

        by Eleanor A on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 09:15:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think our local party is quite that bad.. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          oysterface

          Close, but not as bad as the picture you have painted.

          But to top it all off.... we have the friggin DLC -- NOT even part of the grassroots party apparatus --- essentially acting as a wayward board of directors by determining the party platform.  

          So, no matter how much reform happens at the local and state levels in the party (no matter HOW MUCH), the DLC preempts ALL OF IT.  They pick our platform issues. They pick our candidates. And they use corporate money to make sure 'their' candidates get in.

          And therein lies the problem.

          The DLC .... a little gift from Bill Clinton.  Clinton gave us several 'gifts' that turn out to be the death of us. (telecommunicatons act, china=most favored nation status, signing nafta, welfare to work, and the DLC).

          LetsFight. re handle: Fight the radical right is the sentiment!

          by letsfight on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:46:19 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yep. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            oysterface

            I admire a lot of things Clinton did (Empowerment Zones program, emphasis on the environment, etc.) but I also blame him and McAuliffe for getting us as addicted to corporate cash as the Republicans.

            An elaboration on the above: I live in a state where Dems think they have to court the rural conservative vote to win.  However, there are also a couple of largish cities in the state, that get told to sit down, shut up and swallow whatever Republican-light palaver our party leaders are in the mood to shovel out.

            Our current governor, a Democrat, has approval ratings nearly 20 points higher among Republicans.  His staff people are slapping themselves on the back and guffawing over how great it is.  Meanwhile, he ain't doing jack for anyone else on the ticket.  

            We have a terrific woman running for U.S. Senate, who's been in our state Senate for a dozen years, and I strongly suspect she's getting next to no support because of those darn pesky X chromosomes.

            It'd be funny if it weren't the saddest thing I've heard.  

            Now.  Am I going to go vote Republican?  No.  But I'm pretty tired of trying to encourage others to get involved with a Party that's done everything but run barbed wire along the edges of the front entrances in order to keep new people out, and enforce the same old ways everything has always been done.  

            This party can't expect to be competitive going into the future if it's allowed to keep on this way.  Worst part is, I don't think the people who run things even realize why they can't seem to get any real Democrats elected, and why folks in the two big cities I mentioned won't contribute money.  

            You gotta give people issues to get excited about, dumbasses.  And if you're going to actively support candidates who get in the newspaper and trash other Democrats for supporting issues like the minimum wage, you for DAMN sure better be in touch with the Democrats in those two big cities and get willing to make a deal.  Otherwise the ship is going down, and all the rats will still be aboard.

            How long? Not long, because the arm of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice - Martin Luther King, Jr., Montgomery, Ala., 1965

            by Eleanor A on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 07:34:00 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Front paged this at MLW (12+ / 0-)

      Don't know if you've checked back yet...

    •  I want to give you a fantastic rating for this (0+ / 0-)

      post, but I don't know how.
      I also don't understand troll rating.
      My bad for sure, since I've been around
      DKos for a year and a half.

      "United we stand, divided we fall"

      by Cassandra77 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 04:26:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks for saying what I summed up the other day (0+ / 0-)
      in about 25 words. You earned (so far) at least 255 tips in your jar, I got a 'how dare you' reply only.

      Hmmmmm, maybe I should have gone hog-wild and diaried instead, I see I'm not the only one who is thinking these thoughts. I already have decided to become independent, as of about four days ago.

      These leaders we have now (for the most part) can take a permanant flight to the other reaches of space for all I care. Unless they get off their ass and start talking truth, instead of cowering in a corner, I won't vote for them if I have the opportunity.

      Thank you Steven D for having the gumption to say what I have been thinking.

    •  My only quibble (0+ / 0-)

      is you putting the onus on Barack Obama in the same way as Pelosi and Reid. I agree Obama should get behind the censure resolution. But beyond that, it's a little unfair to expect a guy who has been in the Senate for 14 months, as talented as he may be, to have the same responsibilities in getting the Democratic party turned around as do the party's leaders.

      I support Feingold's resolution, but it's arguable he could have done it in a better way, based on this comment I saw in the New Yorker: "Feingold sprang his resolution on his Democratic colleagues without a word of advance warning or consultation." If true, that was wrong. Feingold may have done the right thing, but that doesn't mean he did it in a good way. Would it have hurt him to tell colleagues what he was up to, so they could have been prepared? Do you think a Republican lone wolf would have done something as important as this without first trying to drum up support from colleagues?

      Anyway, I did like this quote from Obama about corruption:
      "The scandals we've seen under the current White House and Congress - both legal and illegal - are far worse than most of us could have imagined. ... Now, some have dismissed these scandals by saying that 'everybody does it.' Well, not everybody does it. ... We're not being partisan by pointing that out.

      "The fact is, since our federal government has been controlled by one political party, this kind of scandal has become the regular order of business in this town."

  •  Right f'ing On Steven! (25+ / 1-)

    This would make a great Op-Ed piece and I would like your permission to send it along to my reps!

    Frodo failed....Bush has got the ring!

    by Alohaleezy on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 09:15:12 AM PST

  •  Me too, Me too... (15+ / 0-)

    My thoughts exactly...it would be better to "appear" weak on National Security..(which no one believes anymore, except BushCo) and very strong on the laws of the land, civil rights, support the middle class and poor (and then, the rich, in that order)...thats the best way to protect our nation..! Put us back to work, let us make and manufacture here, with living wages, give the corporations who stay here and employ Americans, tax breaks.
    Make our country stronger not weaker.

  •  Don't quit (7+ / 1-)

    Quit the Democratic party, and watch the GOP stay in power for a century or more.

    I dunno about you, but I change things by offering constructive criticism and getting involved.  Not by threatening a huge organization that I'll leave it.  They don't care if you leave.  There's plenty more where you came from.

    If all you do is sit in the corner and pout, like Ralph Nader, nothing good will come of it.  The Democrats aren't perfect, but they're all we've got.  They're all that separates the unholy alliance of selfish business jerks and religious fanatics from total domination of this country.  Quitting the Democrats now would be like quitting the SPD in Germany in 1932 just because it had by them absorbed a lot of centrists who were scared of the Nazis.

    To paraphrase Rummy, you vote for the party you have, not the party you wish you had.

    All your vote are belong to us. Warner/Feingold 2008

    by Harkov311 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 09:29:44 AM PST

    •  any party who would tell its members (34+ / 0-)

      that they don't care if you leave, that expects you to believe in them more than they believe in you, and then proceeds to blame you for everything that might go wrong if you don't support them, is a doomed party.

    •  But the only thing in the middle of the road ... (21+ / 0-)

      ... is dead armadillos.

      Seriously, I take your point Harkov. I made the mistake of voting for Nader in 2000 because I knew Gore wasn't going to win Virginia anyway, but I put a clothespin on my nose to support Kerry in '04.

      You are correct that the party leaders don't care about the rest of us as individuals. But I have to believe that if enough Democrats speak out, demand action, and refuse to contribute to the party financially until our candidates start fighting back again, something positive will happen. I mean, unlike the Republicans who are totally controlled by Big Business, Democrats must still depend to a large extent on the economic support of the rank and file. Collectively, we can make a difference and get them to change.

      If money is the mother's milk of politics, I suspect there is nothing like the prospect of facing an election with an empty campaign war chest to focus the mind and inspire a spine transplant. I'm not saying people should abandon individual Dem candidates who fail to get behind every one of our pet causes (be it censure, impeachment, etc.), but I think Steven D is right, too. It's long past time those of us in the trenches find our voice and insist on seeing some backbone from the likes of Clinton, Pelosi, Reid, et al.

      Loyalty to our nominees is an important quality, but loyalty runs two ways and these days our elected officeholders are far too complacent and quick to take us voters for granted.

      •  They're plenty willing to take my money (5+ / 0-)

        ...just look at my inbox over the past 24 hours--many financial solicitations from Democrats.

        If only they cared as much about my 4th amendment rights as getting my financial contributions!

        "Control of the initiative is control of the battle. In the alley, at the poker table or in politics. One must raise." David Mamet

        by coral on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:39:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The difference between the Dems and the SPD (21+ / 0-)

      Is that the Dems have actively collaborated with the fascist enemy, whereas in Germany, the SPD was steadily marginalized although it refused to go along.

      These so-called "Democrats" in the Senate - in actuality a bunch of corporate whores who claim the mantle of America's most storied, most successful progressive party - are out to screw each and every one of us. They must be stopped. Primarying them is the only way it can happen.

      Our efforts must be directed at primarying all these bad Democrats. Ned Lamont should be a warning shot across the bow of the entire Senate "Democratic" delegation - stop screwing around, or get fired.

      I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

      by eugene on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:17:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  No (4+ / 0-)

        Fire them anyway, no matter what. Already they have failed and continue to do nothing while thousands die. Fire them in your mind right now. No "or else." "Or else" will get you slippery promises that We Can Do Better in the future. I'm talking about primaries, not about allowing Rs to win. My state uses magical, mysterious touch screen voting, so it's too late for me. Save yourselves!

        "Live free or take it up the ass every day for the rest of your life." - Gen. John Stark, patriot

        by paraphrase on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:55:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Well, I Sorta Kinda Agree... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, NearlyNormal

      I have no doubt that in many regards, the current class of Dems come from the same field of oligarchs and corporate whores that the Repubs do.  It is very redolent of Tweedledum and Tweedledee...and a win/win for the Kleptocracy...

      And yet...and yet...does anyone sincerely doubt that we would be living in an ENTIRELY DIFFERENT UNIVERSE had Gore took office?  I mean, really and truly...2000 we all stood at the switching station and watched the tracks diverge in two very different ways.

      So, I may not like 'em...but I like the criminals, thugs, cons, carnies and two-bit chamber of commerce yeggs even less.

      "We're all working for the Pharoah" - Richard Thompson

      by mayan on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:30:10 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Switching to Republican... (4+ / 0-)

      is not the same as being a "stay at home" Democrat.  Perhaps if I switched to being a registered Republican I could get some representation for my taxation out of my Republican senators.

      Not that I'd like to but there's something to be said for fighting them from the inside out.  Just a thought.  RINO.

      Hey hey, ho ho, irresponsible corporatism and social intolerance have got to go! Hey hey, ho ho!

      by kfractal on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:46:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Eating them from the inside (0+ / 0-)

        Quite Frankly I think it's a great thought (please don't sue me Steven A Smith).  That is what they did to our party.  So now it's time to take back our party and the repug party, although I really don't want to have to hang out with them

        You all have to admit, if all the crazies were not around life would have less purpose

        by genethefiend on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:58:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Again with Nader (5+ / 0-)

      Centrists need to under stand that you can't win elections in 2006 by using the same methods in 1992. Times have changes, people have changed, and things are more serious.

      BTW, we have a right to vote for who we see fit.

      •  Yikes (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wmtriallawyer, DemocraticLuntz

        I call for people who wanna change things to do so within the framework of the party, and suddenly everybody's mad at me.

        Cause that's all I said.  Be as upset as you want to be.  But don't quit the party.  Nothing good will come of it, and a lot of very bad things would come of it.

        All your vote are belong to us. Warner/Feingold 2008

        by Harkov311 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:25:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's hard for him to quit the party... (0+ / 0-)

          because he's not even a registered Democrat, according to his comment above.

          If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

          by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:32:42 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  explains a lot (2+ / 0-)

            non-partisans of our ideological persuasion seem to think that the parties have to suck up to them to be "worthy" of their vote.  Being better than the GOP is apparently not good enough.

            But how could anyone who's seen what the GOP does when it's in power not believe that the Democrats have to be better by default?

            Sometimes I despair of trying to reason with people.

            All your vote are belong to us. Warner/Feingold 2008

            by Harkov311 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:42:21 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Of course you have a right to vote your choice. (0+ / 0-)

        The flip side is, then you also have an obligation to face the real-world consequences of your vote.

        "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

        by jbeach on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 12:00:50 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  So what the hell is the difference in the GOP (13+ / 0-)

      staying in power and what we have now or what we will have if we accept
      weak assed non principled Democrats in power.

      Don,t any of those screaming lets not rant at how ineffective our leaders
      are but encourage and support them instead, see that  unless they go back
      to reperesenting the people and  not supporting damn wars to export
      Democracy at gun tips, we will not be a damn bit better off.

      Folks what we have today is not our Democratic party of yesterday which
      stood up and fought the battles for the common people. What we have
      today are mostly Democrats that have also sold their soles and votes to
      Corporate America. That funding from Corporate America does not cease
      going to Democrats who are willing to keep getting it just because
      Republicans are in power.  It may decrease to some extent, but it does not
      stop flowing.

      An excellent example of that is in the recent propaganda from both parties
      regarding Lobby reform. The plans put forth by either party did not do
      anything to really solve the problem even if it ever went anywhere.

      The failure to support Feingold on the Censure Resolution was a damn
      good signal that even our leaders for the most part do not give a damn
      about our Privacy rights and the rule of law.

      So tell me please when we support such shit bags what are we standing
      for? What are gaining by doing so other than OH we are not as bad as
      them.  Bullshit they are just as guilty by lack of fighting tooth and nail
      in every damn possible way to at least throw road blocks in the GOP
      path.

      The diaryist is absolutely right. The Democratic party is setting itself up
      for a massive move from the Dem Party without some drastic course
      change.

      Until the last very few months I was in complete agreement that we
      should hold our ranting down as much as possible and concentrate on
      making sure we re-elected the Joe L's of our party as well as every other
      Democrat. Well sorry but after the recent examples of their actions if
      those slimes want me to vote for them they are damn well going to
      have to start doing something.

      One thing I have learned in life and that is.
      In matters of importance, lack of courage to face the issue head on is
      not an option.

      The Christian fundies have forgotten one major thing about religion . If God wanted to enforce his will on people he is capable of doing it himself.

      by eaglecries on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:50:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Stay with the Democratic Party, (0+ / 0-)

      and watch it collaborate with the Rethuglicans at almost every turn.

  •  But, but ... it's Nader's fault (17+ / 0-)

    These guys lost me a while ago. Now Nader-blaming Dem supporters are losing me, too. I could understand in 2000 doubting Nader's warning that corporate power in politics was a danger, but some don't see it even now, after everything.

    There blindness has caused great lasting division. One start would be to admit reality, and make ammends. If that won't happen, we all have to wait until this Ship of Fools sinks, as it is. You can't build the unity needed with defamation and lies.

    History will wish Nader-haters had seen the light - it would have helped matters immensely to have addressed our traitor Congress back in 2000, as some of us knew.

    I still don't think the Nader-haters realize the situation, and how much they have damaged their nation by reaction instead of research.

    •  I'm sensing (2+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      Harkov311, dazed in pa
      Hidden by:
      LiterateWolf

        total non sequitur here.

    •  If there was a Dem party that stood up for ideals (38+ / 0-)

      there never would have been a Nader. Or Perot. Or any other scapegoat you want to drag up and throw into disaffected voters' faces.

      If politics in America were a couple of marriages between Repugs and their base and Dems and their base, can you blame the dem base for wanting a divorce when they keep finding their spouse in flagrante dillecto with GOP monsters?

      They should STFU and keep loving their Dems?

      I liken folks who keep telling me to vote Dem no matter how badly they betray us to a spouse who enables or tolerates a destructive spouse. You folks have a problem, not the folks strong enough to say "Bleep you, assholes. I'm outta here!"

      -6.63 -5.64

      I am I and you are you, and we are both each other too -- Clair Huffaker

      by xysrl on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:06:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  and the 60 ? 70? MILLION who did NOT (7+ / 0-)

      vote in 2000,

      or 2002, or 2004 ... or 1980 ...?

      that is Naders fault?

      gore lost cuz he sucked. period.

      rmm.

      Grassroots Organizing Should Be for The Community, By The Community - NOT for "Leaders" http://www.liemail.com/BambooGrassroots.html

      by rmdewey on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:09:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  If Nader hadn't run in Florida, Gore would've won (5+ / 1-)

        Doesn't make it Gore or Nader's "fault". It's just numerical fact. Blame is irrelevant.

        You have to pick your battles. In this case, fighting for a long-off good thing, a system with more than two parties, caused a real short-term loss of one key battle, to keep the GOP out of the White House.

        After this battle was lost, the Constitution, the country and it's future have taken one hit after another.

        In the meantime, what's Nader done to break the two party system? Has he run for Congress, the Senate, Mayor, Governor? Sponsored or done fund-raising for independant candidates? Anything?

        "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

        by jbeach on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:40:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Don't you mean Buchanon? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          genethefiend, blueoasis

          Heaven knows if Buchanon hadn't been on the butterfly ballot in Florida, Gore would have had a lot more votes.

          Ignorance killed the cat. Curiousity was framed.

          by Lashe on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:52:51 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  at least nader tried something other than CW, AND (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Moody Loner

          gore lost cuz he ran an incompentent campaign.  

          (unless you are one of the f$%^ing parasites who was at the front of the billion dollar campaign trough)

          although, I guess if you export you spreadsheet to powerpoint, showing

          ALL Nader Voters = Gore Won,

          or whatever fantasy formula you want to create,

          maybe I'll believe it on PowerPoint cuz,

          anything with numbers and a graph on a computer is convincing.

          rmm.

