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Reading Daily Kos is like reading the newspaper a month in advance.

Reading Daily Kos is like reading the newspaper a week in advance.

Reading Daily Kos is like reading the damned newspaper... used to be.

If you were following the FISA and telecom amnesty debate in the traditional media (even their blog versions) yesterday, you were hopelessly lost. You would have read that Dodd's filibuster had "fizzled," and that the telecoms had won a victory. And you apparentlywould have been reading this well into the evening, since it wasn't until well after the bill had finally been pulled that the media got a real handle on what had happened, even if they never really understood how it had happened, much less why. But if you stuck with us, you probably had a pretty good handle on things, whether you're a visual learner, or prefer the narrative form.

The reasons are myriad, and we've discussed some of them before. First, there's the background media narrative to overcome. The conventional wisdom was that this deal was going through, and that was that. So the stories were in some sense already written. A change of direction always catches the media off guard. But beyond that, the plain fact is that the traditional media just isn't that well suited to covering a story like this.

Second, this situation was fluid, and traditional media that have strict deadlines for going to press just can't keep up. That's why so many media organizations have made the move to the Internet, or have developed news blogs. But that overcomes just one of the many hurdles.

Third, in addition to being fluid, it was complex and arcane. It took a long time to explain exactly what was going on, or what might happen. In fact, that explanation turned my planned 15 minute interview on The Young Turks radio program into a 45 minute appearance, explaining as thoroughly as I could what the situation was and various possibilities of how it might shake out, not to mention what that might mean and why it happening this way in the first place. No traditional media organization can spend that kind of time on things. Even the radio appearance was perhaps only possible because The Young Turks show had committed to continuing to tape their show as long as Dodd kept up his fight, so we had lots of time to kill and the longer we spent explaining it, the better. As a result, the traditional media coverage of yesterday's events by and large simply got the procedure wrong, mistaking the cloture vote on the motion to proceed for a cloture vote on Dodd's filibuster of the bill itself (which we never even got to), and forgetting entirely about the 30 hours of post-cloture debate, which is what we were actually seeing yesterday.

And fourth (I was going to say "finally," but nothing is final until the comments come in), there's the matter of the time and effort that we can put into a story like this -- both individually as bloggers, and collectively as a blogosphere -- that the traditional media can't. Or won't. I don't have to remind anyone here of what that boils down to...

but I will, because it's so delicious:

I have neither the time nor legal background to figure out who's right...

Well you know what? Neither do I. But I did it anyway, because I care what the hell happens in this country, and I want to know what I'm talking about.

I worked on Capitol Hill for a few years, so I happen to know something about procedure in general. But I never worked on the Senate side. Do you want to know how I came to understand Senate procedure? I looked it up and read about it. What a concept.

So thanks for playing along with us. Hope you enjoyed the ride. We'll be back here on this bill again in January, and we can put what we learned to good use. Until then, don't forget to put your "Stupid Internet Hayseed" costumes (or your "Vinny in the Bronx" bathrobe) back on. You don't want to spook the natives.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:29 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  They're either ignoring it or lying about it (12+ / 0-)

    Par for the course for our wonderful GOP/Media Complex.

    •  A little more complicated than that. (11+ / 0-)

      An effective propaganda system can't be that transparent and still be effective. One of Kagro's statements, although incorrect, points to an important piece of the puzzle:

      In fact, that explanation turned my planned 15 minute interview on The Young Turks radio program into a 45 minute appearance, explaining as thoroughly as I could what the situation was and various possibilities of how it might shake out, not to mention what that might mean and why it happening this way in the first place. No traditional media organization can spend that kind of time on things.

      That's simply not true. The 24-hour cable news networks can and, in fact, do spend that kind of time on things. They often spend all the time necessary (and then some) to educate their audience about the most subtle and arcane details of such relevant issues as the Natalie Holloway disappearance or Paris Hilton's travails with the legal system. There is absolutely nothing about their format that  prevents in depth coverage of any issue they want. That they provide superficial coverage on issues of acute relevance to a functioning democracy is a feature and not a bug.

      miasmo.com If you're not a liberal, you're a dick.

      by miasmo on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:00:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's true. (5+ / 0-)

        Although I must admit I've never seen them spend 45 minutes with the same "expert" guest on a story like that.

        Changing the faces and voices makes the happy lighty picture box look shiny and different every few minutes.

        •  True... (5+ / 0-)

          ...but they will run hour-long Nancy Grace or Larry King shows on single issues (look at the coverage of Anna Nicole Smith).

          For all my seething hatred of Lou Dobbs, I did gain a modicum of respect for him when he refused to cover it the night of her death.

          Whether they use 45-minutes-of-a-single-expert or not, I'd argue that they are certainly willing and able to cover a single subject for substantial periods of time.

