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Yes, I support the President. I've been a Democrat from birth, and I was born in the South. And I know enough to know when a good man is getting shafted by everyone around him. I don't blame the Republicans half as much as I do the Democrats. The Republicans, after all, are just doing their job.

But the fickle, illogical and puerile demographic that our media "betters" say is the betrayed base of the Democratic party, gets no respect from me at all; and a lot of the Democrats in elected positions do as well.

In fact, if they don't like what I have to say in this blog, they can kiss my blue Virginian ass, because I would pit my Democratic credentials against their warped ones any day.

I always hated math in high school, mostly because I disliked the teacher; but I need to qualify that and say it was actually “higher maths” I hated – the second year of algebra and trigonometry. Prior to that, I was really rather good, especially in geometry.

If I remember nothing more from my geometry course, I remember this: that the base of a triangle is its broadest part. “Base” means that bit of a triangle or a building that supports the structure at its lowest level. It grounds or anchors said structure, so it must be that the base of a movement grounds or anchors said movement.

Now this is what I don’t understand: Poll after poll after poll has been taken throughouth the US, and consistently, the findings conclude that a full 20% of people polled identify themselves as either liberal or progressive, whilst 40% consider themselves moderate. We also know that roughly 40% polled call themselves conservative, and whilst the Tea Party element is truly proving itself to be more or less a fringe element, it’s pretty safe to say that the base of the Republican party consists of socially conservative religious people. So how can the media claim that the Democratic party’s base consists of a minority of voters. That’s really like turning a triangle upside down, but then, in a converse sort of way – considering the current Democratic kindergarten – wibbling, wobbling and falling is pretty much normal behaviour for its base.

Actually, I think the so-called progressive base of the Democratic party is something created in the mind of the media and promoted by them to feed the progressive addiction of not thinking critically. Many of these people seem to have forgotten the way our country was structured, by the Constitution, to govern – that each branch of government has certain obligations and duties and each branch keeps a rein on the other two. It’s why the President can’t legislate and has to keep himself above the petty squabbling of the politicos on the Hill. It’s also why those same politicos can effectively nullify an executive order.

But then, in our simplistic, time-saving, convenience-laden world, it’s all too easy to blame the President, especially this one.

Take the Gitmo kerfuffle, which is being blatantly presented in the press and media as the President reneging on a campaign promise, first to close the facility, and then to try all its inhabitants in the civil courts. Well, that’s another part of the Big Lie propaganda which seems au courant throughout our media-driven lives these days.

All of us remember that seminal moment when the President signed the executive order effecting the closure of Guantanamo Bay within a year’s time, back in 2009, as his first act as President. In fact, throughout the 2008 campaign, that was one campaign promise both Obama and McCain pushed. The problem ensuing was basically logistical: Where would all these prisoners be housed until they were either tried or released? In fact, George Bush, the man who created the monster, had actually released some Gitmo prisoners, several of whom had rejoined their old Al Qaeda buddies.

Maybe some, if not all, of us remember the debate which raged throughout the spring of 2009 regarding the fates of these prisoners and where they should be housed post-Gitmo. Basically, the public, fuelled by the media, adopted a NIMBY approach – “not in my backyard.” When a disused maximum security prison in Illinois was put forward as the best and most logical place to contain these men, no less than Dick Durbin, DEMOCRAT, from the President’s home state, led the charge against that action. Apparently a maximum security facility in the United States isn’t enough to withstand the incomparable might of Al Qaeda – certainly not in the country where prisons are a big and effective business.

And maybe some, if not all, of us remember the following autumn, when Attorney General Eric Holder announced that Khaled Sheikh Mohammed, arguably the most important prisoner held at Guantanamo Bay and the mastermind of 9/11, would be tried in a civil trial in New York City, where his most devastating atrocity occurred. Almost immediately, some – if not all – of us remember Mayor Bloomberg lauding this decision. Who can forget Holder’s forceful rendering of this announcement, when he repeated the name of New York City twice, for obvious emphasis?