          Grassroots Organizing Should Be for The Community, By The Community - NOT for "Leaders" http://www.liemail.com/BambooGrassroots.html

          by rmdewey on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:52:56 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Are you asking for a powerpoint? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Bob Friend, Harkov311

            It's not tough.

            Votes for Nader = votes that probably would have gone to Gore.

            Votes for Nader in Florida = 97,488.

            Gore lost by, what, a hundred or so votes?

            Now remember, I'm not talking blame, I'm talking results. Pragmatics. Yes, Gore ran a poor campaign. Yes, the Florida elections board gamed things for Bush.

            Nader couldn't control that - but he could control whether or not he ran, when he really had no hope of winning. People were worried at the time that he might splinter things enough to let the GOP get a President in. He chose to run.

            Therefore he is a contributing factor. That's how it is.

            "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

            by jbeach on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:16:50 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  You're assuming (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SarahLee, Geenius at Wrok, rmdewey

              that, were Nader not on the  ballot, they would automagically have voted for Gore.

              That assumption is incorrect - do you have anything backing it up?

              Maybe they would have voted Green anyway. Maybe they would have stayed home.

              It wasn't their job to go vote for Gore because he needed them, it was Gore's job to earn those votes - a job he failed at, probably due to the advice he got from his consultants.

              And no, I didn't vote for Gore in 2000. Who did I vote for? None of your damn business.

              •  I think at least 300 people out of 97488 would've (0+ / 0-)

                I think that's pretty safe to say.

                I'm not saying it was their job to vote for Gore.

                But had Nader not run in Florida, George Bush would probably not currently be president.

                If Nader's job is to care about what's best for the country, then Nader blew it. Because he lost, as he expected to - and in the process split the vote, which brought us a GOP regime that has been far worse than even my most cynical expectations.

                Nader talks a good game, but I have never seen Nader do anything to crack the two-party system, besides run for Pres every 4 years. Is he fundraising for other candidates, in off-years? Is he running for Congress or Senator, or even Mayor anywhere? No.

                It's hard to view Nader as doing anything except running a vanity campaign, for all the attention he can get as a spoiler.

                It doesn't matter to me who you voted for. I assume you voted your conscience.

                "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

                by jbeach on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:56:05 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  But it is his right (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  SarahLee, forrest, corvo

                  to run for office without being anointed by the Republicans or Democrats.

                  Just as it is your right, or mine.

                  It's still Gore's fault for not getting those votes, not Nader's fault for running.

                  I don't give a crap what Nader has or hasn't done since 2000. My beef is with Democrats that want to win by making sure there aren't any other choices, rather than by standing up and fighting the Republicans.

                  Because if the Democratic Party is reduced to keeping people off the ballot that might draw their voters, rather than fighting to rally their base and sway independents to their cause, then not only have they already admitted that the Republicans have won, they've admitted that they're not worth replacing the Republicans - that in fact, it's the same corporate-sponsored policies, different logo.

                  Ironically, just like Nader said.

                  •  I'm so sick of hearing this straw man argument (4+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Bob Friend, jbeach, gmb, blueoasis

                    No one has said that Nader didn't have the right to run. Everyone has the right to run for President as long as they're at least 35 years old and a natural-born citizen. What some people are saying is that Nader's 2000 run for president did incalculable damage to all the causes he'd championed in the past, all the people he claimed to care about the most. Nader knew full well that there were innumerable critical differences between Bush and Gore, but chose to run anyway and claim the differences didn't exist because he wasn't getting his ego stroked enough.

                    And yes, it IS Nader's fault that Bush is president. It's his fault and the fault of every single idiot in Florida and New Hampshire who voted for him instead of Al Gore. If you're one of those people, you have the blood of thousands of innocent people on your hands, and no amount of mealy-mouthed whining of "But Gore didn't earn my vote!" is going to change that fact.

                    •  First: (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      SarahLee, corvo, blueoasis

                      I'm in California. Dems tell me that this state is so solidly blue, it doesn't matter who I vote for, and I take them up on it.

                      As far as anyone not telling Nader he doesn't have the right to run?

                      Try this.
                      Or this.
                      Or this, quoted below.

                      According to Sarah Leonard, spokesperson for the Democratic organizations America Votes, ACT and the Media Fund, they are keeping an eye on Nader's efforts. "If we think it gets to the point where we need to step in and mobilize to make sure he doesn't get on the ballot, then we will," she says.

                      I get on the Republicans for being anti-democratic, and I''ll get on the Democrats, too.

                      Second:

                      I'm not a Democrat, or don't you get that? I'm one of those independents that the Democrats need to convince to vote for them, and if they fail to do so the fault does not lie with me.

                      And no amount of mealy-mouthed whining about Nader spoiling the election is going to change that.

                      •  I don't care if you're a Democrat or not (0+ / 0-)

                        The real-world results of Nader's candidacy is that Bush was able to squeak into office.

                        You want to argue with that? Tell me who's in office now. Show me how at least 300 of the 97,000 votes Nader got in Florida, would NOT have gone to Al Gore.

                        OK then. And no amount of mealy-mouthed denial is going to change that. It's reality.

                        There are times and places to fight some battles, and there are time to not fight them, because they put other outcomes at risk that are far more important.

                        Nader chose to fight that battle in 2000, knowing that he would lose anyway. Every liberal in the country knew what was on the line; so did Nader. He just didn't consider the outcomes of a GOP presidency as important as his deliberately futile "on principle" campaign.

                        I'm reminded of the phrase "Pyrrhic Victory." Do you know where that comes from? A battle that ancient Rome fought, in the Pyrhenees mountains. They lost so many men winning that battle, that a Roman leader remarked, "One more victory like that, and we are done for."

                        "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

                        by jbeach on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 11:47:40 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  NO ONE is saying he doesn't have a right to run (0+ / 0-)

                        Just that his running was a bad idea that helped George Bush squeak in.

                        Can you get the difference?

                        Look at this way: it's my right to curse in public. If I'm a Liberal, and I'm running a campaign, and I curse in public all the time at public speeches, is that a good idea? Is that good for the Liberal cause?

                        Is that battle of cursing in public worth fighting for, in these circumstances, if it means that I would help GOP members to come into power instead?

                        That's the distinction. Nader had a right to run, sure. No one's arguing about his right. What I'm pointing out is the stupidity of his running. It has helped contribute to an outcome that is far more destructive to any of the causes he claims to care about than his not running.

                        Nader has a right to be stupid, selfish and destructive in his pursuit of Pyrrhic victories. That doesn't make it good.

                        "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

                        by jbeach on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 11:55:26 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Why does everyone blame Nader . . . (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      corvo

                      . . . and not the roughly 200,000 Florida Democrats who crossed the aisle and voted for Bush?

                      "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk." --Ian McDonald

                      by Geenius at Wrok on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 07:52:34 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  everyone blames Nader (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Angry White Democrat, jbeach

                        because he torpedoed all the causes he claims to believe in.

                        The Florida Democrats who voted for Bush did something sensible. They wanted Bush to be president, voted for him, and got him elected.

                        Nader and his voters did something nonsensical. They wanted a more progressive president, and they got Bush elected.

        •  No, The Republicans would have stolen (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          corvo, blueoasis

          it anyway, just like they stole it in 2000, when the Dems didn't stand up and fight.

          "Control of the initiative is control of the battle. In the alley, at the poker table or in politics. One must raise." David Mamet

          by coral on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:42:22 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Start demanding Dems work for IRV (0+ / 0-)

          fighting for a long-off good thing, a system with more than two parties, caused a real short-term loss of one key battle,

          This would not be the case if we had IRV.  Every election Dems say "wait" then during the good Clinton years, they made no push for it.  Eventually you pay for broken promises.

      •  I liked Gore, but he did not campaign well (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        corvo, blueoasis

        and I HATED Lieberman.  

        I am a Green at heart and have been a registered Green before - I voted for Gore, but it hurt to have to do so.

        I worked for Kucinich this last go round as the most Green Democrat.  I held my nose and voted for Kerry in the General.

        Dems need to fight for IRV or they are going to keep loosing.  It is the only way to get the disenfranchised back in the race and the Greens and Socialists would mark the Dem as their second choice, giving the Dems the election.

    •  That's some fine crazy talk you got there (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Harkov311, letsfight

      nt

      Anything's possible with Commander Cuckoo Bananas in charge. -Homer J. Simpson

      by Cheez Whiz on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:39:42 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  It IS Nader's fault (8+ / 1-)

      Nader, and his supporters.

      If all the idiots in Florida and New Hampshire hadn't voted for him instead of Al Gore, Gore would have been President and we wouldn't have thousands of dead Americans in Iraq, we wouldn't have tens of thousands of dead Iraqi civillians, 9/11 would have been just another day at the office, our massive deficit would still be a surplus, a great many key environmental protections wouldn't have been gutted, and we wouldn't have two new reactionary right-wingers on the Supreme Court.

      Nader and his supporters are the ones who need to make amends. If the "Nader haters" had gotten their way, the country and the entire world would be MUCH better off today.

      •  Gore ought to have been a shoo-in (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Geenius at Wrok, Moody Loner

        The Onion probably summed up the 2000 election best with the headline "Our Long National Nightmare of Peace and Prosperity is Over."  Al Gore was running on a solid record of achievement, and that election should have been a landslide for the Democrats.  If Nader was a deciding factor, that's Gore's fault.

        Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will pick himself up and continue on. --Winston Churchill

        by rmwarnick on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:47:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  So what? (0+ / 0-)

          The logic is simple: Nader voters had it in their power to stop Bush, and they decided not to. What is hard to understand about that?

          •  What is so hard to understand is (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            corvo
            that people keep wearing this logical fallacy as a badge of honour. And it does not help their casue much.

            To take your "reasoning" to its logical conclusion:

            • People too lazy to vote, who could have voted Gore, had it in their power to stop Bush but they decided to stay home.
            • True conservatives amongst Republicans had the power to stop Bush by not voting for him but they did.
            • All the drooling Repug pions could have had a sudden communion with their conscience and reason and voted Gore.
            • The media could have found its journalistic integrity and started asking seriously pointed questions during the campaign, causing any of the above to occur, but they chose not to.
            • Canadians could have invaded to distupt the election but they chose not to.
            • The Neo-con crew could have had a near-death religious experience and repented, following a life-time of work of charity and vows of poverty. Except they did not.

            And so on, etc. Note that the probablility of any of the above is not part of "what could have happened", any possibility, no matter how small can be used in your "reasoning", arbitrarily, as you have no way of measuring of probability of such one-time events which did not occur.

            Isn't woulda-coulda-shouldaism fun?

            The failure of your reasoning is the ommission of the fact that any of the elligible voting groups could have "stopped Bush", and that is on top of events outside of electoral process. But you then proceed to blame one specific group, because ... I am not quite sure exactly, probably out of some feeling of tribal loyalty you harbour being hurt. How dare these Naderites (whom you consider to be a traitor splinter group) to defy your tribal logic! Splitters!

      •  'The governor (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Moody Loner

        assured me that I won Florida." If it's Nader's fault, then it's OK to steal an election. If election fraud is wrong, then what is Nader's fault? I'm goddamn sick of you dumbasses telling me we need to vote harder to overcome vote rigging.

        "Live free or take it up the ass every day for the rest of your life." - Gen. John Stark, patriot

        by paraphrase on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:25:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Exactly (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, cotterperson, Moody Loner, corvo

      Now Nader-blaming Dem supporters are losing me, too.

      That is why I changed my registration from Democrat to Green. Anti-Nader/Greens are embarrassing.

      I could understand in 2000 doubting Nader's warning that corporate power in politics was a danger, but some don't see it even now, after everything.

      They don't want to either. They have a pro-free market ideology that doesn't work, never will, and they won't accept it's failures. When wages decrease, healthcare suffers, and job disappear, things aren't perky.

    •  Nader was saying that the Dems represent their (7+ / 0-)
      corporate donors.  Not the voters.  

      He's still right.  The explanation for the constant rightward shift of the media is ownership.  The explanation for the cowardice of the Democrats is also ownership.  The donors either fear Bush or agree with many of his policies.  

      "... in my empire, life is sweet, just ask any bum you meet. You may say that I ain't free but it don't worry me..."

      by lumpenprole on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:27:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Recommend - not that those spineless cowards (25+ / 0-)

    will read it.

    What this country needs is an opposition party.

  •  Thanks for this... (19+ / 0-)

    I couldn't agree more, but have been too lazy to organize my head around all that is irking me. You organized, crystallized and summed up all my grievences. I'm much more disturbed by the issues you raise, than I am by what this administration is doing. Horrible policies are one thing, but it's the lack of any functional opposition that reveals real problems with the system.

  •  You're either part of the solution, (24+ / 0-)

    or you're Ken Salazar.

    We've cut Democrats a lot of slack in my opinion.  I don't expect to agree with everything they do, yet I will still support them with my money and my time so long as I see we have common goals and that he or she is working for American citizens.

    I'm not seeing that much.  There's no excuse for refusing to deal with Presidential lawbreaking.  If they can't see that, then yes, they'll lose me.

    Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

    by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:03:52 AM PST

    •  What I wouldn't give for an hour (9+ / 0-)

      of that man's time, alone in a locked room.

      I sincerely regret having voted for him. I regret, even more so, being his unwitting Judas horse. I will never forgive his performance in the Senate - particularly as it comes at this crucial hour for the very framework of America.

      I would agitate to recall him in a second if we weren't so financially strapped in Colorado.

      The soul that is within me no man can degrade. - Frederick Douglass

      by Kimberley on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:43:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  What I don't understand about Ken (6+ / 0-)

        is why he won't listen to us.

        I more than voted for him, I helped coordinate some of his GOTV and knocked on many doors for him.  I bit the bullet after all my work for Mike Miles, because I knew I didn't want Senator Pete Coors.  I saw that Salazar was not a bold leader, nor particularly progressive, but I figured he could be guided by his constituents' opinions.

        But he's had several instances now where he's ignored overwhelming constituent feedback.  I don't get it.  If Senator Salazar thought supporting Feingold's censure motion was risky, he could simply have said, "the citizens of Colorado have spoken," or "I've gotten an overwhelming amount of feedback," and done the right thing.  Listening to your constituents gets you off the hook.

        I gave him the benefit of the doubt, and I was wrong.

        Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

        by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:58:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Me too (0+ / 0-)

          It won't happen again though.

          I don't know what his deal is. I don't even care anymore. I'll never forgive him. And I'll never again cast a vote in his favor.

          The soul that is within me no man can degrade. - Frederick Douglass

          by Kimberley on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 04:50:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  He looked soooo proud (0+ / 0-)

        when he ushered in Gonzales for his nomination hearing. So very, very proud. ugh.

        LetsFight. re handle: Fight the radical right is the sentiment!

        by letsfight on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:55:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  There is good in their incompetence - (19+ / 0-)

    it will make it easier to get rid of the worthless sons of bitches.

    as I said on MLW yesterday

    "Bush, RayGun - they ain't the f$%^ing problem. they are aristocrat scum who have existed since the pharoahs and they will exist till the sun cinders this stupid planet

    the problem is the the f$%^ing losers on "our" side who won't fight to win."

    rmm.

    Grassroots Organizing Should Be for The Community, By The Community - NOT for "Leaders" http://www.liemail.com/BambooGrassroots.html

    by rmdewey on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:05:55 AM PST

  •  Hell, yes! (11+ / 0-)

    I hope you sent this to every single Dem Congresscritter!

  •  Wow! (9+ / 0-)

    We are on a similar wavelength.
    I am frustrated beyond belief!

    I wrote a diary about it...
    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    I want to send your diary to my Senator - would that be okay?
    http://billnelson.senate.gov/

    •  Be my guest (8+ / 0-)

      Have at it.

      "I just had the basic view of the American public -- it can't be that bad out there." Marine Travis Williams after 11 members of his squad were killed.

      by Steven D on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:17:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Stephen D, congratulations Sir... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SarahLee, Steven D

        Beautifully said, and the exact right thought.

        I was an Independent for two decades.
        I NEVER voted for a D, not even Clinton, until the 2000 election - because even then I could see that there was something not quite right with George W.

        Today, I'm with you 10 thousand percent.

        It's time for the Party of the People to start doing their freaking job, and if they can't, or won't, it's time for the People to get a new Party.

        "You can have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, or democracy, but you cannot have both." Louis Brandeis - former US Supreme Court Justice

        by Angie in WA State on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 03:47:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Stephen D, congratulations Sir... (0+ / 0-)

        Beautifully said, and the exact right thought.

        I was an Independent for two decades.
        I NEVER voted for a D, not even Clinton, until the 2000 election - because even then I could see that there was something not quite right with George W.

        Today, I'm with you 10 thousand percent.

        It's time for the Party of the People to start doing their freaking job, and if they can't, or won't, it's time for the People to get a new Party.

        "You can have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, or democracy, but you cannot have both." Louis Brandeis - former US Supreme Court Justice

        by Angie in WA State on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 03:50:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  why so angry (10+ / 1-)

    Steven?  Please - voters don't like that.  The key to this election is to position ourselves to the right of the far right - victory is assured!!

    Then when we have control of the House and Senate we'll show our true progressive colors and get to work on universal healthcare, withdrawl from Iraq, public funding of elections, ad infinitum.

