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I posted this last  night on the diary I No Longer Hope For Audacity by Badabing.

Everyone around the nation should
mail Obama a pair of their old comfortable shoes
so he can get out to Wisconsin and support labor.


And understand this: If American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain when I’m in the White House, I will put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself, I’ll will walk on that picket line with you as President of the United States of America. Because workers deserve to know that somebody is standing in their corner.

The thread continued...with ideas for shoe collection centers, contacting Firedoglake, contacting Trumka, SEIU, and other  national labor contacts.

The comfortable shoes could be first delivered to the White House and then donated to people in need in DC.

Vtblue had two outstanding comments

Great idea! And I like the vague comparison to
the "thrown-shoe incident" with Bush and that journalist years ago at the presser in Iraq.  Kind of a combined gently sarcastic encouragement and veiled threat of symbolic derision if he doesn't get his act together.
Let's DO! I think it would be a GREAT campaign to
embarrass the WH into doing what he said he would -- and if nothing else, it would garner additional attention and energy for the union campaign to roll-back the collective bargaining assaults.

How shall we begin?  Here on DKos, or should we enlist other, less Dem partisan orgs to get the ball rolling.  Maybe MoveOn?

Let's give our old comfortable shoes to a man to make him uncomfortable enough to do the right thing. Obama has been far too cozy with the corporations and big money interests and his pledge to labor has been forgotten.

Obama needs a gentle nudge to prompt him to put on those promised comfortable shoes and walk with labor in there time of  need.

Labor needs our help when Wisconsin State Senators are calling students, teachers, firemen, and nurses who spend the night in protest on a cold hard floor "slobs".  Labor is being scapegoated for the crimes of Wall Street and blamed for the corruption of special interests that is destroying our economy.   Obama needs to be held accountable for his promises and walk with the middle class that elected him.

How shall we begin?

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Comment Preferences

    •  Crystal (4+ / 0-)

      As you say, "Obama needs to be held accountable for his promises."

    •  Great diary crystal eyes, I'm totally for this (4+ / 0-)

      idea, esp. now that Ohio's Unions are on the way to the chopping block too.  

      I noticed there were all kinds of bullshit reasons that some people made up as excuses not to hold President Obama accountable for his own promises, and every single reason was nothing more than  an excuse.

      President Obama applauds the mass firing of teachers in Providence RI

      So why is the Obama administration going out of its way to praise this mass firing?  In a speech to Colin Powell’s dropout prevention nonprofit at the US Chamber of Commerce headquarters, Obama “voiced support” for the firings.

          President Obama voiced support Monday for the mass firings of educators at a failing Rhode Island school, drawing an immediate rebuke from teachers union officials whose members have chafed at some of his education policies.

          Speaking at an event intended to highlight his strategy for turning around struggling schools by offering an increase in federal funding for local districts that shake up their lowest-achieving campuses, Obama called the controversial firings justified.

      This wasn’t just an off the cuff remark from Obama – this is the administration’s official position. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan went out of his way to praise the firings.

          Meanwhile, state and local education officials received some high-powered support of their own, when U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan weighed in, saying he “applauded” them for “showing courage and doing the right thing for kids.” [...]

          “This is hard work and these are tough decisions, but students only have one chance for an education,” Education Secretary Duncan said, “and when schools continue to struggle we have a collective obligation to take action

      .”

      http://workinprogress.firedoglake.com/...

      This news is disgusting, and it makes Reagan's firing of the Air Traffic Controllers look small in comparison.

      Wake up and smell the fucking coffee people, because 'this' President is not standing up for Unions, not by a long shot.

      Ms. B.

      “I hope the two wings of the Democratic Party may flap together.” William Jennings Bryan

      by Badabing on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:25:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Excellent! (7+ / 0-)

    Give me an address and I'll send a whole box. He can take the fam.

    ...his...appointments showed that he had no intention of honoring the promises he made... He's a liar and a cheat. -Dallasdoc

    by Words In Action on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 07:26:48 AM PST

  •  this is just effing ridicilous (7+ / 0-)

    you do realise that the man has an emense secruity detail and every  protester will have to go through a screening?

    It will only disrupt the protest... oh and what a perfect place for some nutcase to try and do something eh..

    but never mind that, its all about trying to get Obama to support something HE ALREADY FUCKING SUPPORTS,

    My thoughts are with Christchurch... Please donate to http://www.christchurchearthquakeappeal.govt.nz/

    by GlowNZ on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 07:41:10 AM PST

    •  sigh (4+ / 0-)

      Which would you rather have right now,
      The kind of support that Obama gives to Wall Street
      or the version that he gives to labor?

      And we can just leave our shoes at the gate, because I don't think Obama is really going to wear them anyhow.