        •  infrastructure of ignorance (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          slangist, greenearth, JVolvo

          But as you point out in your diary, you have been doing your homework on this issue for quite a while, because you place a value on understanding issues that actually matter to our democracy. The TV networks do not, because they aren't really interested in educating the public on such issues in any way beyond the most superficial. If they had, they would not have misinterpreted the situation, as you point out. I wasn't watching the coverage yesterday (I watched some of the debate itself on C-Span,) but I would seriously doubt if they even have anyone on their bench with anywhere near your level of expertise that they could call into the game when such issues climax as they did yesterday. That's why they couldn't figure it out. When it gets right down to it, they don't really give a shit. They're very well paid to not give a shit. But if Paris Hilton gets thrown back in jail, they've got a whole rolodex of qualified experts who can enlighten us on every detail of the riveting saga.

          The point is not that they didn't have 45 minutes to explain it - They didn't even have anyone who understood it, much less be able to explain it. That level of ignorance can't be summoned on a dime. You need to have an infrastructure of targeted stupidity firmly in place ahead of time.

          miasmo.com If you're not a liberal, you're a dick.

          by miasmo on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:45:01 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Most Americans don't get their news this way (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          miasmo, greenearth, JVolvo

          They get it from drive-time radio in their cars, or from the evening TV news at home.  Even cable TV junkies are a minority in comparison.

      •  Read the above comment... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        miasmo, greenearth

        ...and read it well. I'd recommend 50 times if I could.

      •  issues of acute relevance (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sparhawk, greenearth, JVolvo

        That they provide superficial coverage on issues of acute relevance to a functioning democracy is a feature and not a bug.

        In case that wasn't clear, the "issues of acute relevance to a functioning democracy" would include such things as the FISA law, and not Paris Hilton in jail.

        miasmo.com If you're not a liberal, you're a dick.

        by miasmo on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:15:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  But where do most Americans get their news? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        miasmo

        From drive-time radio and the evening TV.  Neither of which mentioned the FISA bill's withdrawal at all last night.

      •  24-Hour News Channels (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        miasmo, greenearth, JVolvo

        I was traveling all day yesterday so the only news I learned was during airport waits.

        CNN Headlines News repeated the story of the Philly news anchor who recently hit a NY police officer and years ago sent pictures of herself in a bikini to a married man FIVE times while I was waiting for my flight.

        I never once saw anything about Senator Dodd's actions nor that the legislation was tabled.

        At the time I was sort of grateful that I wasn't being subjected to Fox News, but after the third repeat of the anchor story that feeling went away. Today I'm bummed that I missed all the action.

        And, go figure, there's nothing at all about it on CNN or MSNBC today.

  •  To me (19+ / 0-)

    its crazy to stay away from the blogs for more than a few days, even if its just to scan the general issues of the day.

    The media is deciding that a staggering number of important issues to me are completely unworthy of even the most vapid 'Man Bites Dog' and 'Brawl in Asian Paliment' coverage.

    Megan Meier, you deserved better than the cruelty that some so-called "adults" showed you. Rest In Peace.

    by LeftHandedMan on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:30:16 AM PST

  •  Clifford May has Boat Payments. (8+ / 0-)

    As well as all of those other dufases (Doofases?)

    You can feel the G-Force when they all start turning their blathering around.

    :::::

    ...Operation Rota is Closed... New Blog Coming Soon With Pictures!...

    by nowheredesign on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:31:28 AM PST

  •  Laziness is a feature, not a bug, for CelebCorps (18+ / 0-)

    I worked on Capitol Hill for a few years, so I happen to know something about procedure in general. But I never worked on the Senate side. Do you want to know how I came to understand Senate procedure? I looked it up and read about it. What a concept.

    But that would come dangerously close to leaving the prescribed precincts of what is acceptable to discuss and what is not.

    To quote Upton Sinclair yet again:  "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it."

  •  no, fool.... (13+ / 0-)

    you are up against college professors, labor organizers, farmers, clerks, doctors, homemakers, radio disk jockeys, computer programers, artists and lawyers....

    Wake up.  We ARE the people and we aren't reading Time magazine anymore or watching the "Nightly News".  Wonder why?  Well I don't have the time to do this either, but someone has to try.

    You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you mad. Aldous Huxley

    by murrayewv on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:32:57 AM PST

  •  I hope ppl realize how historic this was! (21+ / 0-)

    This was an important historic event and we were there to watch it unfold.

    The Senate was all set to do the Telco's and Prezinut's bidding but it fell apart because of one man's efforts and a whole CROWD of peoplel like Kossacks who flooded the phone and internet "tubes" with activism!

    We actually STOPPED the gov't! It'll take a while but this day will be remembered. By some, it will be a fond memory. By others, a date that will live in infamy because the people took control of the gov't and not the other way around.

    "What a peaceful world it would be if Barbara had aborted!"

    by DevonTexas on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:33:02 AM PST

  •  Geez I gave up the newspaper in 2003... (9+ / 0-)

    about the time I found the blogs and got two different versions of the news...them and us.

    Guess where I stayed???????