  •  Not only that (24+ / 0-)

    But as I've tried to argue with some Kossacks lately, Dems won't win elections if they keep this attitude up. Not just because they'll lose the base, but because they won't be able to convince any swing voters to turn in their direction.

    Many Kossack-types believe that the first priority is to elect Democrats, and then change will happen. What they don't realize is that electing Democrats is impossible given the behavior of the party right now. It also leaves unanswered the question of whether Dems in power would act any differently - would be less appeasing and collaborating - than they act in opposition. So far, the answer is no.

    Working off of David Podvin's ideas that Maryscott presented to us, I think the Senate Democrats are best described as "pseudo-Democrats." They have adopted the name of a party with a rich political history for their own uses, and do nothing to honor the true meaning of what being a Democrat is all about.

    It cannot be denied that the Democratic Party is dying. And I'm more and more tempted to suggest we pull the plug, instead of enaging in what may be a vain effort at resusciation.

    I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

    by eugene on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:15:14 AM PST

    •  But the problem is, (7+ / 0-)

      we can't afford the "creative destruction" that would ensue as the Democratic Party dies and a new progressive party theoretically arises.

      If times were less dire, I'd advocate boycotting our own party and leaving us in the wilderness temporarily while we build the Green Party into a workable national voice.  But I think we're between a rock and hard place right now.  We have to replace pseudo-Dems and encourage those who show signs of life.  I don't see another choice.

      Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

      by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:19:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  We can afford it (22+ / 0-)

        Because you know what? All those bad things everyone worries about are already happening. Democrats have done nothing to stop any of it. This isn't 2000, where we have to fear the fall. It's already happened. The shit is here. Now. And these "Dems" aren't lifting a finger to do a damn thing about it.

        So, we have nothing left to lose, since electing more Democrats without changing who those Dems are will accomplish absolutely nothing.

        I'm not saying build a third party...yet. What I am saying is primary every Senate "Democrat" who continues to play this game of appeasement instead of doing their goddamned job.

        I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

        by eugene on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:30:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You're persuasive. (3+ / 0-)

          And I agree with primarying every pseudo-Democrat.

          Perhaps I'm just cluelessly optimistic.  I still think more Democrats in leadership can and will determine which way the wind is blowing--our way.  They're spineless, so they can be led.  Or something like that.

          Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

          by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:34:46 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Sometimes the only solution (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Moody Loner, asskicking annie

          is to tear it all down if the foundation is rotten.  Sometimes things have to get a whole lot worse before they get better.

          A third party WILL emerge. It will be made up of candidates that citizens will WANT to vote for.

          Don't believe everything you think.

          by trinityfly on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:31:44 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Hence my reference to (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Moody Loner

            Joseph Schumpeter's "creative destruction."

            I'm just not ready for it right now.  Not in terms of my commitment or activity level--I'm the "torches and pitchforks!" guy--but I'm skeptical a new phoenix would rise from the ashes, at least in a time frame I can live through.

            We've got two elections left to restore some intelligent leadership, IMHO.  If not, forget about it.  I think a carrot-and-stick approach within the Democratic Party is the only plausible strategy, but I'm listening.

            Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

            by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:08:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  The GOP consists of at least three parties. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Moody Loner
            Dems can and should do the same. Failure to approach the party as an inclusive catch-all is our undoing.  

            And no, we can't risk the country for even one day while we erect another circus tent.  What we do with this catch-22 I just don't know, but we have to build on what we got.  The foundation isn't rotten, the roof is.  

            Bushco is doing enough destruction for all of us; let's focus on rebuilding. That  is what the country needs right now - not more destruction.  It sucks, yes.  But we are democrats because we love our country and her suffering people.  Let's put that first, folks, and keep our focus - war with this domestic enemy.  

            We can't restructure the entire infrastructure of army in the middle of war - that's just how it goes.  Doesn't mean we can't demand we fight the war, though. And it is WAR.

            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

            by Unduna on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:29:44 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  You are talking to the committed, though... (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SarahLee, oysterface, Steven D

              ...those who WANT to rebuild the Democratic Party which is saying emphatically NO to any attempts to being rebuilt in any meaningful way.  It's like trying to talk to crazy people who are listening to their own inner voices and can't (or won't) hear you. I do not agree that it is only the roof that is rotten...it is the core and foundation that is paid for by lobbyists and moneyed interests...the same ones that pay for the Republicans.  The system is corrupt.  

              There are many "out here" who will not vote "strategically" ever again...I'm one of them.  The way I will fight my war is to only vote for someone I can believe in...I'll write him/her in if I have to.

              It's what my vote is supposed to be for.

              Don't believe everything you think.

              by trinityfly on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:16:48 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  The foundation is the Constitution and the (5+ / 0-)
                Bill of Rights.  And I want to rebuild My Country with whatever I can possibly get my hands on RIGHT NOW. This war is an emergency and all I see are tea parties happening. We can not afford more parties - we have to mobilize what small fraction of the COUNTRY that is willing to fight and enjoin the battle.  Think the Potomac.

                We must find a way to make the very small army we do have fight this war successfully. It is happening right NOW.  Both parties are sick and have been infiltrated with the domestic enemy - corporations.  We can not count on them.

                I'm not looking right now to parties to save this country, I'm looking to people. Yes I want my Democratic party to fight - and if wishes were horses, then beggars would ride.  I'll keep wishing, I'll keep hoping, but we have to take what we've got and FIGHT NOW.  

                "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                by Unduna on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:38:11 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  It's not a binary world (6+ / 0-)

        And this is not a dilemma.

        Instead of getting gored by one horn or the other, grab both and jump over them, or skewer the darned beast, or get out of its pen, or...or...or...

        We want to screw in a bolt and you're telling us that since a hammer won't work, we should use the nail? No wonder the party can't stand up for itself!

        -6.63 -5.64

        I am I and you are you, and we are both each other too -- Clair Huffaker

        by xysrl on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:36:05 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm not following your metaphors, (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          oysterface, Moody Loner

          but I think I understand your intent.  I was making a point about abandoning the Party completely rather than continuing to bang our collective head against it.  I'm of the headbanging persuasion, but I'm open to alternatives.

          And please, I chafe at being associated with the go-along-to-get-along faction of the Democratic Party.  Check my comment history--I'm not at all shy.

          Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

          by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:43:54 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  pass the word along (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, Moody Loner

      there is only one solution.  We, the voters must unite and replace all politicians in Congress with new blood.  This will send a real loud message and we will start to get respect for our power.  As long as we let corporate money dominate our voting behavior, they will never listen to us.

      We have to stop listening to corporate money.  Start listening to each other and supporting each other.

      The force of public opinion cannot be resisted when permitted freely to be expressed. Thomas Jefferson

      by Thea VA on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:09:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I understand the general consensus of the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Moody Loner

        voting public right now is throw the bums out meaning all of them
        both Repug and Dems.  That is another reason we need an alternate
        candidate trying to primary every race. They have to elect someone if
        they are voting against those in office.

        It is going to interesting to really see how this midterm plays out.
        One thing I am afraid is not going to please Democrats is that regardless of
        so called leading and all that, we Dems will be damn lucky if we manage to
        take even one house. At least with this crop of people who now represent us
        unless they make some great changes and damn quick.

        The Christian fundies have forgotten one major thing about religion . If God wanted to enforce his will on people he is capable of doing it himself.

        by eaglecries on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:08:55 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The dem leaders can't convince this 25 yr yellow (1+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      Steven D
      Hidden by:
      SallyCat

      dog to vote for them.  And how do I go out into my community and express the things I dislike about bushco (all the illegal stuff, for starters) and follow with:

      "Oh, and please vote for the dems because they, uh, well, if they didn't vote WITH bushco... they didn't stand up against him."

      I have no alternative to OFFER my community members!  Well, except a revolt.

      LetsFight. re handle: Fight the radical right is the sentiment!

      by letsfight on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:58:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Excellent (17+ / 0-)

    In another diary, I made this same point, only to be called "Eyeore" and that I was "giving up" and "whining" and so on.

    Some people really need to wake up.

  •  Is it time to start cancelling Democracy Bonds? (9+ / 0-)

    I was just going to post this question in a diary, but I think this one says all the points I wanted to include as justification for this action.  I just don't know if this will cause the Dems to wake up and start fighting, or if it will just make things worse.  

    I just don't know if it will have any affect or not.  But I'd like to hear the thoughts of others, because I am ready to do it.  I am sick to my stomach thinking that these jokers can't support Feingold on even this minor issue.  It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it is the size of the fight in the dog, and I think most of the Democratic dogs are lying dead.  

    Anyway, please let me know your thoughts on this because I am truly conflicted.

    •  I think it would be more strategic (21+ / 0-)

      to give more money to the DNC while stopping donations to the DSCC or to any specific campaign that isn't willing to stand up to Republican abuses.  And if you do so, tell them exactly why the money stopped.

      The DNC is really focused on long-term, local and state organizing at a grassroots level.  I think that's the solution, but it won't help overnight.  Hitting Howard's pocketbook doesn't send a very direct message that you're unhappy with Senators, so I don't think it's worthwhile personally.

      Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

      by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:25:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Dem Bonds your best bet (18+ / 0-)

      Don't cancel your Democracy Bonds.  Dean is your best bet in turning the party around at the leadership level.  If you want to cancel something, cancel your contributions to the DSCC and contribute directly to campaigns.  Cancel your DCCC contributions and send them to Francine Busby, Bill Winter, Angie Paccione (hey, I'm from Colorado...), and others.

      Write Charles Schumer and Rahm Emmanuel and tell them why they're not getting your money any more.  Write HRC, Joementum, Evan Bayh, and Joe Bayden and tell them why they won't be getting your grassroots support in '08.  

      Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

      by Phoenix Rising on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:26:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Howard is the man, but where has he been? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Moody Loner, corvo, Sharon Jumper

        I already don't give to those two funds because they've done nothing (or little) to earn my support.  

        This brings up a side question for me...I feel that Howard is making progress and he is obviously great, but where has he been for this whole censuring resolution?  Maybe that is not his role, but what is his role then?  

        The only email I have from "Howard" about Feingold and the censure says "Agree or disagree with his proposal, as a Senator -- and as an American -- he has the right to speak his mind and express his views without Republican Senators questioning his patriotism."

        OK, great, I agree with that.  But, that's not really the key issue; that being that the censure itself, not the right to bring it up.

        Why isn't Howard coming out more forcefully for this?  That is another point I don't really understand.

        •  to the real point... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee, Moody Loner

          I just mean for people who already don't give to those worthless funds, what method do we have for influencing  the party on issues like this?  Ironically, living in IL my congressman is Rahm and my two Senators are also D's who haven't come out to fully support this.  I've sent them letters, but they don't seem to really care about that sort of stuff.

          I am really waiting for a third party to come up.  I know what that means, (especially considering how many anti-Nader things I've said in the past 6+ years).  But maybe it is time to let this baby out with the bath water.  

          I'm waiting for 2006 to run its course for that though.  If the Dems can't win after the War, after Abramhoff, after DeLay, after Katrina (a major American city was destroyed by incompetance, for christsake!) and after all the other points that are obvious inadequacies i nRepublican leadership, then how will they EVER win?

          I am just afraid that the lack of support for censure is a dead canary in the mine.  And I don't know how else to rattle the cage, other than Democracy Bonds.

        •  let me say it clearly for you (8+ / 0-)

          howard made the deal to focus on organizing and leave policy statements to the dem leadership way back in '05 when he got the DNC chairmanship. we all knew what that meant, and our support for him in that race meant that we woulod have to pick up the slack.

          dean isn't speaking out because he agreed not to. what he is doing is planting the seeds at the state level to support a grassroots insurgency. where we fucked up is that we didn't play our role at the grassroots level and continue to hammer at the elected officials with primary challenges and coordinated outside pressure, but instead got bought off the moment that we swapped daschle and gephart for reid and pelosi, as if a change in management made all the tensions unimpoprtant.

          dean's doing his part, while we have dropped our end of the bargain. as a result, grassroots challengers have gotten squeezed out in one race after another, even with our new and improved special lines of communication to the dem leadership.

          crimson gates reek with meat and wine/while on the streets, bones of the frozen dead -du fu (712-770)

          by wu ming on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:00:16 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  That's not true (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Moody Loner, Steven D

            I several have emails from "Howard" where he speaks out on more than simply organizing the party.  They are still in my inbox.  Let me list the ones I have:

            He demands the administration come clean with its role in the leak. (sent 7/13/2005)

            He asks for assistance following the Katrina disaster. (9/6/2005)

            He says the Roberts nomination should be rejected. (9/23/2005)

            He supports Reid's closed senate move.  (He actually sent two on that one: first one was on 11/1/2005)

            He sent two about John Murtha. (11/18 and 11/30/2005)

            He sends one for signatures for a Freedom of Information petition regarding the wiretapping. (12/20/2005)

            One raising funds for an organization called the Fisher House. (12/22/2005)

            An email asking for signatures for a petition to reject Alito. (1/3/2006)

            And of course, there is the one I mentioned in my comment, where he says that we should get Wayne Allard to apologize for his comments against Feingold. (3/15/2006)

            I think it is pretty clear that Howard Dean will get involved in more than organizing the party.  I just don't know why he seems to have stayed out of this one.  That's my point/question.  I like Howard a lot, I am just suprised that he hasn't played a bigger role in this.

            (side points: I don't agree that Daschle was that bad.  I thought he was pretty good actually, and would have done all he could to prevent the Iraq War Resolution until Gephardt stabbed him and us in the back.  I like Reid too, but I just don't understand why they are hesitant on so many things, this one is the clearest example.  

            Also, I don't think that the grassroots can do as much as the elected leaders; maybe you agree with this one.)

            •  all of those emails (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Malacandra, Moody Loner

              are well within the dem consensus. dean's not allowed to lead in disagrement with the dem leadership; he is allowed to speak once the word's agreed upon.

              he's been pretty clear in his devotion to decentralizing the DNC and building up the state party grassroot organizations.

              as for grassroots, yeah, we've got an uphill battle, but until our elected officials get their heads out of their asses and join us, we have no choice but to strive on alone.

              crimson gates reek with meat and wine/while on the streets, bones of the frozen dead -du fu (712-770)

              by wu ming on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:36:08 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Totally Correct (0+ / 0-)

                This is absolutely true!

                Help me please! Bad bad people have stolen my country!

                by JulieIde on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 06:54:08 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  No way (0+ / 0-)

                What about all the things he's said in the press that has been in direct conflict to the positions of our elected officials?  Hasn't Biden and others said something along the lines of "howard doesn't speak for me" in the past year?  

                I know Biden did for sure, after Dean said that DeLay belonged in jail.  Edwards did too, after Dean said that Republicans haven't worked a day in their life.  (Granted Edwards isn't an elected official, but still.)  Oh, also, Biden and Bill Richardson came out against Dean when he said that the GOP was a white-christian party.  There is another one; Obama criticized Dean too for "using religion to divide".

                Anyway, I don't think I can agree with you that Dean has only come out to say things that are approved by the Democratic leadership.  I think there are plenty of examples of him disagreeing with elected officials.  (It only took me 3 minutes to Google those examples.  I thought Clinton and Feinstein did too, but I didn't find anything.)

                If you are right, however, this is only more reason that the Democracy bonds should be cancelled.  Why would I help Howard Dean, (who I think is "the greatest"), build a system that is only going to solidify the power of these wishy-washy Dems, who I won't contribute directly to, and who most likely, need to be pushed out of government?  I liked Howard's plan of local support, but I like it because of the end I hope it will bring about; the election of progressives to office.  If Howard is taking his marching orders from the current office-holders, it seems unlikely that his work will  produce the kind of Democrats that I want.  It seems more likely to protect what we have, and produce more of the same.

                I don't want to build something that is going to make matters worse.  I didn't even think of this as a possibility until I've read your points, but now I think this could be a legit concern.

            •  Those emails are generally (0+ / 0-)

              about non-economic issues out of Democratic control and things that don't matter to most Americans.

              There are economic issues still under the control of state and local Democratic governments:

              1. Affordable health care [drug price control, hospital fair billing, basic dentistry by limited practitioners, specialized (diabetes, arthritis, etc.) four-year college health management practitioners]
              1. Affordable housing [zoning by housing price (three houses per acre at $300,000 each or six houses per acre at $150,000 each)]
              1. malignant long-term contracts [at will price changes need to be capped]
              1. open trade laws [single family plumbers and electricians, four year college legal (probate or contract or criminal or real estate closing) practitioners]
              1. housing cost based minimum wage
    •  N O! Keep giving on Democracy Bonds. (8+ / 0-)
      They are the only money that is going to revitalize the party and break the connections
      to the coporate checkbooks.

      Dean is really trying to start the ball rolling on the reform we all want.  And it starts with a committed, reliable organization in every state, which is part of what the 50 state strategy will
      help produce.

      Cancelling democracy bonds would be cutting off the change we want to see at the knees.

      It will be a loooong process though, folks.
      It took the Reaganites how long to change the party?  15-20 YEARS?

      I am hoping with the internet and technology it can be reduced to 10-15, but it will take a long time.

      And I will not give up in the short term.  Talk to me in 10 years when we haven't made any progress, and I will help you form any other party you want to get our voice in government back.

      If you need to save money, skip giving to the DSCC and DCCC which are actively HURTING our long term goals with what they are doing to the Paul Hacketts and Christine Cegelis types in our party who are trying to wake up the grass roots, only to be shot down by the wrong headed "establishment" Democrats.

