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Warren Buffet
Warren Buffett
The difference between our side and theirs? As we well know, their billionaires are dumping whatever it takes into the system to rig the elections in their favor.

Ours are too busy taking the high road.

"I am 100 percent behind Kerrey," [Warren] Buffett, the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, told POLITICO. "I will not be doing super PACs of any sort. I think allowing unlimited contributions to campaigns is a terrible idea and an important and unfortunate step toward a plutocracy.'"
Allowing unlimited contributions to campaigns is a terrible idea and an unfortunate step toward a plutocracy. And the best way that plutocracy happens is to refuse to fight fire with fire.

I've long railed against weenie liberals who cling to their high-minded ideals as if they're more important than winning the next elections, and this is the reason why—you don't change the world by allowing the other side to win elections and codify their version of the rules. You fight will all available tools and resources, and when you win, THEN you rewrite the rules to shape a better society.

But too many liberals would rather stay pure and lose, than get down in the mud and win, and that's one of the biggest electoral advantages conservatives enjoy.

Originally posted to kos on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:13 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  It's Warren Buffett's money to do with (18+ / 0-)

    as he pleases. If he won't donate, then we'll have to find someone else, or do it ourselves. That's what it comes down to.

    •  Certainly .. (11+ / 0-)

      but how many Democratic billionaires are there?  I don't mean d-bags like Dimon(who supposedly is a registered Democrat .. or was at one time .. or asshats like Bob Rubin) ... I mean billionaire Democrats with the politics of someone like Bernie Sanders .. or even Russ Feingold?  There aren't any .. that's just the problem .. Can anyone name me a billionaire that's to the left of Buffett(and he's not that left)?

    •  Is Buffett really taking the high road or keeping (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      verso2, ChuckInReno, Micheline

      his money in his own account?  I remind you, whoever wins, Buffett wins.  The Republicans are not going to upset billionaire Buffett's applecart, he's one of their protected species.

      Buffett is very politically aware(he's the son of US Representative Howard Buffett, a four term congressperson) and he plays all sides very adroitly.  The Fed is backing some of Buffett's big bets.

      Those who forget the pasta are doomed to reheat it.

      by CarolinNJ on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:48:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Our plutocrat vs. theirs? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        This is MAD (mutually assured destruction).  Isn't a question of who cannot be bought as opposed to how they are bought?

        We will never have billionaire parity with the party that avowedly supports them.

        Nor should we remain smug in our splendid isolation of moral superiority.   We need to be active.  Talking to people beyond DailyKos.

        The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.

        by Agent Orange on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:57:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  EVERYBODY who is anybody plays both sides (0+ / 0-)

        I worked for a company who's owners were very conservative.  Solid GOP voters and supporters of GOP policy.  Our company donated to Dems, especially on the state level, all the time.  Not the wild, social liberal activist types, but rather the machine-type Dems (like Ed Rendell and Jack Murtha).  You see, sometimes Dems are in power, and it's best if everybody owes you something.

    •  True, but doesn't speak to Kos's point. (18+ / 0-)

      If I could rec this post by Kos a hundred times, I would.

      I too am tired of hearing progressives lament the money Obama has taken from ANYWHERE he can get it.  That's the way our system is set up right now, and that's the way we have to play.

      Loosing to Romney because Democrats don't realize just how important raising money is in this election cycle, is just about the dumbest thing EVAH.

      We must do what we have to do to win, and then keep working on what we want changed.

      And yeah, Buffet is a weenie, and where the hell is Soros? and others.  Have you seen the difference in Pac money between Romney and Obama?  Romney has over a hundred million, Obama about 5 million, last I checked.

      •  Sad state of affairs and well said. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        It's a 30 year problem and not a 3 year one.

        by lovingj on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:18:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  And, PAC money can be used (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        for the worst kind of advertising.  Whereas campaign money must say "I"m Barrack Obama, and I approve this message..."

      •  True, it's a war out there. (0+ / 0-)

        "When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." - Sinclair Lewis

        by Bob Duck on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 02:18:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Well said. (0+ / 0-)

        I've been on the President's ass since day one about the things I want him to do (and he hasn't done), but if I were Bill-Maher-rich, his Super PAC would have my $1 million check in a heartbeat.

        Honestly, Kos' smuggy smugness about his dream candidates and scathing mockery of people who take a stand they're probably going to lose in the short run is insufferable, but this particular point is valid, if still smug smuggy smuggery. We have to know when to fight by not losing. When it's important enough (the Presidency, for instance), we have to set aside certain things and pick them up later.

        The problem with going with your gut as opposed to your head is that the former is so often full of shit. - Randy Chestnut

        by lotusmaglite on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 01:53:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The problem is that Dem Billionaires (0+ / 0-)

      have a conflict of interests.  In any liberal society, someone is going to have to pay.  Since the poor have nothing, the rich will have to pay.  Therefore, if you really support liberal policy and you are rich, then you support having less money for yourself.  Not easy to get your arms around, expecially if you have the ambition, talents and skills to have amassed a billion dollars.  Something drove you to do it.  My guess is that it was love of money, at least to some degree.

      GOP billionaires are not burdened by this moral conflict.

    •  Buffett is also behind building the biggest (0+ / 0-)

      coal terminal (and 5 others spread down the coast to Oregon) in North America at Cherry Point in northwest Washinton State, so I wish he wouldn't put his money in it but Berkshire Hathaway (which owns BNSF RR) is pushing it's construction along with SSA Marine.
      The whole planet will feel the effect of this and it won't be good while we dump coal on China as we destroy the Powder River Basin area with strip mining.

      Warren Buffett, the third wealthiest man on the planet (net worth: $44 billion), often referred to as the “Oracle of Omaha,” is the target of a May 5 action called for by Stop Coal B.C. Well, not Buffett directly, but a rail company he owns through his massive holding company, Berkshire Hathaway: Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway.
      Also included in the call to action’s letter to Buffett is a request of him to mandate that BNSF exit the business of coal transport:

      Since we know what is at stake we feel a moral obligation to do what we can to help prevent this looming disaster. On Saturday May 5th that means stopping your coal trains from reaching our ports.

      What we can’t understand is why you allow your railway, Burlington Northern Santa Fe, to continue shipping vast amounts of US coal out of Canadian ports to be burned in Asia. No matter where this coal is burned, it brings us closer to a climatic point of no return.

      You are in many ways an important figure of conscience in the world. We appeal to you to seize this opportunity and make a bold decision on coal. With your support we can ensure a healthy future for our children and people around the world.

      (emphasis mine)

      without the ants the rainforest dies

      by aliasalias on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 02:29:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I half agree here.. (0+ / 0-)

      I don't like Super PAC's either, and I agree with Warren Buffet and I'm very concerned it will put us further down the road to plutocracy..

