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It is no exaggeration to say that if there was a single event at which Barack Obama won the Democratic nomination for President, it was his speech to the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner in Iowa in November 2007.  It is not unfair, therefore, to judge him by it.  Here is a selection from it:

I will lead the world to combat the common threats of the 21st century ... and I will send once more a message to those yearning faces beyond our shores that says you matter to us, your future is our future, and our moment is now. America, our moment is now.

Our moment is now!

I don't want to spend the next year or the next four years refighting the same fights that we had in the 1990s. I don’t want to pit red America against blue America. I want to be the President of the United States of America.

And if those Republicans come at me with the same fear-mongering and swift-boating that they usually do, then I will take them head-on. Because I believe the American people are tired of fear, and tired of distractions.

Andrew Sullivan titled his column on that event, from which I take the above quote: "The Fierce Urgency of Now."  I don't know whether Obama used that phrase in his speeches (or in either of his books) before then, but I know that he used it often in 2008.  The phrase is derived from a book by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Beyond Vietnam, from which I will excerpt far less than I hope you will go and read on your own:

We can no longer afford to worship the god of hate or bow before the altar of retaliation. The oceans of history are made turbulent by the ever-rising tides of hate. History is cluttered with the wreckage of nations and individuals that pursued this self-defeating path of hate.

We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked and dejected with a lost opportunity. The “tide in the affairs of men” does not remain at the flood; it ebbs. We may cry out desperately for time to pause in her passage, but time is deaf to every plea and rushes on.

What strikes me as I read these passages is that President Obama has, in essence, adapted the notion of "the fierce urgency of now" in an unexpected (and, for many of us, unwelcome) way: as an argument for the need to deal quickly, decisively, and grandly with the nation's national "debt crisis" -- such as it suddenly deserves that name.

"We do big things," Obama told us -- or perhaps warned us -- in his second State of the Union Address last January, and this Grand Bargain that he may or may not be arranging would be among them.  We are told that it is urgent and we suspect that it will be fierce.

"The Fierce Urgency of Now" would also be a fitting term for another idea that was presented in what I and many others consider possibly the best political book of the past decade: The Shock Doctrine, by Naomi Klein.  Many of you are already familiar with it; for those who are not, here is a video primer. It's actually a 78-minute documentary taken from the book -- but the first six minutes or so would be enough for you to get the basic idea:

The Shock Doctrine is also known as "Disaster Capitalism" -- economic engineers and/or military forces swooping in at the moment of a nation's greatest vulnerability to impose change upon it.  Time limits and imminent deadlines -- the need to make decisions and concessions now, now, now!, are a critical part of its effectiveness.

It makes me queasy to describe such tactics as inducing, through panic and terror, a "fierce urgency of now" of the sort that Dr. King tried to elicit by moral suasion and exhortation -- but there you have it.  Both approaches seek to create "fierce urgencies" and move people towards concessions they would not usually make -- but King did so non-violently in the name of justice and disaster capitalists do so by wreaking havoc, in the pursuit of economic injustice.  Injustice, after all, is a more sure bet and it pays better.

Barack Obama campaigned on a fierce urgency of now, evoking King rather than Milton Friedman -- but here we are, with the loaded gun of national default cocked and pointed at our head, being told that a quick resolution of complex problems is critical to our national welfare.  Fierce.  Urgent.  Now.

I have to call it as it is: this is "The Shock Doctrine" applied to Congress.  It has happened before -- many of us remember the FISAAA bill of 2007, for example -- and it will happen again; it is just that this time both the weapon and the goal don't involve matters of national security, but of economics.  Whether Obama sought this situation, fell into it, or was pushed into it is a matter to debate another time.  We are being stampeded into precipitous action; the question of the day is "how do we keep from becoming its victims?"

We avoid becoming the victim of "disaster capitalism" by recognizing that this is not like the urgency in 1967 of ending the war in Vietnam; it is not even like the apparent urgency of saving the banking system in 2007.  It is a made-up deadline that we have no real reason to treat as real other than the ministerial task of raising the debt limit, period.  It is not a "fierce urgency of now"; it is a "false urgency of now."

And that is now what we must say, to President Obama, to Republicans, to Democrats:

We will NOT be rushed into a bad decision!

