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We are coming down to the crunch!  Clearly, most all of us are hoping for good things to happen.

Yes, this is yet another diary calling for that party vote, why below the fold...

(The point of this isn't to be lofty.  It's to say, "It's ok!  Me too, dammit!)

From the comments:  "It's insulting"  Here's the truth.  It's not.  The opinion I have expressed here is advocacy.  Agree or not, I'm not forcing anybody to feel, or do anything.  Know that, be secure in who you are, and do the civic duty of discourse, just as I am.

Meip and I had a brief chat last night.  Diaries like that, sometimes spark some interesting thought.

Well, hers did.

I happened to be thinking about the changing social politics of up and coming generations.  Truth is, they are increasingly focused on whether or not other people present as who they actually are.

There are a lot of dynamics in play to potentially explain that, and I'll just lead with a couple:

  1.  The more connected we are, the more difficult it is, or more precisely, the higher the cost associated with managing lies.
  1.  A lie, compartmentalized our state of reason into that which is who we are, and that which is associated with the lie.

Texting, social networking, phones everywhere, and other tech to come, means we can be connected in ways and in amounts that are a very serious step up from the norms seen in the past.

Additionally, the rise of many to many, and inexpensive one to many communication has changed the game on media for good.  Whether that is good or bad remains to be seen in the longer term.  That it simply is, should not be questioned at this point.

I'm voting a full ticket because I don't want to give regressives any momentum or validation.  I sure as hell don't want to empower those fuckers either.  Times are hard enough.

So, does that impact my principles?  Am I being a political whore, selfish, not true to my ideas?

Let me submit this to those people, who have told me voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil:

It costs too damn much to stand for purity.  Seriously.  This all comes down to both a personal and a very real financial cost.  If we are to live under a law that says money is speech, then we also need to put money on the table regarding these things and see where it leads.

And that's connected to being real, as opposed to being fake.

Truth is, my cost and risk continues to escalate, and it's painful.  I'm generally not a happy camper, and am going to the mat every damn month trying to just keep up the family and the basic obligations we have to bear.  Adding to that isn't acceptable to me.

Adding to that takes time away from my advocacy efforts, my ability to contribute to causes and people I believe are worth it, and from my time to just do, love, be who I am.

A hard look in the mirror reveals I'm just not a bad guy.  Truth is, I'm probably about 10 percent evil, not serial killer evil, but deffo mess with the people in the grocery line evil, or tweak the neighbors for the simple entertainment evil.  They will live, as will I.  :)

You know the up and coming people hate that kind of zero tolerance shit, and they are faced with it all over the place.  Absolute hard line, stupid ass, "Zero Tolerance" for whatever it is.  Tough on crime right?  Tough on personal responsibility right?

Well, doesn't it suck that every "Zero Tolerance" rule I've ever encountered suffers from some awkward exception that's perfectly legal, possible, practical, and ethical?  That really puts a cramp in my ass, in a fashion not unlike the classic, "Never Say Never".

Honestly, that's a fools game, and part of being real is owning up to that, recognizing idealism for the good influence it is, while at the same time being a realist in terms of personal cost and risk.

Quite simply, one has to pick their battles, or they end up with a life of war.  That's as true right now as it ever was, and most importantly, it's going to be true going forward in the future, up to and through the time when we all are dead, buried, and ideally watching the drama from our vantage point in the after life.

(hope I get a good seat)

So, I'm gonna vote that ticket, and there are gonna be some asses on it, and they will probably pass or vote on some policy that I am absolutely opposed to.  What does that really mean?

Well, if one is posing as some hard-liner, that's simply unacceptable, right?  Some issues are sacred, not to be touched, and so on, and on...

But what if that's not possible and practical?  What does one do then?

Squat, that's what, and we all live through it, we all sleep at night, and we all wake up the next morning wondering how we can fix it, and the circle of life rolls on as it always has.