      But...If there were enough wealthy people passionate about the environment, health care, abortion rights, and other issues they donated and Citizens United favored progressives, the political right would take it back to the SCOTUS who would overturn it.

      How's that for hypocrisy?  These Republicans never believed in anything but to promote wealthy interests. All else is a sham.

      As a member of Courtesy Kos, I am dedicated to civility and respect for all kossacks, regardless of their opinions, affiliations, or cliques.

      by joedemocrat on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 04:52:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I guess the only alternative... (19+ / 0-) to conspire to get the Republican 1% to really spend, spend, spend, and get very little for their efforts. Except maybe pissing off the public.

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:16:29 AM PDT

  •  Give me Buffett and Gates money and I will (12+ / 0-)

    carpet bomb Republicans everywhere.  I wouldn't be afraid to drop TEN billion to get rid of these people.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:17:30 AM PDT

  •  Just to be clear (49+ / 0-)

    this is the same Bob Kerrey that you hope loses.

    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra En théorie, il n'y a aucune différence entre théorie et pratique, mais en pratique, il y a toujours une différence. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:21:09 AM PDT

  •  Not just our billionaires (27+ / 0-)

    but far too many people from the billionaires on down to local activist groups on our side get way too hung up on trying to do things the "right" way, rather than just doing whatever it takes to win by any and all legal means.

    Unilateral disarmament just doesn't work and damages our cause in the long run as Republicans steer this country further to the right.

    •  not that I don't appreciate (14+ / 0-)

      the concern, but there is a time for nuance and a time for reality...

      we better hope smart trumps money.

      And Warren, really.  We almost lost the entire country and perhaps the global economy four years ago.  Do you really want anyone to go through that again...

    •  Agreed, we have too many naive do-gooders (8+ / 0-)

      Conservatives never hesitate to get down in the mud pit and wrestle and sling mud at liberals.

      Too damn often, liberals bring a butter knife to a gun fight -- and then wonder how the likes of Scott Walker get elected.

      Please help to fight hunger with a donation to Feeding America.

      by MJB on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:32:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        and there's many on this site very willing to argue that Walker's money didn't matter, and wasn't the issue.  AYE YI YI.

      •  I thought someone would never ask (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        edrie, MJB

        this question...What wrong with us liberals.
        Why do we always think men are honorable?
        Why do we always think people have integrity
        Why do we always think we should hold hands and sing Kumbaya?...even in  the world created by CITIZENS UNITED?
        Conservatives see politics as war, as do or die, they are militant and steadfast.  
        They want to win by any means - fair or foul. It doesn't matter. $B Super PACs, Voter suppression? all good.
        -They don't bother themselves with conduct, it all about the results...
        But what do we do? We withdraw, we curse, lose faith in mandkind, "philosohize" on the wickedness of man vis-a-vis his fellow man,  yet we do nothing to fight back. We declare unilateral disarmament.
        -Do you think a Dem would ever dream something up like voter suppression strategies? Breibart and ACORN? never ever. It not just in our DNA..
        --Take the they give a damn what the nation thinks? Are we still not buying their products?
        --What is Buffett scared of? Soros?
        I imagine Obama would never name a piece of legislation 'Buffett rule' without consulting him.  Yet he won't chip in.
        I read in "game change" that Obama consulted with Soros about his run in 2008? That's as much acknowledgement as a man can get from an aspiring politician.  What does it take for Soros to drop a couple of $$$ his way?
        ..we liberals suck. If not the for "rightness" of our course, I wonder how we even win some elections in the country...

        "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis, 1935 --Talk of foresight--

        by tuma on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:40:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  But what if we offend someone? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BigOkie, rennert, ozsea1, bryduck

      That would be really really sad!

      "just give me some truth" --John Lennon

      by vernon nackulus on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:47:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The means must reflect the ends. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Any billionaire who helps buy an election will expect his due.  No one is a billionaire because of their intense altruism.

      Buffett is hardly a good guy.  Remember his machinations during '08 with GS and BOA?  He earned his money the old-fashioned way: he stole value from workers and put it in his pocket.

      How far do you carry the philosophy that the ends justify the means?  Where do you draw the line?  It will always appear that "winning" is at stake, but what is it that is really being won.

      Leninists claimed they could install a workers' paradise through ruthless and violent policies of repression.  Emma Goldman, an anti-Capitalist to the core, saw how wrong the Bolsheviks were, and she went directly to Lenin to deliver her critique.  Eventually, she had to leave Russia or face certain death or imprisonment because she refused to remain silent.

      (Remember that Goldman was born in Russia, but spent most of her life in the U. S. until she was deported by Wilson's AG Palmer during the Red Scare of the 1920s.)

      The means must reflect the ends, indeed no good end can ever result from evil means.  History demonstrates that.

      •  How is playing within the rules, by any stretch (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        of the imagination, "evil"? We don't employ all the means at our disposal. Kos is not advocating doing anything unethical, let alone illegal, let further alone immoral or evil. There are plenty of waystations along the road before we hit any of those signposts . . .

        "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

        by bryduck on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 01:30:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  All is fair, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ozsea1, bryduck

      right up the line of the law.

      That's my philosophy when it comes to elections.

      •  that works for (0+ / 0-)

        elections all's fair, but once they are won what we win actually matters. How pragmatic is it to win the election and end up losers with no representation and then get scolded for noticing we get screwed. Could be worse doesn't cut it.  Purist's may just be the most pragmatic as they vote for actual results rather then 'victories for compromise' and corporate RW policy passed off as centrist.

  •  I'm not always a fan of Bill Maher... (39+ / 0-)

    but bless his heart for getting the message and donating a cool million to President Obama's Super PAC.

    How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

    by BenderRodriguez on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:22:05 AM PDT

  •  We need to warn them about the future (11+ / 0-)

    If we warn the "weanie liberals" that Romney's justices will almost certainly overturn Roe v. Wade, and possibly invalidate huge parts of the New Deal era legislation, they may be more likely to give. I know Romney says a lot of stupid funny things, but if he wins, we're going to forget everything he said and instead remember his disastrous policies. A lot of "high-minded" liberals find the election season silly.  Instead of reacting to the most recent example of Republican idiocy, we have to set our own narrative and give those donors something to be scared of.

    •  If progressives were warned in 2010 (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drpmeade, edrie, ozsea1, CoExistNow

      That the Republicans would threaten to cause a financial crisis unless they got 2.4 trillion in cuts, I think they would be more likely to give money and volunteer.

      If we were warned in 2000 that Bush would start a war responsible for nearly a million deaths, turn huge surpluses into deficits, and do nothing to stop the worst recession in 75 years, I think we would have been more involved.

      The signs of Republican extremism and incompentence weren't necessarily really clear in 2000, but they were definitely there in 2010. We can't be surprised anymore every time they go further than we imagined. We have to look at the extremist statements and legislative proposals of some Republicans and make the case that they could become the mainstream Republican position.