      Rick
      -7.75 -6.05
      Fox News - We Distort, You Deride

      by rick on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:39:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Conservative Movement (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Moody Loner, Steven D

        I guess I just disagree with a few things you've said.

        First, if you want to think of the Republican rebirth, I think you'd have to start with 1964, where they were hammered hard, much harder than we've been hit in the new millenium.  In 1968, they elected Nixon.  So that's really only four years until they regained power.  Even if you want to start at Reagan, well, he was still the President and Bush followed him, so I think that those are results a little better than what we're seeing on the Democratic side.  So, I just don't buy that it should take 10-15 years.

        Also, I don't think that this crowd is the culmination of Reagan/Bush.  (Aside from biologically with Bush of course. ha ha.)  I think this is something different; more radical, more religious, etc.  I'd love to have Reagan as President right now.  (Make that 6 years ago, since it is too late now to avoid the Bush screw-ups.)

        One point I would agree with is that the Democratic side is supposedly fighting big money, so that could slow things.  The righties are the ruling class (ie. big money), and that class usually rules.  So ours is more uphill, but that doesn't excuse the little guy for not speaking up and fighting. (something I am sure you agree with.)  

        I still don't know what it is going to take to get it through these Democrats heads that fighting against the Republicans is the only way to beat them.  Even if you don't want to fight, you at least have to stand for law.  But they won't even stand with Feingold and do that.  

      •  You think we just now started trying to change... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Steven D, cbfatih

        the party?

        It took the Reaganites how long to change the party?  15-20 YEARS?

        Heck I've been trying to change the Democratic party for longer than that.

        Do you understand that the Green Party evolved from Democrats who got damned tired of fighting the monied interests within the Democratic party?  

        In my days when I lived in the city, I did the PC thing, did the organizing thing (helped make Ann Richards Gov. of Texas and worked for Jim Hightower during those years), organized and trained canvassers and phone bankers....  I have been trying to change the party since McGovern.  So continuing to ask for my patience while I see all of my predictions about what would happen to the party, the country and the planet come true is asking a LOT - maybe too much.

        Democratic leadership pushing a Pro-life candidate over a real progressive and you keep asking for my patience.  You really don't get it.  Or you are really young.

  •  How much longer Dem leaders do you think we will (16+ / 0-)

    wait for you to take action?  You seem frozen in space and time like frightened children.  Wake up!!  We need for you to condemn, like Feingold has, this administration.  What the hell kind of leaders are you when you quake and quiver in fear for the votes that won't come if you don't act!!  You are playing directly into the Repugnants hands.  They tell us how ineffective you are and we are seeing it.  I won't vote for a Rethug but I also won't vote at all if I don't have a choice between a rethug and a zombie!

    The shrub needs to be pulled he is terrifying

    by libbie on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:20:56 AM PST

    •  I think they believe that it doesn't (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, genethefiend, Moody Loner

      matter, as they are the only plausable alternative. And to a certain extent, they are right.

      Which is why I feel that some alternative voting system becomes the norm (I like IRV, but I'll listen to others). What keeps the Dems getting elected is the (correct) belief that people do not want to "waste" their votes.

      I think that an interesting excerisize would be to make Dem's address IRV or other systems. I will predict to a wo/man they will be against it.

      •  Explain IRV (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Simplify

        The shrub needs to be pulled he is terrifying

        by libbie on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:33:03 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sure (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee, Moody Loner, Simplify

          It is really easy: you rank your choices (votes) in order of preference. So, in 2000, you could have voted:

          1. Nader
          1. Gore
          1. Anyonebutbush

          The least numbers are thrown out until a majorty is reached. So in our example, Nader's vote would have been chucked and then that vote would have gone to Gore.

          See this.

        •  Instant runoff voting (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee, Moody Loner

          You get to rank your choices, so if your first vote doesn't get the vote, your second choice gets it and so on. That way, there isn't a spoiler effect to a third party.

          A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow.

          by Webster on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:45:10 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  IRV (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee

          Instant Runoff Voting. You rank your choices #1, #2, #3 etc. When the votes are counted the first time all the #1 votes are tallied and if someone gets 50%+ they win, end of story just like in our current system.
          However if no one gets 50% of the #1 votes then an instant runoff is held with the top two candidates adding in the #2 votes they got from those eliminated. This keeps going until someone gets the magic 50%+. The mayoral election in Burlington Vt. was run this way just recently and it had to go to the next level to get a winner. So far all indications are that it worked well there and Vt. is considering using it for all statewide elections.
          The advantage to third parties is that a progressive can vote for the independent or the green or whatever, and by putting the Democrat as their second choice, they don't run the risk of throwing a tight race to the Republican because they split the vote, which is essentially how Vt. ended up with a Republican Governor.

      •  I'm against IRV (0+ / 0-)

        precisely because it takes away spoiling power. I don't get why the Greens back a plan which would make them irrelevent.

        Not that I feel that spoiler power should be used indiscriminately.

        A Senator YOU can afford
        $1 contributions only.
        Masel for Senate
        1214 E. Mifflin St.
        Madison, WI 53703

        by ben masel on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 03:27:00 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Not voting lets the Repug focus on turnout win (0+ / 0-)

      That's how they can win by catering to their base, because of Democrats who don't vote.  Just sayin'.

  •  Laws and sausages (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Moody Loner, el dorado gal

    As Bismark famously remarked, don't enquire too closely how they are made. At the moment the right strategy, or is that stratergery, for the Dems is harry the enemy. Key words corruption and incompetence. They don't need to say much more because the facts speak for themselves. The voters can see for themselves. So just keep up a harrying fire, believe me most of America is not yet focussed on this election, and bring out the big guns over the summer. The news is not going to get better, in fact there are some beuts ticking out there, like what if a bunch of congressmen and staffers get indicted, so time is on the Democrats side. When people do start to focus on the politics of all this at the end of the summer that tidal wave of disatisfaction is going to take off. The Dems are going to start rolling out their ideas over the next few months and they will get lots of exposure. Stay cool.  

  •  heartily recommended (n/t) (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Moody Loner, Steven D

    eieio

    the best lack all conviction while the worst are full of passionate intensity --w.b.yeats the second coming

    by synth on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:22:53 AM PST

  •  A-men (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oysterface, Moody Loner, Steven D, corvo

    Well stated.  They should be kicking ass and taking names.

    I'd fed up with these clowns.

  •  Ms. Pelosi, Mr. Reid, Dr. Dean: (32+ / 0-)

    If you're reading this diary, I suspect you're thinking, "But, but, but . . . they don't understand.  They just don't understand."

    And you're right -- we don't.  And the reason is, YOU HAVEN'T EXPLAINED IT TO US. Institutional vagueness is KILLING OUR PARTY.  What is our party's position on health care?  On the deficit?  On international trade?  Energy?  Pollution?  Etc., ad nauseam?  Members of our party have a thousand positions, but THE PARTY LEADERS have not asked them to unite, to compromise, to set an agenda to take to the public.  Want to know why the public believes the Democratic party stands for nothing?  Because there is no clear, agreed-upon statement of what it DOES stand for.

    SET AN AGENDA -- you're the leaders -- NOW LEAD.  PLEASE.

  •  Heresy? Is is a disaster if we don't win control? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Steven D

    Taking the long view suppose the Democrats pick  up some house and senate seats but don't win control. Is that a total disaster. Not necessarily. The Republicans are still in control and therefore ''responsible'' but their ability to actually get anything done will have been severely curtailed. Furthermore they will be running scared. And everything that goes wrong for the next two years will be their fault and believe me a lot is going to go wrong including the economy which they will not be able to spend their way out of because of the deficit. Not exactly a winning prescription for them in 08. Of course winning one or both houses and making their life a misery for two years would be better.    

  •  Don't give money to the DSC or DCC rather... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oysterface, Moody Loner, gmb, Steven D

    Give money to Dean at the DNC and specific candidates.  I am still pissed that Hacket took my 50 bucks and dropped out of the race, but I will be more carefull next time.  Giving money to the people who have taken over the Democratic party for facist interests is just stupid.

    You all have to admit, if all the crazies were not around life would have less purpose

    by genethefiend on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:31:07 AM PST

  •  I hear you . . . (8+ / 0-)

    Hey,

    I hear you, and I feel the same way.

    I've never thought of myself as a Democrat, but I've thought of myself even less of a Republican.  Having said that, I've basically voted Democrat since Ronald Regan's second term (voted for Clark when he ran the first time, big mistake!) but after what I've seen from Democratic leaders the last 5 years I'm about ready to conceed that my self described wacko leftist friends are right and that there isn't much difference between the two parties.

    When Democratic leaders stand up behind Jack Murtha and Russ Feingold I'll stand up behind the Democratic Party.  Until then, I'll consider myself an independent who pines for a viable third party candidate who espouses tradional Democratic party values and who will put up a fight against the evil men who have stolen our country.

    ~j

  •  They already lost me... (11+ / 0-)

    When they allowed these bastards to steal the election of 2000. Their retiscence to truly stand up for principle makes them really no better than those they enable by their silence.

  •  Great Letter! (18+ / 0-)

    I'm really starting to worry that we're going to be in the middle of George Allen's second term in 2014 before the DC Democrats (collectively) come to understand that this middle-of-the-road, upset-no-one, offend-no-voters, play-it-safe, Republican-lite strategy accomplishes nothing other than keeping our party in the minority.

    We don't need GOP clones. We need a friggin opposition party that stands up for the truth and for the rule of law.

    Republicans didn't win a landslide in 1994 by "getting along" with Bill Clinton. You would think more of our elected Dems would remember that.

    Bob Shrum is zero-for-eight in Presidential elections, yet he's still the flagship Democratic "consultant" in Washington these days, and I'm betting he still gets the highest fees. Why our elected Dems continue to listen to people who know nothing about winning elections is beyond me. It's like going to Michael Jackson for advice on parenting and babysitting.

    This is the political opportunity of a lifetime, and we're going to blow it (again) unless people like Evan Bayh and Hillary Clinton grow a spine instead of running for the hills the first time a Republican starts channeling Joe McCarthy.

    I'm a man who discovered the wheel and built the Eiffel Tower out of metal and brawn -- Ron Burgundy

    by IndyScott on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:33:01 AM PST

  •  Support this Resolution in your state (9+ / 0-)

    Resolved: that the Democratic Party should encourage Democratic officeholders and candidates to speak out strongly and articulately in support of Democratic principles and against the assault on American values and liberties waged by Republicans and their allies.

    We passed it in our precinct on Tuesday, and I plan on pushing it through to the State level and, if I can, beyond.

    Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

    by Phoenix Rising on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:33:05 AM PST

  •  Steven D's letter speaks for me (14+ / 0-)
    I used to be one who strongly advocated all of us working behind our DLC leaders.  Given the juggernaut, steamrolling events of the past three months, increasing in momentum by the hour these days, I can no longer support these leaders and their decisions on our behalfs.

    This diary letter to all the Dem leaders addressed herein speaks for me.  Thank you for giving me my voice to them.

    (And feeling "inspired" by seeing the movie "V for Vendetta" last evening.  Run, don't walk, to see this movie.)

  •  Some staffers better print this out (17+ / 0-)

    And wave it under their Democratic bosses noses.

    Feingold shoots up %30 just for proposing a censure of the President. His approval rate is at 34% and slowly sinking. The most common phrases associated with him in polls are "incompetent" and "liar".

    I don't know what they're playing at by not acting. But they're being either too smart or too stupid. They need to take advantage of what's going on right in front of them.

    Or they will really will lose my support, and not incidentally also risk their jobs while they're risking our country's future through inaction.

    "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

    by jbeach on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:35:06 AM PST

  •  Ignorance was bliss (17+ / 0-)

    I was an independant for years, but was always a social liberal. I voted for individuals, but found myself in agreement with Democrats most often. I only registered as a Democrat about a year ago, and since then I've volunteered with the local party and registered other voters and contributed a monthly $100 to the DNC. I've made it my business to become informed and to stay informed; I visit this site several times a day, listen to liberal talk radio, and watch the TV news shows that I can stomach (I'm not wasting my time listening to Faux).
    And I've got to say that in my case, familiarity is beginning to breed contempt. I see us "little guys" out in the trenches giving it our all, and the "face" of our party that is out there for all the world to see is not one of integrity, honor and courage. The more I've learned, and the closer attention I pay to what the Beltway Dems are saying, the more upset I become. We all know what it means to be a Democrat, and what it stands for. There is no floundering or lack of focus for those of us in the trenches -- we understand what is at stake here!  And yet we're being painted with the same namby-pamby prevaricator brush as the Dems who are supposed to be representing us. I'm sick of it, and I am just about ready to say to Hell with it and pull that monthly donation. I moved a month ago, and I've got to re-register and it is going to take every ounce of will I've got to register again as a Democrat -- and I'm only doing it so I can vote in the primaries.
    I'm middle-class, middle-aged and don't consider myself a "loony leftie" at all. I've raised a family, I've contributed to society, I've believed in an American Dream that is increasingly turning into a Nightmare and if this party's very public Washington face can't get a clue about what's happening out here to their base, then they can kiss my ass.

    •  Democrats don't have a clue about their base (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, kainah, Moody Loner, Steven D, corvo
      I saw Obama at a Cantwell campaign event last weekend at Garfield High School in the heart of liberal Seattle.  It was depressing.  Obama was engaging as always.  He's a great public speaker.  But the event was supposed to center around education (and politically, to 'reintroduce' Cantwell to the African American community in Seattle).  From the outset many of the frustrations in this diary were on display:  Cantwell was greeted with anti-war shouts and banners (the people were removed), and she tried to ignore them.  She talked about reforming education and fighting for...wait for it... Pell grants.  I mean, fuck.  Here we are in a slow motion dismantling of every democratic priciple on which this country was founded.  And Cantwell, in a tough re-election fight, in a friendly crowd, thinks she's going to get points by talking about how Pell grants are what she's fighting for.   WTF?  She barely mentioned the Republicans at all.  She's got to figure out this war vote (still saying going to war was a good idea, she is), or she's toast in November.  People are not going to go out and vote for Pell grants.  
      •  Do you (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Moody Loner

        really think that Cantwell is clueless? That's bad enough, but it could be likened to saying that Enron didn't have a clue about the suffering of Californians.

        "Live free or take it up the ass every day for the rest of your life." - Gen. John Stark, patriot

        by paraphrase on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:05:52 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Maybe I was being generous (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          paraphrase

          She's scared? incompetent? beholden to interests at odds with her base?  I have no idea.  It's completely baffling to me that she and Dems in general can't figure out that people are angry and scared and desperate for leadership. I mean, I got through college on Pell grants. But it's like saying you're pro apple pie.  Oh, and by the way, South Dakota just outlawed abortion, the president just abetted the destruction of a large American city with incompetence, and half the Republican congressmen are about to be indicted for corruption.  and you want to talk about Pell grants?  Save it.

      •  Oh, they've got a clue all right. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        paraphrase

        They just despise their base, is all.

  •  They will not lose us, we will lose them (9+ / 0-)

    The party is not the party leadership. We will replace them and build a strong Democratic Party. There is no other way out.

    . . . solutions emerge from [our] judicious study of discernible reality.

    by realitybased on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:39:21 AM PST

  •  Strong State Parties + Competitive Primaries (6+ / 0-)

    Are death sentence to the Mealy-Mouth Tyranny.

    1. No need for establishment funding.
    1. No truck with establishment candidates.
    1. No patience attall with establishment interference in local politics; ie, who runs, and runs for what office.
    1. And eventually, a federation of strong state parties will BE the new establishment.
    1. And for the same rules that made its rise inevitable and righteous, it won't have an easy time taking up the bad old habits of its predecessor.
    1. And that's a good thing.

    We're all Helens now. :)

    by cskendrick on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:39:51 AM PST

  •  My Wish (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D

    I truly wish there was a way to make our Vote + $.01 So they could just who we are,and how much we really do count as a part of the party.

    -8.63 -7.28 "I did my fighting in the street here, so they didn't have to fight them over there." AntiWar Vet.

    by OneCrankyDom on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:39:54 AM PST

  •  See, but they know better. (5+ / 0-)

    Because the very concept of the alternative is anathema to everything that is America.  The answer is not to chastise our current "leadership" but to elect the most progressive candidate possible in every election in every precinct in this country.  Let Hillary Clinton be the Ben Nelson of the party, or, better yet, let New York elect someone way more progressive.  

    We need Mr. Obama, even if we don't agree with him 100% of the time, the same as we need our misters Nelson.  The thing is, let them be the rightist fringe rather than the standard bearers.

    And, while you're at it, follow the link in my sig and help Howard take back our country.  He's never going to be president, he's advocating empowering people after all, and that power comes from those who already have it, who, in turn, makes sure that he cannot claim the seat of authority; but he can, and will, grow the Democratic party and shift us leftward again, for now as well as the generation to come.  So, if you value the core values of our nation, if you prize Democracy over Fascism, help Howard help us all.

    -8.75;-5.28. But it don't mean nuttin if you don't put your money where your mouth is

    by ultrageek on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:40:32 AM PST

  •  No, it's not (15+ / 0-)

    Our advice to you on the issues we care about has generally been dead on. Yet, for the most part you have ignored our advice.