We should thank the President for two things:

(1) opening up debate on this issue

(although it would have been nicer if the debate had included some discussion of counter-cyclical Keynesian economics and whether it makes sense to cut the deficit deeply during a time or raging unemployment and underemployment, but we'll have time for that), and

(2) exposing the true priorities of the Republican Party

(because even many of us Democrats have been shocked by the completely irresponsible and unpopular Republican responses elicited by the President's gambits -- if they have been gambits.)

If we stop right there, then the President truly deserves our thanks.  If he imposes a shock doctrine solution when the "urgency of now" is false, he deserves our opposition -- and I rule out a priori no legal means of asserting it.  He must understand -- our representatives must understand, that we will NOT be stampeded.

We will NOT be shocked into compliance!

The answer is simple, and whether the Republicans want to follow it or not is up to them: we demand a simple vote, of a kind that we had 18 times under Reagan and many more times since, to raise the debt ceiling to cover our already existing obligations.  Period.  These matters of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are extremely important and we will NOT let out Congress hammer out some slapdash solution to them within a few days -- or even a few weeks.

Our "fierce urgency" must not come from a deadline that we can meet with a routine ministerial bill.  If we are to have "fierce urgency," it will come from serious consideration of the situation on its merits -- and approaches that refuse to consider reversion of taxes to previous higher rates are Not Serious.  They demonstrate a lack of fierceness, a lack of urgency.  If the Republicans truly won't pass a clean bill, then let the default be on their head -- they have the ability to end it at any time Congress can convene.

So that is now my position, and I hope it will be your position, and I hope it will be all Democratic legislators' position (except for the obvious lost causes like Sen. Conrad) -- and I hope that, before too long, it will be President Obama's position as well.

The actual "fierce urgency of now" right now is to prevent the President from imposing a bad and half-baked solution upon us out of panic.  The actual "fierce urgency of now" is to honor our commitments to our seniors, to our poor, to our sick, and to the cherished history of the post-Depression Democratic Party.  The actual "fierce urgency of now" is to prevent our government from shutting down and giving windfall profits to vulture investors by needlessly spiking interest rates.  We need this settled, and settled until, let's say, May of 2013.  And meanwhile, we promise that we will continue talking about the national debt, the economy, unemployment, and Keynesian economics.

We will continue talking because the "crisis" demanding urgency is one that our leaders in Congress can, and should, and must address without shocking the system to gain compliance.

We will honor the true "fierce urgency of now."

We will not be cowed by the "false urgency of now."

President Obama is welcome to stand with us.  We hope that he will not stand against us, but that is his choice -- to make urgent, to make now.

(202) 456-1111  Comment line for the White House

(202) 224-3121  Contact the U.S. Senate and U.S. House

3:52 PM PT: I'm sorry that I had to write this diary, though I don't regret it, and I'm very happy that Barack Obama's gambit was rejected and that he's coming out swinging at the Republicans and is in the Democratic fold.  But this diary won't be complete, so far as I'm concerned, until and unless I get a recommendation from user 66948.  (For now, he can just accept a tip of my hat.)  Now -- fiercely and urgently -- we get to work.


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Comment Preferences

  •  And just as I finish and prepare to publish (112+ / 0-)

    this diary, I see on the front page that it comes just a little too late.

    Oh well.  Let this be my testament to the day.

    In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

    by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 12:47:26 PM PDT

    •  Too bad; going to T/R you anyway (10+ / 0-)

      PS; nice avatar.  :)

      "People should not be afraid of their government; governments should be afraid of their people." --V

      by MikeTheLiberal on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 12:50:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I just want to alert people to the update (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SoCalSal, RFK Lives, shantysue

        If this "reform" was something that the President truly wanted to happen, it failed -- thanks to the Republicans.  On the other hand, if it really was merely a calculated risk to make the Republicans look terrible, intransigent and unserious about policy, then it worked wonderfully.  We'll never know which it was (or if it was both, or something else); either way, we can unite now for the purpose of letting the public know just how heartless, hypocritical, and out of touch Republicans now are.

        In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

        by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 04:00:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  This was a wonderful diary and it was (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lura, Aeolos, Seneca Doane, JG in MD

          pressure from people like you who kept the President from making some very bad concessions, but I'm not thrilled yet.  I think there is much more to come; the European economy is very close to tanking and that will have a negative effect on the world economy, and so we're far from walking our way out of this mess.

          But there is one thing that should never have happened and that is this:  Obama should never have been the first American president to place our social safety network on the bargaining table.  Now, all Democrats will have to share that stain.