      •  and yet we still have the fools on this site who (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        stellaluna, CoExistNow

        constantly attack democrats and president obama.

        i am appalled by the sheer stupidity (or need for self-destruction) by this behavior.  

        we have two choices in the next election:  republican or democrat.

        anyone who can't see the consequences of not voting or voting third party is beyond my description (unless i want to be thrown off the site).

        for those that still don't get it, let me repeat:

        it's the supreme court, stupid!

        •  I'm voting for Obama (0+ / 0-)

          I'm probably sending him and/or Democratic candidates money as well. But I will not hesitate to criticize Obama when I think he's wrong. He's been doing better lately and I like his progressive economic approach of the last few months. But he has made mistakes by moving too far to the right and it only hurt him.

      •  Progressives, by and large.... (0+ / 0-)

        ....turned out decently and voted Democratic in 2010. We still lost. The reason was that the economy sucked, Republicans were motivated, and independents either stayed home or voted Republican out of despair.

    •  you're assuming they're THAT stupid and (0+ / 0-)

      don't know

      warn the "weanie liberals" that Romney's justices will almost certainly overturn Roe v. Wade, and possibly invalidate huge parts of the New Deal era legislation, they may be more likely to give.
      honestly. you think they don't know this?

      of course they do.

      they don't care. They make normal donations, Ilm sure. But to drop 10 million every month or so is bad news. I tell you what. I wouldn't.

      •  I don't think 100 % of potential donors (0+ / 0-)

        have constantly thought about every single catastrophic possibility of a Romney administration AND still don't care. I know it's a bit naive, but I think if they were constantly reminded of how much suffering Romney would cause, some of them would be more likely to get involved.

  •  Hey, I'm not a weenie. I will fight all the way (14+ / 0-)

    over the finish line.  And if we should lose  - at least I went down swinging.

    Republicans only care about themselves, their money, & their power.

    by jdmorg on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:25:08 AM PDT

    •  Actually nothing stops us from casting (7+ / 0-)

      aspersions on their in "Why did Scalia just allow pedophiles and terrorists to launder their money through SuperPACs and support Romney??"

      Nothing false there, surely falls under the First Amendment protection - after all, if a pedophile or terrorist wanted to support Romney all they have to do is drop a few chips at an Adelson owned casino, with a wink-and-nod, and how would we know? How are we to know it already hasn't happened?

      Keep hammering this message that their money is toxic.

  •  Battle of the 1%ers!!! (10+ / 0-)

    My money is on Mothra.

  •  Really? (14+ / 0-)

    a) I love the idea of getting this message out in the chatterverse by publicly calling the people we're hoping to persuade "ours" and "weenies"

    b) Because people with billions of dollars clearly need to be second-guessed about what they do with their money.  That Warren Buffet guy just doesn't understand how to best manage his money!

    c) Fuck people on our side of the political spectrum for wanting to stick to their own principles.  Asshats, all of them.

    d) GOP also uses its state-level politicians to pass legal, albeit morally questionable, legislation to reduce voter turn out.  WHY ARENT WE DOING THIS?  WIN! WIN! WIN!!!!

    e) Really?

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:26:54 AM PDT

    •  Telling it like it is! (0+ / 0-)

      There may be more suitable websites to troll, if you don't want your fee-fees hurt.

      IOW, if you have a problem with this:

      Allowing unlimited contributions to campaigns is a terrible idea and an unfortunate step toward a plutocracy. And the best way that plutocracy happens is to refuse to fight fire with fire.
      I've long railed against weenie liberals who cling to their high-minded ideals as if they're more important than winning the next elections, and this is the reason why—you don't change the world by allowing the other side to win elections and codify their version of the rules. You fight will all available tools and resources, and when you win, THEN you rewrite the rules to shape a better society.

      But too many liberals would rather stay pure and lose, than get down in the mud and win, and that's one of the biggest electoral advantages conservatives enjoy.


      Both parties are beholden to their corporate sponsors. The Democratic Party deigns to throw us a few bones from the table on which to gnaw and squabble over, but it's just kabuki.

      by ozsea1 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:35:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Principles don't mean shit when you always lose nt (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      edwardssl, tuma, ozsea1
      •  And winning doesn't mean shit (4+ / 0-)

        if you become that which you oppose in order to achieve it.

        •  Doesn't have to be either or. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ozsea1, bryduck, stellaluna

          And what "principles" are we as Democrats defending?  Are we saying we won't do what's legal and the other side is doing to the nth degree?  Are we saying we'll act as if the system is what we want and believe in, and hope for the best?  Are we saying we believe that losing to Romney will make our point?

          •  I'd be wary of using 'what's legal' (0+ / 0-)

            as your guideline.  A lot of ugly, world-destroying shit is technically legal.

            That said, you are right is isn't always an 'either or' situation, my point is let's just be a little careful in any drive to match our foes.  It is all too easy to start out with just easing up on principles a little, all with good intentions, and wind up finding out you've lost everything somewhere along the way to 'victory'.

            •  Unfortunately, (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ozsea1, bryduck

              Citizens United has already compromised the principles of this republic.  Now we're left to fight on that ground, period. We don't have any other choice.  None. At. All.

              •  I hope you are not one of those people (0+ / 0-)

                who complain about 'corporate, anti-union' Democrats and 'blue dogs' then, because that is the best outcome you are going to get going that route.

                •  No, that is what we get when we think we can (0+ / 0-)

                  get involved in an exciting campaign and then vote every four years and think we accomplished anything. Politics is a process. And certainly progress is a process. We can't just gather up all our marbles and run home just because politicians continue to be politicians. And we certainly can't stop playing the game. We have to be a presence to have input into the process. We have to be reliable allies to the point politicians rely on us. We have to have progressive aides and idealistic staff people. We need school boards who will stop book bannings and state legislators who will fund indigent defense. If we just show up to vote and think we have accomplished something then you are right...we get the Blue dogs.  Getting President Obama elected should have been the beginning of us consolidating power and focus. Instead we are more fractionalized than ever. How many people splintered off over health care and have never come back enthusiastically?  So politicians are counting on the only reliable and consistent thing about progressive voters and that is our collective fear of more Republicans. We need to show them we are a block that can come together even with differing opinions. Not just "hold our noses and vote" supporters.

                  “You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don't make money your goal. Instead, pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can't take their eyes off you...” - Maya Angelou

                  by stellaluna on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 04:41:34 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  That is the problem with power and control (0+ / 0-)

            Once you achieve it, you do whatever you have to, and become whatever it takes, to keep it.  You ultimately become what you tried so hard to defeat - or you never end up defeating it.

          •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

            If Michael Dukakis hadn't just sat there and took it while he was defamed by Lee Atwater and George H.W. Bush, he would have been elected President. And incidentally, Clarence Thomas never would have made it anywhere close to the Supreme Court.