Sue me then.  I'm just not fucking pure.  I won't ever be, don't think I can be, and I don't know ANYBODY that is.

That's real.  That's the kind of real that doesn't cost much, and it's the kind of real our up and coming young voters can identify with far more than the fucked up, false choices we are handed every cycle.

So, are you real, or just a poser?  

That's what your vote is all about.  If you need to pose, and 'stand for what's right', then explain to me how not voting, or voting for some ass, or for some idealistic fantasy candidate actually isn't just voting for what's wrong?

You know the regressives don't have this problem, right?  They are going to vote for the party, taking the good and the bad, because they are, for better or worse, 100 percent real about it.  Many of them are racists, theocrats, dumb asses, corporatists, bigots, and down deep they know it, and would much rather degrade the state of things, in the hopes they come out of it looking better, not worried about the little things like purity.

That's reality, and I don't think we are a whole lot different in concept, but for one little difference:

We are supposed to be about US, you know, "we the people", not "us the idealists", and we are not selfish, we are tolerant, and we are all about the right things happening for the right reasons, the common good, so how come this is such a problem then?

Is it that lofty expectation getting in the way?  Fear that good friend we've all made high statements to, might find out that we are really just all cogs in the wheel, ordinary, just trying to find a way through?

God, I hope so, because when it's that simple, it can be fixed right now.

Trust me when I say it's not going to change your life to vote that ticket.  Nobody even has to know, but you of course.  You will still sleep at night, and all the other things we expect, want and need each day.

Just get real, vote the thing, advance the party, and let's get together on the other side, driven by the ideas, but not enslaved by them and the cost of owning up to them, being the solid, worthy, passionate people we are.

I can't afford "Zero Tolerance" politics.  Can you?  Really?

Our up and coming generation is more worried about whether or not we present as who we are than they are about who we actually are.  Think about that, and what it means.  Think about that, and read some stories about who others are, the choices they made, the lives they lived, and realize we are all the same, imperfect, and that being that way is perfectly ok.

Nobody is pure.  It costs too damn much.  It costs me too damn much, and I feel better having said it.

If you get this far, there are options!  We can change the game, we can push back in new ways, and there is power in the people beyond that vote.  Let's build those out after this election, and give those people, who struggle with the shitty choices, some options, a time line, and a vision they can better buy into.  That starts with the understanding that they are, in fact, shitty choices.  It ends with us doing the work to improve those, as a means to our end.  Join me in that particular fight.  I think it's going to be great.

Vote the party, build the movement, sacrifice in the here and now, to prosper in the future.  Life it so short --too short to beat ourselves up over forced choices.  

Originally posted to You can call me spud on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:08 PM PDT.

Poll

Does it cost too much to be pure?

35%7 votes
20%4 votes
5%1 votes
0%0 votes
20%4 votes
20%4 votes

| 20 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    claude, PeterHug, sberel, 3goldens, IProfess

    IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

    by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:08:35 PM PDT

  •  I'm not Pure, and feel great about it! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PeterHug, sberel, 3goldens

    IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

    by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:09:01 PM PDT

  •  12 steps to self acceptance!! (0+ / 0-)

    (this is all in fun, just so you all know)

    IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

    by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:09:46 PM PDT

  •  Sorry, can't agree. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    potatohead, blueoasis, nippersdad, output

    So, are you real, or just a poser?  

    That's what your vote is all about.  If you need to pose, and 'stand for what's right',

    You stand behind your beliefs, or else you're the poser, or just lying to yourself about what you believe.  Sometimes you do indeed vote strategically, but voting your beliefs is never a 'pose' unless you don't really hold those beliefs.

    When I vote for a candidate, it's because I believe in that candidate, or feel the difference is so immense that a strategic vote is necessary.  I'll vote strategically against teabaggers, who are, by and large, what I would call 'psychopaths'.  But when I vote for the candidate I believe in, even if he's not one of the two parties with a stranglehold on our political system, it's no 'pose', and it's actually highly insulting to be told it's a 'fantasy'.