          •  I agree about the last point (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JG in MD

            That egg should not have been cracked and can't be unscrambled.  Others will disagree, of course -- some thinking that it's good policy, other thinking that Obama obviously never really meant for it to happen, neither resolving the obvious contradiction -- but that's just not at the top of my "to-do" list right now.  The fact is: these possible concessions were mostly a sop to Republicans (along with Conrad and those like him), and that is what has to be emphasized right now.

            In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

            by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 11:43:02 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  66948 - ha ha ha ha ha (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Seneca Doane

          I knows how to look those up now, thanks to teh Major. Won't comment on 66948, though. I just don't go there. Smart, ain't I?

          I will talk all you want about 66948's enemies all you want, though: Murdoch, Koch, Norquist, Alec, etc., and their puppets - Boehner, McConnell, Republican governors, representatives and senators, whoever's running for Pres., and I'll talk about buying Canadian money, self-sufficiency, protesting what's being done to us by those who are leading the tpers over the cliff and stuff like that.

          All I'll say about this diary is looks like 66948 1/65885 0 (just on this one diary and "the speech" this afternoon, though).

          •  See my follow-up diary: I mostly agree with you (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            shantysue

            I'm not thrilled, for reasons that praenomen expressed just above, but I'm pleased.  And I want to reward Obama for that press conference.  He should know that when he kicks ass and takes names, we appreciate it.

            Read 66948's diaries and the comments to them, by the way.  They offer a lot of insight into that user.

            In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

            by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 11:40:08 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Those two diaries are partly why I love this site (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Seneca Doane

              I read them long ago.

              I learn so much from what I read here. I just have to make choices in what I read and respond to.

              I've read books by him, about him, his parents, articles about him, his wife, his relationship with Oprah, hell I even had two dreams about him two nights in a row this week - Wednesday and Thursday, the two nights before his speech. I found the dreams oddly comforting and strange, because I haven't remembered my dreams for a long time.

              Otoh, I also bought some Canadian money and got an enhanced dl yesterday, only to walk in as the news was breaking.

              I just prefer bringing light to ALEC/Koch, stomping all over Murdoch, stopping Norquist, talking points about Perry and Bachmann for post-primaries, discussing solutions to what is happening to the world (water, food, etc.) how to stop the states via electing the right judges and leaders, and if all else fails, preparing ourselves for the inevitable.

              I like it when you post those types of diaries because they're well read.

              I did read your next diary (I read through ALL diary headings on this site each day), and then I read the diaries that interest me.

              As I've told you before, I don't always agree with you, but I give you mad respect, wise Seneca. Yesterday, I just got a chuckle out of your 66948 reference and also the timing of your diary.

              Thanks for the reply. Now carry on with your good work in all that you do.

              btw how was Gypsy?

              •  *Gypsy* was fantastic (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                shantysue

                And two our kids loved it.  (The other liked it.)  It did require us to explain to our 12-year-old what "pasties" are, though.

                In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

                by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 02:39:40 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  The false urgency of now - dealing with the (6+ / 0-)

      nation's deficits, debt, in the context of a debt-ceiling deadline.

      Whereas we should be dealing with:

      The fierce urgency of now - concerning a no/slow growth economy, high unemployment/underemployment, stagnant wages, growing income inequality, millions of homeowners in foreclosure or in default, or whose houses are "underwater," still tens of millions of Americans without health insurance or who are underinsured, etc.

      A  "manufactured disaster" to carry out the wishes of the oligarchs, and their  Simson-Bowles Commission; instead of using the "real economicl disaster" caused by the frenzied, greedy, speculative, Wall-Street casino/gambling bubble, to bring relief and productive answers to an American public who have experienced far too many "shocks" to their existence, security, and sense of well-being over the last thirty years.

    •  IF the government defaults (0+ / 0-)

      Although it would be disastrous for Social Security and Medicare & Medicaid, at least it would be a blow to large bondholders.

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

      by Mumon on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 02:45:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not if it's only a spike (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Aeolos

        and they snarf up the ones with high interest.  Then it's a windfall.

        In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

        by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 02:56:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly. The vigilantes will get their flesh. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Seneca Doane

          Much more than a pound for their "trouble".
          The U.S. Dollar will still be the reserve currency, and U.S. Treasuries the safe haven for skittish investors.

          The Bond market will reap the spread between the relative risk of holding U.S. bonds and the "default premium".  Nice work if you can get it.  PIMCO is drooling.