  •  That's really unfair. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    caul, ozsea1, MKSinSA

    Did it ever occur to you that perhaps Mr. Buffet needs to save his billions for new drapes for his manse? Custom window coverings ain't cheap; at least the good ones, anyway.

    Not this mind and not this heart, I won't rot • Mumford & Sons

    by jayden on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:28:35 AM PDT

  •  New Marlantes book (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    caul, foucaultspendulum

    "What it is like to go to war," by Karl Marlantes, actually hits upon this subject, too.  I can't quote a line but think I will go back and scan the relative parts with this thought in mind.

  •  The ends do not justify the means. n/t. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gentle Giant, conniptionfit

    "Never let your sense of morals get in the way of doing what's right." - Isaac Asimov

    by Aramis Wyler on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:31:03 AM PDT

    •  the ends are unachievable (7+ / 0-)

      if you don't fix your means.

      Both parties are beholden to their corporate sponsors. The Democratic Party deigns to throw us a few bones from the table on which to gnaw and squabble over, but it's just kabuki.

      by ozsea1 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:37:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  "Never let your sense of morals get in the way of (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      surfbird007, tuma, ozsea1

      doing what's right."

      "Gussie, a glutton for punishment, stared at himself in the mirror."

      by GussieFN on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:37:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It is funny that you'd point that out; I lol'd. (0+ / 0-)

        In fact though, Isaac Asimov was making a poignant juxtaposition there regarding moral and ethical correctness because they are commonly confused or misconstrued, and I think that is exactly what is happening here where one might think that the ends did actually justify the means.

        "Never let your sense of morals get in the way of doing what's right." - Isaac Asimov

        by Aramis Wyler on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:53:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Loser talk (5+ / 0-)

      plain and simple.

      •  Exactly. nt (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
      •  More loser talk: (0+ / 0-)
        They say 'means are after all means'. I would say 'means are after all everything'. As the means so the end. There is no wall of separation between means and end. Indeed the Creator has given us control (and that too very limited) over means, none over the end. Realization of the goal is in exact proportion to that of the means. This is a proposition that admits of no exception.
        Your belief that there is no connection between the means and the end is a great mistake. Through that mistake even men who have been considered religious have committed grievous crimes. Your reasoning is the same as saying that we can get a rose through planting a noxious weed.
        Mahatma Gandhi
        •  More loser talk: (0+ / 0-)
          Over the past few years I have consistently preached that nonviolence demands that the means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek. I have tried to make clear that it is wrong to use immoral means to attain moral ends. But now I must affirm that it is just as wrong, or perhaps even more so, to use moral means to preserve immoral ends. Perhaps Mr. Connor and his policemen have been rather nonviolent in public, as was Chief Pritchett in Albany, Georgia, but they have used the moral means of nonviolence to maintain the immoral end of racial injustice. As T. S. Eliot has said: "The last temptation is the greatest treason: To do the right deed for the wrong reason."
          Martin Luther King, Jr. "Letter from the Birmingham jail
    •  Just like not making a decision has the effect of (0+ / 0-)

      making a decision, refusing to participate because you don't like the "means" is choosing the "ends". There is no moral superiority in refusing to participate on the grounds of not liking the means. It doesn't absolve you of complicity when evil is done if you refused to try to stop it. Even if your heart was pure.

      “You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don't make money your goal. Instead, pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can't take their eyes off you...” - Maya Angelou

      by stellaluna on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 04:45:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  True that! (8+ / 0-)

    When the neo-conservatives in 1981 only began to vilify the word "Liberal", I was wondering, often aloud, where the f@$* the lefties were to counter their lies. Hardly a peep for, oh, thirty years!

    It took grass roots movements like this blog and OWS, and the campaign of a bi-racial candidate for president to start the long road back to the public acceptance we once took for granted.

    Yes, it sucks to get down in the muck with the pigs. But if we don't, we'll never bring home the bacon.

    I believe in democracy, civil liberties, and the rule of law. That makes me a liberal, and I’m proud of it. - Paul Krugman

    by Gentle Giant on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:31:43 AM PDT

    •  You are very young if you think the (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nina Katarina

      demonization of "liberal" started in the 1980's.  LOL!  You're about 25 years off.

      David Koch is fucking Longshanks, and Occupy is the real Braveheart.

      by PsychoSavannah on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:41:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not "very young" by anybody's measure, lol. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        StellaRay, stellaluna

        But that's when it started in earnest, when the Vast Rightwing Conspiracy machine, as Hillary called it, got stoked and fired-up. It's when the real attacks began and the left slept as it was bulldozed.

        Doesn't really matter when it began, but I don't remember the vilification of Liberalism being much of a topic during my childhood. I DO remember Goldwater being considered a flake. Now, he'd be the picture of middle-of-the-road normality in comparison to the rwingers we suffer with today.

        I believe in democracy, civil liberties, and the rule of law. That makes me a liberal, and I’m proud of it. - Paul Krugman

        by Gentle Giant on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:46:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Seriously? (11+ / 0-)

    Warren Buffett is the (2nd?) largest philanthropist in the history of the world... I don't blame the man one bit for not throwing a dollar of his billions towards this stupid political-industrial complex. Cure malaria, already Warren. The government won't.

    •  What makes this knee-jerk post especially rich... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      conniptionfit, Wisper
      •  I don't agree with this diary as I've... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ...already stated in a comment but I see no contradiction in these two diaries from Kos. He's saying throw a lot of money at Democrats and many good ones will be elected but screw individual blue dogs like Kerrey if they will help Republicans enact their America-killing bills.

    •  Apples to oranges. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      What about the millions in this country that will die if the republicans get their way on Health care?  What about the women who will die again at back street abortionists if the republicans manage to over turn Roe Vs. Wade?  What about the elderly who will die under bridges if they succeed in voucherizing Medicare and privatizing social security?

      I'm all over curing malaria, but we've got many in this country just hanging on, and that's going to get a whole lot worse if the republicans take over this country in 2012.  There are real live people with hopes and dreams and fears in this "stupid political-industrial complex."

      •  Kos Quote (0+ / 0-)

        "Given the choice between a "Democrat" [Kerrey] that will lend a bipartisan veneer to efforts to dismantle Social Security —the most popular and successful government program in American history—and a Republican that simply reinforces GOP efforts to do so, I'll take the Republican."
        -- kos

        "women who will die if the republicans get their way..."
        -- You

        Pretty much runs the gamut of possible opinion here. I'll place my chips on a 501(c)(3) organization. It's a much safer bet than some wanker political ads.

        •  I'm aware of Kos's quote (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          on Bob Kerry and I didn't agree with it, and said so at the time.  I come from the side that thinks we need every senate seat we can get.  If we lose the senate, it all becomes academic.

          I do agree with what Kos said here. And don't conflate the fact that we may have to deal with a few blue dogs to keep the senate with the idea that's the same as republicans taking over the senate, with the same outcomes.  It's not.

