That's right. Thanks to DFA and your vote I will be going to Netroots Nation next week in Providence, Rhode Island from June 7th-10th. I am what is called an unemployed starving artist(except for my family's intervention which keep me from starving) so obviously I never have the funds to go.
Even with this scholarship I can barely pony up dough for the plane ticket to and fro, but it is now a reality. Whaddaya know? I was picked by the DFA board, but all of your votes and support of my work here at Daily Kos helped substantially; if there was going to be any year I had a chance to win this scholarship it was this one. Thank you very much for all your support. This should be quite an interesting and enlightening experience.
These past couple of years have been quite a journey as far as my writing. I have drawn as much ire as I have praise, but that's the name of the game. I have thick skin for the most part, so it doesn't bother me too much. It can't. The truth is uncomfortable, and it needs to be stated bluntly regardless of the consequences for the greater good as much as it can do good in the blogosphere in my view.
I have been always happy to spark a healthy, substantive, and sometimes a little contentious debate that is needed for our discourse, even if that healthy debate may be coming to an end depending on the changing rules at this site. It's a shame, because there really is no third way to be a real Democrat. That simple fact should be allowed to be pointed out even during election season. There's a reason the Democratic Party Platform as written is a New Deal platform instead of a Hamilton Project platform.
In fact, one of the few reasons the term liberal doesn't have exactly the same classical conservative bent it once had(a commitment to limited government and laissez-faire economics), at least in the United States, is because of the proponents of Modern American liberalism like FDR. FDR and the New Deal coalition adopted offshoots of the more sweeping social programs from Huey Long, Dr. Francis Townsend, and the Union Party; all who criticized FDR relentlessly. In addition to Eugene Debs's socialist platform years earlier building coalitions over time for these causes, that's what really brought us Social Security and the New Deal.
(pdf) Dissent brought us FDIC insurance(why you didn't lose everything in 2008) when Huey Long filibustered the banking reforms of 1933 adding it in the legislative package thus bringing 50 years of financial stability. I have a feeling all of this as well as the landslide election in 1936 is somehow being forgotten around these parts by those who treat Democrats as a proverbial Tinkerbell needing undying faith. Dissent is good and healthy, always was regardless of what party or group one is in.
So the cries for some to leave what is called the Democratic Party these days, and in turn this site, mainly just for pointing out the documented factual attack on New Deal programs for years by Peter Peterson, Alan Simpson, David Walker, the cat food commission(enabled by some Democratic leaders), and how it rightly bothers them, is perplexing. I figure this is mainly just a matter of some people needing to be more informed about the actual history of Peter Peterson's attacks on social security written about by economists James K. Galbraith and Dean Baker to name a few. The make up and funding of the cat food commission is really anything but a CT if one knows any history about the purpose of the Peterson Institute at all.
Social Security doesn't belong in the dishonest economically ignorant debate about deficits that purveys Washington. The well being of seniors should not be put in jeopardy, just because politicians don't want to learn how the budget they are in charge of operates in tandem with our Monetary system. Why should seniors have to suffer for their ignorance? I don't think they should, and I write about it all the time, because it angers me.
Social Security is our most successful program to date, and it defines the real Democratic party platform within the last 50 years. Neoliberal third way Democrats within the Hamilton Project decided to stray from that platform while adopting many of the Chicago School's policies putting Social Security in danger of privatization and into the idiotic deficit debate(empirically deficit spending only matters if there is no unemployment in a Post Bretton Woods system) where it doesn't belong and is irrelevant, anyway. We should stay true to the New Deal Democratic party platform or find a new name.
The sham that was called a "foreclosure fraud settlement" and the poorly staffed (100 or so compared to over 1000 staffed during the S&L crisis) Mortgage Task Force is still a joke. It's a joke that is similar to AG Eric Holder Justice Department's record of prosecutions or even criminal referrals on financial crimes. I have written about this from time to time, and it is still relevant.
It's relevancy bothers some people who want it to go away during an election year, but it's not going away. Ignoring it didn't go away during the Great Depression, and no wishful partisan discipline will make it go away now. The only debt problem we have is a private household debt problem, and it's called debt deflation 101.
Peoples' lives and national income depend on focusing on this problem like the needed deficit spending we need. Many of the great posters and commentators here on Daily Kos know this, and to them it is every bit as important. Since my time here starting in 2007, I have noticed that Daily kos is quite a big melting pot. And within that pot is a site full of well informed posters that remember what the Democratic party platform is supposed to stand for even during election season; a season that never really ends.
There are many people I consider friends on this site. I can't name them all(I don't want anyone to be mad at any omissions), but all of your support in my diaries is noticed, believe me. It would depress the hell out of me if a majority of posters on this site thought supporting Democratic politicians regardless of the outcome is more important then ending a Too Big to Fail Financial system; a system that will crash again soon enough. And once it does it will leave countless people destroyed; many of them that haven't even recovered from last time.
It would also depress the hell out of me to find out that a majority of posters believe the lies coming from both parties about the importance of austerity(sending the eurozone back into recession), bond vigilantes, confidence fairies, or even a so called kindler gentler Democratic austerity that keeps real unemployment high as the new normal for the non existent future deficit crisis. Luckily this is not the case. There is real unrest about this.
Throughout the course of writing here, I found out that I am not the only one who thinks and feels the way I do. That is comforting to say the least. I write because deficit scare mongering is not morally right or based on any sound foundation. It should be classified as heresy and a tool used to control people and to keep their standard of living down. As Harry Truman said, how many times must you be hit in the head before you realize who is hitting you?
That billy club is the lie about deficits and national accounting being used by both parties(more by Republicans but it shouldn't be part of the debate or enabled by Democrats in any way) to keep demand side solutions that make it over the hump out of the equation. It doesn't have to be this way. Sadly, a good portion of people think we are resigned to it, but for every one of those there is a Letsgetitdone, bobswern, Dallasdoc, or david mizner type that refuses to believe that.
That's what keeps me going.
And this time I am going, to Netroots Nation.
Thank you, Daily Kos.