    Memo to Congress: Put up or shut up ~ all talk and no action pisses me off.

    by SallyCat on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:34:14 AM PST

  •  I learned Senate Procedure... (9+ / 0-)

    from watching the senate at work on c-span.   they explain things as they are happening and if you still dont 'get it' there IS always a myriad of reference material on the net to further explain the proceedings.   So its kind of BS that someone would get what happened WRONG and still claim to be a working newsperson...

    IMPEACH THE CHEERLEADER... SAVE THE WORLD! © ®

    by KnotIookin on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:34:42 AM PST

    •  Comcast, in Indianapolis switched C-span2 to HDTV (11+ / 0-)

      last Saturday (no more weekend Book Notes)...unexpectedly and on a few hours notice.  I believe it was calculated to limit people seeing the Senate proceedings.  With the holidays being a week away (time and money really tight for many people) the chances of viewers running out to get a converter or a new TV are slim.

      It was an odd time to make ONE channel inaccessible to the masses.  Coincidence?

      "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

      by 417els on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:48:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  And before anybody dismisses this implication (10+ / 0-)

        as fringey, keep in mind that this is Comcast, who are not only a company deeply engaged in government graft and corruption, but a company with a thoroughly vested interest in retroactive immunity.

      •  you do have recourse for losing c-span2 yanno (8+ / 0-)

        the company that provided my large multiple dwelling complex was going to cut c-span 2 in favor of giving us (for a fee) the yankee channel.  in full disclosure I must admit I am a METS FAN so I didnt even want the yankee channel but I did want c-span 2 so I immediately called my cable company to ask what was up and they were unresponsive so I next called my local council member who told me "its not muh job" so I called my state assembly person (then my state senator) to ask WHO oversee's c-span access for we, the people.   Got a surprise answer - they didnt know, but after I explained that c-span 2 was going to be removed from at least 2500 households right before the 2006 election cycle they got really interested and we partnered up to find out, at least, WHO could address this for me.

        i went from the local state senator to my congressperson...  who's office told me it was another branch of government but they didnt know which one so THEY too got involved in getting to the bottom of this problem....as did a wonderful young lady in (or all people) Hillary's office (she is my senator).

        I could keep going on this call list, I spend 2 days on the phone trying to track down WHO would be responsible for cable access/c-span in government and no one knew but everyone was interested in helping me find out and they joined the chorus of people calling around.

        the outcome of all this was that I learned a great lesson in getting people in political offices to aide me in my quest to resolve what I saw as a political problem AND our cable company now not only offers us the yankee channel but we have free access to c-span, c-span2 AND c-span3

        IMPEACH THE CHEERLEADER... SAVE THE WORLD! © ®

        by KnotIookin on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:06:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I wondered what that was all about! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greenearth

        Cause Cspan-2 sure ain't HD on my HDTV!

        "What a peaceful world it would be if Barbara had aborted!"

        by DevonTexas on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:07:16 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  C-Span 2 (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          greenearth, aigeanta

          I still have analog TV.  I did get C-Span 2 on my channel 22, and I do get C-Span 1 on channel 17, and never had C-Span 3.  

          Several months ago in South Jersey, Comcast took off C-Span 2.  I only called C-Span about this.

          I called C-Span, using my cell phone, because it was a toll call, and the person there talked to me for over ten minutes, explaining why Comcast took C-Span 2 away, and what I could do about it.

          The explanation was that some of the "frequencies" (I'm not sure of the right word) were being sold off.  But that I could call Comcast, and for a nominal fee, get a box that will enable me to get C-Span 2.  Cost about 1.99 a month.  Or they said "the squeaky wheel gets the most grease" or something like that, implying if I voiced my discontent enough, they might give me the box for free.

          I might point out that it was Comcast who made this decision, because it was actually the channels in the 60s that Comcast did away with.  So they moved channels from the 60s to wherever they wanted, like the old C-Span2 channel is now a shopping channel.

          A C-Span employee also told me that were aware that 2 was taken off the air in the northern part of New Jersey, and had frankly thought it was taken off in South Jersey long before I had called.  Ummm.

          A few weeks later, strange, but I got a voice mail on my cell phone from another C-Span employee, basically explaining the same thing to me.  I don't recall ever giving out my number to them.  

          I'm sorry I didn't make more of an effort like you did to follow up on this.

          "We The Lobbyists (and the rich)"

          by gooderservice on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:29:00 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Here C-span is channel 22, C-span2 was channel 23 (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JVolvo

            22 covers the House & 23 covers the Senate.  Channel 23 was the SINGLE channel they switched to HD this weekend...without the advance warning they've given out in the past when channels were going to be switched.