To say the all-controlling media were impressed with this decision would be an understatement, but almost immediately the backdraft began – led by Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, DEMOCRATS, of New York. Their chief concern would be that the cost would be far more than the city would be able to support; there was also the concern regarding businesses and private residences in the area where the trial would take place – access issues and losses of revenue. There would be congestion problems with traffic, coupled with a veritable circus caused by the convergence of the world’s media; then add to that the security risks, with the threat of, possibly, another Al Qaeda attack.

The list went on, whilst the DOJ searched for alternative venues for the trial and the Republicans pressed the argument about how these men should be tried by military tribunals. Pennsylvania was mooted, and Virginia, but both echoed the chorusof fright, uncertainty and doubt led by Schumer and Gilibrand.

The gist of the whole Gitmo saga was simply that it was railroaded and the President blind-sided by what was possibly the only genuine act of bi-partisanship ever engendered by this Congress of cowards and fools.

Yet, it’s all too easy and disingenuous to blame the President and brand him a coward and a caver.

Well, I suppose he did cave on this one, because he reversed his former stand and authorised military tribunals to be the method of trial for these prisoners, including the star event concerning Khaled Sheikh Mohammed. Some, if not all, of us will remember how when the President announced this, earlier this year, he made a point of remarking that he had grave reservations about this procedure on two points, but Congress in their infinite wisdom and in waking from their slumber and remembering their role in the system of checks and balances, had rendered any thought of a civil trial virtually impossible.

In the meantime, the President’s running for reelection, and various pundits, reincarnations and natural inheritors of the old radical chic are managing to nudge and wink and subtly imply that there should be a primary candidate for the President. They’re worried, you see, about his abandoning his base for the more moderate of the party.

Do these people have a death wish for Democrats? Because by any mathematical calculation, 20% isn’t a very solid base. The people pushing the myth of Obama as the first post-racial President-cum-the Progressive’s singular disappointment are the natural successors and trust fund children of Tom Wolfe’s radical chic, the ueber rich, super-cool cafe society types who adopted Civil Rights seven years after the fact as an enhancement to their cutting edge image by supping with the real Black Panthers, who saw them for the phonies they were. The closest the ladies-who-lunch liberal pundits come to people of colour is when they’re seated at a discussion table on MSNBC with Eugene Robinson. The only Latino they know is Bill Richardson. The poor is only a vague idea, the working poor and working class morphed into the middle class at the end of the 1970s, and any Southerner is always a racist.

And Obama’s such a disappointment, because instead of getting John Shaft in the Oval Office, they seem to think they’ve got the lovechild of Dr Cliff Huxtable and Fred Sanford. So they’ve got this incessant need to tell and tell stridently what the President should do. They have to remind him of the dire consequences, should he abandon his so-called base. And when he doesn’t listen and achieves something far better than they ever imagined he would, they never recognise this; instead, they move onto the next point of criticism, or they sulk until the point that they can only see their talking point within the framework of the larger equation.

It’s always easier to rationalise that the President caved on extending the Bush tax cuts because they, personally, don’t know anyone who’s unemployed or a part of the working poor. It’s easier to ignore the fact that there’s a Republican majority in the House who pretty much stymie any imperceptibly progressive legislation. In fact, they’ve spent the past four months trying to undo everything that’s been accomplished under the previous Democratic majority, which – for the moment - is impossible, because there’s this slender majority of 4 Democratic Senators in the upper house, one of whom is Joe Manchin, which really makes the majority three.

This is why the silly rant issued by Bill Maher at the end of Real Time this past week about the President taking a stand and pushing for the repeal of DOMA, simply because Dick Cheney, Cindy McCain and Jenna Bush had spoken out in favour of gay marriage. Dick Cheney’s always believed in same sex marriage, but only because his daughter is gay. Otherwise, he’d be no different from any rank-and-file conservative. Besides, neither Cheney, nor Mrs McCain nor the Bush baby are in a position to legislate the repeal of this odious law. They are private citizens, with private opinions and little influence. In fact, I doubt Cindy McCain has any influence over the old maverick, himself.