          NO CE/CW. NO UNION BUSTING

          by Aeolos on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 08:46:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Could you write a diary on this, my friend? (0+ / 0-)

            People don't seem to get this -- and you know that Cantor has been invested in a fund that makes money this way, maybe PIMCO, right? -- and it is one of the stories that has to be circulated: what we're seeing here is market manipulation.

            Let me know if and when you post so that I can timely rec (or by PM if you won't).

            In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

            by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 11:45:30 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  I want to rec this NINE TIMES nt (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Seneca Doane, k9disc

      "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk." --Ian McDonald

      by Geenius at Wrok on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 03:06:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Oh, lawsy, the "debt ceiling" is a (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Seneca Doane

      legislative fiction conceived by expediency, that is "the fierce urgency of back then" in WW I.

      Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

      by dadadata on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 05:38:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Obama made his choice some time ago (15+ / 0-)

    How many will have the honesty and perhaps the courage to face that fact is the only question remaining in my mind...

    Whom do you blame more? The rattlesnake, or the bipartisan guy who put it in your sleeping bag?

    by chuckvw on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:01:46 PM PDT

  •  Because the President and Democrats have bought (13+ / 0-)

    into the fake right wing austerity shock framing, we're going to be in perpetual budget cutting talks from now until we just swirl down the bathtub drain. It is just sickening to see the Democrats buy into and promote the same hogwash as the Republicans.

    Our only hope is some politician  or labor leader emerges out of thin air and comes forth and starts talking clearly  about what an incredible load of crap this has all been.

    And a lot of Americans are already there and they already know this, so it's not that much of an uphill struggle.

    So far the only one who has openly and bravely tried to derail  this train is Bernie Sanders.

  •  I will say that, (8+ / 0-)

    after the discussion we had this morning, I appreciate the thoughtfulness of this diary.

    But that said, I have a few points of disagreement:

    First of all - as I read Shock Doctrine - the idea was to go in AFTER a crisis and implement policies people wouldn't otherwise support.

    Perhaps you'll see that as hair-splitting. But a more apt shock doctrine would be to let the deadline pass without raising the debt ceiling and then push through policies during the panic.

    I'm not justifying the idea of putting all the pressure on now. Its just that your shock doctrine metaphor doesn't hold for me.

    Secondly, it might be helpful to remind you and other folks that President Obama pushed for a clean debt limit bill for a couple of months. No one paid much attention.

    Then on May 31st, the House voted DOWN a clean bill...this leading to where we are now. Their whole point in doing so was to take that option off the table.

    Finally, as to what you said in your tip jar...I'd simply suggest that this situation is extremely fluid and I'd never jump to any conclusion that its too late for anything until I've heard agreement from all parties involved. Reid and Pelosi have to play their own political games while all of this is going on. Its just how things are done.

    •  Fair statements (7+ / 0-)

      I think that Klein would agree that you can use the threat of imminent disaster as a basis to apply the shock doctrine -- and I believe that this applies to one or more examples in her book.

      Yes, I give credit to Obama for pushing for a clean debt limit bill -- but on the other hand he doesn't get much credit if he knew (as lots of people apparently knew) that it was not going to pass.

      I may be overdramatic in the tip jar (cue critics: "ya think?"), but it was really demotivating to check the FP and Recent List just before posting this and find that news about Reid giving up.  The Pelosi news was better.  I think.

      In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

      by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:31:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You confuse me with this (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        glynis, gramofsam1, sebastianguy99, wader
        but on the other hand he doesn't get much credit if he knew (as lots of people apparently knew) that it was not going to pass.

        Did I read this diary accurately? Are you not suggesting that the only option is a clean debt limit bill? If everyone knows that its not going to pass, why would you advocate for that and be dismissive when Obama did the same thing?

        Both Reid and Pelosi are posturing. I've read several places that McConnell/Reid is done and is sitting on the shelf ready to go. This is the same thing they did at the end of the health care battle..."you go first." "no, you go first." But my money is on Pelosi because I think she's the better strategist and the battle this time around really is going to be in the House. She's beginning to smell the possibility of an end to Boehner's leadership in all of this and will be doing everything she can to make sure that happens.

        •  For Obama to have supported a bill through May (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jackson L Haveck, blueoasis

          that he knew was not going to pass was a "freebie."  He knew that it would not pass over two months before the deadline, because Republicans were sure to posture.  I still give him credit, but I don't see it as decisive evidence that he didn't plan to go this route after it didn't pass.

