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I must say that I was disappointed to see this diary on top of the Recommended diary list. The prominence it's received at this site - a site to help support and elect Democrats - tells me that the Republicans are winning the spin war and causing real harm with the one thing at which they're good: carrying out psychological warfare against the American people and striking fear into the hearts of Democrats.

How many times did diaries scream with fear last fall about how the McCain/Palin team was cleaning the Obama campaign's clock? How many times during the fall of 2007 did Obama supporters urge his campaign to come out swinging against Hillary Clinton? How many times did Barack Obama seem too cool, almost unconcerned with what was going on around him? More times than we can remember now.

Do I think the Obama team is doing a perfect job right now? No. And I do think the Democrats have not run this whole stimulus campaign perfectly. But there are few things we all need to keep in mind:

  1. We are 16 days into this administration. Never before has a piece of legislation this large and of this much consequence ever gotten this far this quickly.
  1. Bill Clinton couldn't get a $16.2 billion stimulus bill passed in 1993. The lack of historical perspective on people's part is pathetic. This shit ain't easy.
  1. Bush rammed everything through Congress and stifled debate. Sure, it got things passed but what did it result in? The PATRIOT ACT, the Iraq War, his tax cuts, TARP. How did that work out? Obama ran on the need to have more transparency and the debate that is happening now is what Congress used to do decade after decade BEFORE Bush took office. Get used to this messy process - it's called fucking representative democracy. Give it a big ol' welcome back.

President Obama has asked the American people to be patient. He said he won't be a perfect President but he will try to learn from his mistakes. Well, guess what. He lived up to his words: he has not been perfect and has already admitted he screwed up. And yet we have not lived up to our side of the bargain by acting with patience. We haven't done enough to counter the Right Wing reactionary forces that flood Capital Hill. Have each of us flooded Capital Hill with support for Democratic priorities? Or have we sat here blogging, letting ourselves get caught up in a collective panic? Remember, as Bush/Cheney illustrated so well (and Cheney continued to try to do today), fear is the easiest way to motivate the American people. The American people may have chosen hope over fear in November but the re-conditioning isn't complete. They're reacting once again to fear and we're complicit in it.

I understand people's anxiety. I understand people wanting this site to be reality-based. But reality-based does not simply mean seeing only the warts. It also means not letting ourselves get psyched out by Right Wing spinmeisters. It means keeping track of Democrats (and Republicans) shooting down Republican amendments, as this diary points out.

Many here - especially Markos - can't believe President Obama ever considered trying to reach across the aisle. They're surprised that the President ever thought this would bear fruit. I still believe it was the right thing to do on the President's part. If it had worked, great. But the fact that the Republicans couldn't even pretend they wanted to cooperate is out there for everyone to see. No one but Republican lying sacks of shit can say that there has not been a good faith attempt on the President's part at trying to bridge the divide. And I can't help but think that the Republicans will pay a price for this. President Obama's poll ratings may go down a bit. But the Republicans will never go up. In fact I would bet they will plummet even further. We all wish President Obama could maintain his artificially high poll numbers. But every President has artificially high poll numbers before their inauguration. Once the work begins, naturally the poll souffle deflates. People forget that Ronald Reagan only got a second wind for his tax cut package after the March assassination attempt against him caused the nation to rally behind him. President Obama will get his package and will regain/maintain public confidence and I doubt it will take a tragedy to do it.

The President is keeping his cool. We need to follow his example.

Update [2009-2-5 13:27:2 by John Campanelli]: I woke up this morning and this diary I wrote because I didn't want to go to sleep with frustration on my mind is at the top of the Recommended list. It's good to know others were feeling the same frustrtation.

I don't want people to think that this diary is trying to paint a rosy picture. It's not. It's just an attempt at being reality based by adding some perspective to the doom and gloom that's been frustrating me.

However, the best way to insure Right Wing Psychological Warfare does not bring you down is to do our parts to make sure our views are heard. Here is the contact numbers for Senators:

Contact information for U.S. Senators

I have already written and called my Senators a week ago letting my concerns be heard. I am about to do it again. This time I am going to express concern about:

  1. The need for more infrastructure spending. An amendment to increase it by $25 billion was defeated. I want the issue revisited, even if it's a $15-20 billion amount.
  1. slinkerwink's dairy says they voted down COBRA for unemplyed people. I think that should remain in the bill, perhaps get it included in Conference.

If other people have issues that we need to emphasize in our contacts, reply to my Tip Jar and I'll include them in the diary.

    * * * * * * * *

One last point while I have your attention:

Diogenes2008 has a comment below about a matter I've want to talk about:

I know not enough people will see this comment, but we need to HAMMER on this:

Read what Ken Blackwell, who ran to be the head of the Republican Party had to say about the stimulus:

      "Most federal employees, that are not political employees, vote Democrat," Blackwell argued. "Creating 600,000 new jobs might help cement Virginia in the Democrat column, making it harder for Republicans to retake the White House."

They want the stimulus to FAIL.  They don't WANT new jobs created because they want power.

If that isn't sick and un-American, I don't know what IS.

This is a common framing you will hear from the Right Wing about ARRP. I've heard it from Limbaugh, Blackwell, and Buchanan. In essence it is saying that Democrats are bribing the American people, especially working people, with government give-aways.  Here's the problem: using that same argument, what would you call tax cuts? What about when John McCain wanted to end the gas tax holiday? The fact is that if a policy is good, it will attract votes next time a politician runs. That's democracy. Sure they may come at a cost: tax cuts that are too large or too much social spending will cause deficits and may later require tax hikes or spending vuts. But there is a time and place in the economic cycle for certain tax cuts, spending increases, spending cuts, or even tax hikes. This argument that we are trying to buy their votes can be a very persuasive argument, but we can't let them get away with it. Economists are saying we need to prime the pump big time. And like President Obama is now saying over and over: the American people voted for this vision last November. We need to give them what they voted for.

Update [2009-2-5 13:27:2 by John Campanelli]: To my fellow Connecticut Kossacks, I received am e-mail from Senator Dodd's office about a healthcare forum this coming Saturday in Daunbury. Rep. Chris Murphy will also be in attendance:

On Saturday February 7, Senator Chris Dodd is coming to Danbury because he wants to hear first hand from the people of Connecticut about their views and ideas for reforming our nation's health care system.

Will you join us at Western Connecticut State University to tell Senator Dodd what a solution to the health care crisis should look like?

Representative Chris Murphy will also be joining the discussion and hearing your voices on Saturday. Both he and Senator Dodd will carry your words and ideas back with them to Congress. This is your chance to influence two of our nation's leaders as they work on health care reform.

Western Connecticut State University, 2:30 PM, Danbury - JOIN US!

Saturday's event will focus on prevention, and it is the second in a series of town hall meetings that Senator Dodd is hosting across the state. Videos of the first event, which focused on health care coverage and access, are available for viewing on the CCAG website at this link. Below are the names of people who will be joining Senator Dodd and Representative Murphy at Western Connecticut State University on Saturday:

       * Jeneatte DeJesus, Hispanic Health Council
       * Johnna Torone, Pitney-Bowes
       * Ron Williams, Aetna


   Date: Saturday February 7, 2009
   Time: 2:30 PM
   Place: Western Connecticut State University, Westside Campus Center Ballroom, 43 Lake Avenue Extension, Danbury, CT

I'll be there. Hope to see fellow Kossacks there.

Update [2009-2-5 13:27:2 by John Campanelli]: the girl makes a good point in a comment below: The site is a good place to go to keep track of what's going on in Congress and gives people the opportunity to comment on subjects that interest them.

Originally posted to John Campanelli on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:18 PM PST.

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    I realize this is just a rant/pep talk but it's been frustrating finding myself getting pulled down by the panic around here.

    The Obama Experiment: thrilling, sickening, scary...I can't wait to see how it turns out

    by John Campanelli on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:20:02 PM PST

  •  ellinorianne had similar thoughts (16+ / 0-)


    "Gloom we always have with us . . . but joy requires tending." Barbara Holland

    by jlms qkw on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:25:45 PM PST

  •  Whatever happened to the "first 100 days?" (30+ / 0-)

    Give him time....

    "Certainly the game is rigged. Don't let that stop you; if you don't bet, you can't win." Lazurus Long

    by rfall on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:28:45 PM PST

  •  lipstick on a pig nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    environmentalist, CWalter

    "Imagine better than the best you know." Neville Goddard.

    by boatsie on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:33:21 PM PST

  •  If memory serves me right (37+ / 0-)

    (and it has been known to be wrong) there were numerous times during the campaign there were so many diaries about "Obama should _________."  But he played it his way and it worked. And I, for one, am more than willing to give him time, and willing to give Americans more credit than the pied pipers of the RNC (the media) are apt to, because people are hurting, but not stupid.

    -6.25 -5.3 "Fighting for peace is like screwing for virginity" George Carlin

    by dansk47 on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:37:18 PM PST

  •  I know the situation (53+ / 0-)

    is dire, but it's almost as if Obama is not allowed to make any mistakes. He is only human. He will not do everything right.

    And please people don't jump down my throat. I am not saying people are not entitled to expect more from this president.

    But during the campaign, we saw a similar pattern. Obama was going to blow the election. He was showing signs of weakness, because he did not respond to the McCain campaign when they pounced. He was weak, blah, blah.

    Today, he is spineless, weak, caving....

    He has made some mistakes, yes, and some missteps, he warned us would happen, too.

    But with all that, in 14 days, he has done some things to undo the eight years of crap we dealt with in this country. He signed the SCHIP bill for children today.

    I am unemployed, but my 11-year-old son, hopefully will benefit from this legislation.

    So, even as we sit on the edge of our seats because we know that the Republicans are no good for the country, I am hopeful that the Republicans have shown Obama that they are up to no good. And perhaps this will help him learn from the mistakes he's made.

  •  It's Been 40 Years Since We Had Comptentent Dem (46+ / 0-)


    I'm not even going to elaborate.

    The panic was utterly, utterly understandable no matter how wrong it was.

    Nobody younger than near-retirement Boomers has seen the United States governed liberally and that fact generally approved.

    Nor seen a smart powerful Dem President.

    Do you have any clue how close we were to losing forever?

    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 Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 09:50:06 PM PST

    •  Thank you for this, Gooserock. (20+ / 0-)

      I';ll be 63 in a couple of months and I've seen precisely what you're talking about. It's why I'm four-square behind this man.

      "Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illuminates it." ML King

      by TheWesternSun on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 12:05:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Would you elaborate for a bit on that? (0+ / 0-)

      Surely you're not suggesting Clinton was incompetent?

      The main things many of us were displeased with by the Clinton Administration were precisely his attempts to compromise with Republicans on things the Republicans weren't going to compromise on. NAFTA, telecommunications deregution, financial services deregulation, etc; those didn't happen because of Democrats in Congress. They happened in spite of Democrats in Congress. The headliners on the bills and the bulk of the votes came from Republicans. Health care reform failed because it tried to make the insurance companies happy. NAFTA was so bad most Democrats voted against it. Financial deregulation was pushed so hard by the GOP that Rubin and Summers et al couldn't find Democrats to sponsor it; in the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, please, name the Democrat. Etc, etc.

      So as someone who's not a

      near-retirement Boomer

      could you maybe flesh this thought out a bit? The perspective I take from triangulation and bipartisanship is that that's precisely what causes Democrats to lose. Lukewarm liberalism is the road to irrelevance.

      Do you have any clue how close we were to losing forever?

      I don't follow this comment at all. People under 30 hate the GOP in sizeable numbers. Democratic problems at the ballot box in the past decade are due precisely to Democrats being Republican-lite. That's why the party was losing elections; it was listening to Beltway pundits and lobbyists and consultants instead of the American people.

    •  I'm 64 And You Are So Right (0+ / 0-)

      ... the United States governed liberally and that fact generally approved.

      I've been looking for the words to define "good government, for the people" for a while. Maybe we should paint a picture for the young 'uns who've never seen it.

      On the other hand, they'd pick it apart. Hell, prolly we would.

      I helped put on a White House Conference on Food, Nutrition and Health that brought community activists from all over the country to Washington to compare notes and go back out and organize. That's how we got a network of commmunity organizers in the first place.

      Oh yeah ... This conference was during the Nixon administration.

      Joe Biden: Get up! Al Gore: Pray, and use your feet! Harriet Tubman: Keep going!

      by JG in MD on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:06:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It looks like some good news on the stimiulus (36+ / 0-)

    bill.  CNN is reporting that Obama thinks he has the votes in the Senate.  And Reid is willing to keep the Senate open all weekend to get the bill passed.

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told reporters earlier in the day that Congress would send a stimulus package to President Obama’s desk by the end of next week.

    She declined, however, to say whether House Democrats would accept a variety of GOP-sponsored changes to the plan now pending in the Senate. Instead, she raised the prospect of stripping some of the pro-business tax breaks included in the legislation to punish the lack of Republican support.

    The Hill

    If the bill is amended in conference does it have to get 60 votes again before bringing it back to the Senate for a final vote?

    •  I'll be damned: (47+ / 0-)

      Instead, she raised the prospect of stripping some of the pro-business tax breaks included in the legislation to punish the lack of Republican support.

      Ha ha fucking ha, TAKE THAT, Republicans!

      Also: nice fangs, Pelosi. Please keep doing that.

      •  This is how it's done (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tomephil, DParker

        I think Obama momentarily forgot that he is not only president, but the leader of the Democratic party.

        But it's not too late to turn things around.

        •  I don't think the President forgot a thing (13+ / 0-)

          However, I do think some noisy people forgot who it is that we elected President.

          •  I think he did... (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HeavyJ, tomephil, Dave925, CWalter

            he seems to have forgotten, if only for the first couple of weeks in the elusive and ultimately futile quest of bipartisanship, that the republicans in power will never support him or his agenda for the American people. To do so would be an act of political suicide on their part...they may be despicable, but I do not believe for a moment that they are suicidal.

            If, on the other hand, this was simply an exercise to "show" the American people just how partisan and uncaring the republicans really are concerning the plight of everyday citizens who happen to not be bankers, then perhaps the sense of urgency felt by so many in the country to set a new course is misplaced...we obviously have plenty of time for this latest bit of political theatre.

            Is the sky falling? No, however try explaining that to my last seven employees that I had to layoff yesterday...