    And that's okay.

    No, it's not okay.

    Nancy Pelosi, wake the F up. This is not loony leftie liberal talk. We're talking core Democratic values here. The bedrock of the party.

    With Bush at 33% or 37% or whatever poll you read, the fact is that a very telling MAJORITY of people disagree with BushCo and his policies. And if the average person has tuned into this and is registering disapproval, just imagine and grasp what those of us actually engaged in this shit think:

    We are sick of the cowering.

    We are sick of the flinching.

    We are sick of the recoiling.

    Grow a pair and fight the bastards already! They are wrong! The Dems are right! Say so!

    Snap out of Battered Dem Syndrome and take them on!

    "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

    by Kestrel on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:40:59 AM PST

  •  Severe Democratic Backbone Shortage (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oysterface, Moody Loner, Steven D

    There is a great supply of artificial backbones( made from chickens and hawks)bought up by the Republcians, but the Democrats backbones are nowhere in sight, though there are many reports that they are also trying to use a version of the Republicans artifial backbone.

    Please let your congressmen know that they really need to find the backbone they were given - I am sure it is nearby. They really look silly without one.

  •  Survey Letter (6+ / 0-)

    Just got one of those 'Tell Us Your Opinion' letters from the Dems (really a fundraiser}.

    My plan is to send it back without donation simply writing in "Show Some Spine" type commentary on the survey.

    Ted Hitler on bloggers: They have no credibility, all they have is facts.

    by EastFallowfield on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:43:43 AM PST

  •  Thank you (8+ / 0-)

    Yet, our so-called Democratic leaders keep their mouths shut, afraid to rock the boat, hoping that this time the Public will finally put them back in power if only they don't say anything that might be conceivably controversial. I got news for you, ladies and gentlemen in the upper echelons of the Democratic Party. You're headed for another round of election failure unless you come out fighting.

    Couldn't have said it better.  How many times can the same group try the same losing tactics over and over, and end up losing again, only to decide to try it again next time?

    Oh, this time we're going to copy their "Contract with America".  Wow, that's all you've got?  How much were your consultants paid to come up with that?

    I can appreciate that this party is more worried about substance than style.  I understand that while Democrats worry about how to make us truly safe, Republicans worry about ways to make Americans THINK they're making them safe - such as putting the president in front of a big sign that says "Making America Safer".  

    Sooner or later though you have to realize that the two biggest reasons they're smoking you are their media operation, and their ability to speak to and get out the vote of their base.  Please, stop trying to hide in a corner hoping a few independents will swing your way, become a true opposition party, fight for the things you and your base believe in.

  •  I'd settle (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, oysterface, Moody Loner, gmb

    for the idjits at least giving us the Democrats plan.  You know, like how we're different and have a better agenda than Republicans

    We can't even get that from them.

  •  Required Reading (7+ / 0-)

    I want this to be required reading for any elected Dem official who decides to post here.

    Don't get me wrong--I love reading their stuff.  But blogging is a two-way communication medium: if they're not reading what people say here, I'm not interested in what they have to say.

    Very, very well said, Steven D.

    Your president lied to me.

    by Oaklander on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:49:46 AM PST

  •  Exactly wrong. (13+ / 0-)

    You're letting their failure become your problem.

    "If you Democrats don't start leading, I'm going to withdraw from politics."

    The correct response should be

    "If you Democrats don't start leading, I'm gonna come up there and start doing the goddamn job we hired you to do, you sickening candyass."

    The Democratic Party is not a TV show to get bored of now that it's in its 217th (or whatever season).

    We're the fucking writers of this show.  If we don't like the plot, we start writing a new one.

    Anything's possible with Commander Cuckoo Bananas in charge. -Homer J. Simpson

    by Cheez Whiz on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:49:55 AM PST

    •  Katherine Harris (7+ / 0-)

      may have $10 million of her own to put into her race, but I don't and neither do most rank/file Dems.

      I totally agree that WE are the party, and that instead of bitching about it we should do our best to change it. I absolutely hate having people come up to me, the lowly volunteer at the table, and try to rip my head off over what the Beltway Dems are not doing and not saying. I urge them to become involved, etc., just like many of you are saying.

      But the bottom line is that I'm becoming truly scared that there will be nothing left of the country to try to salvage. We'll be ruled by a theocratic minority, bankrupt, without any civil liberties or personal freedoms, and with the enmity of the entire world. Can't some prominent Dems just for God's sake start speaking what I must believe is in their hearts??? Can't some prominent Dems -- who were all too willing to censure Clinton when our country was healthy --- vote to support the Feingold censure???

      I firmly believe that the Dean strategy of building from the ground up is the only way to go, but the problem is that by the time we've built there may be nothing left for our children and grandchildren.

  •  You are my hero, Steven D! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    epcraig, Steven D

    Thank you for so eloquently stating what goes through my head.  Your anger is infectious - and it is a gift!

    --- Soooo...you voted for Bush. How's that working out for you?

    by dspiewak2634 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:51:43 AM PST

  •  bloggers are (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    epcraig, Steven D

    We're ordinary Americans who believe the same things you do.

    We are NOT a paid for advertisement like most of what you see on television.  

    The force of public opinion cannot be resisted when permitted freely to be expressed. Thomas Jefferson

    by Thea VA on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:53:06 AM PST

  •  Oh DNC, Why, why, why, must you have no balls? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kestrel, Steven D, LiterateWolf

    This hits the point many of us have been arguing for the last 5 years.  

    He not busy being born is busy dying.

    by jarrrettg on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:55:12 AM PST

  •  These Are NOT ISSUES (9+ / 0-)

    It's an attack on the United States of America.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:56:15 AM PST

  •  So true with one addition: (5+ / 0-)

    Because if you don't, I'm warning you, you'll lose more than just this year's elections. You'll lose all of us too.

    And our nation, too.

  •  If the Dems lose 2006... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gmb, Steven D, LiterateWolf

    ...that's it. I'm off the fucking train. I don't care if Dems do govern better than the Reps, it doesn't make one bit of difference if they are too cowardly to get themselves elected.

    Third party, anybody?

    Thy hand, great Anarch! lets the curtain fall: And universal Darkness buries All.

    by Dunciad on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:58:29 AM PST

    •  Already there (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, Steven D

      This year will be sink or swim. Democrats will run as centrists, lose (again), and the base will either reform the party, create a 3rd party, and join the Greens.

      I recommend the centrists to join the American Centrist Party. If centrism works so well, ACP should be mainstream this year.

    •  politics contains heartbreak. 2000 was full of (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, freeyourmind

      heartbreak and that was it for me, I got off the train. The country had collapsed into madness and I moved and decided I wasn't even going to reregister to vote, because it no longer mattered.

      Then Howard Dean came along, and gave me hope, reason to get back in.  

      The problem is, I don't see another Dean on the horizon.  If the dems lose 2006, by another spineless collective campaign -- that sets up the GOP for a total steal in 2008.  It will really be over.  A 2006 loss will have a number of people off the train, and most likely, the beginnings of a new "militant" left.  Scary times.

      "pulp is fiction, blogs are hope, long live electricity"

      by dash888 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:34:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  but what if they win? (0+ / 0-)

      Will you stay "on the train," or find some new reason to hate the only party that has a chance of stopping the GOP?

      All your vote are belong to us. Warner/Feingold 2008

      by Harkov311 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:55:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  if they win (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SarahLee

        that really is the question. What if they win? I hate to say this and I hope to hell I am wrong. But I think that if the Dems win, they will disappoint all of us even more. The consultants will tell them how important it is not to rock the boat because they'll risk losing everything again in 2008. Moreover, I believe there are elements of the VRWC that believe losing one or more of the houses of Congress is the best thing that could happen to them in 2006. It will allow the 2008 Rs to bitch and moan and complain that everything that is going wrong in the country is the fault of the Ds who hold the House or the Senate or both. What Republicans do best is complain and blame the other guy. Having Ds in control of one or both houses for 2 years will give them exactly that opportunity.

        Which is not to say that I don't hope Dems take control. At the very least, we would probably get a little bit of oversight and smidgen of accountability. But I don't think it will make as much difference as a lot of people will hope for and expect ... and I am sure the Repubs will play exactly the game I outline above and I have little confidence that the Dems will see it coming and have some game plan to attack back.  

        We need not stride resolutely towards catastrophe, merely because those are the marching orders. -- Noam Chomsky

        by kainah on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:22:55 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Agreed 100% (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, cotterperson, epcraig

    The lack of anger and action by the left just shows they're not on our side. Most elected Democrats are Republicans with personaltiy disorders these days. They're not interested in rocking King George's boat -- they just want to keep their head down and get rich off their power. Democracy is a thing of the past.

    "Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere"

    by Morbo on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:59:05 AM PST

  •  Well said. (5+ / 0-)

    And they're going to lose us Decline-to-States too.

    I keep saying that just because I despise the Administration and believe that the Republican Party are fascists does not mean that the Democratic Party has a God-given right to my vote.

    The Dem leadership seems to think that they can just cower in the corner or worse, Lieberman or Feinstein their way through their terms supporting Republican fascism, then expect me to vote for them because they're not Republicans.

    Well, I have news for you. I'll vote third-party or get on the ballot and write myself in before I put a Weimar Dem in power. This means you, Feinstein.

    And, yes, I'd like permission to use this as an LTE - and post it at Electronic Darwinism,  crediting you.

  •  Yawn. You can almost set your watch to it. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jonathan, Pandora, BWasikIUgrad, Harkov311

    The once a week screed that trashes the party leaders and "threatens" them with loss of support.

    Do you really think they care about these threats?  I don't.

    I mean, you threaten them with losing this year's elections.  When was the last time they WON one?

    In order for your threat to mean anything, it has to be able to have some leverage.  What leverage do we have over a bunch of losers?

    I happen to agree, by the way.  The leadership is bullshit.

    But no one single diary on dKos spewing idle threats is going to change that.

    If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

    by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:00:51 AM PST

    •  But I think you may agree (4+ / 0-)

      that our Democratic leaders' collective inaction is even more of a crisis today than previously.  We have financial ruin, international ostracism, and executive lawlessness.

      I agree that the carrot works better than the stick.  But these threats aren't all idle.  Disenchantment is what will keep us from winning big in November.  I lost a Precinct Leader of 20 years recently, because as she put it "What's the point?"

      Angie and Bill: Colorado's bright future!

      by ubikkibu on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:09:14 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I guess I'm trying to figure out... (4+ / 0-)

        ...what the diarist wants done.

        As has been pointed out umpteen times, the Democrats are the party in the minority.  So their leverage over "financial ruin, international ostracism, and executive lawlessness" is pretty much nil.  They have no control over the levers of government.

        And since it's currently March, approximately eight months before the Congressional elections, I'm not sure you can say that Democrats will lose the election unless they stand up NOW.

        I guess that's the difference I see. Do I want the leadership to grow some balls? Yes.

        But I want them to grow them with approximately four months to go the election, not eight.  When everybody is paying attention and ready to go to the polls.

        If they don't then, well...that's when I worry.

        Also, the diarist, like many, exaggerate saying the only three people in the party worth a damn are Feingold, Conyers and Murtha.  

        That's ridiculous.  Just because a few at the top of the party didn't jump on Feingold's censure immediately doesn't mean the rest of the party is crap.

        I mean, for crying out loud, even KUCINICH is saying we should investigate first, not censure first.

        That's what I mean by the weekly screed. And why I pay less and less attention to them.

        In other words, you're losing ME from these kinds of rants.  

        Good to clense yourself of rage...not good for much else.

        If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

        by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:19:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  exactly (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wmtriallawyer

          Maybe I just don't get mad very easily, but I just don't share this frustration.  Maybe I've just gotten good at suppressing it from living in a state run mostly by Republicans.

          I grow rather tired of the windmill-tilting rants about leaving the party or withholding money.  Yeah, cause you know, THAT'S gonna really help us get back the majority.

          I think you pretty much nailed it here:

          Also, the diarist, like many, exaggerate saying the only three people in the party worth a damn are Feingold, Conyers and Murtha.  

          That's ridiculous.  Just because a few at the top of the party didn't jump on Feingold's censure immediately doesn't mean the rest of the party is crap.

          I mean, for crying out loud, even KUCINICH is saying we should investigate first, not censure first.

          Be angry people.  But direct you ire where it truly belongs: at the GOP, for getting us in this whole damn mess.

          All your vote are belong to us. Warner/Feingold 2008

          by Harkov311 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:38:34 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Your questioning the timing? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee, Steven D, corvo

          WTF is that about? You think the public will be paying more attention in July, when their all on their weekly vacations in their crappy beachhouses or lake cabins chasing ham and cheese sandwhiches and doritos with Budweiser? Or in August when their busy buying school supplies and having those end of summer cookouts? Or maybe September when they start running all of the kids to football or track practice, attending PTA meetings (where I'm sure there will be some sort of anti-sex education or pro-intelligent design motion to consider), and organizing car washes to buy new band uniforms.

          It's not about timing. It's about a relentless fucking drum: week after week, month after month. How many corruption scandals, how many bad pieces of legislation proposed and/or passed at the behest of the American Taliban does it take to get this? Tired of being in the minority, then don't just sit there and wait for the other guys to self destruct, because even if they do, most of the public won't know it. These are the same people who don't even know who the fuck Karl Rove is. Don't have a clue about committee structures in Congress. Will hear Dubya and Co. spout skewed statistics about how good the economy really is - even if they can barely pay their own bills - and how the Democrats have no plan, their just a bunch of anti-troop, pro-baby killing, gay loving, terrorist appeasers. And they'll buy it.

          Every Democrat in the Senate should support the censure resolution, loudly. They should hold townhall meetings about it and the reasons for it. They should shut down the Senate until they get a real freaking investigation.

          If they can't do it, I agree with Steve D, they will not get my vote in November.

          'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

          by Whigsboy on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:00:13 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  they better get some practice in (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Meteor Blades, SarahLee, Steven D, corvo

          But I want them to grow them with approximately four months to go the election, not eight.  When everybody is paying attention and ready to go to the polls.

          The only problem with that is that these guys haven't stood up to anyone for such a long time, they have no familiarity with the feeling anymore. If they wait until four months out to start standing up and yelling, you can bet that they won't begin to feel comfortable with that posture until way too late.

          We need not stride resolutely towards catastrophe, merely because those are the marching orders. -- Noam Chomsky

          by kainah on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:27:17 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Easier to get and keep the voters' ... (4+ / 0-)

          ...attention in September if you can point back to nine and six and three months before September when the party leadership actually stood solidly on something those voters might care about. Instead, we dieharders have to explain away weakness on Iraq, Roberts, Alito, NSA and censure, just to name a few.

          What I keep hearing - and I'm getting fed up with hearing it - is that the Dems should avoid having a specific plan, whether that's an exit plan for Iraq or a plan for doing anything. We say we're not the GOP, not the GOP-Lite, but where's the friggin' beer?

          Instead, we're supposed to just hope that Republican incompetence and the Throw the Bums Out slogan will carry the party to victory come November.

          I don't buy it. Much as the leadership - and a lot of the elected rank-and-file Dems piss me off - I hope they win. But they're making it extremely hard for those of us in the trenches - you know, who do precinct work - to craft a message beyond the GOP is corrupt and incompetent, elect Democrats, trust us, we'll be different. As Markos notes in his Il.-06 post today, malaise may mean the Dems don't do so well in November. Then what? No plan until after the elections of '08?

    •  Boy, you ain't kidding (0+ / 0-)

      And the interesting thing is, it really doesn't matter what the topic.  Every time "The Democrats" fail to live up to expectations, you have a slew of people threatening to "leave" the Party.  It seems that some are die-hard adherents to the "let's hang separately, rather than hang together" idea.

      Of course, half of those people were never "with" the Party to begin with, and a fair number of THAT are just here to stir things up.  I'm sure it's not lost on most here that one of the best ways to defeat your enemy is to divide and demoralize them.

      Here's the bottom line: there are ways to enact change, both within the Party and the country at large.  Some more effective than others.  Most will take some time.

      Abandoning the Party, leaving it to the consultants and the Party insiders who succeed and get rich regardless of whether the Party wins or loses, is not one of them.  That way leads to one thing: an ossified Democratic Party, a permanently marginalized progressive movement, and a country that will only turn around when the right wing of the Republican Party decides it's time for that to happen.

  •  The contrast between Prez Carter and... (14+ / 0-)

    the Beltway Dems shows the true poverty of the latter group.  Prez Carter truly understands what we're up against right now--he made that fact clear in his post today and on so many other occasions.

    Why have so many Dems become so confrontation-averse?  Why are they so unwilling to call a spade a spade?  Is it that hard to say that W isn't above the law?  Is there any reason not to make an issue about this WH's brazen violations of FISA?

    There's a party chairman who is willing to stand and be counted.  There's a Senate leader who is usually willing to stand up and be counted.  There's a House leader who's occasionally willing to stand up and be counted.  Unfortunately, there are caucuses in both houses that are, as often as not, unwilling to stand up and be counted.

    It has now been 11 days since RF went on "This Week."  He still has the same 2 co-sponsors now that he had about a week ago.  Conyers has had impeachment and censure resolutions pending for weeks now, and he has roughly 30 members willing to join him.