          Reid has supposedly abandoned McConnell-Reid.  See the Front Page.

          Pelosi, as often is the case, is our best hope.

          In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

          by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:43:36 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  "After the crisis" (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      k9disc, Seneca Doane

      This is after the crisis.  The crisis was the meltdown three years ago.  This is going in.  It fits perfectly with the pattern.

      The 14 trillion debt wouldn't be nearly such an issue if we didn't bailout Wall Street and continue the Bush tax cuts.  

      NO CE/CW. NO UNION BUSTING

      by Aeolos on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 08:53:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  He can't take a punch, which is why he doesn't (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Seneca Doane

      want to fight.

      It's terrible for a politician and for fostering change.

      He should have doubled down, not folded and waited for a new hand.

      As far as the Shock Doctrine, I hear you, but there was a crisis - remember 2008? How about 2010?

      We are in a permanent state of crisis. This place is ripe for the Shock Doctrine.

      Also, this kind of stuff - Greece, Ireland, the US here - this used to require a middle man - a tinpot dictator - to sell out his people. In 2008, they bypassed the middle man entirely and took down the most powerful economy in the world. We are in uncharted territory.

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

      by k9disc on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 12:20:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Queue up defenders asking us (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    drnononono, 3goldens, k9disc

    if we'd prefer president Bachman in 5.4.3.2.1...

    (And I have ZERO doubt that many of them are part of the con and are being well-compensated for their efforts, because it's how politics has worked ever since Jefferson hired Freneau to shill for him in the National Gazette so spare me the CT accusations--btw, Jefferson, and his policies, ultimately lost, even if he and his side politically won in the end--we are a Hamiltonian country that only pretends to be Jeffersonian.)

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:39:48 PM PDT

    •  If anyone here is paid to blog in either direction (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drnononono, Sychotic1, 3goldens, NWTerriD

      they should divulge it -- and if it's happening, I wouldn't be shocked by it and don't even think it's impermissible.  It should just be divulged and then people can be judged by what they write and the reputation they create.

      Interesting points about Jefferson.

      In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

      by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:45:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  People on our side have divulged it (5+ / 0-)

        E.g. nyceve & slinkerwink--because they're honest, agree with their positions or not. But why should those on the other side do so, since they're dishonest, and not in their interest to do so? You're presuming a moral equivalence that simply does not exist in such situations. And it's not just me who believes this.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:56:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  As used, "should" is a normative (ethical) modal (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kovie, NWTerriD

          If I said "should be expected to," meaning a prediction, that would be different.

          In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

          by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 02:02:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  In some sense, it shouldn't matter (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Seneca Doane, FG

        The problem with assuming that there are traitors in our midst is that, once you accept that position, everyone starts to look like a traitor.  Destroying our trust in one another is at least part of their overall goal. This has been done before, see COINTELPRO. People with contrary opinions should not be ostracized or subject to accusations of dishonesty and double crossing. That plays right into the other side's hand. And most of the time, it won't be true, we will in fact be attacking and alienating a potential ally.

      •  COINTELPRO should have disclosed their (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Seneca Doane

        allegiance?

        I think that is quite naive. I understand your deference to rock solid ideological positioning, but there is no doubt that some people here are not who they claim to be.

        Psyops and full spectrum dominance and disinformation of cyberspace is a stated goal by the Pentagon. It's a fact, as far as I'm concerned.

        I'm not one to lay allegations at individuals, but I think to proceed as if disinformation psyops specialists should disclose their job is not very realistic.

        peace~

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

        by k9disc on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 12:26:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Prove to me that you're not paid to write (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Escamillo

      this comment. Of course, you can't. Can't prove the negative. Btw, I don't think you're indeed paid for this but this is just to point out that it's very easy to accuse everyone of being a paid operative and pretty much impossible to prove that anyone is not.

  •  We (5+ / 0-)

    Shall Not be Stampeded!


    Give these weighty matter, the care they deserve.


    Go after the real causes of the Debt,

    -- not the Fake Urgent Fierce causes.


    What is necessary to change a person is to change his awareness of himself.
    -- Maslow ...... my list.

    by jamess on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 01:40:22 PM PDT

  •  the most important issue facing the country is (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane, blueoasis, Jagger, NWTerriD

    nearly always whatever the republicans say it is.

    National security, terrorism, war on drugs, invading someone who hasn't attacked us, etc., etc.