I don’t know what the President’s opinion of same sex marriage is. I would imagine, open-minded individual that he is, he favourably views the repeal of this act; but pushing for this now is a non-starter, as long as such legislation has to be approved, first, by the House of Representatives. That just ain’t gonna happen, as long as the Speaker’s on a buzz from his martini, the birthers and the baggers are getting restless; and while it’s ok for the Republican majority leader to introduce a piece of legislation that’s a slap in the face of the Constitution in abnegating the upper house’s existence, should the President try a dictatorial style (so favoured by many of the Progressive Left), he’d be impeached, which would make the strange bedfellow pairing of Darrell Issa and Dennis Kucinich very happy.

The truth is, the radical chic set of society play-politicos who “reformed” the Democratic party 40 years ago, threw the real base under the political bus, only to have them rescued and nursed back to health by the very party who, formerly, were their rabid enemies: the Republicans. And they coddled and comforted them just enough for Stockholm syndrome to set in.

So let the inverted triangle that’s the Democratic base continue to totter, let them come up with a patsy who’ll primary the President, and let them then be recorded in the history annals as the reason the Democratic party was rent asunder irreparably in the election of 2012.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Where's the leadership? (4+ / 0-)

    When Captain Capitulator starts acting like a leader, and actually starts taking a stand on some issues, I think you'll see the progressive base cheering loudly.

    I'll hold my nose and work my butt off to get Captain Capitulator reelected, not because I have hopes that he can achieve the level of mediocracy he so feverishly strives for, but because the Republicans are pure evil and will literally turn our country into an impoverished 3rd world country ruled by the Oligarchs.  

  •  this is a site where people try and tell me (4+ / 0-)

    that certain "yellow dog dems" voted for reagan and/or bush.

    I treat their definition of "the Democratic base" with as much respect as I do the above.

    tipped and recced.

    (but... as another math hating geometry lover... I must correct you on your 'base of the triangle' definition.  the base of a triangle is the side perpendicular to the height.  so the base is only known when the height is known.  sometimes this depends on how the triangle is drawn.  I think.)

    "Wake the town and tell the people!" ~Ewart Beckford, O.D.

    by mallyroyal on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 07:30:56 AM PDT

  •  Of course, it's clear to many that (5+ / 0-)

    you and your ilk hate or fear Democrats.

    I don't blame the Republicans half as much as I do the Democrats.


  •  Where is the base? I don't know. (5+ / 0-)

    But I do know where it is not.  It is not where Barack Obama is.  He is the head of the Reagan Democrats and the base are still FDR Democrats.  Either he changes or millions of New Deal Democrats must change.

    Does that help?

    When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

    by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 07:49:13 AM PDT

    •  Oh, and as for smooching your rather hefty (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pollwatcher, SpecialKinFlag, sorval

      posterior, no thanks.  I am an at will employee, so I have a boss's ass to kiss.  Thanks to Reagan Democrats.

      When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

      by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 07:52:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You can speak (3+ / 0-)

      for yourself.

      I am with the President.

      •  good for you. (4+ / 0-)

        I still believe in the New Deal.  So there!

        When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

        by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 08:05:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  New Deal (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          the tmax, blueyedace2, Marianna76


          Did you know that in order to make Social Security pass FDR had to compromise including domestic help to qualify, and who in this country at that time was all the domestic help. You got it black people, so excuse me if I don't run around proclaiming how great it was.

          What say you about that? It helps to know some of the TRUE history of this country before jump around touting how wonderful things are.

          •  sorry Karl, your Reagan worship is lost on me. (0+ / 0-)

            wish I had time for more of your nonsense, but I am in the middle of my 12 hour workday.  If I go over 40 I get overtime.  I used to get overtime for over 8 hours in a day until the Reagan Democrats like YOU exercised their right to be stupid.

            Have a nice day.