            "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

            by 417els on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:49:32 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  it never to late to make an effort.... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            417els, gooderservice, JVolvo

            I would bet you would find a friendly ear in corzines office, thats where I would start or maybe your 2 senators offices.. are they both up for re-election this year?  I think the reason I got so much attention from Hillary's office was becasue she was up for re-election in 06 when this all happened and I merely had to point out that 2500 homes in a strong democratic district were about to LOSE the ability to follow her senate work through access to c-span2, where her speeches could be seen.

            with each office I found another reason they should get involved in getting us back our c-span2 access...  the more local the office the harder it was to find a valid reason but it was not impossible but when I got to my senators offices it was easy..it was an election year and thousands of voters were going to be cut off from hearing the speechs our senators were writing JUST to read to the c-span audiences so they immediately took an interest in WHY we were losing c-span2, which for us is the Senate at work access channel

            I am sure my little calls to the fcc and our local cable company were not the calls that got c-span2 restored and c-span3 added, that kind of action takes the clout of an office like Hillary's backed up by congress people and local politicans.

            So let me point out that THIS is an election year and even if you already lost your access you should contact your senators to point oiut you cannot see or hear them on the senate floor anymore because your cable company took away your access to the senate and you would like help from THEM in getting it back before the upcoming elections ;)

            IMPEACH THE CHEERLEADER... SAVE THE WORLD! © ®

            by KnotIookin on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:55:54 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's a great idea (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              KnotIookin

              Because Senator Lautenberg IS up for re-election this year.  Plus, he's from South Jersey.  What a great idea to point out that his speeches on the floor won't be seen, nor will his committee hearings, although I did see him the other night on CSpan1 in a hearing with that jerk from the FCC testifying (at 2 in the morning, though.)

              Thanks again for that idea.  In fact, I'm going to call his campaign office first, instead of his senate office.

              Although, I'm not sure how much enthusiasm I can muster from them, considering aren't we all changing to digital in a year or so?

              And, yes, I will call Corzine's office, too.  There is no damn good reason why we can't see the House AND THE SENATE.  Okay, I can see, maybe, that CSpan3 would be a "luxury" kind of, but not 1 and 2.

              "We The Lobbyists (and the rich)"

              by gooderservice on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 12:11:37 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  Re; Senate Procedure on C-Span (0+ / 0-)

      C-Span seemed to follow, though, the TM coverage of this on Washington Journal yesterday morning and today.  Yesterday morning's opening topic was about elections.  Even reading the newspaper articles in the first hour, the host never read one article about the impending FISA vote.

      Today, the opening 1/2 hour was about "family values" and what do they mean, reading numerous articles about that topic.  Again, never read an article about Chris Dodd or the FISA vote.  Then the first guest was Artur Davis, talking about the money just passed for the drought for some states and the bill just passed by the House.

      I found that very curious that C-Span, supposedly THE main show about government, never mentioned the lead-up to yesterday's vote nor the aftermath.

      Granted, they do seize on articles in the newspapers to start their morning topic off with, so...  

      "We The Lobbyists (and the rich)"

      by gooderservice on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:35:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Phone calls do matter. I could tell (12+ / 0-)

    that the lady taking my call in Sen. Reid's office in Nevada was listening to my words and my very, perhaps overly so, emotional and heartfelt pleading.  My call meant nothing, but multiply it by the thousands around the country, and we DID make a difference.  And, after all, who was calling for the other side - a Verizon VP?  

    We Changed The Course! Now we must hold their feet to the fire.

    by hcc in VA on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:35:10 AM PST

  •  I'll Stick to Pajamas (6+ / 0-)

    Until then, don't forget to put your "Stupid Internet Hayseed" costumes (or your "Vinny in the Bronx" bathrobe) back on. You don't want to spook the natives.

  •  sometimes dkos is better than cspan... (9+ / 0-)

    because there is an analysis component that cspan doesn't offer, which sad to say is also unavailable in the msm.

    as much as i'm grateful to chris dodd and some others in the senate for standing up, i'm also grateful to a bunch of folks on this site for helping me to follow the action and participate meaningfully based on good information.

  •  MSM laziness, not blog superiority (8+ / 0-)

    There is no excuse for these monied media mavens not to have knowledgeable beat reporters covering stuff like this.  Yes, blogs have an advantage in up to the minute news, but there no reason why the print media can't run an accurate "as the issue stands" story.  They didn't.

    •  They no longer want to pay for specialists. (5+ / 0-)

      We don't get decent international news because they closed the bureaus and quit hiring area specialists. We get lousy fluff pieces on government actions because half the "reporters" couldn't pass a high school civics class of about fifty years ago.

      They write gossip pieces as news because that is what they know and what their publishers think sells. Unfortunately, very unfortunately they are probably right. Go out and try to engage someone in a conversation on how things work. We have become a "black box" society about technical things we depend upon whether how the cell phone really works or how an idea becomes a bill and then becomes law.

      Expecting pure free enterprise to serve a population is like expecting a garden to feed a family by simply throwing out bags of seed on the ground. (Me)

      by pelagicray on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:55:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  people are hungry for real knowledge (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greenearth, Uberbah

        i totally disagree that you can't engage regular people on the issues - they are starving for information and desperately seeking leadership!