          •  My point (0+ / 0-)

            Is that Buffett's wealth is otherwise going to charity... where the recipients... you know... actually do useful shit with it... Buffett chooses to not purchase dubiously-effective television spots trying to convince tweedle dee and tweedle dum that democrat X is better than republican y... when the paid media is already saturated with said dipshit-ads.

            If he otherwise spent his excess cash on tacos and coffee (such as I do), I could see that trying to convince him to spend it elsewhere might be worthwhile.

            Again, I don't begrudge him one bit. He's decided to fund the Gates foundation. Period. Which should hopefully have real, lasting effects in the world. He COULD spend a billion... two billion... 3 billion... 4 billion... 5 billion... on television and radio ad-spots. Each additional dollar spent, however, has progressively less of an impact. The same cannot be said for charitable contributions.

            Buffet is the richest fucking Philanthropist in the world... who believes that "allowing unlimited contributions to campaigns is a terrible idea and an important and unfortunate step toward a plutocracy." He maxes out his individual contributions to Democratic politicians. He hosts fundraisers for said politicians and donates literally BILLIONS annually to charity. He's likely the most successful investor ever. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that he has simply decided that funding Super-PACs is a bad investment relative to funding charity. To call him a "weenie" for that is fucking stupid.

            •  We'll agree to disagree. (0+ / 0-)

              I don't think Buffet is a weenie but I think it is weenie  thinking to say I disapprove of the rules of the game set forth by the SCOTUS, so I'm not playing. Buffet isn't just any old billionaire, he's a billionaire who has often, to his great merit, spoken out on the inequality of today's system, now at a nadir with Citizen's United.

              He's a great philanthropist, and no one would take that away from him.  All I'm going to say is that IMO, it would be hard for him to make a greater contribution, then to do what he can to keep the republicans from taking over this country again.  

              Because if that happens, he'll have A LOT more charity work to do.  

  •  All Of Which Works Great (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    caul, greenbastard, WisePiper, wsexson

    THEN you rewrite the rules to shape a better society

    If everybody involved has a common vision of a 'better society'.

    For example, how come I haven't seen of Daily Kos' 'free traders' and 'one worlders' in Jed's diary Obama campaign tags Romney as 'outsourcer-in-chief' in new ads?

    The answer is of course 'we want to win so as to be able to rewrite the rules to shape a better society'.

    The problem being of course that once we 'win' those same 'free traders' will go right back to working towards their vision of a 'better society' -- which is not my vision.

    Which I think speaks to the size of the 'big tent' -- it's too big.

    I won't be coming home tonight, my generation will put it right - Genesis 9:3

    by superscalar on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:33:45 AM PDT

  •  When You Can't Fight Toe To Toe (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    caul, Dirtandiron, edwardssl, Hey338Too

    Does it become the time for asymmetric warfare? I don't know what that would be in a political context but when the other side has seemingly unlimited resources, what can one do rather than lay down and die?

    This head movie makes my eyes rain.

    by The Lone Apple on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:33:54 AM PDT

  •  my reply to myself is STFU, what insight... (0+ / 0-)

    "It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment." *Ansel Adams* ."Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there."*Will Rogers*

    by Statusquomustgo on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:34:14 AM PDT

  •  Elections shouldn't be "bought" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gentle Giant, Aramis Wyler

    But, let's face it, guys.  A zillion elections on both sides have been decided on because one candidate (both democrat and republican) has had a huge money advantage over the other.  But, having said that, there is a difference here.

    I recently saw a statistic (can't remember where which I hate) that Obama gets a massive amount of money from "small" donors vs. the money coming into the Romney campaign from "huge" donors.  Now, there's a big difference in my book in that.  Maybe I'm not seeing the "big picture", but isn't it more important for presidential candidates to get their funding from the populace rather than from political PACs and so forth?  Yes, I know that Obama also has his PACs and this makes my argument a little less pointed, but c'mon.  

    What do other countries do as far as political donations?  I guess I'm gonna have to do some "Googling" or something to get that answer, but I'm betting it's nothing like what we have here in the good ole U.S of A.

    The truth is sometimes very inconvenient.

    by commonsensically on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:34:15 AM PDT

    •  It's okay to rec this post -_- (0+ / 0-)

      One poster rec'd the above post but then took it away.  Musta thought there was something here not perfectly stated or something -_-

      I understand.

      The truth is sometimes very inconvenient.

      by commonsensically on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:03:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  the grassroots donor myth (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      brooklynbadboy, shaharazade

      In 2008, Obama had the same percentage of small dollar donors as Bush and Kerry before. This cycle the number has increased, but the majority of funding for both presidentials comes from rich folks who can afford to cut max out checks at $2,500. Obama is faring better than Romney in the ratio department, but small dollar donors still do not fund the majority of his campaign.

  •  There is your slogan: (4+ / 0-)
    stay pure and lose
    Couldn't have put it better myself ... In fact I didn't, you did :)

    History is littered with examples of how to win, and keep your principles intact.

    For example ... "Pacifism" does not demand that you refrain from defending yourself and end up dead ... merely that one should not take up arms as an aggressor. Whatever the purists say!

    I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
    but I fear we will remain Democrats.

    by twigg on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:35:16 AM PDT

    •  Pacifism. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Wisper, twigg

      I can only think of a couple of victories via pacifism and it does, in fact, demand one not violently defend oneself.  In Tiananmen Square, the fellow did end up dead, but that was a pivotal moment leading toward a non-violent end to that regime.   Ghandi on the other hand achieved great victories without dying until consiedrably later.  Those people did not violently defend themselves - they were pacifists.

      "Never let your sense of morals get in the way of doing what's right." - Isaac Asimov

      by Aramis Wyler on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:14:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I thought I might get pushback (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        on that.

        However, broaden the definition ever-so-slightly and look at the consequences.

        The allied nations in the thirties ALL tried to find a peaceful resolution to the brewing conflict in Europe. Only one party wanted a war.

        Where would we be now, had we remained "pure"?

        I would describe myself as a Pacifist. Peace at almost any price, until the price demanded is my total subservience. Then I will say "No more", "Enough".

        It's reasonable.

        I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
        but I fear we will remain Democrats.

        by twigg on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:57:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Look at Sheldon Adelson... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gentle Giant, Aramis Wyler, tuma

    ...spending just a bit of his billions because he perceives President Obama isn't sympathetic to Israel. On Romney. Like Romney gives a damn about Israel. More chutzpah than brains...

    Really, I wonder how many of these well-heeled donors will get sufficient bang for their buck. And, suppose they don't? Do you think they will switch to lavishing cash on our side? And would you want our politicians beholden to them?