    Go tell the folks voting for Meek down in Florida they're voting for a 'fantasy' and are just 'posers'.  I don't think it'll go over real well there either.

    If you feel insulted by anything I've said, find out if it was intentional. I'll let you know if you ask.

    by Ezekial 23 20 on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:39:28 PM PDT

    •  Well, a vote is just a vote, in a very long and (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens

      Complex series of things we will do in our lives.

      Considering my personal costs is no crime, and doing some advocacy intended to sway others to entertain that same consideration isn't either.

      If there is a real shot at a win, I say go for it.  If not, then the cost risk equation comes into play.

      Right now, given the impact of Citizens United, third party options, write ins, protest votes, etc... are costly things.

      Potentially very costly, and that's the argument.

      I personally am not where I'm able to continue bearing that cost.  

      Really, my diary is only insulting, if you think it is.  My argument of that vote being a fantasy one is perfectly defensible, as is yours in return.

      That's discourse at it's finest.  

      There are more options than the vote, and expanding the game some is where we can get some return, without so many of the risks.  A lot of my advocacy will be centered on that, because the game was changed with Citizens United.

      In other words, they raised the cost of those votes very significantly, and that's a sustained and additive cost that will impact us over time.

      Again, you should not be insulted at all.  If you are, please reconsider that, as differences in strategy, station in life, values, ideas, are perfectly ordinary, natural things.

      Finally, standing for what one believes is right, means doing the things that will, in the end, advance those things in society.  It means being productive, if those beliefs are to be embodied in our daily lives.

      So then, a counter productive vote, may well impact those beliefs in a negative way, thus undermining the absolute stand for them.

      You do realize that a "nothing else matters" vote, or position on something is rather easily exploited by those who would do so, right?

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:54:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Is there any case where the GOP will make (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sberel, 3goldens, blueoasis

      a better decision?

      If so, vote that, if desired; otherwise, deny them the seats.

      Our votes are all about who we think will make the better decisions.

      It's hard to imagine voting in people who make worse decisions, even when both decision sets are bad, being productive.

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 06:56:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Wingers Sit Out Just as Liberals Do When (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    potatohead

    not motivated. There was depressed turnout on the right both of the last 2 elections.

    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 Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:52:59 PM PDT

    •  And perhaps that's not a good idea. (0+ / 0-)

      Citizens United raises the cost of doing that very significantly.

      IMHO, the game has changed some, which is where I've changed some in response.

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:55:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Let me clarify. (0+ / 0-)

      The real politics are corporations vs people.

      The only ones in Washington pulling for the people are the Progressive Democrats, and the likes of Bernie Sanders.

      Everybody else is for the corporations.

      When they stand down, the cost to them is divided by the ratio of corporate politicians to non-corporate ones.  For them, let's just say this is a 4:1 number.

      So then, it's one quarter the cost.

      Now, for us, that's inverted isn't it?  1:4, and that same division means FOUR TIMES THE COST.

      It therefore is significantly more important that we hold our solidarity than it is for them.

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 09:47:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  And, of course... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    potatohead, output

    your poll is slanted, but you knew that.  I voted 'no, I have the means', though I'm not sure what 'means' are.  I'm unemployed for 8 months, never got a cent of unemployment benefits, and have taken home less than my mortgage this year to date.  Savings were already low, and are dwindling faster than spit on a hot sidewalk.  But that doesn't mean I'll compromise and cheer on legislation that hurts someone else to make my life better.

    It costs too damn much to stand for purity.  Seriously.  This all comes down to both a personal and a very real financial cost.  If we are to live under a law that says money is speech, then we also need to put money on the table regarding these things and see where it leads.

    And that's connected to being real, as opposed to being fake.