    One exception was when dems forced the health insurance issue when they held both houses and the white house very securely. Then they shooed actual progressive views out of the room and gave everyone else seats at the table.

    Now the republicans say it's the budget, and now we've all seen this movie before.

    Sadly, the dems line up to be counted every time. So many of them, so consistently, that it looks like a . . .  a . . . . a pattern!!

    Fear is the mind-killer - Frank Herbert, Dune

    by p gorden lippy on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 02:17:06 PM PDT

  •  false sense of urgency is human nature (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane, FG

    Or more accurately, the difficulty in sensing when urgency is fierce and when it is not.  One of the reasons I find reading history comforting is that distinction is only possible to know in hindsight.

  •  The True Priority of the Republicans (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane, wader, k9disc

    is to introduce only legislation that they know will fail to pass in an effort to keep from doing anything effective to solve the nation's problems so that in '12 they can point to the president and say, "He's ineffective.  It's time for a change.  Give us a Republican president and we'll get America moving again."  

    This strategy is conducted in the full knowledge that with Tea Party Power of the House, even if Dems keep a slim majority in the Senate, they will be forced to compromise on any legislation that comes to them, and there will be no threat of a Democratic president's veto to curb right wing radicalism.

    America will lurch further into the grasp of corporations and the "false urgency of now" will pass into history.  What was once a phenomenon will be the norm, but w/o the urgency.

    Readers & Book Lovers Pull up a chair! You're never too old to be a Meta Groupie

    by Limelite on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 02:23:07 PM PDT

  •  Sigh (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, Seneca Doane, k9disc
    if those Republicans come at me with the same fear-mongering and swift-boating that they usually do, then I will take them head-on.

    Politifact may have to, very belatedly, given the President a 'Pants on Fire' rating for that one.

  •  I did not jump off of the Love Boat I was pushed (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane, k9disc

    off.   The fierce urgeny of now is right now.   Safety net cut and we are in the water neck high without a lfe preserver.   Thanks Mr. President,  The love was real.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 03:00:31 PM PDT

  •  I don't really get why a lot of people (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wader

    like this book so much. Yes, shock doctrine is one of the methods used in war and politics. But it's not the only one and claiming that everything is a part of it is a bit much to me.

  •  :fuckyeah!: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k9disc, Seneca Doane

    This fucking diary so totally fucking kicks fucking ass.

    Fucking. To. The. Yeah!

    More and Better Democrats

    by SJerseyIndy on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 05:06:07 PM PDT

  •  That video (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    should be required viewing.  Thanks SD!  We'll see what shocks Monday brings.

    "Rules must be binding. Violations must be punished. Words must mean something." President Obama in Prague on April 5

    by jlynne on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 05:16:55 PM PDT

  •  Gawd, two days in a row (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    I guess that old saying is true -- politics makes strange bedfellows.

    And I mean that ONLY in the figurative sense.  ;-)

    T&R'd

    (Of course, since the rest of the world appears to have turned upsidedown, perhaps nothing should surprise me anymore.)

    "Ça c'est une chanson que j'aurais vraiment aimé ne pas avoir écrite." -- Barbara

    by FogCityJohn on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 05:31:22 PM PDT

    •  It's a pleasure to agree with you, John (0+ / 0-)

      As for my being a strange bedfellow -- yes, and I can provide references.

      In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

      by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 11:57:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Actually, why NOW? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    The debt ceiling has been raised time and again without fuss. Is the fuss because a Democrat is in the White House? Why should the Democrats play this game, rather than shrug and say, well, if they don't want to raise it, let them answer to the nation?

    Well? Shall we go? At least that man is gone.

    by whenwego on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 05:32:15 PM PDT

  •  dammit. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k9disc, Seneca Doane

    OK, maybe the timing altered its applicability, but your central observation about what was happening is sickeningly on point.

    "The fierce urgency of now" was imho one of the most compelling themes of the Obama '08 campaign. The moment I saw Naomi Klein's name in your diary, I got a sinking feeling. That is really a brilliant connection. I want it to be a figment of your imagination, but I knew immediately that it's much more than that. I can't make myself read the rest of the diary just yet; I need to prepare myself.

    Go ahead. Enjoy your night at the theater. Don't worry about those of us who will spend the evening fighting the waves of nausea your diary engenders.