      I no longer am crediting  Obama being a labor supporter because he puts out the occasional comment about the nobility of the working man and woman.  

      Standing with labor means standing with  labor.

      If cats could blog, they wouldn't.

      by crystal eyes on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 07:53:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  keeping your promises is not that important... (0+ / 0-)

      because we should just know not to take politicians seriously when they say that they're going to do something for the little guy.

      besides, obama's not really needed in wisconsin now because it's not time to capitulate to the plutocrats and claim it was the best deal we could get.

      professional sanctimonious purist

      by joe shikspack on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 10:27:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I am curious (8+ / 0-)

    why do some people want this righteous fight that a majority of the American support want to turn it into something that about Obama? Once President Obama injects himself into Wisconsin it will instantly stop being about the Unions, about the middle class, about Walker and will be all about him.

    So mail your shoes, but don't expect him to do something that will end up hurting more than helping.

    In the choice between changing ones mind and proving there's no need to do so, most people get busy on the proof.

    by jsfox on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 07:44:14 AM PST

    •  If the shoes end up on the feet of those (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      semiot, crystal eyes, Badabing, judyms9

      in need, it cannot possibly hurt more than it helps.

      A headache over symbolic gestures is nothing compared to being hard up for decent footwear. My mother grew up in a home where she shared three pairs of shoes a year with four sisters--through all of high school. You can't imagine the emotional scarring it left behind.

      Obama's a smart man, a savvy politician and a decent bloke to boot (pardon the pun). He knows he's got this coming and there are worse ways to get called out, that's for sure.

      •  There is a wonderful Iranian film (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Kimberley, Dunvegan, crystal eyes

        about shoes, "Children of Heaven," about a brother and sister who ended up having to share a pair of shoes.  It's black and white and has subtitles, but it is well worth anyone's time to watch.  Beautifully human and nominated for best foreign film a few years back.  Netflix has it.

        •  Thank you for the referral (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          crystal eyes

          I love foreign film. I'll be sure to watch it and if it doesn't yank my heart out of my chest I may even turn my mom and her sisters onto it.

          One of my aunts (also named Judy, if you can believe that, and  went on to earn three doctorates related to molecular biology) always had her head in the clouds as a young woman and actually lost one of their pairs of shoes during my mom's junior year--so this film could be all the poignant to my mom because of that similarity.

          Thanks again!

        •  Children in poverty break my heart (0+ / 0-)

          That is a  movie that I really want to see but it will be hard to watch.

          If cats could blog, they wouldn't.

          by crystal eyes on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 09:08:49 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  If Obama tacked to the left (6+ / 0-)

      by actively supporting labor he would redefine his presidency, activate his base, and restore the American dream.

      The middle class is engaged in open class warfare with  the oligarchy and yet our Democratic president remains above the fray.  

      Here is a taste of what I think Obama should be saying right now...

         For nearly four years you have had an Administration which instead of twirling its thumbs has rolled up its sleeves. We will keep our sleeves rolled up.

          We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace—business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.

          They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.

          Never before in all our history have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today. They are unanimous in their hate for me—and I welcome their hatred.

          I should like to have it said of my first Administration that in it the forces of selfishness and of lust for power met their match. I should like to have it said of my second Administration that in it these forces met their master.


      If cats could blog, they wouldn't.

      by crystal eyes on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:08:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  it's not about obama... (0+ / 0-)

      and obama is sufficiently eloquent that he could make it plain that his visit there is not about himself but about the rights of the state workers.

      what it is about is obama supporting in both word and deed regular working families in their time of need.

      your argument disguised as a question is poorly formed, because everything that obama does in our current, highly partisan environment is controversial. if obama is to avoid associating himself with causes to keep them from becoming (even more? unacceptably?) controversial then he would have to go into hiding and never come out.

      professional sanctimonious purist

      by joe shikspack on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 10:36:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I am think he his treating Wanker like (6+ / 0-)

    he is treating Arab dictators...if you but yourself in front of the demonstrating masses ...Arab dictator will say YOU want the regime change not the people.

    If Obama did what you ask of him, what he have naively promised to do, the fight in WI would be between federal government and the Governor Wanker instead of being a fight between an Ideologue who overreached and school teachers.

    There is a reason why the GOP wants Obama to be vocal on this matter because they they can make the fight between GOP and Obama instead of what it really is.

    •  How is it that we've reached the point... (5+ / 0-)

      that schoolteachers with tepid support from a Democratic President of the United States have a better chance in a political battle than schoolteachers with strong and full-throated support from a Democratic President of the United States?

      Democratic political leaders have been afraid to fight for their base for many years... and Republicans win way more elections than they should given the popularity of their positions on issues.  There seems to be a correlation there IMHO.