    To paraphrase, those who seek security over liberty deserve neither.  If you're unwilling to put 'it all' on the line, then you're just talking the talk, not walking the walk.

    What you seem to be saying there is that you don't want to pay the costs, but you want things better...

    Is that really what you mean?

    If you feel insulted by anything I've said, find out if it was intentional. I'll let you know if you ask.

    by Ezekial 23 20 on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 05:53:50 PM PDT

    •  Actually, it's more complex than that. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sberel, 3goldens

      I do not see the party responding to protest / alternative / fantasy votes in a favorable way.

      History does not support that proposition.

      Now, if the election is winnable, go for it!  Bernie is a good example of that.

      If not, then it's a net loss.

      Finally, the vote to choose who keeps the seat and who does not, doesn't mean we think what happened was ok.  It only means we think it's worth it for the ass to keep the seat.

      Subtle, but important distinction.  

      A lot of the framing on this stuff is about linking those votes to bad things being ok, or to demonstrate the viability, or correctness of policy positions.

      Not true.

      And that's how it works for me.  Voting my best interests doesn't mean anything other than voting my best interests, and those happen to be where the GOP gains as little as possible right now.

      That could change, but recognition of that is the lower cost option right now.

      I've diaried before about firing off PAC's to start to put serious influence on bad party members, fund raising off of bad votes, and grooming challengers from day one.

      We, as a movement, have a lot of options besides just casting that vote, and the more people see and participate in that, the more we raise the cost of fucking us over, and that is the only thing that our party --our Government in general appears to respond to.

      Simply voting no, yes, no in a cyclic fashion based on performance is being gamed big.  Time to break that, and open the door for new options to take hold, and change the game, how it's played, what the costs are.

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 06:04:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Of course the poll is biased! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ezekial 23 20

      It's advocacy today, and I tagged it as such.

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 06:06:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The fundamental problem with this argument, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    potatohead, blueoasis, output

    IMHO, is that there actually is a Washington Concensus. Both the liberals in Congress and the conservatives largely are forced to cater to it. This is how Dennis Kucinich was forced to vote for Bob Dole's health care plan in order to "save" Barack Obama's Presidency. Remember that? Remember how we were going to defund the wars? How no one was above the law? How we do not torture, and if we do, we at least hold war criminals accountable?

    Nobody is pure.  It costs too damn much.  It costs me too damn much, and I feel better having said it.

    You may feel better for having said it, but I doubt that it actually costs any more than the alternative at this point. Sharon Angle is clearly nuts, but she will fall in line when McConnell puts on the pressure, as he has said he would do with the TeaPartiers who are elected. Nancy Pelosi ran in Bush's last mid-term on a theme of "making them accountable", but you will note exactly how long that idea stayed on the table.

    In the end, all you have is your conscience. I don't sleep well when I do things adverse to its' dictates, I'm not sure how you can. A vote for the Washington Concensus is always the default position, I would suggest that were that a bit of conventional wisdom, we would have little need for columns like this. I would suggest that castigating those who follow their consciences with regard to voting (or not voting as the case may be) for those they find repugnant would be even more offputting for them than the alternative. At least you can fight a known enemy, it is those that are supposedly your friends that are difficult to change.

    Two thirds of the eligible electorate in this country do not vote. At all. There is a reason for that.

    Give them a viable alternative and they will come.

    "Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth." Oscar Wilde

    by nippersdad on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 06:08:30 PM PDT

    •  It's a chicken and egg thing. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, blueoasis, nippersdad

      We won't get those alternatives until we raise the cost of not having them.

      The real politics here are corporations vs people, with the Progressives being the only ones for the people.  The rest of our party, and Republicans are not.

      Given that, and Citizens United, there will be no better choices, unless...

      We build our movement in ways that raise the cost of telling us no, to a cost higher than not.

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 06:11:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Now THAT I can buy! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        output

        Raising the stakes, changing the paradigm, however, is not done by rubberstamping the status quo. You have to make waves, risk unpopularity, potentially lose your battles repeatedly in hopes of winning the war.