            When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

            by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 10:45:17 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Are you kidding me (0+ / 0-)

              Reagan democratic. I am an african american woman who has voted democratic my entire voting life. Which is since I was eligible, since my parents did not get to vote until they were in their 40's.

              I was not old enought to vote for Reagan, but was definietly adversely affected by his policies. So this tells me how much you know about what you are talking.

            •  Still (0+ / 0-)

              said nothing about those people who's income was not counted for social security.

    •  Why don't you go read some history and (0+ / 0-)

      learn to think critically? Reagan Democrats, of which neither the President nor I have ever been a part, were a tranche of New Deal Democrats. Indeed they were the children and grandchildren of New Deal Dems, mainly from the South and the rural Midwest.

      If you bothered to learn a little bit about FDR, you'll see that not only did he intern thousands of Japanese-Americans in concentration camps, he also accommodated a LOT of segregationists in the Democratic party, in order to get the New Deal programs to kick in. It was these people, Sherlock, whom the reform Democrats kicked to the curb in 1970, and who went over to Reagan by 1980.

      Most of the people claiming to be New Deal Democrats today don't have a rat's ass of an idea what New Deal Democrats were and what they endured. I know very well what they were, because my parents were part of that generation. They never left the Democratic party and nor will I; and they weren't entitlers like you, who pay lip service to caring about other people when all you care about is your sorry situation and getting some benevolent dictator who'll further your end.

      Like most affluent so-called socially oriented Democrats, you secretly view the President as a token, someone who needs your better guidance to the point that you dictate to him what he should do, as if he were your servant ... or your slave. You are worse than a Republican and you live up to your name.

      •  I will speak for what I believe. (0+ / 0-)

        I don't think Obama is a token, I think he is a sellout.  

        Furthermore, the first half of my life was marvelous and got progessively better under the New Deal.  The policies worked.  Both my brother and I were union organizers, I lost a career for my efforts, my brother still works as an organizer.   My forbears were tool and die makers, union.  

        The segregationists did vote for the New Deal because it worked in spreading vast prosperity everywhere.  It was the most dynamic economic era ever. The Democratic Party turned on the segregationists for certain, but they still voted their best economic interests.  Until........

        The Reagan Democrats denounced the New Deal for small government Reaganomics.  I was there, in Michigan, when Macomb and Oakland counties tipped the balance of the state to Reagan with help from you.  They are all now working at WalMarts down south because that's where the jobs are.

        Sorry, Condoleeza, ain't buying your Reaganomics.  I am for complete repudiation of Reaganomics and a return to the New Deal.  Government is not the problem, it is the solution.

        That's what I think.

        Obama has no affinity whatsoever for the little guy.  He is in the pocket of Goldman Sachs.  Wish it weren't true, but it is demonstrably so.  And in that he is just like Reagan.

        Climb out of your Trench and get some oxygen to your brain.

        When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

        by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 03:07:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I support the President in his re-election bid (13+ / 0-)

    whole heartedly and shall work just as hard as i did in 2008 to ensure that he remains President of the United States. This base business is irrelevant. His base is Democratic, and that includes Progressives, Radical progressives, moderate Progressives and even regressive Progressives.

    Why? be cause the ONLY alternative is a Republican who is Regressives and Independents, who in the main seem to be Tea Party Libertarians like Ron and son of Ron, Rand paul

    That is the alternative. So when working for or against electing this President consider the alternative above all.

    At this stage in the cycle i frankly do not see Daily Kos as being a viable player in this game because far too many are still playing the game of what they consider personal betrayal for very thinly veiled personal reasons.

    Its either President Obama (D)or President Whoever (R)

    Your choice.  Now hit the streets instead of the keyboard.

    And, oh, if you don't believe me listen to what Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, John Boehner et. al.are proposing to do to the nation!  and puke, weep, or both.  get real.  GOTV.

  •  Thanks (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gary Norton, jan4insight, blueyedace2

    for your thougthful diary.