            •  Disagree (21+ / 0-)

              I completely disagree.  He set the House Thugs up beautifully.  He put some of their demands in the bill, let them vote against it and what can they say now?  Last week they a real chance to impact the legislation. Now they get jack shit.  And they have no one but themselves to blame.  He gets exactly the bill he wants and he gets to show that he tried.  This whole bit of theatre held the bill up - what? - two days?  Okay.  I can give the man two days.

              Meet me in Cognito, baby

              by out grrl on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:09:31 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I can see where you're coming from... (0+ / 0-)

                maybe I'm just looking at it all wrong, but I'm still not convinced. I saw it not as "He set the House Thugs up beautifully", but more of the Thugs stringing along the thin hope of bipartisanship, getting some of their demands in the bill...and then voting NO with one voice. Unanimous. Every fuckin' one of 'em. Have any of those demands been removed from exactly the bill President Obama wants, or does it remain weakened by their input?

                Can't speak for anyone else, but I winced. Never even crossed my mind that the Thugs were set up. What did cross my mind was that after sitting down and accepting the hospitality and spirit of bipartisanship offered by a sincere and magnanimous President Obama...and after getting the majority to allow some of thier demands, apparently in the same spirit of bipartisanship...the Thugs unanimously spit in everyone's faces. They then immediately set their well-lubed spin machine into hyperdrive, saturating every known means of mass communication with smear and fear - again with one voice. That's how they operate, that's all they know. Wash, rinse, repeat. That's what I believe and that's how I saw it.

                I believe the Thugs can crunch numbers just as well as you or I. They already know that there's little to zero chance of them positively impacting legislation. The predictable exercise seems to be to create as many clusterfucks, obstacles, embarrassments as possible for President Obama in their sincere hope that he fails. Their ideological and financial lives depend on it. When The American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan succeeds, I sincerely believe the Thugs will be out of any meaningful power for the foreseeable future. Tears of joy...

                And I only mentioned "political theatre" in the context of urgency, or in my opinion, a lack thereof. For me, there is NO time for political theatre in this chaotic-enough environment, not even 2 days...though I believe this particular play has been running for quite a while longer than that. What I'd like to see are champions of the The American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan with a unified message, shoulder to shoulder with President Obama, every hour of every day setting the tone, framing the conversation, creating public support - and not this weak-assed seen this rerun already defense to the now saturated talking points - weak defense by all other than President Obama himself. Where the fuck are his vocal and visible face-in-the-cameras support in Washington?

                Though pissed off, don't consider me to be a 2 weeks into this administration and it's an utter fail messenger. It takes me 2 weeks just to train decent kitchen help! "Multiply it by infinity, and take it to the depth of forever, and you will still have barely a glimpse of what..." it means to be in President Obama's shoes!

                Please don't think me so foolish as to not know what President Obama's up against! I always smile when I read on here that dkos is like "trying to herd cats"...and the cats President Obama's trying to herd are on both sides of the isle with positively lethal claws and fangs compared to the relatively tame pooties around here!

                All that said, I can still understand the anger and frustration of so many as expressed in the diary that has led to this one - and why I tipped several comments there.

                Even though it only takes about 2 weeks to train a new employee, I can usually guage in the first couple of days whether or not the trainee is on board with the mission of our kitchen...or if he/she is more intent on implementing their own way of doing things. The latter invariably leads to me spending more time putting out the confrontational flare-ups than attending my trusted employees begin bitching the loudest and the longest...with "why the hell did you hire _____ in the first place", leading to the final, "we told you so!"

                That's sorta gets to my anger being triggered - those "leaders" of our party (take your pick!) that seem intent on preserving their own old ways of doing things (hence, the I've seen this movie before and hated the ending), instead of displaying any type of concerted, disciplined message in unity with President Obama and his stated goals that at least 69,456,897 Americans voted for. Nothing more, nothing less. I want to see our guys out there fighting the good fight, on offense - not defense - and definitely without the monster truck 4x4 tire treads of the Thug spin machine permanently imprinted on their backs.

                My only question concerning President Obama is his trusting the honorable colleagues on the other side of the isle to understand the times we are living in and do the right thing. To me, he sincerely believed that at this time in our nation's history the Thugs would put partisanship aside for the good of the people of our country...moving on...

                And now we can all move on. I don't belive for a moment that President Obama will be silent - even if he has to take the case to the American people by himself. It just would have been nice to have our leadership, you know, effectively leading the charge right along with him.

                Sorry so long

      •  Take that! (5+ / 0-)

        Instead, she raised the prospect of stripping some of the pro-business tax breaks included in the legislation to punish the lack of Republican support.

        Ha ha fucking ha, TAKE THAT, Republicans!

        Emotionally, I feel the same way -- I want to "stick it to the Republicans".

        However, I hope that, when all is said and done, that we are motivated by the desire to make good decisions for our country.  Our country is at our best when everyone prospers and I believe that the time has come for progressive politics.

        I think the point of this diary is for us to keep heart and not to be intimidated by Republican rhetoric.

        •  I only wish (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Hill Jill, kevin k

          that I believed that the GOP is motivated by a desire to do what's best for the country. I haven't seen  much evidence of that in the past and I'm not seeing it now.

          Let tyrants fear.-Queen Elizabeth I

          by Virginia mom on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:21:54 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I share your wish (0+ / 0-)

            The Republican's goal is to divide the country.

            Their twisted campaign slogan, "Country First" was shorthand for:

            "You are either with us or you are against the country."

            Hopefully the voters will continue to reject the mean-spirited politics of the right-wing.

      •  Fangs for the memories! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Also: nice fangs, Pelosi. Please keep doing that.

        Well, Nancy Pelosi does rhyme with Bela Lugosi.  ;)

        bela lugosi Pictures, Images and Photos

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

        by littlenomad on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:15:03 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  (That was snark.) (0+ / 0-)

          (I did that just for wasn't meant as a slam on Nancy Pelosi.)

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

          by littlenomad on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:16:01 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Monsters (0+ / 0-)

            After a quick search, I've found some wingnuts have already been making with the Pelosi/Lugosi remarks.  I'm almost sorry about my joke.  

            But, you know, I do like her with fangs.  Maybe Harry Reid will turn into a wolfman next full moon.  That would be fucking awesome.  

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

            by littlenomad on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:21:02 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Yes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The conference report is also subject to filibuster.

      •  Let them filibuster. (9+ / 0-)

        I don't mean threaten a filibuster, I mean actually have one where they have to physically keep debating the bill.

        I believe you have my stapler.

        by Troubadour on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:42:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not worried about a filibuster. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aisling, Sychotic1, CWalter, Sapphire1

        A filibuster would require forty senators to assert that  a) that no bill is better than this bill or b) they are holding out until specified changes are made.  

        A is death politically...the bill just isn't that bad and they will get blamed for every single job loss in the next two years.

        B is impossible since the senate republicans or few recalcitrant democrats can't agree on the changes, as shown by the diary demonstrating that  amendments are getting less than forty votes.

        "The first Republican who cries "Wolverines!" on the House or Senate floor has to be considered the front-runner for the 2012 Iowa caucus." JF on TPM

        by Inland on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:05:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I saw some Republican jackass (0+ / 0-)

          on PBS News last night (can't remember which one) claim that this stimulus bill is the WORST bill  to be proposed in the Congress, evah! Not to be outdone, Charles Krauthammer says this is one of the worst piece of legislation in galactic history (which sorta proves he must be an alien from outer space after all, because how else would he know this?).

      •  Thanks for the answer. Too bad. (0+ / 0-)

        I was hoping we could make changes in conference and ram it through the Senate.

  •  Too much attention's being paid to MSM (33+ / 0-)

    It's pretty clear that the majority of Americans do not care what the MSM has to say.  So it doesn't matter whether there are more Republicans than Democrats on the airwaves or how the media's angling a story.  It's not moving public opinion.  And this isn't new.  Remember...

    1.  The overwhelmingly negative media coverage of the Clinton scandals when he was in office, in particular Lewinsky and Whitewater.  The MSM got out the pitchforks, but Clinton's approval ratings went up.
    1.  The refusal to really report on Bush and what he was doing, and especially on Cheney and what he was doing - and just look at the approval ratings for the last three years and the jubilation that greeted their departure.
    1.  The MSM was harsher on Obama than McCain.  Who won?
  •  Historic imperative with Obama (8+ / 0-)

    He does not have the luxury of being able to whittle away at bits and pieces of GOP nonsense like Clinton did.  He is on the precipice of an economic collapse.  If he handles it right, he is our next Franklin Roosevelt.  If he doesn't, he's our next Herbert Hoover.

    It's much like what Obama's folk hero Abraham Lincoln faced when he became president.  His success guaranteed his place in history as a great president.  A failure would've make Lincoln one of the worst.

  •  Criticism isn't disloyalty, much less psyops... (12+ / 0-)

    There is much that President Obama has said and done to give pause to those of us who attend to the details as well as the big picture. Digby had it right when she wrote today:

    I think the administration thought they could be mediators between the two parties rather than leaders of the Democratic party.

    I will remain a trenchant critic of President Obama's administration as long as they appear willing to save and perpetuate the economic system of global domination that is rapidly decaying from its own corruption. Holding his feet to the fire is and should be the natural response of the public to its public servants. Democracy means us telling them (the government) what to do, not them telling us what to do.

    This is more a teachable moment for President Obama than a bunch of brainwashed Democrats unable to keep their powder dry.

    "A union is a way of getting things done together that you can't get done alone." Utah Phillips

    by poemworld on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 10:37:17 PM PST

    •  I'm Not Exactly Sure How Obama's Bipartisan (27+ / 0-)

      gestures have backfired.

      He did get 5 Republican votes just on Ledbetter, and the public actually likes that Obama tries to be bipartisan. Let the Republicans keep shunning his offers--the voters will take a hint especially since it will be the Democrats' campaign message in 2010.

      Obama has very little to lose unless you're of the one panic attack away from adrenal fatigue school of politics.

      That is all. Individually, I wish you the best, but collectively, my dearest hope is to outlive you - groovetronica

      by Nulwee on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 10:54:57 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  If Obama doesn't keep his promises, he'll pay... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Words In Action, thethinveil

        not the gop. And I really don't think Digby belongs to "the one panic attack away from adrenal fatigue school of politics." Let me know when you have factual arguments oriented to political reality, not just assertions backed with ad hominem attacks.

        Just sayin'.

        "A union is a way of getting things done together that you can't get done alone." Utah Phillips

        by poemworld on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:13:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  This is exactly right. (13+ / 0-)

        Obama is not trying to get the "stimulus" right, he's trying to get his entire first term right.  

        That means saving some of your ammunition for the even tougher fights: Health Care, Iraq Withdrawal, Green Energy.

        He's betting that these battles will be assisted by the building of "good faith" now.  Honestly, Obama doesn't give a crap about the House.  We own the House.  Its the Senate he wants on his side, and considering he just spent 4 years there, I'm guessing he's got a pretty good idea how to build the most support long term.

        I'm not crazy about Obama's "bi-partisan" bent so far, but he was never the "progressive" we all imagined him to be.  Seems he's exactly the man we elected, so why is anyone surprised?

        •  I find all your naive faith simply adorable ;) (0+ / 0-)

          Good luck with your prognostications. I sincerely hope you're all right. We'll find out in the end. My read of history and understanding of domination aren't quite as rosy. And I couple my criticism of the President's administration with a call for direct and indirect action through organizing, including relationally, politically and economically. Agitate, educate, organize. Many of you commenters seem to shortchange the "agitate" part of this formula. All that agitation does is get people to recognize there's a problem or problems. Of course, that's why agitators get labeled "troublemakers." However, I am troubled by the attitude of some kossacks that we should just "move along, there's nothing to see here" regarding some very troubling decisions made by the administration and Democratic leadership in Congress as part of its bipartisan outreach program to the gop. Finally the question comes down to priorities. Is President Obama really going to subordinate the nation's social and economic welfare to FIRST making nice with the gop? I feel this way leads to disaster. But, as I said, we shall see, shan't we?

          As Thomas Jefferson once remarked,

          I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever.

          "A union is a way of getting things done together that you can't get done alone." Utah Phillips

          by poemworld on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 10:07:57 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Prognostications? (0+ / 0-)

            "It's like, just my opinion, man."

            But seriously, I advocate for action all the time (check my comment history), and I take action all the time.  I am fully aware that one must agitate and applaud those that do, myself included.

            As for "naive faith," you've got the wrong guy.  I for one don't actually have any faith that universal health care will get passed.  I'm expecting Iraq withdrawal to take 2-3 years, not 16 months.  And I am fully aware of how difficult it is to get something passed when you have to work with a big group of obstructionist millionaire establishment assholes who really don't give a shit about the general public.  And no, I'm not talking about just the Republicans.  That's the real problem.  The Democrats that represent us DON'T ACTUALLY represent us.

            As I said in another comment, hold Obama's feet to the fire.  I am pretty sure he told us to do exactly that.  Everything is is wasted breath and makes the natives restless and useless.

      •  how has it NOT backfired (0+ / 0-)


        I'll just add that Obama gave the GOP this opening by courting Republican opinion instead of loudly denouncing them as the party that gave us this economic disaster.

        Not that they wouldn't have done this anyway, but Obama legitimized them at a time the nation should be attacking them with pitchforks

        and the public actually likes that Obama tries to be bipartisan

        No, they like the fact that he isn't an asshole.  But in bending over backwards to placate the assholes (instead of inviting them to be a part of the process) is going to keep Obama from getting results - what the public really wants.

    •  Yes, hold his feet to the fire... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aisling, catdevotee, LynneK

      Let him know, loud and clear, what you expect.  In fact, I'm pretty sure he told us to do just that, in pretty much those exact words.

      But the other diary makes no call to action.  As someone else said in those comments, it's a "Woe is Me" diary 14 days into the new administration.  Might as well be "GBCW."  What's the point?

  •  Awesome diary, John (28+ / 0-)

    and a hearty THANK YOU! for expressing what I've been feeling since I arrived at Dkos tonight at approximately 8 p.m.

    Stop bitching and whining, people: take some fucking action. Support your kick-ass president by utilizing your Constitutional right to participate in this process, and let's get the stimulus passed.

    A big "DUH!" seems to be in order here.

  •  All the right wing has left (33+ / 0-)

    is psychological warfare. They have lost control of Congress and the White House, and now their strategy is to show America we made a bad choice in electing President Obama. Of course they're trying to set the stage to take back the WH in four years.

    I think our President is off to a great start. We have nothing to panic over.