        There is another diary up right now which takes a poor view of Nader voters during the 2000 election because of how they supposedly enabled an enhanced corporatism on the national stage. I was wondering if the diarist even knew what they were registering a protest vote against, much less what corporatism was at the time. The value of their sacrificed votes was better recognition of their issues. Can anyone here say that they do not know the evils of corporatism now? They largely have them to thank for having written the lexicon.

        How would we all have fared had they known that then?

        I'm just not ready to condemn purists at this point. All too often they are the leading edge of future conventional wisdom that force proponents of the Washington Concensus into uncomfortable positions...and all too public whining when they fail to keep their promises.

        And that is what we want, don't we? To make the status quo as uncomfortable as possible in furtherance of changes we could truly believe in?

        "Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth." Oscar Wilde

        by nippersdad on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 06:24:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  it's not just common sense, it's game theory: (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Major Tom, potatohead, nippersdad

          a party that values emmanuel more than dean, geithner more than warren, and lincoln more than sanders deserves to get its butt kicked.

          by output on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 07:31:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  That was really interesting. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Major Tom, output

            I had always heard of Game Theory, but never really knew what it was; no mathmetician here. :)

            Thanks for the link!

            "Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth." Oscar Wilde

            by nippersdad on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 07:41:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I must challenge this. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Major Tom

            On the surface, I agree with your alignment of game theory to the problem at hand.

            However, you assume the vote is the only option, when it clearly isn't.

            As a movement, we can do ANYTHING WE WANT TO.

            So, how does the idea of forming PACs, or even corporations, since they can speak anonymously, whose goal is to "Punish Democrats?"

            Intrigued?

            Now the game is different.  We can change the rules of the game, and we can do so to favor us, and we should absolutely do that.

            Right now, we've got our party holding the GOP at bay.  It's not done all that good of a job, but I seriously doubt we would be where we are, with the GOP calling the shots in either house of Congress.

            So, that's a net gain.  Painful, but a net gain.  That's not really disputed in a reputable way, and let's not forget that history does not support the premise that weakening the party improves it.

            I've not seen that.

            One other thing, before I advance the rest of my challenge, and that is they are not divided in this way.  They are going to vote their party, and will do so, even against their own interests, because they buy into the overall vision, and won't sweat the little things here and there.

            We are divided, and that means we don't have the potency at the polls they do.  We have a numbers advantage though, which makes it less ugly than it could be, IMHO.

            So then, we take these new entities, and we re-elect all the Dems we can.  A few things happen:

            The GOP loses momentum, because they got checked at the polls.  Do not underestimate the power of the group norm.  That kind of rejection is worth a lot, just as it was worth a lot in reverse, when the Bush administration cried "MANDATE", when in fact, they almost didn't make it the second time, and had to lie, cheat, steal, bully to get there.

            So we have that.

            Another thing that happens is Progressives can focus their energy on transforming the party, in a sense, taking power that is on their turf, while not having to also blow a lot of energy battling the brutality of the GOP.

            Net gain there too, IMHO.

            Finally, in our system at present, we can either yield power, transform power, or hold power.  Other options are not productive, given the dominance of the two party system, and the demonstrable lack of political will required to actually build a third party to compete.

            For the foreseeable future, that means we must either take our party, the Democrats, and bend it to Progressive ways and means, or fail, settling for less, or empowering the GOP.

            That is the end game on these things, as of right now.  We wish it were otherwise, but the hard truth of it is not otherwise.

            With no other option but the vote, I think I would agree with you, but that's shown to be a cyclic affair, that ebbs and flows back and forth, and in case you've not been paying attention, we generally have been getting our asses kicked.