        "No society can legitimately call itself civilized if a sick person is denied medical aid because of lack of means." - Aneurin Bevan

        by aigeanta on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:47:11 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I think it's more than laziness (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      greenearth, JVolvo, Uberbah

      The media are owned and run by organizations whose interests they serve, and that interest is not the public interest. In other words, the media are now marketing and propaganda tools, nothing else; they have not been reliable news and information sources for a long time. Not since the foxes were put in charge of the henhouse.

  •  On cloture vote on the motion to proceed (4+ / 0-)

    what was the roll call ?

    How do I find it in general ?

    Marc In order to understand recursion, you must first understand recursion

    by msobel on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:40:00 AM PST

  •  Disappointed in the other presidential candidates (6+ / 0-)

    First of all, big-time kudos to Chris Dodd for standing up to the White House and (more impressively) his own party's leadership. His, admittedly temporary, success is tremendously inspirational. This is the kind of thing we need a lot more of, and I find myself very strongly supporting those who have called in the last day or two for Dodd to replace Reid as majority leader. (The system doesn't work that way, alas, but we can dream.)

    I am, of course, very disappointed--nearly enraged--by Harry Reid's behavior here, especially because he claims to oppose immunity for the telecoms. But really, this is the kind of behavior I have come to expect from many leading Democrats (remember Schumer on Mukasey?): say they're opposed to something but do nothing to actively prevent it. Which leads me to others with whom I am disappointed:

    Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama didn't leave the campaign trail to give Dodd a hand, though Clinton they had essentially promised to do so. Now, I do understand that this is a hugely close race in Iowa and one day on or off the campaign trail could make the difference. I, of course, feel that showing some leadership on the Senate floor would be just as good--if not better--than talking about leadership in Iowa, but I can understand how they and their campaign managers might not be convinced.

    Which leads me to my greatest disappointment among the Democratic presidential candidates: John Edwards. Now, I should emphasize from the get-go that my disappointment in Edwards here is of a very different kind: it literally is "more in sorrow than in anger". I think Edwards and his campaign missed a huge opportunity here. Imagine that Edwards had announced last Friday (and reiterated on one or more of the Sunday morning gab-fests) that he was suspending his campaigning in Iowa for the duration of the FISA debate on the Senate floor for the explicit purpose of allowing Clinton and Obama to go back to DC and support Dodd's filibuster. Not only would this have been the right thing to do, it could have been a huge propaganda coup for his campaign. And that's why I am not so much disappointed in John Edwards, but for him.

    •  The senate has become very problematic (6+ / 0-)

      and it is something we need to work on.  It is, first of all, a millionaire's club.  You can tell by Lieberman that he thinks he is entitled to do just as he pleases, in spite of the fact that he LOST the democratic primary.  Ho Hum, move along, etc.  But entitlement is NOT WHAT WE WANT IN A SENATOR'S ATTITUDE.  True, we are still stuck with Lieberman for a 1/2 decade.  Do you think his constituents learned anything?  Do you think primary challenges would help going forward?

      •  I never thought I'd support term limits, but (4+ / 0-)

        I agree absolutely that things have got to change in the Senate.  I don't know what the solution is (comment title is mostly snark), but the Senate has really become unworkable.

        It used to be that the Senate "worked" because the 6-year terms and smaller size led to a more "friendly" and compromise-driven system.  But the Democrats don't seem to understand that the Republicans aren't playing by the old rules anymore.

        •  That wouldn't change the (4+ / 0-)

          Millionaires club, it might even accelerate it.  Campaign finance reform of genuine limits would be more effective.

          •  I'm very afraid you're right (0+ / 0-)

            but unfortunately one of the key criteria for running for federal office (Senate more than House, too, alas) is the ability to quit one's current job.  I wish I had the slightest clue what to do about that.  (My somewhat snarky reference to term limits was aimed more at getting rid of people like Lieberman.)

          •  There's no "might" about it (0+ / 0-)

            Term limits would definitely accelerate the "Millionaires' Club". Campaign finance reform is the only solution.

            "Toute société se juge au sort qu'elle réserve aux plus démunis d'entre les siens." — Victor Hugo

            by dconrad on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 05:12:59 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Term limits probably won't pass Constitutional (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dallasdave

          muster for the same reason recall of federal elected officials does not.

          Although the Supreme Court has not needed to directly address the subject of recall of Members of Congress, other Supreme Court decisions, as well as the weight of other judicial and administrative decisions, rulings and opinions, indicate that: (1) the right to remove a Member of Congress before the expiration of his or her constitutionally established term of office is one which resides exclusively in each House of Congress as established in the expulsion clause of the United States Constitution, and (2) the length and number of the terms of office for federal officials, established and agreed upon by the States in the Constitution creating that Federal Government, may not be unilaterally changed by an individual State, such as through the enactment of a recall provision or a term limitation for a United States Senator or Representative. Under Supreme Court constitutional interpretation, since individual States never had the original sovereign authority to unilaterally change the terms and conditions of service of federal officials agreed to and established in the Constitution, such a power could not be "reserved" under the 10th Amendment.