    Obama admits he loses sleep over the economic situation of America. Bush slept like a baby while he sent thousands of American service men and women to their deaths in Iraq. I believe President Obama really cares about suffering Americans, and that he has a plan and is working his plan.

    Instead of 100 days, it seems some people only gave him about 100 minutes to undo eight years of Bush damage. Not fair to the man at all.

    Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America..President Barack Obama

    by Ekaterin on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 10:42:38 PM PST

    •  The problem from my POV (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dave925, frandor55, Skid, CWalter, Ekaterin, soms

      is the lack of context surrounding 'change'.

      What are we changing from?

      What are we changing to?

      Why do we need to change?

      I'm afraid that's awful fuzzy out there in Corporate Media land.

      If people were told that what we are changing from is 'Failed Conservative Policies' and that we're changing to a Country that cares for and works to protect it's people and their future and that we need change because those bastards fucked it up so bad, then the conservative clowns would just have to STFU.

      But we have not gotten any of that context.

      It's all fuzzy, so the clowns get to spout their BS, and no Democrats defend the institution of Government, and the bill is going to spend a lot of taxpayer money, so the clowns are able to sabotage the plan.

      It should be a political slam dunk, and it's not shaping up that way because there is no context for change and no foundation for progressive policy to be built upon.

      That's the problem I have.

      Look at the 1928 and 32 Democratic party platforms.

      That's the foundation that Roosevelt built the New Deal upon.

      It's not there today.

      Obama is starting to lay that foundation, per his comments today, but it needed to be done before 01.20.

      Democracy - 1 person 1 vote. Free Markets - More dollars more power.

      by k9disc on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:00:14 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly, but within a reply or two... (0+ / 0-)

        that same view will be deemed "Doom and Gloom" as the crows set in...

        "Its a grave digger's song, Praising God and State. So the Nation can live, So we all can remain as cattle. They demand a sacrifice..." -Flipper

        by Skid on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:24:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Easy to counter... (8+ / 0-)

          "Where you see doom and gloom, we see light and opportunity. We are no longer going to be ruled by fear, we've got too much work to do."

          or something like that.

          They are so toast if we just lay the foundation - it'll be all softballs.

          Or the harsher...

          "In case you haven't noticed there are 5 million Americans with no job, no healthcare and no way to feed their families because of your failed policies. There are 5 million Americans for whom this is a life or death situation. We're going to fix that, and if you're not willing to help then get out of the way."

          Democracy - 1 person 1 vote. Free Markets - More dollars more power.

          by k9disc on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:59:13 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  No, they have Steele, Palin and Joe the WTF (7+ / 0-)

      They are the screwball team they need to destroysave the Republicans. I call them Mother, Jugs & Speed.

      "You know what's more refreshing than having a President who speaks in complete sentences? A President who behaves like a responsible adult."

      by londubh on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:14:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Your diary or the other diary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    musicalhair, CWalter

    what's the difference? To me, they both point out why we should stop being fooled by the two-party system in this country.  

    I used to believe people would wake up to this fraud, that the majority of our society would reach a tipping point, or critical mass, where, everyone at once (and during an election year!) would suddenly come to their senses and say "enough of this bullshit!" and vote for a third party in enough numbers to at least hamstring the other two and keep them from destroying our country any further.

    But I think it's too late now. People are still asleep and "hoping" for "change". When you wake up homeless, jobless, peniless and wondering where your next meal is coming from, just remember that all the signs and warnings were there, but you were all too busy hoping something would change to do anything about it.

    The dead might as well try to speak to the living, as the old to the young - Willa Cather

    by Matrix Dweller on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 10:45:53 PM PST

  •  Thank you for shifting (10+ / 0-)

    the mindset. Please keep it up. Obama has somehow always seemed to make it work out, so I'm going to have to trust him on this one. And, likely, many others.

    I hope he's setting them up for a big fall--I think he's smart enough to play this chess game well.

    Heh. Bush had no clue what "hard work" is.

    "President Obama." Yeah, that looks good.

    by konscious on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 10:49:26 PM PST

    •  I think you hit on the main difference (4+ / 0-)

      and the one that people don't seem to be grasping; Obama is playing chess, while the Republicans are playing checkers.

      "Truth never damages a cause that is just."~~~Mohandas K. Gandhi -9.38/-6.26

      by LynneK on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:01:49 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Whether Obama's approaches would work has always (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      johnny rotten, elmo, konscious, Hill Jill

      been a bone of contention: the people who were certain that he was naive, certain that he should be more negative and aggressive, certain that he could not overcome the worst in americans, have been confounded so far.  It's not certain he will come out on top, but I wouldn't take any bets that he will lose.

      "The first Republican who cries "Wolverines!" on the House or Senate floor has to be considered the front-runner for the 2012 Iowa caucus." JF on TPM

      by Inland on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:09:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  and remember (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        johnny rotten, konscious, RinaX

        we have in Obama a person who seems to be constantly learning, reflecting, adjusting and evolving. Remember how much better as a candidate he was at the end of the campaign than at the beginning?

        •  That's true, as opposed to republicans (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          johnny rotten

          who seem to have a very limited, and old, number of tricks that they use.  Watching John McCain trot out his proposed stimulus plan of tax cuts and military spending makes it clear that, even after 2006 and 2008, they are sure that nothing has changed since 2004, either in the world or the economy or the minds of the voters.

          "The first Republican who cries "Wolverines!" on the House or Senate floor has to be considered the front-runner for the 2012 Iowa caucus." JF on TPM

          by Inland on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 07:01:14 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  I'm not all doom in gloom (11+ / 0-)

    but there is frustration...Democrats need to get out there and sell this thing.  More of what Obama did earlier today please.

    My cat has stolen my I fear I'll be sleeping on the ground...

    by Jeffersonian on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 10:56:09 PM PST

  •  big ol' welcome back to representative democracy (21+ / 0-)

    Great diary!

    I thought Obama did an excellent job going out to the media and explaining that any pork spending in the stimulus package was
    a) bipartisan - every politician has constituents
    b) only 1% of the total bill

    This and the ceo salary cap makes me very happy and hopeful.

    In a democracy, everyone is a politician. ~ Ehren Watada

    by Lefty Mama on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:01:09 PM PST

  •  Stop calling it stimulus; Start calling it Jobs (43+ / 0-)

    Hartmann said this today and he's obviously right.

    The Republicans are deliberately confusing this Jobs bill with TARP 2.  People are being told to oppose the stimulus Jobs bill because it's a big government giveaway.  TARP is the government giveaway, not the economic stimulus package Jobs bill.  This is another Democratic Naming Failure, but it's not too late to change that.


    Support the Obama Jobs Bill!

    The hopeful depend on a world without end, whatever the hopeless may say. --Rush

    by Leftcandid on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:05:02 PM PST

  •  I still find it amazing (12+ / 0-)

    how the GOP continues to be able to con some of the blue collar Americans (mostly in the south) who always parrot their calls for more tax cuts. Apparently they don't have an internet connection or they only listen to Druggy Rush and Faux News because if they ever read the fine print they'd notice that when the GOP talks tax cuts they're talking about tax cuts for the wealthiest 1-2% of Americans, Big Corporations and Big Oil.

    They've become used to blaming others. The Repuglican leadership (Rush, Faux News etc) is very, very skilled at identifying scapegoats so that almost all of their blue collar supporters have someone else to blame for their sorry state of affairs i.e.: "liberals, tax-and-spend Democrats, hippies, communists, immigrants, gays". It's an easy way to avoid facing reality. - "Gay people drove my property values up! And Mexicans took my 50.00 per hour lettuce-picking job from me! And the Demoncrats take all my tax money and use some of it for THINGS I DON'T NEED! And the hippies made us lose Vietnam! And the Communists...well...not sure what they did...and the liberals killed my cousin's baby after I got her pregnant! And the immigrants! How dare they have the chance to earn the same quality of life and hope for their childrens' future that I have for me and my family"!

    Most of the average GOPer's still haven't figured out that wealth doesn't ever trickledown to them.

    It's like a shell game to the Repuglican leadership, using diversionary tactics to steer the people away from seeing the real problems. Unfortunately for them, they're starting to lose that game nowdays.

    "Load up on guns, bring your friends, it's fun to lose and to pretend" Kurt Cobain-1991

    by Jeff Y on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:06:15 PM PST

  •  You are Kevin Bacon in Animal House (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roguetrader2000, Words In Action

    "All is Well!!!"

    a tent can only be so big before it starts to sag at the seams.

    by jbou on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:09:34 PM PST

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

      Cool movie references are strictly reserved for the purposes of trashing Republicans, not internal squabbling.

      I believe you have my stapler.

      by Troubadour on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:17:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I am not saying "All is well" (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      johnny rotten, elmo, TheLoneliestMonk

      I'm just not saying, "We're all doomed losers!" Big difference. I say the process is not going perfectly. But I also know representative democracy is not perfect. If this was parliamentary democracy, it would be far smoother. But American Congressional rules allows for say so on the minorities part. Right now the minority is getting its say and yet they are still losing. The system is working, as imperfectly as it is.

      The Obama Experiment: thrilling, sickening, scary...I can't wait to see how it turns out

      by John Campanelli on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:03:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  We'll know when the bill actually passes. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tanya, soms, Words In Action

    Look for the ratio of tax cuts to spending.  That's how you keep score as to who won this round.

    "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

    by Geekesque on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:10:00 PM PST

  •  This diary has a nice calming effect. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peraspera, Matt Z, addisnana, Sapphire1

    "The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in times of great moral crisis maintain their neutrality." - Dante

    by jazzence on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:19:24 PM PST

  •  thanks (10+ / 0-)

    I appreciate this diary.

    We're going to appreciate our cool President when the shit really goes to hell.

    Have I mentioned that we haven't seen nuthin' yet, and that real change is coming? Well, there.

  •  I totally forgot that about Reagan. (20+ / 0-)

    I was wondering why his popularity went up so dramatically between assuming office and a few months later.

    He was shot in March, and had that quip to the doctors about "I hope you're all Republicans".

    And then his tax package got a second wind.  Kinda makes sense.

    I've been reading up on Clinton and 1993 again...we VASTLY underestimate the amount of shit that went down.  Republicans filibustered the stimulus bill, the budget barely went through (2 votes in the House, a tie in the Senate).

    And we're complaining?  If Obama gets this through in the next week, he'll have done more in his first 3 weeks than any President in the last 70 years.

    Read some history, people.

    "President Obama will be the most liberal President of our lifetime."

    by rashomon on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:41:06 PM PST

    •  we are trying to avoid the *if* (0+ / 0-)

      and we aren't just crying, these diaries have motivated many of us to make calls, write emails ect....

      ~Calling one a "concern troll" is just a lazy way to avoid formulating an intelligent counter-argument~

      by CWalter on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:44:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  the real fear is yet to come (6+ / 0-)

    people expect this melt-down to be like that whole "terror" problem we had back in '01 - a phony, media manufactured reconfiguring of our nation if I ever saw one.

    The pain has yet to really set in. Things are gonna get bad. Many progressive will be grateful for our practical, pragmatic, popular, mainstream, safe, non-partisan President when things get worse.

    If Obama engaged in major warfare to push a big progressive restructuring of our country through prematurely, he would suffer. That kind of thing causes pain, lots of it, and there's no way around it. Then, in 4 years, the worst elements of the Conservative movement would have a rallying cry, and, horrible as it may seem, could elect a Palin. That's the road to fascism. We'll be grateful that Obama didn't marginalize himself too soon in that case.

    Real change needs real pain. We tend to live in an overblown mediatized echo world, where people shout "FIRE" and the whole place goes nuts. That's what 9/11 was about - focused, intentional mass hysteria. But's it's short lived and politically stupid. Real change comes when people - lots and lots of people, not just we farsighted few on the progressive end, see the light.

    Obama is poised to make real change, and change will come.

  •  Obama can represent. We can raise hell. It's our (4+ / 0-)

    right and our duty.

    One doctor gets bombed in Arkansas is today's headline. Iraq must be laughing it's ass off.

    by JerichoJ8 on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:45:01 PM PST

  •  Yes, the terrorism practiced by Bush/Cheeney (3+ / 0-)

    on the country has affected us and left us jumpy and reactive. But there are some sound reasons for being on edge and impatient. The economic freefall has a finite intervention time to head off much worse consequences. And we're not just paranoid, we've seen both sneaky, underhanded actions and flagrant, blatant law breaking from the opposition. Granted, they're not in a position to do the flagrant and blatant anymore, but the sneaky, lying and Machiavellian are still possible, and the incessant dunning of their BS has made headway with low information voters in the past, we'd be.. unwise.. to allow them to go unanswered and sway those swing voters too far.

    It takes time to recover from trauma like the past 8 years. The line between complacency and paranoia shifts with the circumstances. Makes it tough to figure out what reaction is appropriate and which hard learned lessons apply at the time.

    Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

    by FarWestGirl on Wed Feb 04, 2009 at 11:45:47 PM PST

  •  Jobs, Infrastructure, Transportation! (6+ / 0-)

    Education! New sources of cleaner energy! feeding people!

    These are just a few of the vital aspects of our nation's well-being that will be funded, to some extent, that are in this bill.

    I find myself getting a bit put-off by hearing "Obama better fix this", when the campaign and our own desires all along was that we were gong to do this 'together'.

    Well, I can't force the Republicans to come along, but I'm getting on the horn tomorrow to my all-Dem delegation, and tell them to get out there and support this first stimulus package, and we'll work on making it better in a few months, but damnit, we need to get started now, the speed that the first TARP went thru should be duplicated in getting this thru the Senate, into conference, and on to the desk of the President before anyone goes back to their home states for the weekend.

    I watched the arrogance of the SEC Bush appointees answering questions poised to them by a House committee hearing on the Madoff fraud today, including one of them claiming "executive branch privilege" after refusing to give a straight answer to a question. I just wanted to reach thru the screen and slap those bastards, hard. There's some of that same disdain coming from the Republicans in the Congress and the media. Sweet sufferin' Caesar's ghost, the freakin' media, saying that Obama has lost control of the spin, and I'm still seeing more Republicans on the teevee than Dems who would support the stimulus bill. Where are the Dems that can represent our side in the media?

    Anyway, thanks for letting me vent, I'm blocking out some time early to make some calls, and I hope others will do so too. We did enough calling and canvasing in the last year(s) to be pretty practiced at how to do it effectively.