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:35:17 AM PDT

  •  Buffett & friends should fight fire with fire! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If guys like Warren Buffett really want to end or at least restrict the influence of Super PACs, what they should do is fund their own Super PAC that pledges to match dollar for dollar Rove's Super PACs. If billionaires on the other side see that it's a zero sum game, they will stop giving (wasting) to Rove and his gang.

  •  Not just our weenie billionaires (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Even our media figures aren't willing to fight in the information war. Someone like Michael Moore or Robert Greenwald could be launching a websites to produce unlimited ads. Even Keith Olbermann could since he's a free man now. But oh no, can't do that, since they're above being anyone's surrogate.

  •  I CANNOT agree with you more, Kos! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vernon nackulus, verso2

    "You fight will all available tools and resources, and when you win, THEN you rewrite the rules to shape a better society."

    You succintly described exactly what I have been thinking for years. This is the exact reason why I am not a Democrat or a Liberal. I AM a proud progressive! As such, I agree with "getting down in the mud" in order to fight back against the Right's democracy-demolishing combo of corporatist, pychopathic greed and willfully ignorant base.

  •  Buffett very wrong. Get Off Your Butt, Buffy! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Does he want to see the world burn and the country slide into the ocean and all the poor and unemployed get dumped out onto the streets while the greedy GOP takes control of all three branches?


    Get your money where it belongs, behind the president!!

    Get Off Your Butt, Buffy!

    Get Off Your Butt, Buffy!

    "extreme concentration of income is incompatible with real democracy.... the truth is that the whole nature of our society is at stake." Paul Krugman

    by Gorette on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:38:31 AM PDT

  •  There are plenty of people who (0+ / 0-)

    give tons of money to the obama campaign, like that pixar dude.  We do have some people, except Buffet and Gates are not lefties and Jobs was an asshat supreme.  Some liberal reach people give to grass roots stuff, thinking it circumvents the political process and gets better results.

    Santorum/Bachmann 2012

    by sujigu on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:38:33 AM PDT

  •  What we need to do (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    is to convince the people we can reach in our neighborhoods, in our churches, at our jobs, or at our hobo encampment down by the river to NOT Believe ANYTHING they see on TV or hear on AM radio. The power of lies is only when the lies are believed over truth, not how many times they are heard.

  •  There are a number of left leaning celebs.. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PsychoSavannah, raincrow, TexasTom

    Stephen Spielberg  $3B

    Oprah Winfrey  $2.7B

    Estate of Elizabeth Taylor $600M

    Many like Streisand, Hanks, Quincy Jones are worth $300M.

    Redford is loaded.  Matt Damon $65M


  •  But, but, we have Soros. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Come now, you must know George Soros personally funds every last tentacle of the vast, left-wing, financial infrastructure. /snark.

    "Watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal..."-7.75, -5.54

    by solesse413 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:39:19 AM PDT

  •  What DEMS need to remember (0+ / 0-)

    is that sometimes you just have to get in the pen and wrestle in the mud with the pig. The goal is still to win. Because when we win we'll get out of the frickin' mud pen and leave the stinkin' pig stuck right there where he rightfully belongs.

    Not this mind and not this heart, I won't rot • Mumford & Sons

    by jayden on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:39:49 AM PDT

  •  The right wing's false meme is that the rich (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric K, Mr Robert, cdembrey

    got all their money through hard work. They did not. Granted, there are some who were either smart or lucky enough (or in some cases both) to have been able to build wealth. But how about the rich who have never really worked a day in their lives and live off trust funds.
    One family I can think of off hand is the Whitneys, descendants of cotton gin inventor Eli Whitney. Now Eli was a smart guy and invented something that turned the industrial age on its ear. His invention made cotton farming faster and more lucrative (for the moment we won't get into how the invention prolonged slavery, though it did). And while he was descended from the famed Whitneys of New York, he was not rich as a lad.
    But the his descendants are still living off Eli's money. I've even met one, a reeaaallly rich person who was a friend of my parents.
    Another wealthy New England family is the Ayer family. they live off Frederick Ayer's money, some 100 descendants profit from it. I knew one (another friend of my mom and dad's) who owned an island off bar Harbor, ME. His kid is a ne'er-do-well, but lives quite well, thank you.
    Suffice it to say, there are lots and lots of 1%-ers who have never earned a dime from their own sweat, but live off trust funds and investments. And every one of them can afford a hit to their taxes.
    Let's stop pretending that the rich got that way by their own hand. Most of them did not, including Mittens.
    And I give thanks to the Buffetts and Soroses that they at least have their heads on straight. We need more rich folks like them.

    Isn’t it ironic to think that man might determine his own future by something so seemingly trivial as the choice of an insect spray. ~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring ~

    by MA Liberal on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:40:36 AM PDT

  •  When Elections become Auctions victory is illusory (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PsychoSavannah, Wisper

    It's time to start considering how to replace this broken political system not different ways to game it. It's time to stop recognizing those that win the plutocrats tournament as "legitimate" authorities. They are not legitimate, they are not credible.

    How do you win three card monte? Don't play. It's time to have a different game.

    •  So what is the plan? It would be nice to have a (0+ / 0-)

      different, more honest political and governing system but I don't see anything in the works that comes even close to replacing it. And the problems we face as highlighted by this upcoming election need immediate attention or many, many good people will suffer. So I'm all for your better world when somebody figures out how to do it. But in the meantime I'm going to try to put out the fires in front of me. Anything else would be selfish of me.

      “You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don't make money your goal. Instead, pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can't take their eyes off you...” - Maya Angelou

      by stellaluna on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 05:00:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  To be fair (0+ / 0-)

    our millionaires are pretty weenie too. Actually, so are our thousandaires and our hundredaires.  You know what? Wake me up when the left grows a backbone.

    "just give me some truth" --John Lennon

    by vernon nackulus on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:41:09 AM PDT

  •  Courting corporations... (0+ / 0-)

    Courting corporations is exactly how we wound up with the whole "there's no difference between the parties" sphere of thought. Most of us realize that you gotsta rob banks because that's where the money is but until we change the way elections are financed, this is the way it's going to be. But I'm with the diarist, we have rich folk on our side that are loathe to part with their wealth. Whether it's because they really want to "do the right thing" by not participating in the evil process is debatable.

  •  This is a good point... (0+ / 0-)

    Ideals are one thing, and but they don't amount to anything if you lose so badly that the rules get re-written to make sure you're not able to make a serious challenge ever again.  People call the Republicans dumb, and not without reason, but they learn from their failings.  The Bush era was touted at the "permanent Republican majority" at the outset, and crashed spectacularly into flames in just a few short years due to their extreme unpopularity.  Then, convinced that they were never going to win over again, they simply rewrote the rules to give them advantages a la Citizens' United.

    If we don't use the tools available to us, it'll be a long hard road for us back to the point that we can make a difference.