            I don't see a more Progressive agenda being passed, more than I see a more corporate one.  Do you?  In fact, I don't think I've seen any economic legislation that is actually Progressive in nature, without being seriously "third way" hobbled, so that the corporations get a big enough cut to marginalize the benefit of it overall.

            Now, let's add in the new entities.  Now we've the option to vote our party, not vote, vote the other party, or entertain some alternative vote.

            Because there is a second option, the new entities and actions possible with them, the vote is not the end of things, and the cycle is changed.

            Let's say those entities exist for each coin operated Democrat, or maybe just the top 20, along with some Republicans we think are weak.

            Starting right after the vote, and let's say people voted the ticket, holding power, keeping their growth to a minimum, we start recuriting challengers where we think it makes sense, and we start dogging those coin operated Democrats, placing them "on plan".

            The plan is, every single month, that entity takes it's donations, banking some for the challenger, spending the rest running ADs, and producing media ready "look at this shitty vote" stories and other collateral.  

            The people of that district then see:

            There is a challenger, and they understand that there are people working to make a difference, and that their vote held off the GOP, and empowered our movement to put the squeeze on that clown they voted for, because the other guy from the GOP was worse.

            They have a path to get involved after the election, ideally with a recurring, small donation every month, receiving news, action items, and getting to know the challenger, who is involved with these things, from day one, not near the end, but day one.

            When that coin operated Democrat, or weak Republican screws us, the people know then!  They know because that entity is all about shining the daylight on nefarious, corrupt, ignorant politics, so the people know who is screwing them and why.

            The elected coin operated Democrat or weak Republican is going to have to address that, costing them TIME, and MONEY, which takes away from their war chest, and inhibits their ability to fund raise, and that raises the cost of screwing us.

            This repeats throughout their term in office, with each negative vote actually building the case against them, and support for somebody who stands a better chance at getting it right, and nationwide, a whole lot of people not only know who Progressives are, but they see action, and that's catchy in a good way.

            Our movement builds, and it builds off the need for real reform, real action, and begins to be differentiated from the party as a whole.

            Also in this mix is the idea that the real politics are corporations vs people.  Right now, that's not widely accepted, with incompetence, selfishness and other things being blamed for the party failure to advance the people's agenda, when the truth is corporate Democrats are not very different from Republicans.

            We must get that message out there, so that people understand why and how they are getting fucked, so when they do vote next time, they've got options that make some sense.

            In this way, we can transform the party, while holding back the GOP, and here's the beautiful part!

            If that coin operated Democrat actually does reform, the need for a challenger will diminish, and they can keep their seat.  If they don't, they get challenged, and it will be a very solid challenge, because of the time and effort invested in said challenge!

            We Progressives win either way, and if we are talking game strategy, the best move possible is one that advances our position in the game, toward the goal, with the possible opponent actions not having a significant impact.

            Doing this will absolutely be productive for us, and that linked back to the vote for the party, changes the game, resolving the dilemma you cited.

            We don't have to buy into this shitty framing.  We don't have to put up with only having shitty choices, and we as a movement, can do anything we damn well please.

            So, empower people to do that, to build, and take some power, and it will pay us back.

            Finally, the other thing in play here is cold and ugly, but true.

            Do you want to know why we get screwed and told "no" as Progressives?

            It is because screwing us, and that really means screwing the people because we are the only movement actually aligned with the needs of the ordinary people and labor, is cheaper than screwing the corporations.

            That's reality, and as long as that cost is less to screw us, we are going to get screwed.  From time to time, they will hand us a bone, like Health Care is a bone, and it will do some good, but it will cost us more than we get out of it, because the corporations own more of the politicians than we do.

            Fact.

            Now, one last thing:

            Citizens United has opened the money gates from hell.  From now on, we operate at a very significant disadvantage, over and above what we had before.  Now, we are facing entities that can spend, what they think it will take, and the return on those investments runs in the trillions!

            Why?

            Because screwing the people is worth trillions!!

            So they will spend, and will spend heavy, and they have more money than we do.