    And I'm with Pelosi, take out the most odious tax cuts, extend the one year fix for the AMT, with the clear goal of fixing this once and for all before 2010 rolls around.

    All that money freed up can go a long way toward fixing what's wrong with our infrastructure, helping states prevent cutting major investments in our future, like environmental cleanup and education that doesn't turn our graduates into debtors for life.

    Will report back tomorrow, maybe we can do a OT on who called their reps and what reaction did they get from the staff.

    The holidays were nice, but they're over now, and it's back to work for all of us.

  •  I'll take the flames here.... (7+ / 0-)

    I'm sorry but I have to agree with the "defeatist" diary, as unpopular as I will be. The vast majority of the comments in this diary take the tack that President Obama has only had 2 weeks on the job, and that we should give him time (years, even) like FDR got to change things. Normally, I totally agree with this, and in fact it's exactly for this reason that I stopped reading OpenLeft, because of all the overcritical premature obituaries of the Obama Administration there. So I get that feeling, and I agree with all of you who said so.

    But what I think many are missing is that there is a difference here. That other diary isn't just being pessimistic - the chief complaint (as I read it) is that the "stimulus" package is not bold enough for the times. It's not about whether it passes or not, or even whether it works or not, but rather the squandering of this once-in-a-century opportunity to really shake things up and do some good. Something with enduring value, like switching the entire national power grid to DC, or blanketing the country in renewable energy sources, or tearing some holes in our every-person-must-own-a-car religion by building a national supertrain network.

    "But this is just the first bill!" you say. Well, maybe, but let's look at the possibilities. Given the difficulty the President has had passing this one, I don't think a bolder, more progressive bill will come to pass, whether this one passes or not. It is also beside the point whether this version of the stimulus "works" (by whatever standard), because:

    1. If it "succeeds," the very reason for having another mind-blowing spending bill will evaporate. The deficit will loom large in people's thinking then.


    1. If it "fails," the President's infallibility will be damaged, and likely so will his popularity and political capital. Do you really think the current crop of Congresspeople and Senators will sign off on the more ephemeral (less "shovel-ready") big-budget projects after 800 billion failed to do the job? I don't.

    So, if I read the author right, he is lamenting the loss of a beautiful opportunity, not preemptively calling President Obama a failure.

    •  I see your point, however: (8+ / 0-)

      It is difficult enough to get this bill passed. While I would vote for some big pedal-to-the-metal CHANGE, who else would?

      And my vote does you little good.

      That kind of thinking presupposes we only have this window to get anything done, and I disagree.

      People have been trained by over four decades of disappointment to target government as the problem.

      Seeing that it is the solution will take more than two weeks.

      Pootie fan? Me too! Check out my cat advice blog.
      The Way of Cats

      by WereBear on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 02:50:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Your read on that diary is the same as mine. (0+ / 0-)

      However, it is not 1932, this is a different America demographically,, different political landscape, different reality in regards to mass media.  What it will take to make a grand Vision possible today is different -- so we cannot make judgments without taking into account the many variables of difference between now and 1932.

      Whoever determines what can be talked about also determines what can be known.

      by fearisthemindkiller on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:35:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  "Keep Calm and Carry On" (3+ / 0-)

    There is a very interesting article on the BBC about this phrase and its origin. Might be relevant, in a broad sense, to the discussion here.

  •  Sorry, but the TocqueDeville diary is right (6+ / 0-)

    in many regards.  This stimulus package could have been a Master Plan for America, and it's not. How about that $200 Billion tax cut? Are you aware that the estimated cost of initially implementing National Healthcare is $200 Billion?  Think how easy it would be to swap that out now America has already mentally accepted the $ amount? Put it aside until a nationalization plan can be ready in a couple of months. With the unemployment and fear of unemployment rampant, NOW is the best political atmosphere to enact massive healthcare reform.  

    I also share TocqueDeville's dismay that there is negligible focus on sustainable transportation infrastructure.  But I am not at all surprised; this one I saw coming from a million miles away as soon as Obama inexplicably appointed Republican Ray LaHood to head DOT.

    All in all, the Obama package is acceptable, but disappointing. This package is not daring, it is merely the minimum I would demand of a Democrat. So yes I support it.  But I won't be cowed by party loyalty into clapping with glee.

    Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!

    by bigtimecynic on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 02:26:22 AM PST

    •  The problem with a stimulus bill that is a Master (6+ / 0-)

      Plan for America typically means something that will take YEARS to complete as oppose to months.  This bill's aim is to hit the economy MAXIMUMLY in 18 months (new CBO reporting most of it hits economy by 18 months).

      This bill was made for mainly for short term punch.  In terms of Master Plans, Obama is going to be creating a NEW Energy bill in the Spring that will be a Master Plan for creating a green economy.  The reality is creating a green economy will take 10 years and cost 1 trillion dollars (estimated it will cost 100 billion per year for 10 years).

      Healthcare reform will be tackled later this year which will be part of the Master Plan for America.

      I think people are getting confused with shorterm economic stimulus versus a long term economic stimulus plan.  This bill is NOT a long term economic stimulus bill but a short term.

      Energy, Healthcare reform, etc need to be attacked in SEPARATE BILLS EACH and create a long term plan.

      The problem is that Obama hasn't discussed his vision for America yet.  He will be addressing this on February 24th during his State of the Union speech.  Then you will get the Master Plan for America.  This bill is only a downpayment for that.

      "Because we won...we have to win." Obama - 6/6/08. WELL WE DID IT!!! 11/4/08

      by Drdemocrat on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:57:29 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly - People expect this bill to solve (0+ / 0-)

        everything. Not only will the President have to regulate the market and get money flowing through the banks, but he will have to cut out wasteful spending so he can make way for new and better spending.

        This package has to be focused to jump start the economy. We still have him submitting next year's budget soon after. There is a lot if shit on his plate and it stinks to high heaven.

        The Obama Experiment: thrilling, sickening, scary...I can't wait to see how it turns out

        by John Campanelli on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:08:31 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  walk and chew bubble gum (0+ / 0-)

        Plan for America typically means something that will take YEARS to complete as oppose to months.  This bill's aim is to hit the economy MAXIMUMLY in 18 months (new CBO reporting most of it hits economy by 18 months).

        Then pass a bill that does both.  Duh.  Billions to start funding infrastructure repair AND billions to start the first leg of a national high speed rail network.

        As to the rest of your post: overuse of bold doesn't emphasize your points, it makes your post less pleasant to read, and people less likely to read it - defeating the point of using bold in the first place.

  •  No tips or recommends (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sychotic1, Dave925

    I promised Obama I would point out his flaws just like I did Bush.   I never committed to postpartisanship and always thought it was a bad idea.  I voted for him because I didn't like the republicans, and there is simply no one else to vote for in a two party duopoly.

    Obama wouldn't be apologizing if noone criticized him.  Right Wing psychological warfare wouldn't work if he didn't hire so many right wingers as advisers.  He is screwing up because he is listening to right wing appointees.  He hired all republicans and right wing dems to advise him on the economy and foreign policy.

  •  Thanks for this diary (6+ / 0-)

    I was thinking that there was something Clinton tried to do early on and it didn't happen.  Obama is doing ok, lots of good stuff has been done already.  We can criticize what hasn't been done, but we do need to be careful not to fall into right-wing traps.  Those fools march in lock step, we aren't like them (thankfully) but they can't understand that and will attack in any way they can.

    The thing to keep in mind is that Republican lawmakers do not want to serve the people of this country, they only serve their big-bucks masters and themselves.  They are evil.  Sometimes Obama and other Dems will be mistaken.  Huge difference.

    Fox news: Even better than meth!

    by get the red out on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:23:40 AM PST

  •  Disagree--'what you see is what you get' (0+ / 0-)

    and what we see are terrible appointments, theatrics instead of substance, and lying ('capping exec pay' is but one).

    This White House (passive agressive for not saying Obama) is weak, and so is the Democratic leadership on the Hill.  

    Republicans are running things, they have the media coverage, and our president is spending time saying he screwed up on all major media channels.

    I do applaud the GOP for having a very tough machine and I cry that the Democrats continue with such wimpy leadership and inability to control the message.  The GOP is cleaning our clock--AGAIN!! And we have the WH!  Unbelievable.

    What you see is what you get, means seeing is believing.  Not: believing is seeing (e.g., Obama can do no wrong).

    Very disappointed.  Voted Obama, gave time and money to that campaign.  

  •  ***SMACK!!*** (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    artmartin, Sapphire1

    Thanks John, I needed that.

  •  Point 3 is the whole f***ing problem here (5+ / 0-)

    Bush's policies were wrong because THEY WERE WRONG, not because they didn't have enough Democratic input.

    The boldness of our vision for the future should not depend on how many weasally Republicans we can bribe/cajole/threaten into going along with it. The goal should be just enough to pass the bill then move on.

    As I said dozens of times during the campaign, nobody ever fought a war to forge consensus. There are winners and there are losers.

    It's about time we started acting like winners.

    What did you do with the cash Joe?

    by roguetrader2000 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:55:40 AM PST

  •  I would like bipartisanship (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sychotic1, WI Dem, Uberbah

    But the Republicans don't know what it means. They think it means doing everything they want STILL. Why don't people get this?

    Don't donate to the DSCC in 2010 - they'll give your money to Harry Reid.

    by arcticshadow on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:56:03 AM PST

    •  Republicans (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dave925, WI Dem, Uberbah, arcticshadow

      are radicals and you can't negotiate with them.

      "I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of a whole human being" -Abraham Lincoln

      by joojooluv on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:57:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly (5+ / 0-)


        Yet I still expect some idiot to tell me "Obama sed he'd be bipartisan you should've listened..." blah blah blah. Seriously, have you guys forgotten what party we're dealing with here? It's not one that has America's best interests at heart, it's one that has their own.

        Don't donate to the DSCC in 2010 - they'll give your money to Harry Reid.

        by arcticshadow on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:58:45 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I agree... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mjd in florida

      It seems to me that the repubs are the ones who are once again playing partisan politics. Obama took the time to meet with them and he included some of their bullshit demands in the bill, but it's not enough for them. It will NEVER be good enough for them. They are not out to make the country a better place, I truly believe they are only interested in making the Dems look bad.
      I will NOT blame a man that has only been in office for 16 days, nor will I blame the Dems. I put the blame squarely on the shoulders of the republicans, they are deliberately trying to obstruct this bill, and it's working. I think it's very safe to say that if this would be bush's bill, the repubs would have rammed it through in an instant. Just like they always did with every. fucking. thing. he wanted.
      Sorry for the anger, but I can hardly believe that they are getting away with this crap.
      Thanks for the diary, I know that I for one needed to read this. :D

  •  I (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave925, Uberbah, pamelabrown

    don't think we can ignore the media's very partisan role in Obama's 'troubles'.

    I just want to know how we can destroy them and republican's once and for all.

    It would help in Obama reached out more directly to us to give us marching orders; we'd all be more than eager to do something.

    "I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of a whole human being" -Abraham Lincoln

    by joojooluv on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 03:56:27 AM PST

  •  Right One (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LynneK, JBL55, Hill Jill, Sapphire1

    Give Obama a break. My SO is a Clinton supporter [yes, he can't let it go] and coo's at every perceived Obama mis-step. The reality is - anyone who had taken the Presidency would have been faced with this Republican/Wall-street mess. I'm grateful we have someone who is open to ideas, not restrained by ideology.  Oh, and after eight years, I'm also grateful we have more than half a brain leading this country.

  •  excellent summary of the situation (7+ / 0-)

    There is alot of anxiety on this site. You name it people freak out about it. Bill Ayers, Rev. Wright, October surprises, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin have all ignited panic surrounding the Obama movement over the last year and he still won convincingly and Bush still left office with the lowest approval rating ever. I am pleased Obama has at least made the bi-pa effort even though he didn't get much in return. He has often said that his plan is to be open to all ideas and strategies. This one hasn't worked right off the bat and since he's not dumb or in a bubble, will move on to a different tack. His presidency will be judged on what he gets done and how he learns from mistakes, not by how happy he makes kossacks.

    Typo In Proposition 8 Defines Marriage As Between 'One Man And One Wolfman' -The Onion

    by last starfighter on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:11:32 AM PST

  •  I am sick and fucking tired of emotion police! (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    justmy2, Jlukes, kovie, Uberbah, leonard145b

    For god's sake, some of us already leave a life of conformance and repression. We go to blogs so we can vent in the safety of our living rooms. If we can't bloviate here, where can we?

    See the losers in the best bars, meet the winners in the dives -Neil Young

    by danoland on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:13:49 AM PST

    •  Shhhhhh (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Mitch McConnell likes to read the comments section here before starting the day and you don't want to get him too excited--especially with Elaine now home all day.

      The liberal soul shall be made fat. He who waters shall be watered also himself. (Proverbs 11:25)

      by kovie on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:52:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Right Off! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bookkillrr, sillia, JBL55

    They're anything but "on". It is good to see this diary at the top - about time. KOS was getting old and with too many obstructionist talking points. Let the Repubs take the bait. This is a chess game and Obama & team are setting the field AND getting it done at the same time.

    •  I can't understand (0+ / 0-)

      why people don't see this--he's playing for the LONG TERM, which is the best way to do it if we are going to succeed long-range.

      I think of it more like a series of basketball games, but then basketball is a little like chess. (Too many football fans in this country; football makes you stupid.)

      Oops! I'm gonna need a whole new sig!

      by sillia on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:13:29 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thank you! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LynneK, JBL55, Sapphire1

    I have grown weary of all of the hand wringing on the left.  I expect crap from the right - that's all they are good for. But I just don't understand why the left insists on ripping apart the person they got elected.  Cover Obama's back a little!

    •  Because he asked us to, that's why (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Go back and reread his acceptance speech. If you think he can't take the heat then you don't think that much of him, do you. Certainly less than his critics do.

      The liberal soul shall be made fat. He who waters shall be watered also himself. (Proverbs 11:25)

      by kovie on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:10:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  your President and your party need you! (5+ / 0-)

    We are at war and we need to recognize that.  The Republican party is our enemy and we must fight them with everything we have.  We must back President Obama and our Democratic Senator and Representatives.

    The Republicans are against education, health care, social services, good government, the democratic process and everything else that makes America great.

    Cheney, Limbaugh and Rove are the true axis of evil.  They must be stopped from derailing President Obama and our Democratic majority with lies and fear mongering.