      Barack Obama in the Oval Office: There's a black man who knows his place.

      by Greasy Grant on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:10:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  because 47% of this country voted for (0+ / 0-)

        Palin as VP. it's good to have Obama on your side if you are in Hawaii or Massachusetts but in PA or OH, not so much. I don't think collective bargaining would have a 60% support on the poll if it was tied to Obama...you may like/love the guy..but a lot of people hate him and anything associated with him....Obama is to the GOP voters and a lot of independent leaning GOP what the US is to the Islamic world.

        he is doing the Teachers Union a favor by staying away.

  •  "We're useless without the leader!" (4+ / 0-)

    Seriously. I don't get this fascination with demanding that the President take over this story. What could he possibly provide that the people of Wisconsin aren't already doing?

    Exposure? They've got it already.

    Leadership? Clearly it's there.

    Resources? No shortage of those.

    Policy changes? The President can't provide Wisconsin Democrats and labor leadership any more leverage than they've already got.

    Why do people keep insisting that we shoot the efforts of 100,000 Wisconsin workers in the foot by bringing the President there and making him the story?

    I just don't get it. It's like getting your shots in on the President is more important than the success of the movement.  

    •  I agree. Obama and some other DC Dems (0+ / 0-)

      can learn something from what's going on.  They can see what real guts look like, for instance.

    •  Indeed (0+ / 0-)

      The Wisconsin protestors are winning their battle against their governor. I have no idea why people here want Obama to fix something that doesn't need to be fixed. But even so, they haven't even pointed out what Obama can actually improve, much less considered the negatives that Obama's intervention now can bring.

  •  I've got a pair of flip-flops (5+ / 0-)

    that I can send him. It would be appropriate.

    I work with B2B PAC, and all views and opinions in this account are my own.

    by slinkerwink on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:03:51 AM PST

    •  zing! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      slinkerwink

      That cuts to the BONE!

      ... just floating by ...

      by cumulo on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:21:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  And this is a prime example... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueyedace2, PaDemTerry, raina

      ...of what i was talking about above.

      No indication of what our President's involvement in the Wisconsin protests would actually accomplish, no effort at all to rationally address those who say it would do more harm than good, no apparent concern of any kind for the success of the movement itself, and no respect for the true leaders of the Wisconsin movement, the people, who are on the ground and should have their work applauded by us rather than overwhelmed by the Presidential bullhorn.

      Just another excuse for our President's myopic liberal opponents to make their criticisms of the President's supporters - namely, that they're obsessed with the President - ring hollow, as they use the Wisconsin Movement not as an opportunity to win one for the workers but as a platform to get in another cheap shot at this President that their faction is obsessed with ripping down at every chance.

      Well done, slink. Another edifying and enlightening addition to our conversation and dialogue.  

  •  Meaningless bullshit that belittles the real (3+ / 0-)

    workers fighting it out on the streets.

    One bitter fact is two bit hacks populate the third rate fourth estate who are truly the fifth columnists.

    by amk for obama on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:04:32 AM PST

  •  the pres doe not need a pair of shoes i do not (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mamamorgaine

    agree the media would make this about obama not the issue at hand .. the folks in WI are aware of his support, he gave strong message to the governors during the dinner telling them not to demonize & vilify the the public workers what more do you want.. right now walker career is in the tank & he's losing this argument. let be critical on other things

  •  How about actually waiting for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mamamorgaine

    a real picket line?

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White

    by zenbassoon on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:11:32 AM PST

    •  what if they formed a conga line? (0+ / 0-)

      could you find a smaller nit to pick?

      "If American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain when I’m in the White House, I will put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself, I’ll walk on that picket line with you as President of the United States of America. Because workers deserve to know that somebody is standing in their corner."

      professional sanctimonious purist

      by joe shikspack on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 10:41:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Why so much hesitancy and caution (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    esquimaux, joe shikspack

    to support working people
    when they are being unfairly blamed for the deficit
    which was caused by  the greed, criminal exploitation,  and excesses of  Wall Street?

    Simply said, I want Obama to get actively involved in the class war.
    Why not???

    because in being afraid to fight, we are losing.

    If cats could blog, they wouldn't.

    by crystal eyes on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:24:25 AM PST

  •  This sounds familiar somehow... (3+ / 0-)

    What was it... something involving sending tea last year...

    I'm a concert pianist with a double doctorate... AND YOU CAN BE TOO!

    by kenlac on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 08:29:58 AM PST

  •  Just one more incidence of not (0+ / 0-)

    living up to his promises; he's a politician, it should be expected.  He deserves to be shamed in public for not speaking out in support of the unions and public employees in Wisconsin and other States.  
           His noble words were just a ploy for votes.

    "In Youth We Learn...In Age We Understand"

    by Jbeaudill on Thu Mar 03, 2011 at 10:37:55 AM PST

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