    "These are not candidates. These are the empty stand-ins for lobbyists' policies to be legislated later." - Chimpy, 9/24/10

    by NWTerriD on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 06:07:09 PM PDT

    •  We *did* enjoy *Gypsy*! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NWTerriD

      Watching a couple of young women (19 and 12) get turned on to a work of over 50 years old is pretty thrilling.  (And the 20-year-old tolerated it too, although once we got back to the car she had to wash out her brain with loud hip-hop.)

      You know, we're most effective when most resilient.  Being able to go out and have a good time, to recharge oneself before going back to the struggles, is important.  I won't worry about you -- you're resilient too, I believe.

      In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

      by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 12:01:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  You are killing it SD. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    Your last few pieces have been amazing!

    Your measured tone and deferential treatment of strongly held beliefs is just what we need.

    Fantastic show! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    A typo:
    The actual "fierce urgency of now" right now is to prevent the President from imposing a bad and half-baked solution upon us out a panic.

    "Out of a panic"

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

    by k9disc on Fri Jul 22, 2011 at 11:59:34 PM PDT

    •  Change made -- thanks (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      k9disc

      I'd like to think that, somewhere in some DC metro area bunker, someone on the President's staff read the title of this diary and said "oh shit.  Better call Plouffe."

      The odds of that having happened are low, but it's a pleasing fantasy.

      I look forward to being able to support the President again.  Things did look up.

      In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

      by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 12:05:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hey man, low odds are better than no odds... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Seneca Doane

        I wrote a piece in 2005 that played a role in protecting SS from Privatization.

        No hyperbole there. A week after  this diary the SS debate was over... I really wish I still had the pics - powerful piece there.

        AARP, DFA and a bunch of other orgs picked the concept up and ran with it - the privatizers shut their mouth and the issues was dropped like a hot potato.

        Never forget that small people can make  a HUGE difference.

        peace~

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

        by k9disc on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 03:41:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Crikey! That's a great diary (0+ / 0-)

          If you don't mind a special request -- would you republish it?  It's still timely.  Let me know, too, so I can recommend it.

          In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

          by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 05:44:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Wow -- it still lets me recommend it! (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          k9disc

          Cool!

          In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

          by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 05:47:30 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The thing is Boehner's walking out. . . . (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    . . .does not affect our problem at all.  Obama was willing to give away too much in his effort to find a grand bargain to a secondary problem.

    But the more insidious problem is one that he and the Republicans refuse to even discuss-jobs.  How can the plight of 9.2 of our population be ignored the way Obama and Congress are ignoring them?  

    Their plans, their budget cuts, their tax cuts, their pontificating, their ridicule, their inaction, their lecturing, their blindness, do not address this four year old catastrophe.

    How do we get people back to work?  How do we get our elected representatives to pay attention to this problem?  They are the only ones who seem unconcerned.  How can that be?

    If Obama (and those idiot Republicans)really wants to lead, we need to tell him to get people work and to forget the debt.

    There is a nice ancillary benefit to Obama, of course, if he gets people back to work.  A benefit that seems to appeal to him. Obama gets re-elected in a land slide if he gets people to work.

    If he wants to be the adult he always lectures liberals to be, he needs to look here.  I am not sanguine.

    I am a liberal. So, I should not expect any consideration from the guy I helped elect.

    by waztec on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 07:34:15 AM PDT

    •  Those are two of the problems (0+ / 0-)

      I don't deny that.  We can't unscramble the egg of what he was prepared to sacrifice.  But with our strong reaction, we can let people know that he did not speak for the brunt of the Democratic Party in doing so.  That's worth something.

      I agree with the rest of your post.  I admit, as he would probably say, that he can't get blood out of a Congressional stone.  But he sure can use the bully pulpit more and better than he has.

      In my avatar, the blue bars show how many want Reps who COMPROMISE; the aqua bars show who wants Reps who STAND FAST no matter what. (Left=Overall; Center=Democrats; Right=Republicans.) And there's the problem!

      by Seneca Doane on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 12:09:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  False Urgency = Contrived Leverage (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    Yes, the urgency of this situation is wholly contrived by the Republicans. There is absolutely no reason that huge and  structural changes to the national budget HAVE to be made in time to raise the debt limit (aka: paying for those expenditures already approved by the same congressional body now opposing them) can be raised.

    First, raise the debt limit. Second, enact a major jobs plan. Third, openly and deliberately have a national discussion about the direction of the federal budget. They spent a year publicly debating healthcare reform alone.

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