    We need to help our president and our senators and representatives beat back the attacks of those who seek a continuation of the same misdeeds and failures of the last 8 years.

    Ask not what your party can do for you.  Ask what you can do for your party and your President.

    •  Gee, if that's what you really believe (0+ / 0-)

      we definitely elected the wrong President for you.

      •  Republicans don't understand bipartisanship (0+ / 0-)

        No I don't agree.  President Obama is exactly the right president for me.

        I think his reaching out and trying to set a bipartisan tone in Washington is a good thing, up to a point.

        However, it is clear that Repbublicans only understand one approach.  That approach is to rally around their President when they have one and to unify in total opposition when they don't have a Republican president.

        Democrats have to realize that is what we are dealing with and we need to support President Obama in order to help him get our agenda through congress.

        President Obama's reaching out to Republicans and being rejected will be noticed by the American public.

        I think you'll see President Obama gradually shift to a more aggressive handling of Republicans as he realizes they are not going to support his search for common ground.

        •  Obama most definitely does not believe (0+ / 0-)

          we are at war with the Republicans or that they are the enemy, or that our loyalty should be to our political party above all else.

          •  Obama took the gloves off today (0+ / 0-)

            The president started fighting back today.  He told the Repubs that their ideas had failed and created the current situation.

            He's from Chicago, so I knew he wouldn't just let the Repubs hammer him for very long.

            I think he'll have an approach that is more carrot to those who are reasonable and a stick for those that just try to block his agenda.

            I think he'll get credit from people for at least trying to reach out to the Repubs and they will be seen as rejecting his efforts at bipartisanship.

  •  Thank you (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mjd in florida, sydneyluv, Sapphire1

    Said it perfectly.

  •  Obama hasn't lost public confidence (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WI Dem, leonard145b

    so "regaining" isn't quite the right word.

    Obama just needs stop accommodating the Republicans and he has appeared to do that starting Wednesday with his speech and his OpEd in the WaPo about what his stimulus plan is all about.

    Obama can't do it all.  It is up to the Democrats to go out there toe to toe and fight the Republicans with their own talking points.  I think this just started happening today.  I just saw Senator Reed go toe to toe with Scarborough over the stimulus plan on Morning Joe this morning.  It was a beauty to behold.

    The Senate needs to pass the stimulus package today or tomorrow the latest.

    While the Senate and the House are revising it to get the final bill, every Democrat out there should be selling this package.  Obama should be daily selling it too next week.

    Tomorrow's jobless numbers are going to be BRUTAL.  Obama should be EVERYDAY next week talk about how this bill will be creating/saving 3 millions jobs next week until the bill is finally passed.

    "Because we won...we have to win." Obama - 6/6/08. WELL WE DID IT!!! 11/4/08

    by Drdemocrat on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:47:17 AM PST

  •  Thank you. (8+ / 0-)

    I, too, was dismayed that the diary you mentioned was at the top of the rec list, as well. Why do we seem to be unwilling to give President Obama time to accomplish his goals? How can we say that the new administration has "failed" when it has only been in operation for 16 days? How can anyone think that Obama could do more than he has in a mere 16 days? In the past 16 days, the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act has gone through Congress, passed in both house, and signed into law, Guatanamo has been closed, SCHIP has been funded, and a cap on executive pay for companies that are accepting Federal funds to bail them out has been made. As far as I'm concerned, these things are not signs of "failure"; they are signs that we have a President who is actually doing the job he was elected to do. After 8 years of BushCo, I'm finding the Obama Administration to be a breath of fresh air.

    "Truth never damages a cause that is just."~~~Mohandas K. Gandhi -9.38/-6.26

    by LynneK on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:50:50 AM PST

    •  And thank YOU. Well said. nt (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
    •  I think the administrations efforts (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      johnny rotten, LynneK, Sleepwalkr

      have been stunningly good for the reasons you mention plus the clear signals on climate change, a generally superb cabinet especially on environment and energy, the Utah giveaway reversal, etc. They are moving at a stunning pace.

      The stimulus debate is ugly and full of lies and distortions, but the Republicans own the media (what else is new). Time to adjust it a bit and push it to a vote. Any Democrat planning on voting no should be quietly informed that they will be primaried.

      We have only just begun and none too soon.

      by global citizen on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:25:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I humbly bow and prostrate myself (0+ / 0-)

    before those who drink at the fountain of received truth. We are not all thusly blessed.

    You have done well, my young Padewan.


    The liberal soul shall be made fat. He who waters shall be watered also himself. (Proverbs 11:25)

    by kovie on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 04:55:35 AM PST

  •  A Master's Chess Match (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mjd in florida, sillia, Sapphire1, BlueUU

    The players have only made a few moves.  The less advanced like to snicker over a few moves made early in the game.  "Mistakes" even.  And then, as things unfold those "Mistakes" are discovered to be moves only a master could make.  Not one, not two, but possibly 5 moves ahead of his apponent.  We are watching a master here.  I have watched every move. He is setting up the board for the future.  Sit back, and watch and just ask, "Why did he make that move" and then watch.    He has done this several times before, and won.   With where we are now, we have only just started to see him come out swinging.
    I can't wait to see the next three moves.

    I so believe in President Obama.  He is one smart guy.   And isn't it refreshing to have someone so much smarter than us running the show?

    I believe in President Obama, and The Beatles

    by bookkillrr on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:05:59 AM PST

  •  When the rubber meets the road it will be clear (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sillia, BlueUU

    that the republitards are nothing.  Very few will take them seriously again.  President Obama has the best of both worlds right now.  He TRIED to reach out to the dark side to pull them in to no avail.  Now, the democrats will simply have to march on alone, cleaning and scrubbing the republitard mess. The people will eventually see the progress. The pundits will eventually have to recognize the progress.  The democrats will look like the confident leaders they are.

    Now, if we could only get them ALL to a tax attorney ASAP.

    "Handle every stressful situation like a dog. If you can't eat it or hump it, piss on it and walk away."

    by winter outhouse on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:06:24 AM PST

    •  Harry Reid? Nancy Pelosi? (0+ / 0-)

      Confident LEADERS?

      In what wet dream is that a fact? This congress did something to Obama that they failed to do to Bush in two years. They stood up to him and said, We are more important than you.  The Democrats are more of a potential problem than the GOP.

      What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

      by agnostic on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:37:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is a nice touchie-feely diary (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    agnostic, pkbarbiedoll, Uberbah

    It's quite full of sloppy illogical conclusion jumping.

    This stimulus package is possibly the most important piece of legislation we're going to see in this decade.  If it doesn't work, a whole bunch of Americans are going to have to learn to live with very little over the next 20 years.  It is critical that this gets done right.

    To say that anyone who disagrees with the way the stimulus package is evolving is somehow influenced by Republican propaganda is nonsense.  It's also insulting to anyone who has specific problems with the stimulus to imply that they can't think for themselves and are being led by Republican sound bites.

    The diarist assumes that people who are upset with the stimulus bill are upset because of "reaching across the aisle", as if the politics of the thing is more important than the substance of the thing.

    Substance matters, and it matters a great deal right now.  Many of us are dismayed at what this bill is turning into.  There are a number of things driving this bill off the cliff and one of them is bipartisanship.  Another is lobbying.

    Bush rammed everything through Congress and stifled debate. Sure, it got things passed but what did it result in? The PATRIOT ACT, the Iraq War, his tax cuts, TARP. How did that work out?

    Let's talk about TARP.  The major failing in TARP is that a bill was passed to dump a huge amount of money to untrustworthy people without specifying what the result was supposed to be, and without auditing the program to make sure the result was achieved.  Seems simple in hindsight that if you want to spend money to produce liquidity and lending, you'd require that the program produced lending, and you'd audit to make sure that happened.

    Now we have a stimulus bill.  The desired result is jobs.  Can we learn a simple lesson before it's too late?  Can we require that this trillion dollars we're about to spend actually produce JOBS, and can we audit the program to make sure that happens?

    Obama based his campaign on strong support for the American middle class and American workers.  Now we see that a number of multinational giants have been courting him over the past few weeks, and have lobbied the whitehouse to have any protections for American workers and goods removed from the stimulus.  There is also a concern voiced by the American Small Business League  that Obama is continuing Bush's practice of diverting money meant for small businesses to large multinational corporations.

    The stimulus package is shaping up to be nothing more than another TARP, this time going to large business enterprises rather than banks.  We are about to dump a trillion dollars into the pockets of the executive teams of Honeywell, IBM, Microsoft, AT&T, and the other corp. lobbyists who sent a letter to the white house this week.  These executives will then be free to accomplish their contracts with the cheapest materials and labor they can find around the world.  In the end, we'll be hearing about "success" in how much money the American taxpayer saved by completing these projects cheaply.

    Remind me again what the purpose of the project was?  JOBS.  

    Mission (not) accomplished.  But hey, the multinationals did well and the executive bonuses will reflect that.

    And this diary thinks we're upset about bipartisanship and the appearance of which party is kicking which party's ass.  Jeebus freaking krispies on a toadstool.

  •  Like everyone else, I'm frustrated. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tomephil, Isara, fearisthemindkiller

    But I'm trying to see the positive.  I have been patiently explaining why things like family planning are good for Americans and things that are neglected.  A baby is a big barrier to returning to work for women, especially poor women.  So, while it seems frivolous, it's really not so frivolous.

    Second, I wish the Obama Administration would fight more.  I can only hope they have a secret plan they are not revealing to hang the Republicans out to dry.  Let them be obstructionist, get the bill passed anyhow with a minimum of modification, and show the American people that the GOP is full of it.

    I watched a news story about the cuts to the police that occurred under Bush.  There are a few billion in the bill for community programs like COPS, and for equipment and overtime.  It seems that there is a rise in crime during a recession and with city governments cutting back on hours and laying off officers, it behooves us to put money into the stimulus for them, to create jobs and protect what we're trying to build.  Still, there were people objecting.  One said, 'not enough jobs, not fast enough, so cut it out of the stimulus bill'.  How assinine is that?  If you feel that way, what's needed is MORE money for MORE jobs and MORE hours and MORE equipment.  And believe me, I'm not exactly enamored of the police, but they have their place in society for a reason.

    Can we please just start re-framing this.  I don't care if we call it the 'Save America' act so later we can beat the GOP with the political stick saying 'they voted AGAINST 'Saving America'.  Let's just get this done.  (Of course, that last bit would be a nice bonus, and I don't mean the Wall Street kind.)

    I'm sick of GOP SOP!

    by xysea on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:09:00 AM PST

  •  This stimulus is a piece of crap (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tomephil, agnostic, north40th

    Nancy Pelosi crap...and that shit smells.

    "Seeing every side of the argument causes paralysis." - (paraphrased - Abbie Hoffman).

    by angry liberaltarian on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:16:25 AM PST

  •  I think what is upsetting so many (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tomephil, khereva, Uberbah, Clarknt67

    is the Democrats kowtowing to the losers and not doing their own Psychological Warfare,I mean the knowledge of doing that is not some tightly held Republican secret there's tons of books telling how to do it.

  •  I believe and trust in President Obama 1000% (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sillia, spacejam, Sleepwalkr, Sapphire1

    Thanks for writing this John.

    There is no doom or gloom. The nay-sayers should take a chill pill and calm the f**k down. I can't believe all this negative talk after 16 days.

    Not only do I believe in President Obama, I believe in us. I don't like reading the defeatist stuff when we pulled off electing the first black man into the most powerful office on Earth and in my lifetime!

    How could all that optimism dissipate after a couple of weeks? Is it like a bad hangover after all the excitement of the inauguration?

    President Obama knows what he is doing. He is an extremely bright guy and when I wanted him to lash out in the past, I now know I was wrong. He knows how to handle the bullies and he knows what he is doing.

    I've even applied his temperance in some of my business dealings with some whom remind me of the pig headed Goppers and it works!

    So those of you freaking out, get busy calling your reps and use your energy helping President Obama get our country working again instead of screaming the sky is falling and running around like a chicken with its head cut off.

    That will never create jobs.

    We can beat the goppers at their own game...and give them just enough rope to hang themselves once and for all.


    We have a great President! Barack Hussein Obama Yes we do!

    by on2them on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:25:58 AM PST

  •  We should not follow Obama's example. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Uberbah, leonard145b

    Maybe he's doing what he needs to do.  That's great.  But without popular push-back against right wing talking points, conventional wisdom framing, Obama can't do shit in DC.

    "The strictest law sometimes becomes the severest injustice." -- Ben Franklin

    by Ouroboros on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:30:23 AM PST

  •  It's been barely 2 weeks since inauguration (7+ / 0-)

    I don't understand how anyone can be taken seriously when they try to talk like Obama is supposed to completely change 25 years of policy in less than 3 weeks.

    I ask myself, "Have any of them actually worked in a job that had long term deadlines?"

    A majority of things in the world take a lot longer to get done than you'd think. Even longer if you have to work with other people to accomplish it.

    Yes, Pelosi, Reid and co. are all doing silly things in fear of losing seats in 2010, but at the same time, Obama has accomplished a lot and only broken 1 promise (He hasn't put bills up for 5 days before signing) in order to get bills through:

    Like, he is actually following through on his promises, but the Gen-Xer cynicism seems to actively try to block that out.

    He hasn't broken any promises yet and only clearly compromised once (re: lobbyists).

    Grow up and give him a chance to get things done. If in a year he has broken more promises or failed to get more things done, then complain.

    But geezus, he isn't going to change the world in a little over 2 weeks.


    by MrvnMouse on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:33:25 AM PST

  •  wait one sec. I NEVER promised to be patient. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pkbarbiedoll, khereva, Uberbah

    And what little I have had, I seem to have misplaced. I want everything and I want it now.  Period.

    It is foolhardy to compare Bill Clinton's sorry first year (and yes, it was sorry, ill-prepared, disorganized, and leading quickly to a failed presidency. Just on simple issues like getting even 10% of the top staffers to complete their FBI background checks within the first year seemed too tough. It wasn't until some serious personnel changes were made that his administration found solid footing)

    Instead, let's compare Obama's first days with Bush's. Bush and his cabal cared not one whit about who said what or who cared about what. They had an agenda, and they followed it. When people squawked and complained, (Paul O'Neill is a prime example) they were canned. When GOPers in the senate tried a middle approach more palatable to Americans and democrat party members, (that is snark, by the by) they were rolled over by a steam shovel, and forced back in line.