    I would like to ask those who do so much complaining what they would do instead. Maybe they should get from behind the computers and run for something since they have all the answers.

    •  We already know (0+ / 0-)

      they would "show backbone" by being obstinate. They would "stand firm" by refusing to compromise in order to get results. They would "punish the financiers" because capitalism is evil. They would promote Bradley Manning to Secretary of State, and Dennis Kucinich to Secretary of Defense.

      In other words, they would ensure that nobody ever voted Democratic ever again, for fear of putting a communist (the real socialist-authoritarian kind, not the right-wing boogeyman kind) in the Oval Office.

  •  You've got 'base' defined incorrectly (10+ / 0-)

    Base does not mean 'the most' numerically, but the most engaged and influential.  So, the base would be that very small segment of the party that does not hold formal roles, but is the most engaged in debating issues, campaign volunteering, donation gathering, etc.  That's the base.  The numbers definition would just be something like 'regular voters' or 'supporters.'

    The problem with any party is that there are multiple bases at any given time, and which base gets tagged by the leadership as the most important depends very much on the electoral problem they want to solve and the best way they think it should be tackled.

    That's the disagreement. One bunch of Dem says the way to win the re-election is to play to the base of more aggressive Dems highly engaged in debating issues and battling the opposition through the media and grassroots organizing--the 'progressive' base.   Another bunch of dems says the way to win re-election is to play to the base of more moderate Dems more directly engaged with the President himself via OFA and centrist outreach efforts. Who is correct?

    Here's the unsatisfying answer:  both are correct.  Both need to be engaged to fully ensure a victory.  Without both Dem bases engaged, victory is not guaranteed, but it is still possible--although we won't know until the end.

    Why not engage both bases?  Well, the people around Obama are convinced that engaging the progressive base will actually lead to a re-election loss.  And that is where a great deal of the frustration emerges because that interpretation has been pushed almost from day one of his term.  Why should people support a candidate who seems to worry that associate with them is damning for the ticket rather than helpful?  That certainly wasn't the message on the 2008 campaign trail.  Back then the message was: I'm with both bases.

    The inverse is not true. The WH has since day one embraced the moderate base, reached out to it, celebrated it--even though both bases were fully active in the first election effort.  So, one base feels...embraced, validated, welcome, while the other feels betrayed, dismissed, suspect.

    The end result is two warring bases--which is a classic symptom of weak political leadership.

    I really do believe there is still time to right this wrong, but time is running out.  The level of frustration in one Dem base is so high right now that it will require a sincere effort by the party leadership to prevent that frustration from turning into a full on revolt.   Bush experienced this same thing when he snubbed one part of his base after embracing them to get elected (the Evangelicals). They sat on their hands and were it not for Cheney's transformation of the race into a forum for scaring the crap out of America RE terrorist attacks, Bush would have lost. And in a sense, he did lose, because the result of his re-election was the abject trampling of his reputation, the collapse of the economy, etc.

    We are a big tent party.  To really win, we need leadership that embraces the full spectrum of our many engaged bases.  

    •  I'm not sure I agree with this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I mean, I agree that there are multiple bases, but I certainly don't agree that they are so sharply defined, particularly into "progressive" and "moderate" camps. Well, depending on what "progressive" means, which seems to be up for debate. But I know many people who call themselves "progressives" and who also consider themselves part of the "base", who are not at all enchanted with the "Oh, I'm so perpetually disappointed that I can do nothing else but talk about how disappointed and offended I am" progressive group.

      They are more the activist type, and the type to take any little tiny bit of good news and run with it. Then there's the group I belong to, more radical, socialists/leftists who are also part of the "base." Mind, there are plenty who won't vote for any official party, but there are also plenty who recognize that we have two vehicles for access to government in this country, right now -- Democrats and Republicans. Well wait, I worded that wrong -- we have two viable parties, but we have many vehicles for access to government and changing facts on the ground. Shouting on the internet is one, of course, but not as effective as doing the scut work of changing the facts on the ground and stuff.