            Sounds futile doesn't it?

            Well, that's the last element of the strategy I've been attempting to get out there.  Wealth is innovation applied to labor over time.  Value, or money is labor applied to materials over time.

            The common factor is time, meaning:  wealthy people have more time free for their purposes than poor people do.

            Good news is there is a lot more poor people, who may not have as much time, but they have numbers.

            How do we check Citizens United?

            Time.  The money never stops, so the civics never stops, and that's how we must change the game, or continue to suffer under a endless cycle of the Prisoners Dilemma, you cited here.

            So let's change the game dynamics, and get some shit done!

            That's going to be easier, if we exercise our options, and if we don't have to beat back the GOP every other cycle, which is why I vote a straight ticket.

            Up thread, it was said that one must act according to their beliefs.

            I am actually doing that, advocating for others to actually do that.  Just voting for purity, or because one can't just accept the beat down we've been getting isn't a game changer.  It's just therapy.  Feels good, but isn't a material action with impact.

            What I outlined IS.

            In long form, that is what I was suggesting to the person up thread who said they could buy in.

            Wonder if they could buy in for $5 a month, or maybe $20, with one dollar going to each entity, working to beat down 20 asses in Congress?

            Sure would be interesting to find out, wouldn't it?

            IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

            by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 11:19:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, I don't think shame makes (0+ / 0-)
          any sense.

          What I do think will matter is cutting down on the framing about what votes are.

          They are simply decisions about who we think will make better decisions for us, period.

          Both decision sets could be lousy, and in that scenario, perhaps less lousy is "better", and that's my argument.

          Really though, I want to expand the scope of options after the elections.

          If there are more options, perhaps we can movement build around those, and raise those costs.

          In the end, that is what the game is about.  Costs.  Until it's not cheaper to screw us, we are going to get screwed.

          IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

          by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 09:11:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Great diary and I love this line: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    potatohead, blueoasis

    Vote the party, build the movement, sacrifice in the here and now, to prosper in the future.

    That's a great motto to keep in mind when one is tempted to get all tied up in knots (and frustration) over our political, economic, or societal problems.  And I think this is another great line I'll be keeping in mind:

    Quite simply, one has to pick their battles, or they end up with a life of war.

    Thanks for a very thoughtful diary.  I voted early--straight Dem ticket and I know I did the right thing.  In my state we desperately need to GOTV.  If people don't show up at the polls, we're in deep trouble in Wisconsin.  I had no difficulty voting Dem--the Republicans and Tea Partiers are scary and they've run dirty, filthy campaigns.

    You can have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, or democracy, but you cannot have both. ~ Louis Brandeis

    by 3goldens on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 07:42:24 PM PDT

    •  Thanks! I appreciate hearing that. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, Miep

      And I believe that stuff fully and completely.

      Let's just say the bell got rang at the school of hard knocks a few times...

      IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

      by potatohead on Sat Oct 30, 2010 at 09:44:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sorry I missed this (0+ / 0-)

        It is, I think, one of the genuine big ethical dilemmas, and we live it every day of our lives. i.e.; how much to compromise.

        To consider this an easily answered question is likely to be an extremist position. Same as with (to give another example) abortion. People who aren't extremists about abortion recognize it as a deeply disturbing action, but that at the same time outlawing it is hugely socially destructive.

        The people who really worry me are the ones who say stuff like "All your arguments are invalid because you are a liberal, and by definition liberals cannot think logically." There is nothing you can do with such folks.

        There are, however, a lot of other people who don't particularly identify as liberals or Democrats, who OTOH aren't insane. Well, there are some at least. And to get through to them, one must make at least some effort to understand their POV, however alien it may seem.

        "Unlike every other nation in the world, the United States defines itself as a hypothesis and continues itself as an argument." - Lewis Lapham

        by Miep on Sun Oct 31, 2010 at 08:50:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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