    One problem that Obama's team suffers from is the failure to mix demands with offers. Perhaps yesterday his team woke up from the slumber they seemed to be in. Maybe it is a sign of things to come. I hope so, But it better be quick.

    I am self employed, and see the problems of people day in and day out. Solving those problems is my job. I know better than most how badly the economy is falling apart.  (unless you are one of the 4,000,000 who is now jobless. You know better than I. ) That sense of urgency is missing in our White House. If they stopped simply mouthing the words that we have a problem and truly felt it, they would be doing a full court press. And right not, they are not.

    What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

    by agnostic on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:34:20 AM PST

  •  It's hard to act with patience when you've lost (5+ / 0-)

    your job, your home, or you fear that you are the next on the chopping block.  

    Watching the rich squeal that $500,000 is not enough compensation when you have been making it on 1/4, 1/5, 1/6, 1/7 etc of that is more than many can take.

    Our needs are immediate, our fears are that we will literally be out on the streets in the cold, with out children.

    Obama does not have those personal immediate worries.  Nor to most in the House and Senate - they can take their time.  We cannot, and that's why this bi-partisanship attempt on THIS is frustrating and ringing hollow for all those whose needs are immediate, whose needs are NOW.

    Any thing but this there would be patience for bi-partisanship - but not this.  And anything else the bi-partisanship attempt would not drop the presidents approval rating so fast
    (well maybe letting the criminal Bushco go scott free would, but not much else)

    This was the wrong piece of legislation to go bi-partisan on, and it is costing the Democratic party dearly.

    Republicans heart big business & the rich and hate everyone else. Need Proof? Bush and his administration's scorched earth policy for the last days in offic

    by Clytemnestra on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:36:43 AM PST

  •  ding ding ding ding ding (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    madame defarge, Sapphire1

    John, m'dear, you are one of the smartest people on this site.

    We're totally falling for it.

    President Obama still could explain the strategery behind the Sen.Gregg pick in a bit more detail so I can have that "a-ha" moment...

    (0.12, -3.33) ONE America! and I am Unanimous in that!

    by terrypinder on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:36:59 AM PST

  •  The "he's not doing ANYTHING!" myth (9+ / 0-)

    Well, let's see:

    -- He got the nation's governors (including Republican ones) to come out to DC last week to back the stimulus

    -- He got the nation's mayors (including Republican ones) to come out to DC THIS week to back the stimulus

    -- He's sent out copies of the stimulus proposal to reporters in every state, custom-tailored for each state

    -- He's already activated his e-mail list, contrary to the accusations of some prominent lefty bloggers (many of whom never liked him much and have looked for pretexts to attack him, justified or not)

    -- He's been on national TV repeatedly pushing the stimulus

    -- He's even got an Op-Ed in today's WaPo

    But yet there are still people out there whining that "he's not doing ANYTHING!"

    Oh, well.

    Visit for Minnesota news as it happens.

    by Phoenix Woman on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:41:56 AM PST

  •  the screaming from both sides (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    johnny rotten, WI Dem, sydneyluv

    has a lot to do with the fact that most people hate change.  They often have to be dragged kicking and screaming forward.  Now I know some will say - we want change - what the hell are you talking about.  But, the process of change is never easy and sometimes for every one step forward it seems like we take two steps back.  We all want to get to the goal but we don't often like all the stuff we have to do to get there.  As others have pointed out above, this is so different than what we have had over the past 40 years that people are freaking out.

    Obama is not going to be all things for all people.  If you accept that then things will be a little less stressful.  Yes it seems we are barrelling over the cliff of economic meltdown and yes it seems we have some of the same people who had their foot on the gas towards that cliff.  But the reality is that no one really knows how this will all turn out.  Obama has said that if it does not work, we go back and try again.  Do you really think we are going to get it right in just a few weeks?  I don't.  I think some things will work and some won't.  Focus on the things we will probably get that are good.  Can you imagine this happening under the last few presidents?  Ha, not likely.  Telling CEO's they had to limit pay?  Gee, you think that would have been possible just last year?  He has not gotten much flack for that which I find amazing.

    So to all you optimists out there.  Keep the faith.  For all you pessimists - well life's a bummer for you.  Sorry.

    Nature's laws are the invisible government of the earth - Alfred Montapert

    by whoknu on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:43:13 AM PST

  •  We're doomed. (4+ / 0-)

    I'm pretty sure...

    I have not GBCWed. I'm just not commenting at present.

    by Bob Johnson on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:44:24 AM PST

  •  Republicans (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    will keep winning the spin war until we take control of our media again.

    I'm not an anarchist, but it would be good if people started realizing the difference between political propaganda and the truth. --John Lennon

    by o the umanity on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:46:31 AM PST

  •  The Repubs will continue to undermine Obama (4+ / 0-)

    I believe this is only the first battle. They will exploit every misstep and whip up negative opinions by ridiculing things like contraceptives. This is their war to regain power in 2010 and ultimately in 2012. They know that if Obama is successful, they lose power for years and perhaps generations.

    I just don't understand why Democrats are so bad at mobilizing an effective PR campaign. I think it's this failure that makes people anxious.

  •  Thanks for this, John. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sillia, SingerInTheChoir

    Well put. And as I've stated before, Obama didn't need to apologize for the tax problems of a few of his picks. That's what the nomination and approval process is for. I bet if we investigated the taxes of Congress, that there would be many, on both sides, with tax issues. Repukes are good at spin, and you're right, we need to beat them at their own game.

    [-6.25, -5.59] ♪♫ Well, bright is my favorite color...

    by Phil N DeBlanc on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:51:44 AM PST

  •  Repugs are running for 2012 election.They want to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    high bitrate

    insure the economy hasn't recovered enough by end
    of Obama's eight years so they can lay the blame
    on him.  I hope this backfires. I don't think American voters are willing to wait eight years to solve the problems of the economy.

  •  Thanks for the diary (7+ / 0-)

    WTF?  Are we all so exhausted from getting Obama elected?  Have we some how lost our ability to call and write our elected officials?  Does nitpicking every call that Obama makes help us move forward?  There is a lot in this bill (call it whatever you want) that is very good.  Let's just stop dropping our trousers to the obstructionist Republicans every time they start screaming about some of the tiniest parts of the bill.  Frankly, the problem might be that Obama is truly a class act in a place where that hasn't been the case for a very, very long time.

    Put your money where your mouth is and start called your elected Representatives and Senators, because we are hemmorhaging jobs, homes, and businesses right now.

  •  Submitting a budget : 101 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Isara, WI Dem, MaikeH

    I am going to turn in a budget.  I need 750K for the project.  I know what is going to happen when I turn it in.  I turn in my budget for 980K.  I will get called in to the big office.  I will hear "This is too high, we need to find a way to bring it down"
    This will happen no matter what amount I turn in.
    I give a look of concern, and make my case for the 980K and then take a moment and pause. Crickets, and say.  OK.  Let me go back and look over the entire budget and see what I can cut back on.  Smiles all around.  Round 2: I turn in a budget for 825K: I get called back into the big office: Same deal>  This is still too high.  (No matter what amount I turn in.)  I respond, But I have cut away just about every possible thing I could think of, some of it I might regret.  They respond... Well give it one more look over.  I pause, and say. OK. I am going to give it another look over and I will see what I can do.  I then turn in my third pass, it's for 750K.    I get called back into the big room.  They ask.  Is this it?  Is this as low as it can go?  I respond.  :Yes, I might need to add some money back into it if you decide you want to add a few things that were removed.  OK. Turn it in, let's go with this budget.  Keep in mind.  The steps are repeated no matter what amount I turn in.
    There are always the three meetings, the three budgets.  I learned this the hard way about 15 years ago.   I saw this same situation with President Obama, and I have a feeling he has been down this road before.

    I believe in President Obama, and The Beatles

    by bookkillrr on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 05:55:20 AM PST

  •  Faxed my Senators (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    John Campanelli, WI Dem, Sleepwalkr

    The phones are swamped and the voice mails are full.
    There is another way you can get through that most people ignore - FAXING!  I just composed a simple note urging immediate passage of this bill and sent it to my two Senators.  

  •  The issue here (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WI Dem, leonard145b

    is that the Obama administration and the Democrats in congress have been allowing the Republicans to dominate the public debate around the bill.  Barack should have been out front making the case for a stimulus on day one, instead he spent over a week pandering to Republicans who simply stepped in front of cameras and lied to the American people.  That was a failure of leadership.

    Also, it's precisely because his poll numbers were temporary that Obama should have seized the moment to push through his agenda; conditions were never going to get any better.

    We have real problems in this country.  Problems that are growing worse by the day.  We don't have time to waste placating conservatives for the sake of Obama's irrational ideology of "post-partisanship".

    This country does not have the luxury to entertain idiocy as if it is reasonable. --Digby

    by Thought Crime on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:02:11 AM PST

  •  This is a much-needed post... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WI Dem, sydneyluv

    I've been feeling the frustration and disappointment in the hopeless diaries here, and so soon after the emancipating support preinauguration and just after.  Thanks for writing what we all needed to hear.

    Never grow a wishbone, daughter, where your backbone ought to be. Clementine Paddeford

    by blubryeyes on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:02:38 AM PST

  •  Someone needs to herd the cats here (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Snarky McAngus, NuttyProf

    With Obama's campaign operation in flux and split between the White House, DNC, and Organizing for America, the rest of the Dems have completely dropped the ball here.

    We need a unified push to beat this back.  We can't let up or the Republicans are going to run us over with their control of the media.

  •  I agree with both points (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fro, WI Dem, leonard145b, High Tide

    You make some good points, but TocqueDeville is right. What I don't understand is this. Why is expecting Democratic leaders to act like the leaders voted into office three years ago, and re-voted in even greater numbers last year, a bad thing?

    The gut feeling of the public on most issues has the gist of the matter correct, much more correct than people inside the Beltway. Legislators should be in the business of filling in the blanks, taking basic sketches and turning them into detailed plans, not ignoring the will of the public to do the interests of very limited, specialized constituents.

    Pointing out that contradiction isn't succumbing to Republican spin. This isn't about Republicans. Quite frankly, I'm not sure why the Republican Party matters on a national level. This is about the Democratic Party. Worrying about what Republicans think or if we're playing into their spinning frames is like worrying what France thinks about our National Park System. It just doesn't matter that much.

    Republicans' only power source is the power Democrats give them. They've been on the wrong side of the issues for basically most of the 20th century (strip away party identity, and virtually every public desire on policy is the 'liberal' or 'Democratic' option). They've been on the wrong side of the politics more recently (quick, who finished with a higher popularity ranking, Clinton or Bush; who won more votes, Gore or Bush?). And then starting in 2006, Republicans have been literally swept out of power. The politics of the past generation has driven huge swaths of Gen X and Gen Y into anti-GOP mode.

    The best way to prevent that from becoming long-term pro-Democratic mode, though, is to worry about whether we're falling for GOP frames when we critique Democrats. The danger the Democratic leaders face is not being too Democratic, it's being too wishy-washy. Lukewarm liberalism and petty politics is the best way to squander the massive demographic advantage we currently enjoy. If a Republican has a stupid idea, we shouldn't give it the time of day. And when Democrats don't do what the people elected them to do, we should call them on it, loudly and persistently. Being respectful and civil and constructive is in no way in conflict with being adament about shifting our policy from corruption-based to evidence-based.

  •  Some bipartisanship (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    John Campanelli, Sleepwalkr

    I just scanned the progress on the bill at, and one thing's abundantly clear: the Senate isn't the House.

    Some of the Republicans' amendments are actually constructive improvements. That's why, for example, Kit Bond's amendment for an extra $2 billion for low-income housing was approved.

    God knows what's gotten into McCain though - why does he hate America (or at least 'Buy American' provisions)?

    I would never die for my beliefs because I might be wrong. - Bertrand Russell
    -5.38, -6.41

    by sullivanst on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:16:17 AM PST

  •  This messy process.. (0+ / 0-)
    "its called fucking representative democracy"

    verb or adjective?

    ; )

    Whoever determines what can be talked about also determines what can be known.

    by fearisthemindkiller on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:17:52 AM PST

  •  Poor politics is now "keeping cool" (0+ / 0-)

    Uh...thanks but no.

    •  Keeping cool does not mean doing nothing (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      johnny rotten, Diogenes2008

      Keeping cool is doing the work on our part to make our voices heard. But it does not mean being so frustrated and angry that we give up on the process after 16 days.

      When there's a fire in a building, panic is the worst thing that can happen. You can't think straight. We need to keep our heads on straight and do our part to move this ball forward. We need to call and write and make our priorities clear to our representatives.

      slinkerwink's diary about the Senate cutting healthcare for unemployed people is a place to start. I would also urge we have a re-vote about more infrastructure spending.

      The Obama Experiment: thrilling, sickening, scary...I can't wait to see how it turns out

      by John Campanelli on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:48:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Please read (0+ / 0-)

        What I wrote down near the bottom of the comments - it's a message that needs to be heard.

        "Spread happiness... share it with all those who seek it." - Keith Olbermann

        by Diogenes2008 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:51:18 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you! (0+ / 0-)

        For including my comment.  I think the message needs to be out there, and I'm glad you took the time to read it.  :)

        The GOP wants the stimulus to fail so that they can regain power.

        If they had any intelligence at all, they would realize that we can see them.  We know what they're doing, we've read what Blackwell said, and we know why they want this package to fail.  We have seen their destructive policies for eight years, and it is obvious that they haven't changed.

        So why would we want them to be in power again??

        They don't care if millions of Americans lose their jobs, as long as they can regain power.  They don't care if millions of Americans lose their homes, as long as they think they can get votes.  It's up to us to stop them, and we have to work together.

        And most of all, we need to fight back against their destructive policies.

        "Spread happiness... share it with all those who seek it." - Keith Olbermann

        by Diogenes2008 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 11:21:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Yeah, but it works (0+ / 0-)

    At least on a temporary basis.  It's like a poker game with the Republicans sitting with jack high bluffing the Democrats sitting with three aces into folding.  The Democrats let themselves get intimidated.  Then they start the handwringing and complaining.  

    Obama and Democrats were elected by a decisive margin.  They were elected to change the policy of direction of the country.  The Republicans lost and now are trying to be obstructionists and nitpickers.  That's the message Obama and Co. need to hammer home.