      Anyway, I imagine that they (politicians all) will attempt to appeal to various groups who are outside the Democratic base, but I think their time would be more effectively used in targeting Republicans and working with the people who are committed to work for Democrats.

      There's a year or so to go, though, so who knows.

      “If you have come to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.”

      by Nanette K on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 08:51:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  and I could (0+ / 0-)

        disagree with your definition of 'activist'--and on and on and on...

        The point is not whether our definitions hold water 100% to everyone's satisfaction--which is chasing a phantom, if you ask me.  Rather, the question is can we stand back and see the bigger picture.  

        If your bigger picture is that a certain percentage of the Democratic party just complains too much, I don't really understand how you distinguish yourself form that--given that you basically complained about another part of the party.  So, I don't really think that's the issue.  

        We have a classic problem here--a textbook problem.  It's not a character flaw problem.  It's a problem of leadership relating to those it leads.  We went through 8 years of very strong executive leadership style and that resulted in lots of national problems. So we elected someone with a different leadership style and that has resulted in different national problems (and solutions).  It's not rocket science.

        I can't say whether that leadership problem will ultimately result to a loss or be overcome and open a path to a victory. But I can say that the endless-back-and-forth-in-both-directions character critiques accomplish absolutely nothing. If that was the solution, then by now there would either be fewer supporters of Obama or fewer critics.  But we've been in gridlock now for over two years. Ergo, complaining about complainers or complaining about being frustrated (two sides of the same coin) isn't helping anybody or anything.

    •  Please clarify (0+ / 0-)
      Well, the people around Obama are convinced that engaging the progressive base will actually lead to a re-election loss.  And that is where a great deal of the frustration emerges because that interpretation has been pushed almost from day one of his term.
      I believe you meant to say "capitulating entirely to the radical progressive base" instead of "engaging the progressive base". The President has never had a problem engaging the progressive base; it is the extremist reactionary base, essentially socialists, who aren't getting any love from the White House. The people who think the Bush recession provided an opportunity to redesign the American economy from the top down by government fiat.
  •  He actually has the base, if by that (5+ / 0-)

    you mean Democrats. There are a number hear who don't fit in that category. But that is only because they don't see the world as a choice between Obama's budget and Ryan's budget, that will end Medicare and Medicaid. They see the choice as between Obama's budget and their own perfect vision for the future of the country.

    I, like them, have my own perfect vision also, but I realize it has no chance of being enacted.

  •  Gitmo "Inhabitants" ? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    teknofyl, angel d, tardis10, priceman

    You do not reside in Gitmo, you are a prisoner. Torture has happened there, which this diary does not mention.

    Take the Gitmo kerfuffle, which is being blatantly presented in the press and media as the President reneging on a campaign promise, first to close the facility, and then to try all its inhabitants in the civil courts

    Action is the antidote to despair---Joan Baez

    by frandor55 on Tue Apr 05, 2011 at 08:36:28 AM PDT

  •  the Gitmo kerfluffle (7+ / 0-)

    that's like the Bradley Manning oopsie

    the tax cuts for the rich hurly-burly

    the catfood commission hoo-hah

    the comfortable shoes commotion

  •  Here you go (0+ / 0-)

    stolen directly from the KOS from the front page,

    "Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told lawmakers Tuesday that the administration is crafting a corporate tax reform plan that would eliminate some tax preferences in exchange for a lower corporate tax rate."

    Geithner is a member of the presidential cabinet.  Obama can fire this guy in an instant.  He doesnt need to play nice with anyone to deal with Geithner, so you cant say Obama is "trying" on this but being stymmied by anyone or anything.  The buck here stops only on Obama's desk, no place else.  

    When the left reads that stuff right next to pieces talking about drastic cuts to basic social services, more extracurricular warring, and open warfare on teachers and unions, are we supposed to feel good for the leadership of our party?  

    We're supposed to what... stand up and cheer for our side?

     And you're saying if we don't cheer we can kiss your ass because we aren't being fair to Obama?  

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