    The thing that infuriates me about many of the long-time liberals and democrats that I know (friends and family both) who say that we should stick to our ideals even if it means a Romney win - on the logic that it will "wake up" the people when things go catastrophically bad - is that these people are usually insulated from the worst that could happen due to recession-proof jobs/industries, lots of savings/investments, or living in a good area of the nation that won't take the brunt of the really bad things that a downturn will bring.  They're willing to stick to their "ideals" on the backs of the rest of us if unemployment skyrockets and the economy tanks, just so that "we" learn a lesson.

    Sorry, just had to rant there because of a conversation I had last night.

    "If you don't stick to your values when tested, they're not values! They're hobbies" - Jon Stewart

    by LivingOxymoron on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:42:15 AM PDT

  •  or. "our" billionaires don't give a shit because (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raincrow, Wisper

    they don't have to. They win either way. Why should the y flush 40-50 million down the toilet in non tax deductible contributions?

    Old Buffett pays as much in taxes as Old Willard.

    Let's not fool ourselves, folks.

  •  Government for sale (0+ / 0-)

    I agree, allowing people (and foreign countries) to buy U. S. elections is a bad idea; it is presently the worst threat to our independence as a nation, in fact.  Someone needs to convince Buffet and others, there are only two ways to undo the damage - appoint justices who are committed to overturning Citizens United and amend the Constitution to prohibit unlimited, unreported, anonymous political contributions.

    We can do neither as long as people like them are willing to sit by and turn our elections over to the likes of the Koch brothers.

    "The test of our progress is not whether we add to the abundance of those who have much. It is whether we provide enough to those who have little. " --Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by jg6544 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:44:19 AM PDT

  •  What is missing in this analysis (0+ / 0-)

    is that the conservative money we are all currently concerned about is an expression of a process that most people have not been concerned about, but which has been built over the past fifty years.  

    What you see is certain special interests, not all.  These are the ones most concerned about environmental regulation or calls for transparency.  

    A big element, which people here are especially likely to discount, is the relationship between the special interests that see political action as necessary to business - and the evangelicals.  The connections are kept subtle so they aren't exactly disclosed in campaign ads.  But there is a paradigm here.  

    The motivation is to keep regulations, especially environmental or financial oversight regulations off of the special interests and to roll back the progressive reforms of the New Deal or the Great Society that the evangelicals chafe against.  

    There isn't a direct correlation on the progressive side between special interests and any particular institution that can provide legions of highly motivated True Believers.

    hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

    by Stuart Heady on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:45:31 AM PDT

  •  plutocracy? what plutocracy? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric K

    This already is a plutocracy so if you want to know why plutocrats aren't terribly invested in changing our plutocracy, there's your reason why: Status quo suits them just fine.

  •  Mixed feelings on this one (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wisper, wsexson

    I really do see politics as a blood sport but also do see the danger in becoming that which we fight.

    This gets to the heart of why the Right will always have a built in advantage when it comes to winning elections - they have no problems when it comes to the race to the bottom.

    I know one thing for sure and that is that I don't want to be part of a party where no one struggles with the morality of this particular issue.

    •  I'm willing to become that which we fight (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Whether or not to become that which we fight, in order to win, is purely a tactical question based on empirical observation and cold-eyed analysis.  Sometimes you call a mass demonstration, sometimes you carpet-bomb.  I'm entirely open to either.

      Romney '12: Bully for America!

      by Rich in PA on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:53:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not to worry, (0+ / 0-)

      you're not a part of a party where no one struggles with the morality of buying elections.  Far from it.

      But the SCOTUS set the rules of the contest with Citizens United, and we have no choice but to play in that arena, if we ever want to change it.

      We HAVE Citizens United because the republicans won too many elections in the last 30 years. As you know, it is presidents who seat the SCOTUS.  George Bush gave us Citizens United.  And if we want to change that, we're going to have to WIN THIS ELECTION AND SEVERAL MORE.

      Some things are just that simple, and this is one of 'em.

  •  The difference is that conservative billionaires (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mdmslle, Wisper, stellaluna

    are spending money for very tangible results.  They are contributing for a quid pro quo in regulatory changes, tax code changes, and other very real result oriented business decisions for which they will be looking for pay back when their chosen candidates are elected to office.   Progressive billionaires seem much more oriented toward more humanitarian, environmental, and progressive social ends for their contributions rather than a straight down the line business bottom line result.

    Republican donors see their contributions as a cost of doing business.  Democrats and progressive are more ideologically driven.  Just my opinion .......

    And it feels like I'm livin'in the wasteland of the free ~ Iris DeMent, 1996

    by MrJersey on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:48:11 AM PDT

    •  With the addendum of people like Sheldon Adelstein (0+ / 0-)

      who presumably is giving to advance his own vision on what support for Israel looks like to him.  To him, support to Israel looks conservative and Republican, but that may not actually be what is best for stability in the Middle East.

      And it feels like I'm livin'in the wasteland of the free ~ Iris DeMent, 1996

      by MrJersey on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:51:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think we have to accept the basic distinction (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mdmslle, PsychoSavannah, Eric K, wsexson

    Super-wealthy conservatives are making an investment when they spend big on Republicans: they make the money back and then some (more than some!).  Super-wealthy liberals don't make money spending on Democrats: it's a free-will offering because they value things besides making money.  And that's (a) much less common, and (b) constrained by how much money they feel spending and not recouping.  

    Romney '12: Bully for America!

    by Rich in PA on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:48:12 AM PDT

  •  I'm far too cynical to view WB as a purist (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OutcastsAndCastoffs, ddn

    He gets to sound high-minded and liberal, and is spared putting serious money behind our side.

  •  Should dems conduct themselves like repubs? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Should democrats conduct themselves like republicans?

    I suggest not.  I do not agree with the ideas and policies of republicans, and I do not like those ideas and policies any better when they are carried out by democrats.

    Shouldn't the democrats offer an alternative to republicans? Something different, perhaps something better?

    Because if we ask the democratic party to chase after the money of the wealthy and corporations just as the republicans do, than what we get is someone in office who may call themselves democrat, but is beholden to the wealthy and corporate interests.

    F'rinstance: Bill Clinton.  Learning from the success of Reagan, Clinton chased after wealthy and corporate money and won the '92 election.  A great democratic victory.  But Clinton also worked to destroy an important social welfare program, and signed into law the Gramm-Leach-Bliley bill that largely repealed Glass-Steagal.  Despite the democratic victory, we ended up with harmful conservative policies that were very hurtful in the long run.

    Allow me to paraphrase Jesus and ask: For what does it profit a man (or a party) to gain office but lose their soul?

    Sure, you can claim electoral victory, but you have lost the war of policy.  In seeking the help of the wealthy and corporate interests, you are only ensuring that the corporatocracy wins at election time.

    "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

    by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:53:05 AM PDT

  •  This diary could be expanded to include others (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew, stellaluna

    like Cenk Ugyur, Maureen Dowd, Janem Hampsher and others would insist that they get their way or the highway.