    Why would you appoint someone as Commerce Secretary who won't vote for your economic plan

    by Paleo on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:20:56 AM PST

  •  Amen and hallelujah (4+ / 0-)

    I've been saying this for the past 15 days. And the chicken-littling isn't limited to the stimulus debate. The Daschle Debacle was another case in point. Sometimes things go wrong. They just do. But you move on and keep your focus. That's all.

    Thanks for this diary.

    •  Daschle was especially silly (0+ / 0-)

      I can't remember an incoming admin my life that hasn't had at least 1 or 2 botched nominees. BFD.

      Don't be so quick to count the GOP out: alligators have avoided both evolution and extinction for tens of millions of years.

      by Scott Wooledge on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:22:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  End this bipartisanship crap (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    leonard145b, satanicpanic

    Bipartisanship is Obama reaching his hand out and the Republicans kicking him in the balls.

    Why would you appoint someone as Commerce Secretary who won't vote for your economic plan

    by Paleo on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:22:21 AM PST

  •  Thanks...this is the diary I've been thinking (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Libby Shaw, WI Dem, artmartin

    about writing....
    Bush got a 7 1/2 year honeymoon! WTF!  Obama isn't getting even a week. He will be changing his tactics and methods to adjust to the conditions, and he'll be looking for may take more than a month, but he's no dummy. It is going to get bloody pretty soon enough. I just hope the Republicans are unable to stabilize their message and remain in disarray.

    •  The MSM is clearly in the tank for the GOP (0+ / 0-)

      Except for Jack Cafferty, Keith and Rachel, it spouts its talking points 24/7.  It is interesting to  note that the outspoken Cafferty is no longer one of CNN's "political analysts." He has been replaced by a conservative jerk probably b/c Jack was critical of Palin.  Cafferty still has his comments and blog, but he has been somewhat silenced.  

      I have stopped watching MSNBC coverage entirely in the morning now. Joe, Pat, Mika, Contessa and most of their guests clearly hold Obama to a standard they did not invoke for the worst President in U.S. history, i.e. W. These folks are completely devoid of any credibility in my book.  

      I also refuse to watch Chris Matthews too.  Last night he said he'd invite Cheney as a guest. That did it for me. I have better things to do than listen to a pathological fear monger who left office with about an 18% approval rating.

      •  I actually got to watch part of Morning Joe (0+ / 0-)

        last week at my son's home..what a waste of air time!
        I am so glad I don't have cable...but regular tv is a total waste too...nothing is on worth watching! I spend my tv time on PBS(WTTW) which is not as good as it used to be, but at least Moyers is worthwhile!

  •  The psychology of it all! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Obama might be made of cardboard, but the fact that we project useful, intelligent gambits from him - that usually, but not always come true gives us the ability to make an intelligent gambit for ourselves in our response to him and the traitors Republicans.

    "It's better to realize you're a swan than to live life as a disgruntled duck."

    by Mumon on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:26:35 AM PST

  •  They're going to say that they did cooperate, and (0+ / 0-)

    ...that the stimulus bill just sucked.

    And it does seem plausible to me that a Pelosi bill would suck.

    Meanwhile, the mortgage lowering and home-purchase tax break got big play on the radio this morning, and were credited to Republicans.

    Sorry, but between the stimulus and the abominable Gregg appointment, it looks like the Administration is being out-gamed by a bunch of unpopular right-wing morons - and that is a legitimate reason to be outraged.

    We must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

    by Minerva on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:35:51 AM PST

  •  Important (9+ / 0-)

    I know not enough people will see this comment, but we need to HAMMER on this:

    Read what Ken Blackwell, who ran to be the head of the Republican Party had to say about the stimulus:

       "Most federal employees, that are not political employees, vote Democrat," Blackwell argued. "Creating 600,000 new jobs might help cement Virginia in the Democrat column, making it harder for Republicans to retake the White House."

    They want the stimulus to FAIL.  They don't WANT new jobs created because they want power.

    If that isn't sick and un-American, I don't know what IS.

    "Spread happiness... share it with all those who seek it." - Keith Olbermann

    by Diogenes2008 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:36:57 AM PST

  •  Thanks for a really good diary, JC. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    artmartin, NYmind

    I'm with you completely regarding the lack of perspective in this forum on Obama's official moves so far.

    We've had some pretty hysterical diaries on the recommended list about this economic incentive legislation, that's for sure. While I respect, on one level, what the diarist was trying to do, I must say I didn't appreciate the "Republicans are beating us 100 to 1" statement in a previous diary, about constituents voicing their feelings about the bill. It's good to inspire progressive concern and action, but inflammatory exaggerations go too far.

    Thanks again.

  •  A few weeks ago, this site was gushing (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pat bunny, high bitrate, MaikeH

    with admiration for the pilot that calmly landed the plane in the Hudson river, the steady-handed rescuers and the amazingly orderly passengers.

    Our country is that plane right now, going down with both engines burning.  

    Maybe we need to practice that which we admire most.      

  •  I Agree With You (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    artmartin, Sleepwalkr

    Remember that the term "Democrat" does not equate with "Progressive". Democrat is a collective noun which includes people like Steny Hoyer, Mary Landrieu and Ben Nelson - people who, in my country would be called either progressive conservatives or red Tories.

    It seems like many posters here expect only very progressive legislation from the "Democrats", but that's not who they are.

    One of the most wonderful things about this site is that it continues to promote a more progressive kind of Democratic party and, especially, progressive candidates.

    The battle to take over the Democratic Party will take longer than the battle to take over the government.

    Canada - where a pack of smokes is ten bucks and a heart transplant is free.

    by dpc on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:47:39 AM PST

  •  I have to disagree....this is not a campaign (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    codairem, satanicpanic

    Let's face it.  Obama has been rolled. Unless of course the plan was to undermine the super majority in the house of representatives and put them in their place (which is not outside of the realm of possibility after Lieberman and Warren, et al.)

    No one is even questioning if Republicans have a point anymore outside of the blogosphere...and now Obama probably too late...

    The ship has sailed.  And I don't even mind changing the bill.  My point is how the Administration and Democrats have allowed Republicans to drive the meme has been shameful.  The zero vote should have been hung around Republicans neck, but it has turned into a crown.

    Do not become the sycophants we have despised for 8 years.

    by justmy2 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 06:52:46 AM PST

  •  This diary is condescending and dumb (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    your points 2 and 3 don't even make sense.  So Bill Clinton couldn't get a stimulus bill passed.  Things were different then.  You're pathetic for not remembering who was running congress in 1993.

    Point 3?  You're forgetting something: Obama is not Bush.  The problem with the legislation Bush pushed through was not that there wasn't enough debate.  It was that Bush proposed nothing but bad legislation.  It doesn't benefit anyone to endlessly debate while jobs are being lost in the tens of thousands every day.

    I'm not worried about Obama- he's hit a rough patch, big deal.  Just because some people are getting upset was not reason to unleash this diary on the world.

  •  It is so easy to be (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BDsTrinity, Sleepwalkr

    an armchair politician.
    It takes more effort to actively support Obama's agenda of change.
    How many of you have written or called your congress critters in support of Obama's actions thus far?
    How many of you have written to Republicans to let them know your feelings?
    How many Diaries do we see here in support of the good things Obama has done so far?
    Obama is one of our own.  We worked hard to elect him.
    He needs our support and he needs our patience.

  •  Last sentence says it all... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BDsTrinity, mysticlaker

    ..."The President is keeping his cool. We need to follow his example."

    You are fucking-A right, my friend.  

    "Your taste buds can't repel flavor of this magnitude!" -Admiral Ackbar

    by Scruffy Looking Nerf Herder on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 07:10:47 AM PST

  •  One of the reasons that my eyes were opened... (3+ / 0-)

    ...back when I was a GOPer was the near constant drumbeat of unfocused rage over every public policy from the right.

    If my guess is correct, there's likely a very large cohort within the GOP that are barely affiliated with them anymore - and that doesn't count the ones who already jumped ship.

    The drumbeat of obstructionism and anger is yielding diminishing returns, and is coming very close to a backlash.  Most people don't want to be that unhappy for so long.

    Keep the faith, brothers, - given enough rope, the GOP opinion drivers will hang themselves.  

    Maggie Thatcher had a line - "eventually, Labor will win an election - its our job to keep winning until they become sane."  With much irony, it really does apply here.

    If Jesus saves, He'd better save himself From the gory glory seekers who use His name in death.... -Ian Anderson, Hymn 43

    by high bitrate on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 07:12:54 AM PST

    •  my red in Mississippi brother (0+ / 0-)

      has certainly come around to being more independent--sees the need for change and resents the obstructionists.  He told me last weekend the country needs to come around now and support the president who's been elected.  It's that old traditional "the king is dead, long live the king" mind-set.  I hope (and believe) many other pubs are feeling the same way.

      Find your own voice--the personal is political.

      by In her own Voice on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:43:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Very cool diary, JC. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Libby Shaw, artmartin

    I couldnt' agree more. I think many of the artificially frustrated Libs and Kossacks do not understand the Obama Way. He seems to have a bit of a taoist strain in him that in time will work well for him, for our country and the world at large. I say reverse your baser instincts to criticize, and send him some of your good energy. It will be energy well spent.

  •  I'm sick of blaming republicans (0+ / 0-)

    For being republicans.  That's what they do- it's like blaming wolves for eating sheep.  

    You know who put this country where it is today ?

    We did.  All of us.  As a culture and society.  There are some good republicans (yea, its true) and there are some bad democrats (you know it... bub) but the rot has come thru at every level.  

    We elected Bush, but before that, we let Clinton off the hook for being a shitty democrat- and being proud of it.  

    The whole time, Wall Street was rotting.  The Catholic church was rotting.  The M/I complex that Eisenhower warned about was rotting.  Our industrial base was rotting.  Our schools were rotting.  Our cities were rotting.  

    And why?  Because everyone wants to be rich.  Everyone wants to be around the rich.  At some point along the line, having some dough came to mean that you were better, so everyone had to have some, because who does not want to be better ?

    We should have been taxing the shit out of the rich @ 70%/80% for years and years and years, and taxing the shit out of oil too.    

    You play monoploly and get surprised when all the money flows to one corner ?

    Oil and money is what messed this country up- not just republicans.      

    Out of my cold dead hands

    by bluelaser2 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 07:24:08 AM PST

  •  Hey, this is a high stakes game (0+ / 0-)

    and the future of the country is on the line.  Some observers say Obama has already lost the debate on the stimulus and it won't pass.  So his lame attempts at "bipartisanship" with an minority bunch of cretins has real consequences.

    If we don't call him on it, who will?

  •  Amen (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ...the "concern trolls" sure love to come out of hiding at the slightest hint of discomfort.

    The fact is that the radical right wing of this country knows that trying to force their viewpoints on the American public is a long-term psychological game, not a short-term effort.

    They also know that there are a lot of nervous nellies (i.e. "concern trolls") on the left who will go running with their tails between their legs whenever they (the right) yells..."boo."

    Progressives need to know one thing: if President Obama is to succeed, we will have to change our behaviors.

    Change number one in order to bring about REAL change in this country: STOP ALLOWING THE RADICAL RIGHT WING OF THIS COUNTRY FRAME THE AGENDA.

    Step number two: Fight, fight, fight.

    Bringing about REAL progressive change for this country will not be easy. Ever. It's been a long time since the electorate has given progressives an opportunity to start implementing their agenda. Lets not blow it.

    This is no time to become faint of heart.

    If you think it's tough now regarding President Obama's economic stimulus package, you haven't seen anything yet. Just wait until he and his administration begin their effort to reform our country's health care system. What is happening now is a walk in the park compared to what's in store for us then. You might as well know it now and begin to brace yourselves. It's time to begin to get ourselves into top psychological shape and to put on our armor. Because, when the radical right wing realizes that they may actually be on the losing side of one of the most important public policy changes in American history--health care for all all Americans--they will start screaming, yelling and gnashing their teeth like you've never seen before.

    Buck up, my friends. It's going to be a bumpy ride.
    But if we just keep the faith, remain calm and continue to develop and then exert our political muscle, there's a chance that real change may happen. If you give up are ceding that chance right now.

    •  Here is an eomail I received in response (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      to this diary. Either a fatalistic Democrat or a foot soldier in RW Psychological Warfare:

      "We are 16 days into this administration."

      You are wrong. Obama and Pelosi have been working on this for 3 months – from the time Obama was elected. He promised the American people that a bill would be on his desk to sign the day he started. "President Obama has asked the American people to be patient."  He wasn't so why should the American people be.

      "Bush rammed everything through Congress and stifled debate."

      The Patriot Act, the Iraq War, and TARP were backed with popular support by both houses of Congress. That was before the spineless Democrats started turning tail and inventing excuses for having originally voted for it. We're seeing the same immature spineless conduct right now.


      Until the polls started showing Obama just how much Americans were opposed to this bill did he open it up. If he does not listen to his own advisor Lawrence Summers then he will fail and he will do what FDR did and catapult us into a Great Depression.

      The one thing that the first two weeks have shown is that we elected a completely unqualified and inexperienced person and now how to live with it.

      The Obama Experiment: thrilling, sickening, scary...I can't wait to see how it turns out

      by John Campanelli on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:19:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  what gets me is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    that if this were happening under a repub admin, the repubs would be screaming at the top of their lungs that any dissenting dem was unpatriotic and wanted the country to fail.  that's how they got everyone to shut up about iraq and the "war on terror."  it even quieted the media.  now, i think mainly because of backlash from the bush years, to suggest that someone is unpatriotic or wishing ill on the country for political reasons is a no-no, even if it's true.

  •  Thank you for writing this diary. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    You bring up some really rooted points.

    I think something to point out, whether it was strategy or not on the Democrats part, the Republicans have made their argument they had some momentum.  But, that is the only argument they have and it is easily debated.  Their balloon is out of air.  Our turn.  I hope the Congressional Democrats (all of them) seize their opportunity to make their argument with the President.( I do not think it was strategy, too risky to let the Republicans get control of the conversation.)
    But, it is what it is and our leaders need to take up the conversation on our behalf.  Regain their momentum.