    There were countless Dems who were willing to censure Clinton for lying under oath in a deposition.  Why is there not a similar (if not larger) # of Dems who are willing to censure W for a far more egregious violation of the law?  Why is there not the sense of outrage that Roberts is visibly stonewalling any attempts to investigate this crime?

    I'm w/ you 100%, Steven.

    Some men see things as they are and ask why. I see things that never were and ask why not?

    by RFK Lives on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:03:55 AM PST

  •  AMEN! (13+ / 0-)

    It's not just lefties who are fed up with the "Washington Generals". There are plenty of people from the entire spectrum who are AGHAST at the Republican corruption and arrogance, the shredding of our Constitution, and the destruction of the environment that this regime has committed.

    GET PISSED, PELOSI.
    SEE RED, REID.

    NOW.

    WTF are you waiting for? Are you waiting for Bush to launch an attack on Iran? Are you waiting for Tom Delay to commit murder?

    Your country needs you, if you keep up the "don't act up, someone will say you're angry" BS, you are making yourselves IRRELEVANT.

    You should be PROUD to be angry. You should be proud to be castigated by the bastards who dragged us into Iraq on a pack of lies. You should wear their ire as a badge of honor.

    Its SHAMEFUL when you let those people keep getting away with murder.

    SHAME.

    The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has limits. - Albert Einstein

    by racerx on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:05:54 AM PST

  •  i agree (4+ / 0-)

    with what u said. i am disgusted by the democratic leadership's weak and shoddy responses to these serious problems. they

  •  ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D
    are gutless.
  •  Who are you all kidding? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wmtriallawyer, Harkov311
    Every one of you are going to vote and you're going to vote straight Democrat right down the line. We'll know the party has "lost" you when you quit posting here.

     

    "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended." George W. Bush, May 1, 2003

    by Jim Riggs on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:17:42 AM PST

    •  sorry but you are wrong. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, cotterperson, Steven D

      I'm not voting for Casey Jr. I've said it many times here and I don't care if people think I'm an idiot. I HAVE in the past voted straight Democratic. Last year I mixed in a few Greens in local races.

      •  If you say so I'll believe you, (0+ / 0-)
        but the way I look at it is I can't afford to have those kind of principles at the moment. I'm not even a Democrat and there are a few of them that I can't fucking stand to listen to, but that's what I'm doing. I'll worry about the consequences later. You either believe the GOP is trying to hijack the country or you don't. I do.

         

        "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended." George W. Bush, May 1, 2003

        by Jim Riggs on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:34:02 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  the GOP has already hi-jacked the country (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SarahLee

          even with me voting a straight Dem ticket for almost 30 years. Even with me compromising what I believe in year after year after f'ing year. You do what you think is best; I'll do the same. I believe in choice.

          •  Me too, and right now my choice is... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wmtriallawyer
            ...NO to ALL Republicans. I live in a red area and even though I don't post here much I visit every day. I steal all of you're great ideas and hard work and then I post it on a local forum, and I've changed a few minds. But some of the diaries I read here are people bitching and moaning that the Dems in office don't vote the straight party line on all sorts of issues. And then I read a thread like this where you want to base your vote a your own principles. The worse part is that it gets RECOMMENDED. You're just as bad as they are. If you want to leave then STFU and do it so a better diary can get recommended. Do you want to change the party now, or do you want to elect the party now?

             

            "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended." George W. Bush, May 1, 2003

            by Jim Riggs on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:02:44 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  why not start your own blog (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SarahLee

              if you think everyone that dosen't agree with you should STFU and/or should not be able to recommend any diary they want to?

              •  I don't have to start a blog. (0+ / 0-)
                This is an open letter to the Democratic party. I hope they read it. I've never been a partisan type person, but it seems to me that you can't be much of a Democrat if you can't rally behind the party now. And if you're not a Democrat then why should they worry about losing you?

                 

                "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended." George W. Bush, May 1, 2003

                by Jim Riggs on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:24:00 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  sheesh (4+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  paraphrase, SarahLee, Steven D, corvo

                  I just love being lectured by someone who admits they are not a Democrat about how to be a good little Democrat: give me your vote, give me your ATM card, and then STFU. You want loyalty at any price; you don't care about principles; heck your not even a partisan! Good greif man! A party that will not stand up to the party in power when they have totally demolished everything I believe in is a party that doesn't deserve my support. You wanna support them, fine. But I'm sick of the "there is no other choice" blackmail. They pull it over and over again.

                  Look, when the Republican base screams and threatens, Miers changes to Alito and the ports deal is sunk. When the Democratic Party's base screams and threatens, they are "children who pout and take threaten to take their marbles home." And you think I should respect that they bash the messenger rather than take the base seriously? You think I should respect your argument because you try to bully me by saying I'm not much of a Democrat?

                  If they don't want me, let them tell me so. Let's hear it from leadership! If you don't vote a straight Dem ticket, we don't want you, your vote, your voice, or your money. Yeah, I can't wait to hear them tell me that in public.

    •  Yes, I'm going to vote. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      oysterface, blueoasis

      And, if Democrats earn my vote, I may vote for them.

      Otherwise, I'll go through the list of candidates and pick the one that pisses me off the least, or vote for myself, or vote for Cthulhu.

      My vote is not a given. I'd be doing a grave disservice to those that died to give me that right if I made it so.

  •  THE PARTY IS OVER (6+ / 0-)

    Intelligent diary. No point in going door to door when you wind up with pompous, chicken-shit lemmings representing you. Sad that impeachment proceedings start 3 years after the war in tiny towns in Vermont. Conyers tried to enter into impeachment hearings at least a year ago - where were his democraptic colleagues? Hiding under their desks. I should raise money for those sorry jackals? I got Coke or Pepsi to choose from. Now is the time for our elected leaders to lead.  They aint home.

  •  Seriously... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, mataliandy, epcraig

    It's way past fucking ridiculous.

    Get busy livin, or get busy dyin...

    by Captain Doug on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:31:30 AM PST

  •  It amazes me... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, mataliandy, epcraig

    that the establishment Dems keep listening to the same consultants who have given them bad advice since 1994.  You would think that they would catch on - stop listening to the people who give you bad advice over and over again.  

    Would you keep hiring a handyman whose repairs failed to hold?  No. No sane person would.

    The Dems are either really dumb or they don't want power - they are happy where they are.

    Any party that would lie to start a war would also steal an election.

    by landrew on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:34:39 AM PST

  •  Not just 'Yes' but 'Hell, Yes!' (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, cotterperson, epcraig

    Thanks for this--agree, agree.  I had a call from the DCCC for money this morning and I told them I'd be making my decisions and donations based on action, and for some reports of that action back to the electorate via the blogosphere.  They didn't seem to have a check box for that response.

    The loyal opposition is neither.  But then,when your full-time House of Representatives (the people's chamber) meets for only three of twelve months, how much can one expect?

    "Never think you've seen the last of anything." --Eudora Welty

    by gazingoffsouthward on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:36:10 AM PST

  •  Send this to the Dems in Congress (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, epcraig

    Send this letter to all of the Dems in Congress.  It absolutely sums up everything I'm feeling about the Party I have been so loyal to.

  •  Democracy bonds (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mataliandy, corvo

    I posted about cancelling mine last week and was beaten over the head by the Kossacks here. Just keep sending them money and don't hold them accountable I believe was the message I was sent. Oh, and that I'm a stupid...

  •  Is Kos part of the problem? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    epcraig, zappini, Steven D, corvo

    I visit this site religiously and agree with much that has been written by Kos et al, but, I'm starting to believe they've become part of the problem.  No matter how chicken shit the party is, they only try to change/sway it.  In other words, they remain loyal to the band of losers.  A party should stand for something at a time of crisis, not stand by and hope for the best.  Bloggers should be organizing pressure groups that say, change or we're leaving--sort of what the conservatives did in the '60's in NY.  They threatened to splinter the Republican party, and ended up runnung the show.

    How could Dinos like Joementum be allowed to remain in the party at this time?  Dems have no discipline--and therefore, deserve no respect.  Pelosi seems to want us to be the "not them" choice.  It ain't enough.  So, this letter should not only be read by the party leaders, but by the blog writers as well.  They are in the position to save our country, and that's more important than saving our party.

    •  Don't know whether 2006 or 2008 is my limit (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, epcraig, zappini, Steven D
      For sure if we don't have a strong Democratic Presidential candidate in 2008 I'll be gone and looking for a 3rd party.  I think millions more will be looking to form one as well.  Perhaps a handful of our favorite Dem officeholders and Governor Dean will join us.

      Saying this as a current delegate to my own State Dem Party.

      •  We don't have that long! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cotterperson, epcraig
        I hate to sound like a defeatist (I don't think all is lost just yet) but I really don't think we have that long. They are eroding everything that makes our Democracy great at a truly alarming rate and I would venture to guess that if something doesn't change soon, we wont have a Democracy to stand up for. I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiment of this diary (and wrote a very similar letter myself last week). The Democratic "leadership" better figure it out and fast or we're fucked.

        "There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action." Johann Von Goethe

        by green917 on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 07:03:34 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Steven D (6+ / 0-)

    Your diary is fantastic!  Thanks for writing it.  You have expressed just what I have been feeling for so long.

    I feel like a broken record, saying how this republicant administration is like a loaded freight train out of control.

    I SO wish that the Dems would just make it STOP!  Every time more legislation is passed, more damage is done to our country and our constitution.  At least if the gov't was shut down, nothing further would be destroyed....or put at risk.

    I also think that you give Harry Reid too much credit.  Yes, he's had a couple of shining moments, but he's not nearly as consistent as he should be.  After all, what HAS he done with regard to the Phase II investigation since calling for the "special session"?  I recall that Senator Stonewall (Roberts) "promised" to have the "results" of Phase II into the Dems' hands within 2 weeks of that day....it's been, what?  MONTHS!  And no follow up from Reid???

    That, to me, is WAY too inconsistent.  Harry needed to come forward, on the 14th day of waiting, and call ANOTHER special session to find out what the results were.  

    Not doing anything is sending the wrong message to these republicants...and further enabling them to "stonewall" and lie and continue ignoring their oversight responsibilities.

  •  Hey Peeder (0+ / 0-)

    Weirdness I've never seen. Comment thread is lying underneath the right-hand column of Menu, Diaries, Recommend, etc. The columns are superimposed on top of the comments thread with little Rate All buttons punctuating the whole mess. Never seen anything like it. I'm Windows XP and Mozilla 5.0.

    "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

    by Kestrel on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:49:11 AM PST

  •  You're spitting into the wind. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, mataliandy, corvo

    They don't care.  After a flurry of activity on this blog, where leaders in the House and Senate have posted here, they have been silent.  Ever since Feingold put forward his motion on censure, there has not been a single response from them, in my memory (correct me if I am wrong).

    Most have said that they are 'shocked' that Feingold didn't include them.  That it was a surprise.  Well Boo-fucking-hoo.  It isn't about YOUR GODDAMN EGO!  It is about the Republic as we know it.

    I am sad to say that most of the posters on this blog have reached the level of complete cynicism that I was at in the summer of 2004.  Back then, everybody was cheery and optimistic about the prospects of Kerry.  Yet Kerry continued the same mealy-mouthed campaign where The Criminal punched him in the mouth every time he had a chance.  Kerry did not come out and outright condemn the Swift Boat Propaganda Crew and for that he lost the election (which he deserved to loose, because he demonstrated he could not stand up to the right-wing noise machine).  Old history, yeah, but it hasn’t change.  They are clinically insane – doing the same thing over and over again – expecting different results.

    "[A] 'Sharecropper's Society' [is] precisely where our trade policies, supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, are taking us." - Warren Buffet

    by RichM on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:53:12 AM PST

  •  I just wish one democratic elected official (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Steven D

    when told over and over again "you Democrats have no plan or strategy" by the republicans, the elected official would stand up to them and say "Whatever you Republicans stand for in a plan or strategy, to save America, my plan and or strategy will be the exact opposite of what you want to do. Why can't these Democrats start getting tough?

  •  You are right, but you are wrong (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wmtriallawyer, Harkov311

    You are right on all of the merits, but wrong on the timing.

    It is too soon for the Democrats to play their trump cards. Most voters won't be paying attention until September, at the earliest. We need to save our loudest voices and most cogent arguments for the time when it counts.

    Because none of your good ideas get done unless we win in November.

    The groundwork is being done. Patience.

    I am the federal government.

    by mateosf on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 11:59:14 AM PST

    •  Why is it so hard... (0+ / 0-)

      ...for most people NOT to get this point?

      It is too soon for the Democrats to play their trump cards. Most voters won't be paying attention until September, at the earliest. We need to save our loudest voices and most cogent arguments for the time when it counts.

      If I can't dance, it's not my revolution.

      by wmtriallawyer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:18:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'll tell you why (8+ / 0-)
        Because every day that the Dems "keep their powder dry," another atrocity slips past.  Have the consequences of "going along until the timing is right" not made themselves patently apparent to you yet?  In what civics class did you learn that democracy is elections?

        What gives you any confidence that the Democratic leaders to whom this eloquent plea is addressed will ever pounce?  What is "the right time?"

        The time is now.

        Some things are not for sale. Send the Republicans home in 2006.

        by The Termite on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:30:26 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Golden bullets get one chance to work. (8+ / 0-)

        An unrelenting, long-term barrage has better odds.

        Hey hey, ho ho, irresponsible corporatism and social intolerance have got to go! Hey hey, ho ho!

        by kfractal on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:57:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That logic would be a lot more convincing ... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SarahLee, cotterperson, Steven D, corvo

        ... if the Democratic leadership had some recent history of actually playing their trump cards in the elections of 2000, 2002, and 2004.

        OK, all right, I get it. Timing is important. But geez, how long is it going to take before the Democrats in Congress (and elsewhere) rise up and provide real leadership? That means being an opposition party even when you know you won't win every argument. We can't simply count on the GOP to self-destruct. That's been tried, and it's failed miserably as a strategy. As Robert Strauss said after the 2002 mid-term bloodletting, "We got what we deserved. We can either stand for something and win or lose. Or we can stand for nothing and lose." All I know is that I'd feel much less anxious if there were ANY signs of life in Clinton, Pelosi, Reid, and the rest of that whole wimpy crew.

        Leadership means offering alternatives to Rethuglican fear-mongering and greed. It means having ideas and proposing progressive solutions to controversial problems (like immigration reform), finding a reasonable compromises, and caring more about what policies work for most people than worrying about ideological purity or whether this or that position might just possibly offend Terry Rakolta in Bloomfield Heights, Michigan. You "Married with Children" fans know what I mean.

      •  Uh...maybe it's because? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cotterperson

        They didn't play any trump cards in 2000.  They didn't play any trump cards in 2002.  They didn't play any trump cards in 2004.

        I don't think they have any trump cards.

      •  I get it, but it's immoral. (0+ / 0-)

        The deaths in Iraq proceed apace. How many lives does it cost each day? How many freedoms?

        Democrats in office NOW are obliged to " ... provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity ...."

        They took an oath, they've broken it, people are dying, and our democracy is racing toward bankruptcy -- poof! gone! -- as Dems wait for the moment. It is not only blood on their hands, it is the fall of our democracy.

        What is so hard to understand about that?

  •  All I'm asking of our elected leaders. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, cotterperson, Steven D, corvo

    Simply put, all I'm asking is for them to lead or get out of the way and make room for those who will actually stand up for what they believe. If the doomsayers are correct and we're headed for one-party rule, the least we can do is fight them every inch of the way. There's no guarantee of victory or of defeat but there is the knowledge that if we shut our mouths and do nothing then we've lost for sure.

    It's the beat generation, it's be-at, it's the beat to keep, it's the beat of the heart, it's being beat and down in the world and like all time low-down

    by Splicer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:01:39 PM PST

    •  One-Party Rule (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SarahLee, cotterperson, corvo

      You should check out an old book "Indispensible Enemies," which describes how the Big Two rely on each other to keep them both in power.

      I'm doubtful the powerholders are going to allow the Democratic Party to go under. They need two parties to keep We The People at each other's throats, while Democrats and Republicans also need each other. Partisanship is a lot about identity. Democrats and Republicans define themselves in terms of each other. Neither one would know who they were without the other.

      On the other hand, if one of the two collapsed, perhaps the other would necessarily follow. Then we would have no-party rule, which would suit me just fine.

  •  There are also a great many who are not Democrats (6+ / 0-)

    but instead are Independents, like myself, who have been driven to the Democrats because of the perfidy of the Republicans. This is your opportunity to capture me and keep me. I've not been an activist, I've not registered voters for you, I've not driven people to the polls.

    This last election was the first time I've ever done anything active. I worked for an independent organization monitoring polling places. I didn't feel comfortable taking a truly partisan stand. For the first time in my life I put up a yard sign and for the first time in my life I had a bumper sticker. They showed my support for Kerry.

    If you don't take this opportunity and show leadership, show vision, show backbone, then you may lose me again. If the Republicans can clean up their act and kick out the radicals, if they can come back to more rational policies, I may actually vote Republican again. At this moment I can't imagine doing that. If you want to make sure I continue to not imagine doing that, then you need to get up off of your wool-suited, overpriced-consulted butts and show me the leadership!  