          The extension is probably that even if Congress enacted federal term limits as law it modifies that original "length and number of the terms of office for federal officials, established and agreed upon by the States in the Constitution creating that Federal Government" and also fails Constitutional review. Term limits would almost certainly require a Constitutional amendment.

          The term limit exist though. It is called a ballot box and a citizenry determined not to allow a House of Lords to be established.

          Expecting pure free enterprise to serve a population is like expecting a garden to feed a family by simply throwing out bags of seed on the ground. (Me)

          by pelagicray on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:08:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Wow (6+ / 0-)

    Just wow. Is it actually possible that we the people could get some TRACTION this time?

    Thank you Chris Dodd.

    I have been following this for quite some time and did not dare to believe that some of these people would ever be brought to account for what they have done. This much groundswell is giving me hope for the first time in a long time.

    Stupid Internet Hayseed. hahahah. VERY good one, Kagro X.

    I have always found that reading blogs in general is like reading the newspapers maybe, SIX months in advance. My 75 year old parents today are ranting about stuff that was old news here two years ago.

    "Today's pig is tomorrow's bacon" - Greg Palast

    by Rosebuddear on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:41:58 AM PST

    •  50 year old acquaintances of mine are doing the (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dazed in pa

      same as your parents.

      An excuse for depending on TV news that I hear is:  "I use a computer at work and don't have time or interest in using one at home".

      "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

      by 417els on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:58:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  oh god...................EXACTLY (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        417els

        I work all day on a computer..........so just going home to watch CNN and veg - that's their excuse

        Hahah, well my parents don't have that excuse...........they've both been retired since the mid-nineties and rub it in to me every day hahaha

        My coworkers do - we're all programmers, some of us are political junkies.......none of us believe a damn word we hear on TV hahah........including the "conservatives"

        "Today's pig is tomorrow's bacon" - Greg Palast

        by Rosebuddear on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:07:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Now if we just had some visibility into some of (5+ / 0-)

    the other shit the congresscritters are pushing, we could make a dent in that as well!

  •  First story on Countdown last night was Fuckin' (4+ / 0-)

    Hillary and fuckin' Obama...Dodd and the FISA battle didn't get airtime until after Oddball.  Of course, I predicted this yesterday:

    Dodd's on fire today...I suspect that's why HRC (5+ / 0-)

    JB, and BO aren't there...they know he'll get the press for his filibuster and if they're there, they won't get any credit...but given the campaign is a different news story altogether, they'll ultimately get more TV time by giving speeches to a handful of dedicated followers/staffers in Iowa.

    by darthstar on Mon Dec 17, 2007 at 02:46:35 PM PST

    Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:42:52 AM PST

    •  Frankly, I think... (6+ / 0-)

      there were writing the script as the show started because it was still "hot off the press". I suspect that's why it wasn't story number one on KO. If it had happened that morning, it probably would have led off the hour!

      Also, jeeze! Cut 'em a break! At least they covered it. NO ONE ELSE DID! Not even a word on national "news" and, of course, Fox never said anything.

      "What a peaceful world it would be if Barbara had aborted!"

      by DevonTexas on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:48:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, I suppose you're right about that...calling (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Rolfyboy6, dazed in pa

        it 'breaking' would have been a little tough.

        Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

        by darthstar on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:51:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The terrible thing was the lack of coverage. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dazed in pa

          I watched all the news channels hoping to see what they would say! It was disappointing to say the least. It wasn't until Countdown that anything was said!

          Sad, very sad.

          "What a peaceful world it would be if Barbara had aborted!"

          by DevonTexas on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:01:56 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Yes. It was happening after 7:00 PM... (0+ / 0-)

        KO comes on at 8:00.  I think the senate finalities were still in progress when Countdown started.  In fact, I think it amazing that he got his information tied down correctly so quickly.

        "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

        by 417els on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:05:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Kagro, you earned this "I told you so" more than (6+ / 0-)

    anyone else.  May your tribe increase!

  •  If the traditional media (6+ / 0-)

    pundits and reporters are not able to understand the process enough to tell the story accurately, the maybe, just maybe, they shouldn't publish the damn story. The half-ass, misguided priorities of the traditional media make me want to vomit.

    They should be damn sure they have the facts before they go to air/print. Ehhhh. They can all go Cheney themselves.

    "She was very young,he thought,...she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing." -1984

    by aggressiveprogressive on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:44:22 AM PST

  •  Thanks to you.... (7+ / 0-)

    and everyone else who was helping to explain what was going on yesterday.  

    It was pretty difficult to follow, but that's why I continue to come here:  to get the real news rather than the corporate take on things.

    Your hard work was much appreciated.