    I have to say what I think is happening here is we fear our Congressional Leadership do not believe in themselves.  I think that is surfacing in these battles.  It is not about being dignified (they can make their arguments in a dignified way).  It is about NOT being loud or proud.  
    Senator Leahy, Congressman Frank, Senator Boxer, Senator Feingold and now Senator McKaskill right or wrong they believe in themselves, I know I find whenever they speak up about anything it is comforting to me.  Even if, I do not agree with them.  Even if, they are indelicate and make a PR mistake.  
    A lot of the others still seem to be apologetic for our general POV.  
    As tired as I am of the Republicans unAmerican attitude, I am twice as tired of this beat down timidness from some of our leaders in Congress.
    They need some balls.
    These Republicans get up and say STOOPIDest things publicly.  Their worlds do not fall in around them.
    The Congressional Democrats are still in fear of the 20%.  They do not believe in me.
    This Economic Recovery plan is a very serious matter.  You either balls to the walls believe it is what is needed or you don't.  This is not an issue to ride the balance on, in fear for your career.
    I am also a tired of the media imbalance.  But, they should not just let that roll them over.  I do not except it as an excuse that lets us go back to our corners.  If need be, I want to see Harry Reid juggling oranges or knives lit up with fire on the Front Steps of the Capitol Building distracting the media from that drip McConnell. Shouting out his argument.  Maybe, Speaker Pelosi can repel off of the Washington Monument while shouting her argument.  I do not care, just fight.

  •  I just called NC's Burr and Hagan (0+ / 0-)

    Burr's office didn't ask who I was, but Hagan's did. Both people answering the phone said they'd pass along my support for the bill. Even though I pretty much already told them my wishes on 11/4/08, but whatever.

    •  A lot of good it did; Burr's on CSPAN right now (0+ / 0-)

      pushing McCain's "Alternative Stimulus Plan."

      McCrankypants, YOU LOST! The best thing you can do for the country is to hole up in one of your mansions and let the people who actually care about us do their job! Again: You Lost. The fact that McCain is doing this makes my head explode almost.

      •  Here's my email to McCrankypants: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        In her own Voice

        Senator McCain,
            I'm watching my senator, Richard Burr, endorse your "Alternative Stimulus Plan" and it's hard to put into words how mad I am, but let me try. Respectfully, Senator, you lost the election. My parents even voted for you, but my candidate won. Your opportunity to craft the recovery bill is over. The majority of Americans who voted said that we want Obama to handle the recovery, not you. Now you look petty. It's bad enough that Republicans have decided to do the bidding of the party leaders instead of the wishes of the American people. But your amendments and alternative bills are just plain pitiful. Republicans' opposition to the bill is  duly noted and you won't be blamed if it fails. Now please get out of the way and let the wishes of the majority of the American people proceed.

  •  Alert: Elizabeth Warren on C-Span 3 (0+ / 0-)

    She is one of my favorite people.

    Go to your TV machines and press the "on" button. Wait... they have these newfangled romote thingies now. Do that.

    Joe Biden: Get up! Al Gore: Pray, and use your feet! Harriet Tubman: Keep going!

    by JG in MD on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:11:18 AM PST

  •  typically fallacious reasoning (0+ / 0-)

    "Most federal employees, that are not political employees, vote Democrat," Blackwell argued. "Creating 600,000 new jobs might help cement Virginia in the Democrat column, making it harder for Republicans to retake the White House."

    It's like the line of thought that said

    a) Southern states vote Republican
    b) a lot of Northerners are moving to the South
    c) a lot of Northerners are going to start voting Republican.

    Blackwell is confusing correlation and causation.  If I paint the White House to look like a red Camaro, that doesn't mean it'll get a speeding ticket on the New Jersey Turnpike.

    "My friend, if you think we're going to spend a billion dollars of our money over there, you are sadly mistaken." - Donald Rumsfeld

    by RickD on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:14:27 AM PST

  •  I would call my Senator but she wasn't elected (0+ / 0-)

    and was appointed by a person who also wasn't elected so I don't really expect her to be open to these kinds of calls...  she doesnt OWE the constituents of my state a damn thing...  she owes the party power players and as such my call will probably mean nothing in her greater scheme of things.

    how many other people are now in this same position, having to "lobby" UNelected congress people?  to many I would venture.

    2001-2008 "What a long strange trip it's been"

    by KnotIookin on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:21:21 AM PST

  •  it's even better if (0+ / 0-)

    limbaugh and cheney keep popping up like they have lately, just to remind the public what fucking assholes they've been to us for the past eight year.

    yeah, that's it, you jerks, keep reminding us, =you= got to have your way with us all that time, and this is what we got now... thanks for reminding us all that it's been =your fault= all this time.

  •  President Obama is on point, now. (0+ / 0-)

    In my opinion, the best way to express the debate across the aisle is:

    Republicans want more of what got us into this mess.

    Democrats want to limit the damage.

    Elevating Limbaugh (even to pinata status) is a mistake for President Obama. Hewhomustnotbenamed should remain in obscurity, haranguing his supporters into oblivion.

    Some perspective was certainly in order. Republicans during the Clinton Adminstration said they were not to be held responsible for the effects of Clinton's priorities. I'm willing to allow them an exempt status from responsibility of the 90's, but think they should be held responsible for the effects of the tax cuts of the aughts.

    The victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory.

    by Pacifist on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:24:45 AM PST

  •  People in this country (0+ / 0-)

    are sick of republicans and all their crazy shit.  
        The Stimulus Package is going to pass, over GOP objections if necessay. What the republicans are doing amounts to nothing but posturing for the footsoldiers. They are all praticing the fine art of obstructionism-and believe me, it will cost them dearly in the voting booth.
        They have been reduced to little more than a regional party with a failed ideology. They have nothing to offer and they know it. If they had anything to offer, where have they been for the past eight years? Their two-term loser has been an abject failure-he has taken his party with him-and they know it! They literally-have-nothing-to-offer-and they know that, too. Obstructionism is all that's left.

    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction." --Blaise Pascal

    by lyvwyr101 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:26:11 AM PST

    Recommended by:
    In her own Voice

    for this diary.

    Coolest Obama Photo Mosaic Image on the net (as seen in Time mag.)

    by Eclectablog on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:29:06 AM PST

  •  I agree... (0+ / 0-)

    And I can't help but think that the Republicans will pay a price for this.

    Thanks for a diary running counter to the hysteria and puerile press for "seeming" progressive.

    Find your own voice--the personal is political.

    by In her own Voice on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 08:39:53 AM PST

  •  with regard to update (0+ / 0-)

    "In essence it is saying that Democrats are bribing the American people, especially working people, with government give-aways.  Here's the problem: using that same argument, what would you call tax cuts?"

    A tax cut isn't a giveaway, it's reduction of take-away. Letting people keep what they already own, what is already theirs, is hardly a bribe.

    It's not the same thing.

  •  Thank you for this. I wrote (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to my two right wing conservative jackass Republican Texas Senators earlier this week and gave them a piece of my mind. I told them their rubber stamping of W. for the past eight years, all the tax cuts for the upper 1%, all of the tax breaks and loopholes for big business, royalty "relief" for oil companies that posted billions in profits in 2008 and their stupid war of choice in Iraq has taken us to the lowest hole in hell in which we now find ourselves.

    Said they had become an outcast party of fundamental extremists in which their leaders are people like Rush, Not Joe the Fake Plumber and Stupid  Sarah (I did not write Stupid Sarah, in all honesty.)  Their Party has been relegated to the South in which public schools tend to rank at the bottom of the national pile and where there are the highest number of uninsured residents.

    Cornyn is too big a jackass to care what I say but Hutchison may take a moment or two to think about it.  She's up in 2012 if she does not run for Gov in 2010.  

    I write for Texas Kaos and tear up Republicans every chance I get...

    Recommended by:
    wdrath, COwoman


    This poster has it exactly right. I would recommend this diary a thousand times!!!!!!! If only I could.

  •  I was in the stall next to Obama (0+ / 0-)

    and I SWEAR his s**t smelled like roses.  He didn't leave through the stall door, he floated over it on a billowing ribbon of toilet paper.  A crowd in the hall applauded, and an orchestra struck up a jaunty tune as he opened the bathroom door.

    I don't know how people can criticize him.  

    Never mind what you've heard.  Past behavior is not the best predictor of future actions.  

    So when you see Dems letting Rethugs frame the debate, members of our own caucus throwing each other under buses, and 'compromises' that strip popularly-supported provisions our of a bill in favor of a radical minority ideology -- when you see that, and you say to yourself, "That looks a lot like the last 8 years where Dems let Rethugs frame the debate, threw each other under buses, and capitulated to rigt-wing ideology" -- well, you would be wrong.


    Just cause.

  •  Sometimes a ramming, a good ramming... (0+ / 0-) exactly what the doctor ordered.

    HR 676 - Health care reform we can believe in.

    by kck on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 09:30:24 AM PST

  •  If instead of the Patriot Act, etc., Bush (0+ / 0-)

    had rammed through large scale public works programs, many of the projects would be completed by now. Laws can be overturned - public works projects can still provide a benefit to society generations later.

  •  "DON'T PANIC!" from HH Guide... (0+ / 0-)

    As the Hitchhiker's Guide illustrates in large letters on the back cover of the book the phrase "DON'T PANIC!", we need to take the same advice in the current stimulus stunts going on over the airwaves and in the news.

    We have one plan from the House,
         - one from the Senate,
         - one from the Libertarians,
         - one from the GOP and
         - one from one Rep and one Dem together,
         ... thus far.

    And we are hearing pundits from every corner of the country chiming in that they have the answer to all of our problems. These Snake Oil Salesmen as I like to call them are always around and willing to sell you their brand of product at the drop of a hat and a few million dollars a whack. The fact is that it doesn't matter that the "End of the World as We Know It" (or EotWaWKI for short) is soon to come upon us. These people don't care they just heard the jingle of Uncle Sam's change purse and came a running!

    So relax and make some popcorn as you flit between C-Span, Fox News and CNN. If not just to watch the talking heads flash in and out of life on the screen as if you were ALMIGHTY GOD smiting them from existence for displeasing you!!! As they say, Rome wasn't built in a day. (Or so they would let you believe. It was actually grown from the living rock. But don't tell my analyst that, he might increase my medication.)

    In the end, no matter what goes into the first Stimulus Plan it won't fix anything on the surface. It will push money around from one pile to another. And as a result the government will earn more money on each transfer and tax each transaction or deposit. That is the actual stimulus plan. Not to give money to a worthy cause or to shift the tax base one way or another. The plan is simply to move money between the banks. And in that trickle of money between two humungous bank vaults the iceberg of frozen assets will crack and crumble as the monetary ice age comes to an end.

    So in those immortal words from the master of all things galactic!

    (at least not yet. I need a chance to make it to the exit first ya know.)

    Nuff Said,

    "Let's make sure that there is certainty during uncertain times in our economy." -- George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., June 2, 2008

    by Wynter on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 09:47:11 AM PST

  •  Well said (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    You stated nearly exactly what I'm thinking.  Much of the progressive reaction to Obama over the past week or at least several days has been nearly unhinged.  Commerce secretary?  It's not an important cabinet position, and Dredd isn't going to be making policy.  History is full of cabinet secretaries who left because they disagreed with Presidential policy, and there are even a few who began their tenures highly skeptical of their president, yet transformed into strong advocates for their president.  Ed Stanton went from calling Lincoln a "guerrilla" to uttering through tears at his death "now, he belongs to the ages."

    I am concerned that Obama's economic team is filled with individuals who embraced deregulation until its results blew up in our faces.  With few exceptions, they lack the vision and creativity our crises demands, and many still adhere to Clintonian triangulation dogma that transforms bold action into polite gestures calibrated not to offend.   As a result the stimulus bill is overly complex, with a lack of focus that spreads the money a mile wide and an inch deep, and will thus fail to produce the tangible successes of the New Deal.  We get a bit more broadband access, but no effort to bring broadband to every American.  We get weatherstripping, but no rolling vistas of wind turbines or solar energy arrays.  As a result the stimulus is a tough sell while presenting plenty of targets for antigovernment forces.

    What keeps my disappointment in the stimulus in perspective is an appreciation that the Obama administration is two weeks old.  There is time to regroup and correct course.  If at two months Obama still hasn't whacked the GOP upside the head with some bold and creative initiatives, then I'll start tying a noose for myself.  Until then, I'll do what I can to whack some sense into the Obama administration.

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 10:10:11 AM PST

  •  The Repug bastards are following Rush's thought.. (0+ / 0-)

    process.  Of course they want Obama and the dems to fail.  It is all they got.  However, I am extremely pissed off that Pelosi loaded this Stimulus with the ammunition the Repugs needed.  She really, really should have known better.  Especially with the Blago thing going down and the tax problems, et all.  Just my thoughts!

  •  Huzzah! (0+ / 0-)

    I love my cigar too, but I take it out once in a while.

    by Muskegon Critic on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 10:14:42 AM PST

  •  nice diary, and ITA (0+ / 0-)

    I feel like we need some leadership HERE on this site to let us know what the site stands for now. What is its purpose? I've been MIA for 2 weeks due to a lovely hospitalization (in which every single day someone from the hospital came to my bedside and asked for money down on my bill), so maybe I missed a new statement of intent from Kos and everyone. But is this site out here just to wring its hands and try to take down whoever is in government, R or D? Or are we gonna adapt and work to support Obama, not letting everything slide, but find a helpful way to dialog. I know this site belongs to Kos and he can do whatever he wants, but I'd love to just see a statement of what the purpose is now, and what it is trying to accomplish. I love this site, and look what we accomplished this past election! Now, what are we going to work for? Dividing our own party? Undermining every little thing? Or working toward a greater goal while having useful discourse when needed?

    ok, this wasnt meant to be such a long comment, but I'm on pain meds and my mind is all mushy, so sorry if it is ramble-y and doesnt make sense.

  •  Great Diary! (0+ / 0-)

    I can only say to the doomsayers....MOBILIZE!
    We still have the lists of people we spoke to during the campaign. I am attending a big meeting for this Economic Recovery Plan this Saturday morning. I will be asking everyone to call and tell their circles of people to call, email, and tell our Senators and Reps that we support the President and this package.
    Keep reccing diarys that help to mobilize and also the ones with talking points. Send them out, post them anywhere and everywhere.


    The meaning of life is to live it.

    by COwoman on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 10:34:33 AM PST

  •  "Republican sacks of shit" Love it (0+ / 0-)

    I am the junior centaur from Illinois.

    by qi motuoche on Thu Feb 05, 2009 at 10:49:11 AM PST

  •  right on brother - obama will go toe-to-toe (0+ / 0-)

    he said he'd do things differently. he is. the most significant thing he is doing that's different from all republican administrations - and all democratic administrations since carter - is represent the people. 'courageous' does not begin to describe it.

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