    Make me want to be a Democrat. Right now an awful lot of us are willing to vote against the Republicans. That's the only reason I see to be a Democrat these days. I'd love it, be thrilled by it, if you could show me a real reason to join a party.

    I know you can do it, just try it.

    Plane

    "It is hard to fight anger, for a man will buy revenge with his soul." Heracleitus, 500 BCE

    by PlaneCrazy on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:25:22 PM PST

  •  I'm only here 'cause Dean is here. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, gmb, epcraig, Steven D, corvo

       News flash, they lost me already.  I vote Bernie.  The ONLY reason I take Dems. seriously is Dean showed me how weak the party is and how easy it is to take over with a few simple ideas.  Hillary doesn't have my vote to loose.  Neither does Warner, Obama, Generic Dem., or anybody.  Think what you want about it.  Call me a deanie baby or any other dismissive thing you want but I could not vote for Kerry.  He did not earn my vote apposing this administration.  I will not fall in love then fall in line, sorry Bill.  

       At the same time my vote is up for grabs.  I am casting about for a pol I can vote for and maintain some self respect.  At this stage, that means a fighter.  I am the base.  I am a Dean Democrat.  I demand more from my representatives.  I won't call them leaders.  We are the leaders.  They just represent us.

    •  OK, but what are you doing about it? (0+ / 0-)

      I don't think you will get far by just demanding.

      •  Good question, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cotterperson

        I volunteer with the local Dems in the town where I work.  We use public acess cable to produce local media.  I keep my VT registration so I can vote for Bernie, Pat, Jim, Howard and all the other Vt'ers saving the country.  I watch the Kos to keep an idea of developing CW in the progressive netroots.  I plan my summer arround the yearly Kos.  I call and write my reps.  I donate a little but I spread it arround in small dollars.  I think of it as paying 10 dollars to express my opinion and maybe through collective action be heard.  I've tried to raise awreness about the war, my own and others, through participation in slow walk and candle light vigil.  I think of this level of participation as a minimum requirement for the privilage of living in America.  In return for being an active citizen I feel justified in expecting my government to function.

  •  So what do we do? (4+ / 0-)

    This diary is so right on, but it also begs the question: what do we do about it? This fantastic two party system of ours has forced us into the same problem election after election: voting for tweedledum or tweedledummer (with attribution to Ani Difranco). My frustration level increases daily and I honestly see no way that it can get better. So I go on complainig, writing the occasional email to my Republican Senators who could give two shits about what a Democratic-leaning Independent says, but I see no real solution on the horizon.

    This censure resolution was the chance for the Democrats to give me some hope, to demonstrate that they get it. But, yet again, disappointment reigns.

    Your diary is fantastic, Steve. I'd give it 100 recommends if I could. I just don't know what we can do about it (although the few bits of the optimist left in me says everybody who reads it should, as somebody else suggested, send the URL to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi - with a wink and a cc to Russ Feingold!!).

    'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

    by Whigsboy on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:33:54 PM PST

    •  I'll let you know (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, epcraig

      If there is a solution, I think it's Out There, not In Here.  I think it's to be found among the majority of voters who are not partisan and who are turned off by partisanship.  The partisans have a stranglehold on the political process now, and they've disenfranchised the rest of us.

      What we need is an effective vehicle for non-partisan political involvement.  My goal is to build one.  I don't know if I build it, they will come.  But I'm going to find out.

      I'll let you know.

      •  Thanks (0+ / 0-)

        I would like to get involved in something like this. Tough when wife and I both work and have two very young kids to even find time, so if others get the ball rolling, I'd love to participate in any way I can.

        'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

        by Whigsboy on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 05:42:29 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I just got a call from the DCCC for $$$ (8+ / 0-)

    I told them (not in so many words) to shove it. It's not that I don't support taking back the control, it's not that I don't support Democratic ideals. But I wanted to send a message. I wanted to tell them that until they start standing up and speaking out, until they stop being so wishy-washy, they're not going to get one thin dime from me.
    Some of you (I'm sure) will disagree. There are a lot of people here who are like the mainstream Dems in Washington - don't rock the boat, take back control and THEN we can rock the boat.
    To that I say
    BULLSHIT.
    John Conyers is standing up, Russ Feingold is standing up. But they have little support from the rest of the Dems. If Dems want my money, let them also understand that I'm not going to give them my hard-earned money until they start listening! I am sick and tired of getting PR missives and campaign letters (either via email or hard copy via snail mail with pleas for my cash) when they don't stand up for what I want. If they don't answer emails, telephone calls and then don't vote, or stand up to be counted on important issues, why should I believe that they have MY interests at heart? You want my money? Get a backbone and stand up against Bush. Stand up for censure, stand up against Alito (oops, too late!). Stand up and be counted. All Democrats should be voting as one - whatever the R's put out there, we should vote against. Sure, maybe the R's have control, but at least we'll see that Dems are voting for what the people want. That maybe they're listening. It's my opinion that if people start seeing the Dems stand up, they'll realize that they're fighting. (And yes, I realize the Traditional Media squashes some of their message. But think what would happen if the Dems stood tall, voted time and time again aganst the crap the R's are putting out there. They'd get coverage).
    So right now? Sorry. I know the guy on the phone was just working a phone bank. But I told him that I wanted him to tell his supervisor to tell Nancy Pelosi WHY I wasn't giving right now.
    When he asekd if he could call back in a few months, I said sure. If I see action on the part of the Dems, I'll consider it. But you tell them if they want my money, they're going to have to work for it!

    All Truth is non-partisan

    by MA Liberal on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:36:02 PM PST

    •  You know, (0+ / 0-)

      I had that conversation almost word for word in 2002, I swear.  That poor guy on the phone.  I just went on and on about the Dems voting for Bush's tax cuts and backing his desire to go kill people in the middle east.  At the time, the key cringers were Daschle and Gephardt.

      Deja vu.

  •  Well said (6+ / 0-)

    Gotta say, I agree with everything you said - it expresses my frustrations perfectly.  I have been chewing out people calling my home soliciting donations for the National and Ohio Democratic Parties, and I have been telling them to go pound salt until they are willing to show me they can handle the job. I have been very enthusiastic about Senator Feingold - he's got my vote for president. I cannot believe that he and Tom Harkin seem to be alone in thinking the motion for censure is a necessity. I think, truly, censure is too soft...I want a God-damned impeachment of Bush and Cheney. Those bastards are ruining my country. I'm about ready to create my own party and run for office myself due to my frustration with the current Dem's - they are acting like such a bunch of pussies. Amazing how little care they seem to have for the rights of those of us who get them elected. If I ran, I would say I'm a liberal, damn proud of it, and that I would protect the Constitution and country first, then my constituents.  Apparently the current bunch has forgotten what they swore to do.  

  •  Yeah. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, epcraig, Steven D, corvo
    So, Dem leaders:  how about some goddamn representation?

    I've been patient since the November 04 elections.  I'm done being patient.  I've been doing my part since then, as well.  How about you folks start doin' your part?

    Goddammit.

    "People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people."- "V" in "V for Vendetta

    IMPEACH Bush

    by smugbug on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 12:51:26 PM PST

  •  Your loosing me (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson

    Your loosing me too!! When are we going to shout, march, protest - make them hear us.

  •  Dems in for RUDE AWAKENING in 2006 and 2008 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mataliandy, corvo, blueoasis

    I've never voted for a Republican in my life.
    But this November  --I refuse 100% to vote for
    any Democratic candidate in 2008 with the possible exception of Russ Feingold. (OK, yes, I will vote
    for Russ if he's on the ballot)... but if Hillary
    is the Demo nominee, then I relish NOT voting for her... ditto just about every other Democratic candidate.  I would rather have another skanky
    Republican in office who will further destroy America, then to have a lame Republican-light Democrat in office who will just be more of the same.  The way I figure it, if the there's no Democrat who will REALLY make a difference, then we might as well vote in Republicans and let them really total annihilate the middle class  --it will be just the jarring that the middle class needs to wake up politically.  The Republicans are like locusts  --they can't help themselves.  They're soo greedy... and they'll destroy middle-class America, something I look forward to as the beginning point of a new era of citizen involvement in the body politic of this nation.

    Voting Democratic is a waste of a vote.

    Dan in Baltimore

  •  There is a time (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    epcraig

    To speak up...

    and a time to shut up and let the party that is drowning drown.

    The Republicans are jyst DYING for the Democrats to come out and do ANYTHING that will draw the public focus away from the Bush Administrations incompetance and the Republican Party's corruption.

    YOu are looking for theatrics rather than subvstance.

    Shut down the Senate...

    For what...

    Even the OPINION that the:

    Then shut down the Senate until you get real investigations of the administration's illegal surveillance programs and its misuse of intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war. Use the word impeachment in every other sentence that comes out of your mouth. Let America know where you stand.

    Is an OPINION.

    until the courts rule on the legality or illegality, any such action could EASILY backfire and cost DEMOCRATS the 2006 election. It has been responding to the likes of people who exect such theatrics that cost the election in 2002 and 2004.

    In fact, the Democrats might just be better off LOSING those who expect emotional reactions rather than a well planned assault.

    When we have the house, then we can talk about IMPEACHMENT, because then and only then will we have the power to investigate and MORE the power to subpoena ANYONE.

    What you want is a minority circle jerk.

    •  Wake me when the well-planned assault is ready (0+ / 0-)

      Wake me when the well-planned assault is ready to kick off, unless Bush dies of old age first.

      Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will pick himself up and continue on. --Winston Churchill

      by rmwarnick on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 09:04:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  One reason Kerry lost in 2004 (0+ / 0-)

        Was Dean's rather open entry into the campaign, attacking other democrats LONG before any of them started to run.

        By the time of the actual campaign season, the strategies of EVERY possible democrat who could have ben the nominee were well known to the Bush Administration, but no one knew how Bush was going to run.

        WHtever the strategy is, they are not going to let anyone know until the candidates are actually squared of and running against each other, and so have less time and resources to work up a counter attack.

        Remember THESE are these are the polling statistics right now:

            .
         
        "To begin, suppose the elections for U.S. CONGRESS were being held TODAY. Would you vote for the Republican Party's candidate or the Democratic Party's candidate for Congress in your district?" If other/unsure: "As of TODAY, do you LEAN more toward the Republican or the Democrat?" Options rotated. N=891 registered voters; MoE ± 4 (for all voters).

            .
         
        epublican Democrat Other (vol.)/
        Unsure    
         % % %    
        ALL reg. voters 39 50 11    
          Republicans 90 4 6    
          Democrats 3 94 3    
          Independents 31 47 22  

        Same old Same old.

        Democrats are firmly aligned to support ANY Democratic Candidate.

        Republicans are FIRMLY going to support Republicans.

        BUT independendents who make up 30 percent of the population are beggining to leean MUCH more heavily towards the DEmocratic Patry than they did in the 2004 election when there were only a few percentage point difference in support.

        Whatever the plan, the Democrats WILL NOT offend the independents, who tend to be very, very centrist.

        And indies are not going to support those screaming censure or impeach or even get out of Iraq immediately.

  •  The Latest Missteps (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, epcraig, corvo

    A few days ago I got a fund-raiser from the NC Democratic Party over Nancy Pelosi's signature with stamped on the envelope "Second Notice" as if it were a bill.  If the Democrats are engaged in this sort of stupidity, they should stop.

    If the Republicans are spoofing Democratic fundraising mail, they should be nailed.

    Then, every week I get unsolicited phone calls from one Democratic committee or another.  They are annoying and they will not get me to contribute more than I already am contributing.

    I can tolerate the tons of Democratic spam in my email because I signed various petitions; often they have interesting update information.

    But I will not respond to messages that come across with the arrogance of the "Second Notice" mailing and the frequent phone solicitation.  Not to mention that I suspect some dirty tricks or fraud is going on in some of these calls.

  •  It's not about 'making the party stronger' (5+ / 0-)

    It's about making the Party Leadership better.

    Every Democrat here is helping make the party stronger by engaging in dialogue, keeping up with what's going on nationally and locally, and I suspect being an active party member.  Every independent and undeclared here is keeping us on our toes, questioning our gripes and challenging our preaching-to-the-converted rationales.

    For a party to be a majority party, to be seen as one and to achieve victory at the polls as one, it needs strong leaders who articulate the values and aspirations of the base and who stand strong for the principles that brings the base together on election days.  Right now, we are not witnessing demonstrations of strong leadership from those chosen to lead this party in Congress.  The leader of the DNC can be stymied in reform and renewal if other "national" party members actively undermine those actions.

    A very large part of the base of the Democratic Party, whether registered as such or not, is demanding Congressional leaders support the efforts of members like Murtha and Feingold.  Those members of Congress and the national party who chose to stay silent and allow the RNC and the mealy-mouthed media (what used to be called the mainstream media) to attack and dissimilate are losing the base, the swing votes, and my personal respect.

    •  Leadership! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, Steven D
      You know, I'm at the point that I don't give a good goddamn why our leadership and most Democratic members of congress aren't doing jack shit in opposition to the Republican theft of government and the creation of a police state.  But the result is that they are destroying the party.  It's not us, or any of the other Democratic base.  Never have so many people been so involved, have given so much time, energy, and money into supporting the party nationally.  Yes, I know it's not what it should be, but it's significant nonetheless.  Many of those people, probably most, will not support betrayal.  Vichy dem, indeed.  I've never used that term before, but I'm beginning to think it fits.
  •  While I appreciate your frustration (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    epcraig

    with the Democrats, it's not enough.  The Democrats along with Republicans in Congress have been silenced by a Bush mafia which classifies practically everything, effectively criminalizing dissent.  There are also corrupt politicians in both parties.

    However, whether your like it or not, the Democratic party is the only viable opposition party.  While I would say that you've articulated your frustration with Democrats quite eloquently; to say merely that they'll 'lose you' (and I confess I haven't read the entire entry), smacks of the apathy you accuse them of.

    I think the problem with politics in this country is that too many people look inward and want to be 'pleased' by their politicians.  Worse yet, people thing of political parties as they do retail franchises (I'm not saying that you've done that in this diary, as I haven't read the whole thing, and for the record I really appreciate the spirit of your frustration).  They're not.  They're us.  If the Democrats are weak, it's because we are.  It's because we are all guilty of getting on this infantile bully bandwagon that Bush uses constantly to silence his critics.  Also, Democrat vs. Republican is a false dichotomy which again is used by Bush to divide and conquer.  You'll never go after Bush if you're more frustrated with Nancy Pelosi.

    I think people ought to stop saying the Democrats are weak.  I think people ought to stop saying Democrat vs. Republican and start saying that Democrats and Republicans who believe in this two-hundred-and-some odd-year experience need to figure out a way to get rid of this menace to American democracy.  Period.  Absent that, it's not going to happen.

    •  I don't think he's more frustrated with Pelosi (7+ / 0-)

      He's definitely more frustrated with Bush and Republicans in general.  I feel like I can speak for him because, unlike you, I did read his whole diary and feel like he's summed up my feelings almost exactly.  

      StevenD is focusing on his frustrations towards the Democratic leadership through their recent actions regarding Feingold censure proposal.  I think what he's trying to articulate is that leaders like Pelosi, Schumer, Reid, etc. are going to "lose" him because they are running away from a chance to engage the country against the policies and actions of Bush.  I think we would all agree that the President is conducting illegal, unconstitutional wiretaps of American citizens.  That cannot stand.

      In their tepid response to Feingold, Democratic leaders are laying down on the job.  They are following the same pattern of ineffective opposition that will just continue to result in people thinking that they are bad leaders which will lead to more lost elections.  

      Not only are they perpetuating the Republican caricature of them to the country at-large, they are throwing cold water on the activist progressive base of the party.  They should be lighting a fire under Feingold by backing up his statements and standing strong against illegal presidential powers.  The Democratic leaders are deflating the passion of the activists that give them so much support.  

      I think what StevenD means when they "lose" him is that he will not be energized and work hard towards victory in '06 but will instead be apathetic.  Multiply that across thousands of activists that feel the same way and you have effectively "lost" your base.  If the leadership doesn't show passion, then whats the point?

      Why settle for the truth when you can have Truthiness???

      by wintersnowman on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:18:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The point is (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SarahLee, epcraig

        that if you're apathetic things will only get worse.  I'm not saying one shouldn't be frustrated.  I certainly am.  I'm saying that if the Democratic leadership won't do anything, we have to find another way.  Besides, isn't it kind of absurd to charge your leaders with apathy and then threaten apathy in retaliation?

        •  A prediction, not a threat. (5+ / 0-)

          Steven D is saying - possibly prophetically - that if the only Democrats in a position to do something about this horror show that has become our government do nothing, people will lose hope.

          I don't see this diary as threatening apathy.  I see it as predicting it.

          Of course, an alternative prophecy is that people will take to the streets, and we'll see a 60s-style reprise of direct citizen action (complete with riots, tear gas, and pigs' blood thrown at cops).

          Either way, folks won't be looking to the Democratic Party to solve our problems.

  •  Steven D... YOU'VE SUMMED IT ALL UP (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D, corvo

    Shout it from the rooftops!  You've summed up my feelings regarding our Democratic leadership since the Feingold censure bruhaha.  But this sentiment's been brewing inside of me.. and I'm sure in the progressive community at-large... for a long, long time.