    The meek shall inherit nothing. -F.Zappa

    by cometman on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:44:37 AM PST

  •  And here I thought (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rolfyboy6, dazed in pa, Rosebuddear

    it was supposed to be a journalist's job to get to the truth.  I'm glad Mr. Klein cleared that up.  Now I can stop wasting my time paying attention to him.

  •  No no no!!! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dazed in pa, 417els, dallasdave

    Don't be "back on this bill in January!"

    Make out your want-list NOW --

    What should DKOS readers be doing between now and January to pre-emptively bulldoze it down before this despicable legislation is re-introduced.

    Give us a bulleted list of "things to do."

    I worked hard over the last couple of days -- earnest discussions with senate staff (Snowe, Collins, and Reid.) I asked polite but passionate questions that the staffers couldn't answer. My calls mattered -- I want to keep on -- give me some guidance --

  •  Thanks Kagro. (6+ / 0-)

    And as a kind of corny note, I want to add that nothing inspires me about this community more than the way we rally, when a concrete issue is in front of us.  

    When that happens, we put everything aside and collectively do our level best to kick ass, and kick it in the same direction.

  •  but LOTS of people around here made (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rolfyboy6, dazed in pa

    this same mistake:

    As a result, the traditional media coverage of yesterday's events by and large simply got the procedure wrong, mistaking the cloture vote on the motion to proceed for a cloture vote on Dodd's filibuster of the bill itself (which we never even got to), and forgetting entirely about the 30 hours of post-cloture debate, which is what we were actually seeing yesterday.

    Lots of people are still pissed at Kennedy and Durbin for voting for this.

    "The only thing necessary for the triumph is evil is for people to mistake writing angry diaries on political blogs for doing something in the face of evil."

    by Buffalo Girl on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:50:41 AM PST

    •  True. (7+ / 0-)

      But the traditional media didn't help with that yesterday, and they won't help with it today, either. Now it's "old news," whereas we treat it as "post-game analysis."

      You can't reach everybody. But you can try.

      We do. They don't.

      •  Can't reach everybody (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aigeanta

        Progressive blog sites probably don't even reach 1% of the US population regularly and directly-- that would be around 3 million people. But even if we reach only a tenth of that, it's still a lot more active, well-informed, and interlinked people than the powers that be have ever had to deal with before. Hence the evident discomfort of traditional elites with lefty bloggers.

    •  Any time Kennedy AND Durbin vote contrary to (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Buffalo Girl, aigeanta

      what I think they should?  I go take another look to be sure I understand the issue at hand...every time that's happened, I have been the one misunderstanding and discover they, indeed, voted in my interest.

      "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

      by 417els on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:16:29 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  "Liability protection" was the Bu$hCo term (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dazed in pa, JML9999

    for "retroactive immunity."  Sorta like these lawyers were gonna gut the phone companies AND let OBL loose on us, all at the same time.

    What if Beethoven drove a Chevrolet?

    by Cartoon Peril on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:51:16 AM PST

  •  A real media (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sparhawk, saralee, dazed in pa, 417els

    would have Senate procedure experts who would explain what was going on in simple clear English (like what happened here and on several blogs).  In fact, one could argue that that that is the very purpose of journalism.

    It's all about the "O"!

    by Viceroy on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:52:19 AM PST

  •  "Dewey Defeats Truman" (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Luetta, dazed in pa, dallasdave, JML9999

    Well, y'know...

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight.

    by JeffW on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:53:13 AM PST

  •  Great Work, Kargo (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rolfyboy6, dazed in pa

    Now, if you can try to explain what "the Deal" was that lead Harry Reid to pull his procedural shenanigans we would all be forever grateful.  Reid must've gotten something -- a bridge in Nevada, funding for school lunches for poor kids, something -- to do what he did.  What was it?

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:54:17 AM PST

  •  Shucks!,...we starting to get the hang of it,... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dazed in pa

    Well, gee,... shucks!  It could be that we are starting to get the hang of this, and we might, just might, still be able to save the Constitution, the Country and maybe even the world from the dark side where weak Democrats hang out with war mongering Republicans! We do have cause to rejoice!

    Let's look forward to the day when we can all understand the meaning of equality and fraternity!

  •  You did a great job Kagro (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rolfyboy6, dazed in pa, 417els

    Much appreciated.

    Are you from Missouri? Join us for discussion of Missouri issues at ShowMeProgress

    by maryb2004 on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 10:57:11 AM PST

  •  You STUDIED? (5+ / 0-)

    Do you want to know how I came to understand Senate procedure? I looked it up and read about it. What a concept.

    CALVIN: What are you doing?

    SUSIE: Studying for the test.

    CALVIN: And all this time I thought you were smart.

  •  It's been a while since I've posted a comment - (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dazed in pa, Elasg

    maybe I'll diary about that, but for now:

    Well you know what? Neither do I. But I did it anyway, because I care what the hell happens in this country, and I want to know what I'm talking about.

    But, exactly.  And if the media can't separate who they are as citizens and see how that works with what they do for a living, then we need to get people into the media who do understand that little, inconvenient, fact.