    It's time for our Democratic leaders to do what they're charged to do-->  represent thier constituents.  If they think they can just skate by and not speak out, not at least ATTTEMPT to stop the endless string of corruption and incompetence coming from the Republican party... then they have another thing coming.  I'm an energized Democrat... but if I don't see a wave of leadership soon I'm going to fucking lose it.

    I'm a level-headed guy, but I'm mad as hell at the lack of passion coming from Democrats in Washington.  I would like nothing more than to smack some sense into the Clintons, Schumers, Pelosis, Hoyers, etc.  

    Hey Democrats!  If you START TO LOSE ME... YOU'RE IN BIG F-ING TROUBLE.

    Why settle for the truth when you can have Truthiness???

    by wintersnowman on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 01:57:33 PM PST

  •  The Republicans have pictures (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, epcraig, Steven D

    Or at least the negatives...

    I can't think of any other reason the Dems are sitting silent. Other than if they do try to say something, they know the Repubs will bring the pictures out and discredit them. So they shut up, take their cut of the action, and smile for the constituents.

    Hell of a way to run a country.

  •  they've already lost me (6+ / 0-)

    In Wyoming, we have same day registration which means that, in the primary, you can change your registration and vote in any primary you choose. So, as has often been my habit in a state where the winner is often chosen in the Republican primary, I went in on Primary Day 2004 and switched to be a Republican so I could vote against Barbara Cubin. As I left, also old habits, I went to switch my registration back. (This is not only legal but common place.) But when I got that form in front of me, I remembered a mailing list debate that our peace group had been having over "Why are you a Democrat?" After a few failed attempts to explain to my young friends why I was a Democrat, I had written that I really couldn't say why because most of the time they just disappointed me or left me ashamed. So, with the voter registration in front of me, knowing I hadn't been able to come up with a compelling answer to that question, I checked "independent" which I will remain, except on primary days when I have a desire to vote for -- or more likely against -- someone.  

    We need not stride resolutely towards catastrophe, merely because those are the marching orders. -- Noam Chomsky

    by kainah on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:08:40 PM PST

  •  Who needs 'the Party' to fight the good fight? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, mataliandy, epcraig

    "I got news for you, ladies and gentlemen in the upper echelons of the Democratic Party. You're headed for another round of election failure unless you come out fighting."

    We don't have to depend on the Party to fight the GOP hard or get the message out about Republican failures.   There are progressive political organizations who are preparing to take our message to the voters. I happen to work for one of them. We are not waiting for the vaunted "strategy document" folks have been talking about for months. We are working hard to raise money and develop hard-hitting ads to slam the GOP this year. We can't take a chance that the party will blow it again. We have to start earlier, raise a ton, and hit the GOP hard all year. This is it. They have left the door open. This year we have to win.

  •  We had a bad comment in the thread (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, cotterperson, epcraig

    Someone used the legacy editor to make an unordered list, perhaps with *'s or -'s. We weren't aware that the legacy editor's generated list markup would break the new layout. The comment was unfortunately deleted as we can't edit them.

    I apologize to the author and the readers of this thread...it was an unforeseen consequence of the site changes.

  •  I would recommend (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Steven D

    except I can't use the button.  I'm having the same weird page view problem.  

  •  They alienated my wife and I by their (4+ / 0-)

    campaign literature in IL (we live in the burbs of Chi.) We got a shitload of Dem and GOP campaign stuff in the mail every day for a month.

    They read nearly the same! Even many of the pics on the lit. were the same--nearly all were really really white people with TONS of kids talking about "family values" and what churches they go to.
    Do people still vote by color and what church (in my area, what Catholic Church) someone belongs to?

    Hello, 2006.

    The politicians seem to think people do.

    I will support the Democratic Party for Nov. with Yard signs, a few checks, go to some rallies, make some calls.....but do I think they really understand me? No.

    Big question is, do they care?

    Proud Commie or Frustrated Capitalist?

    by vassmer on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 02:48:40 PM PST

  •  I concur with the frustration (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, cotterperson, Steven D, corvo

    I to feel that we are in extreme danger in this country and our Democratic leaders seem to be trying to re-arrange the deck chairs on the Titanic.

    Who will step up and truly lead this Party?  Who has the courage to really speak truth to the Republicians?  

    Without this, as is said above, we will surly loose the next election but more importantly, we will loose the only country that we have.

  •  That's why I say BOYCOTT the DNC!! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sally in SF, SarahLee, blueoasis

    I've said it before, I'll say it again.  Boycott until they show they have some balls!  And anyone who wants evidence of what happens when the Democrats lay down and play dead can look at yesterday's SCOTUS decision on search and seizure.  Gee guys, we told you so.

  •  Louise Slaughter... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D, blueoasis

    should also take a bow!

  •  A lot to read (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, epcraig

    and I'm adding to it :)
    I support the diarist. I too will be voting Green. If the Dems are gonna support repubs, I've got nothing to lose voting Green!

  •  Everybody on the internets is so impatient (4+ / 2-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Carnacki, epcraig, DemiGoddess
    Hidden by:
    Blutodog, gmb

    NOW! NOW!  NOW!  YOU'LL MISS YOUR CHANCE!  YELL! SCREAM!  ALL THE TIME!  YANK WOLF BLITZER'S TIE OFF!  HAMSTRING TWEETY!  IMPEACH BUSH NOW! NOW!  IN FACT, YESTERDAY!  OR YOU'LL MISS IT!  YOU'LL LOSE!  YOU'RE ALL LOSE!  INSTANT GRATIFICATION!  NOW! OR ELSE!  EVERY SENATOR! EVERY REPRESENTATIVE!  SCREAM LIKE CRAZY!  IT'S SLIPPING AWAY!!!  NOW!!!!!!

    Meanwhile, the voters are all painting Easter eggs and not even thinking about politics until September or so...

    I need to stay off the blogs for awhile.

  •  Fairly dead on...my only disagreement (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, gmb, epcraig, corvo, blueoasis, Tanya

    is that instead of "losing" me...they'll be making an enemy of me...and I can tell you right now they don't want that...I can be incredibly vindictive and bitchy.

    Support Feingold...support censure...shit, support impeachment fucking 3 years ago!!! When they should have!

    They better do it fast....

  •  MIA (5+ / 0-)

    Thanks for writing this diary.  Exactly right.

    My senators are Murray and Cantwell.  Since early January 2000, I've been writing them both to ask where the fuck my opposition party is.  

    I wondered for a long time when we'll reach the tipping point, what will be the straw that breaks the camel's back, when these bozos will sniff the smelling salts.  

    I don't wonder any more.  If they're not speaking out already, it ain't going to happen, ever.

  •  Losing Me (0+ / 0-)

    "So it's on your shoulders, Ms. Clinton and Mr. Obama, Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Reid, and all the rest of you. Come out swinging."

    Depending on these people have gotten you nowhere. You need new blood.
    Clinton is not believable, will say anything to get the Presidential nomination, but will never win because of her baggage.
    Obama is unknown, Pelosi is an empty suit and Reid is over his head. Keeping Kennedy hidden is a start.
                   Saying "Bush lied and misled" has no effect when people remember this stuff.

    http://www.cnn.com/...

  •  DC DEMOS DON'T GIVE A SHIT! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    paraphrase, cotterperson, epcraig, corvo

    The DC DEMOS have their sexy jobs with the HUGE pension and the Platinum Healthcare and the perks and most of all the endless EGO boost of being called Senator or Congressman/women. Most of them start in politics with good intentions even the Rethugs but by the time they reach Wash. their owned heart and soul by $$$. Almost all of them only care about one thing themselves and their power. They are terrified of thought of having to become just an average smuck again. So they play it safe and they don't take any chances and in the case of the DC DEMOS that means sticking it to their own base. Plus, for stickin it too us they get rewarded by the BIG $$ and by the Media ( which is also BIG Corp. $$) What do we have to offer these very ego-centric self- interested people? Nothing, but hard work and alot of suffering and let's face it most of these folks couldn't suffer through a missed night of sleep. I think it's time we come to realize  were on our own and we have to stop expecting any "REAL" help from these people. All of us need to start to do something in our own communities to exact change. The old saying THINK GLOBALLY ACT LOCALLY is true and any of you that have followed that maxim knows it works. Politics is more then just getting elected or electing people to represent us. WE have to represent ourselves. So if you want change make it happen. Cindy Sheean and many others like her are the one's to follow. Forget about Reid and Clinton and Biden. Stop waiting for them to change their spots already. In the 60's we had the right idea at the start we just got way laid by the party of drugs, sex and music and lost our way. Let's get back into the streets if need be and get back into our communities and do those things that a needed to make things change. It's not all about $$$. Just going to your school board meetings or Commission meetings , writing letters, becoming an activist for a local cause you believe it etc. It all adds up to change. The rethugs many of them ironically took what happened in the 60's to heart and have waged a very effective counter revolution against us for 40 yrs. They've taken over just about eveything but they didn't do it over night and we won't take it all back over night either. But, w'll never ever take anything back waiting for the likes of the DC DEMS that's for damn sure.

    "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees"

    by Blutodog on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 06:38:39 PM PST

  •  You Goooooooooooooooooooooooo! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D, corvo

    Expressing what so many feel, but may not be able to articulate. Most excellent "Steven D".

    And as for "wmtriallawyer" .... This nation, for almost five years, has been waiting for REAL leadership. REAL morals. REAL intelligence. REAL truth. REAL, honesty.

    We are starving for all those things, and this nation cannot afford to just sit back for another three years, and let this junta  drive us off a cliff. Remedial action is needed now.

    I've been a fighting Dem for longer than I care to remember, and I'll tell you, that now is not the time to quit fighting. Quite the opposite. This nation needs urgent action by the opposition.

    "Without full Public Campaign Financing for every election, we are all pissing in the wind, and our efforts to save our democracy will be for naught."

    by Hornito on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 06:54:50 PM PST

  •  You Goooooooooooooooooooooooo! (0+ / 0-)

    Expressing what so many feel, but may not be able to articulate. Most excellent "Steven D".

    And as for "wmtriallawyer" .... This nation, for almost five years, has been waiting for REAL leadership. REAL morals. REAL intelligence. REAL truth. REAL, honesty.

    We are starving for all those things, and this nation cannot afford to just sit back for another three years, and let this junta  drive us off a cliff. Remedial action is needed now.

    I've been a fighting Dem for longer than I care to remember, and I'll tell you, that now is not the time to quit fighting. Quite the opposite. This nation needs urgent action by the opposition.

    "Without full Public Campaign Financing for every election, we are all pissing in the wind, and our efforts to save our democracy will be for naught."

    by Hornito on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 06:55:18 PM PST

  •  Sorry for the dupes (0+ / 0-)

    Screen said it failed, so I resent.

    "Without full Public Campaign Financing for every election, we are all pissing in the wind, and our efforts to save our democracy will be for naught."

    by Hornito on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 07:00:33 PM PST

  •  It's too dangerous right now (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson

    ... to toy with a third party because we're just in too much peril. Besides, unless they could scrape enough DNA to clone Fighting Bob LaFollette, I doubt there is anyone who could provide a true progressive alternative. But if we make it though the current crisis in this country, if we make it to the shore with the Dems back in control, I'll be taking a long, hard look at what comes next for me, in terms of where my political loyalties lie. I'll be voting Democratic for the foreseeable future, as I always have, because I have to. But the current party composition is weak, dilluted, and polluted, and something has to change, or this democracy is going to fold. IF the Dems take control again in November - IF - I'll be watching them with as much cynicism as I'm currently watching the Repubs. Yes, let's help them win. Then let's start kicking THEIR asses.

  •  It's staring us in the face (6+ / 0-)

    Remember the theme before the 2000 election that there wasn't that much difference between Democrats and Republicans? Well, that's dead and buried in the sands of Iraq now. But why are so few top Dem leaders out FIGHTING what Bush, Rove, and Cheney are doing? Well, look at it this way - if Bush, Rove, and Cheney were removed tommorrow morning, how much would really change? The U.S. would still be importing 2/3 of its oil, it would still cost a half billion to run for President and $100 million to run for Senate, CEOs would still be getting 400 times what the rank and file is getting paid, the entirety of the annual Gross Domestic Product of these United States would still be traded in the bond and currency markets EVERY TWO DAYS, 40,000 kids around the world would STARVE to DEATH every day, and on and on and on the hideous list could go.

    And you think the right wing noise machine is bad now? Have you given any thought to what the greedy bastards are going to do IF we take back control of Congress, then the White House?

    Personally, I think we are in a period historically similar to the early 1850s. A few more years, and we'll have another "Bleeding Kansas" somewhere. And if the underlying problem of a democratic republic HIJACKED by the "economic royalists" (as FDR called them) isn't solved, then you know what comes next, don't you.

    I think it's going to be decided in the streets. And it's not going to be pretty. It's going to be very, very ugly.

    Is private credit the friend and patron of industry? -- The Federalist Papers, No. 15, Alexander Hamilton

    by NBBooks on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 08:38:43 PM PST

  •  Thank you Stephen D. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D, corvo

    for voicing so clearly the absolute frustration I feel with our leadership. I'm frankly tired of waiting for these folks to get off their collective butt. I agree with you 100%.

  •  Turn this into a petition (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D

    over at Care2 or something, because you said it all.  I've commented many times that this is, more or less, what I write to Congessional Dems and we all know how far any of our efforts to make them stand up and..."advocate the policies and political principles that drew us to you in the first place" have gotten us.

    Sterling piece of work!

    We Need REGIME CHANGE    

  •  I've gotten two pieces of mail (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson

    urging me to send in my contribution to the Democratic Party. I haven't done it yet.

    I'm more inclined to send my money directly to the local, progressive Democratic candidate (Stephanie Studebaker) or to Strickland's campaign, or to any other campaign where the Democratic candidate is Acting Blue.

    I want to see the Democratic Party acting blue.

    Oh say does that star-spangled banner yet blow, O'er the land of the victimized, self-pitying ego?

    by Cowalker on Thu Mar 23, 2006 at 10:37:14 PM PST

  •  Impeachment already perceived, let's run with it (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Steven D

    I wish the Dems would go ahead and climb aboard a call for Bush impeachment and frame it in terms of rule of law and the Constitution, law-breaking will not be abided, and if Rethugs  refuse to "investigate" warrantless spying, say "OK we'll investigate it in impeachment hearings when we take over the House, and investigate a few other things while we're at it like lies into war, etc." The Dem leaders won't do it because too bloody scared but if they did turn the 2006 elections into a referendum on impeachment it would throw a dose of pride into millions of Americans (some true conservatives included) who like to see a fighter fight back; throw the heebie-jeebies into the White House (and yes, get out their base too which is smaller than our base), and the battle would be joined. Dem leaders can easily develop talking points to counter to charge that Dems are chasing Bush with impeachment while he's protecting the nation from terrorism, blah blah. I could write them right now.

    Meanwhile, media and GOP wackos have already declared that Dems as a whole are calling for impeachment, and extrapolating Feingold's call for censure as impeachment (when he is specifically trying to avoid that), so what's there to lose? The perception that Dems are calling for impeachment is already out there, so they should take that ball and run the fuck out of it.

    But they won't. Instead they're denying they want impeachment which has effect of making it seem Bush crimes are tolerable and okay. What a travesty.

    Recently finished co-producing a model one-minute video campaign spot (see link below in tagline) for the DNC/DCCC that's also socko in non-commercial DVD form in local Congressional district venues for showing at fundraisers, house parties, speech events, webstreamed on candidate websites, aired on public access TV -- an inexpensive motivator to increase contributions and inspire volunteers to get out the vote -- but of course it's being ignored by involuted DNC/DCCC staffers who won't even take one minute to look at it, so we'll try to work around the big hats and go direct to individual candidates.

    Much as I'm as frustrated by Dem leaders as the diarist, midstream in this crisis realistically they're the only horse we've got and many of us are doing what we can to to spur them on.  

    "It's 1776 all over again"--One-minute video, two turning points in history: 1776 American Revolution and 2006 elections.

    by wardlow on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 03:17:09 AM PST

    •  Wednesday on Hardball (0+ / 0-)

      Wednesday on Hardball, Chris Matthews suggested that the GOP could use impeachment as an issue to keep control of Congress.  Bob Shrum immediately said that the Democrats won't impeach Bush if they get the chance.  I was a bit startled, but that's what I think he said.

      Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will pick himself up and continue on. --Winston Churchill

      by rmwarnick on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 08:36:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is how its done (0+ / 0-)

    Dem runners take notes.  You will be tested

    http://seanmaloney.com/...

    It takes a bucket of blood for a barrel of oil.

    by Encriptical Envelopments on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 06:52:50 AM PST

  •  Ned Lamont hears you loud and clear!! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson

    Connecticut senatorial candidate Ned Lamont understands you completely.  That is why he is challenging Bush apologist Joe Lieberman.  And his chances are excellent.  Last night in Greenwich, Connecticut, the Democratic Town Committee elected 22 delegates to the state convention, of whom 16 pledged their support for Ned Lamont.  Not a single DTC member was willing to express his support for Joe Lieberman.  Although Lamont is a Greenwich native, Joe Lieberman grew up in Stamford, the city right next door.  Lamont hears you, and on the night of the Democratic primary on August 8, the rest of America will hear us!

  •  Coke or Pepsi (0+ / 0-)

    The Real Thing or the New Generation!

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