    They ought to be citizens first, media second.  Because without the first, they are no good to us as the second.

    "Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments - Shakespeare, Sonnet 116"

    by xysea on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:00:17 AM PST

  •  Appreciated you spending the time to explain it.. (0+ / 0-)

    Though I had to dig to get the podcast, I really appreciated your thorough explanation of the process on TYT.  Thank the gods for independent media!

  •  What Is a Newspaper? n/t (0+ / 0-)
  •  Today's journalists (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    417els

    Today's journalists are "news readers" not "news reporters."

    WTF do they teach in "journalism" classes anyway?  How to use a thesaurus to put WH talking points into your own words?

    Bang a pot for Molly! (RIP)

    by myiq2xu on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:24:03 AM PST

    •  Hold it right there. You think they ever use (0+ / 0-)

      Rogers Treasures???

      Journo schools must have a sub-major now in how to choose the best hair color and select the juiciest looking lipstick.

      "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

      by 417els on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:33:48 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks Kagro... (0+ / 0-)

    You read so we don't have to!

    77 65 65 6c 7a 75 70

    by weelzup on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:34:21 AM PST

  •  This is excellent (0+ / 0-)

    I remember when Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa were going at it MLB started using marked balls for McGuire but not for Sosa. There was some controversy and my local paper said that the newspapers were caught by surprise by Sammy Sosa. This is an industry that prides itself on being able to cover a story half a world away at a moments notice.
    Now were supposed to believe that the rules of the US Senate are too arcane.

    Second, this situation was fluid, and traditional media that have strict deadlines for going to press just can't keep up.

    Many times I've seen conflicting stories here vs MSM and usually DK is right.

    . There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible but in the end, they always fall -- think of it, ALWAYS. Mahatma Gandhi

    by Sacramento Dem on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 11:55:36 AM PST

  •  These issues are complex (0+ / 0-)

    in the context of a media focused on obfuscation more than clarity, whose mantra in the Bushco era seems to be "move on folks, nothing to see here".

    Who are we kidding.  These are not difficult issues.  What's at stake in the FISA "debate" is not difficult to grasp.

    Scare quotes around "debate" because the Democrats aren't even trying to engage any sort of liberal, progressive, populist politics.

    The US Constitution, our democratic institutions, and our freedoms are such that we might get by with a mainstream media in the tank, if we had a principled opposition, engaged with the true political issues of our time.  

    Instead, we have CNN and the Security State Democratic Party, all consistently, vigorously playing dumb in Bushco's favor.  We see the results.

    Talk of a third party is premature.  First, we'd need a second.

    •  Not Simple, Then Obfuscation (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SingerInTheChoir

      It was a thrill to see yesterday's action live, in real time. And knowing what was going on — priceless.

      Even if the "news" reporters wanted to explain they couldn't, because first most of them don't know the arcane procedures, second they don't know the real leadup to the event, third they couldn't give background and also narrate in real time, and fourth they don't know what the sudden twists and turns are about.

      It is soooo fun to see it and get it, especially when I can whoop and holler at the same time.

      When it rains it rains the same Upon the just and unjust fella But more upon the just, because The unjust steals the just's umbrella.

      by JG in MD on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 12:40:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Without DailyKos, I wouldn't even know (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenearth, SingerInTheChoir, dconrad

    what time it is.  This site and you front pagers are the best.  I can't tell you how much I appreciate:  a.) news, b.) accurate and informed news, and c.) interactive news.  I think all of you bloggers need to supply a feed to AAR and Jones and guest regularly.  Talk about citizen journalism,  the diary on the rec. list is a great example. Kossack Catches Dirty Tricksters: Debra Bowen Investigates    This diary and the FISA coverage is what dkos so good.  I want to mainstream you, but only if you all promise not to be impressed by it.  

    •  I think they do supply a feed to AAR (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dkmich

      I can't tell you how many times I've heard one of the AAR hosts discussing some topic that I first read about hear on DKos and thought, "Oh, they must have read that diary, too." :-)

      "Toute société se juge au sort qu'elle réserve aux plus démunis d'entre les siens." — Victor Hugo

      by dconrad on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 05:16:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The right wing media... (0+ / 0-)

    Had already written the ending to this story weeks ago.
    I think shrub's last year will be different, he won't automatically get his way, but not much different.
    We still have terrible leadership.

  •  NPR was reporting FISA approved at 5 PST! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenearth, dconrad

    I was driving home from work listening to NPR and they were saying it was going to be approved to send to the president. This was a 5:15pm PST or 8:15 eastern time. I knew from DKos that in mid afternoon here, it had already been postponed. So much for "news" even from a source that usually gives some detail of what is going on.

  •  Job well done Kagro! (0+ / 0-)

    Thanks a million for all your efforts and concern!

    I like a little rebellion now and then. It is like a storm in the atmosphere ~ Thomas Jefferson

    by valadon on Tue Dec 18, 2007 at 01:14:26 PM PST

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