    They want this perfect vision of the world in just a few years. It's childish.

    Perfection is nothingness, and the search for perfection leaves you with nothing.  

  •  REC'D (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    1000 times

    2012: It's about the Supreme Court. Follow me on Twitter @farrellmcmanus

    by HarlemUSA on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:54:43 AM PDT

  •  Word. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I'm all for people doing with their money as they see fit, and also for criticizing them when I don't agree with what they see fit.

    I have long lamented the "weenie liberal" phenomenon (as Kos puts it). Sadly, winning is everything in our democratic republic, and we have to do what it takes to win. We also have to THEN maintain a movement to pressure our winners to do what they promised. Elected Dems will fall in line to the corporate power brokers each and every time unless there is real public pressure pushing them to do well.

    Failing to sustain a political movement after election season also falls into a category along the lines of weenie liberalism as I see it - for those who spend more time complaining about purism that they do taking action, that is, which is not the whole of the liberal population by any means. And although that crowd can appear prominent on Daily Kos at times, I don't even think there are really that many here.  

    "Nach dem Spiel ist vor dem Spiel." ~Sepp Herberger

    by surfbird007 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:54:57 AM PDT

  •  Isn't this exactly what the republican's want? (0+ / 0-)

    They have been planning this for at least two years, and obviously have a strategy in mind to take back the white house and senate.  Our side hasn't been matching them strategically, so just throwing money at the situation for the next 4 months may not accomplish much more than enriching "political strategists" and media outlets.  If we had groups like FreedomWorks and American's for Prosperity ready with a plan to capitalize on the cash then I would agree.

    It seems that we need to work harder and smarter than them.  There has to be a way other than "escalation" and carpet bombing, it didn't work against the "insurgents" in the Viet Nam war, there has to be something else we can do.

    I haven't been here long enough to be considered a Kossack, does that mean that I'm just a sack?

    by Hey338Too on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 10:59:14 AM PDT

    •  We do have those groups. (0+ / 0-)

      MoveOn.  The Color of Change. Russ Feingold's Progressives United.  And there's many more.  But guess what?  They need money to operate too.  

      American's for Prosperity and FreedomWorks EXIST because there was money to bankroll their message.

      Yes we have to fight smart and work harder, because we're going to be VERY outspent by the republicans in this election. But I assure you that throwing money at it helps.  A Lot.  And it doesn't just benefit the strategists and the media outlets.  It benefits the party who spends it.  

      Check out the recall in Wisconsin.  The REAL final tally on that election is Walker 30 million, Barret, 7 million.

      •  A couple of points: (0+ / 0-)

        1) AforP and FreedomWorks were set up by the money.  Basically they were given a few hundred million each and two years to create plans to win the White House and the Senate (and a bunch of local races while they're at it).  That is different than the existing groups that we have, each one with it's own agenda.  Getting MoveOn and ColorOfChange and the others to immediately sing from the same songbook is a task that would take longer than the amount of time we have.

        2) Barret was outspent 4 to 1 and all Scotty got was a 1% increase in votes over 2010.  The election seemed to be more a referendum on the recall itself than Walker in the end (I gave to Barret and wanted him to win badly).  In this election the stakes are much clearer to the average person (I hope).

        I am not arguing that we don't need money for the campaign.  But thinking that money alone is going to fix the election, and that the money is going to magically find it's way into strategically useful solutions to the problem on such short notice is not a real possibility in my book.  We need to work with what we have and be really smart about how we do it.

        I haven't been here long enough to be considered a Kossack, does that mean that I'm just a sack?

        by Hey338Too on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:50:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Back at you--- (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          1. Sorry, but his argument makes absolutely no sense to me.  AforP and FreedomWorks are not one issue groups.  They have a full agenda.  MoveOn, ColorOfChange and Progressives United are also not one issue groups and also have a full agenda.  They ARE singing from the same songbook, the progressive songbook.  But like I said, they  need money to be powerful too.  

          2. Yeah, I'm very familiar with the "for all that money all Scotty got was a 1% increase" argument. But that proves nothing because it DOESN'T ASK how many points he might have LOST without 30 million and 4 months to advertise.

          You think the GOP didn't know his image needed a little polishing up?  You think those millions he spent over months didn't solidify and excite his base?  AND btw help convince people the recall was wrong?---This was one of his major money bought messages.  You think that if the Dems had also spent 30 million over 4 months it wouldn't make a difference?  Well, we'll never know.  And that's the point.

          I don't think money alone is going to fix everything.  I just think WITHOUT money, we're tap dancing in a boxing ring.

          •  I'll concede the WI issue... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            ... I was devastated when Walker won, and agree that we don't know what would have happened if we had the same treasure chest he did.

            As for competing with AforP and FW, I just don't think that matching them $ for $ would do the trick.  They are too far ahead strategically on the money spending side of the equation for us to catch up.  That said, I don't think that we need as much as them to win.  

            I haven't been here long enough to be considered a Kossack, does that mean that I'm just a sack?

            by Hey338Too on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 01:31:53 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Agreed, we don't have to match the republicans (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              dollar for dollar to win, which is a good thing as we're not going to.  Last I heard, about a week ago, Romney has well over a hundred million dollars in super pacs to Obama's almost 5 million.  Now that's scary.  And Romeny's war chest in Pacs is going to keep right on growing.

              What worries me is that uninformed Democrats won't donate because they think this is 2008 and Obama is out raising his opponent.  That MAY end up true if you don't count the super Pacs, we'll see.  But you gotta count the super pacs.  They're going to run more advertising in a couple of months than McDonalds does in a year.

  •  In these months leading up to the election, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Obama still has the biggest microphone in the nation.

    You want the youth and the minorities and the disaffected to turn out in numbers comparable to 2008? The answer doesn't lay in persuading "our" billionaires to purchase more lipstick to put on the pig.

    The path to victory is as simple as telling the truth. At every rally, at every campaign stop, in every interview, Obama needs only to call out the Koch's and the Adelson's and (yes) the Dimon's by name and level with the electorate about what's at stake and what exactly they're attempting to purchase with their multi-million dollar contributions.

    Yes, he needs to risk pissing off his "savvy businessman" buddies.

    Alternatively, he can keep giving the Masters of the Universe a free pass and hope the electorate gets excited about voting for the lesser of two evils.

  •  Col. Kurtz (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    had a similar thought:

    You have to have men who are moral... and at the same time who are able to utilize their primordial instincts to kill without feeling... without passion... without judgment... without judgment! Because it's judgment that defeats us.
  •  Why take him at his word? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wisper, Shahryar

    How about this interpretation:

    "Hey look, guys.  I donate to campaigns and meet the legal limits, but I'm in business to make money, not to give it away to a bunch of lunatic political consultants"

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:05:21 AM PDT

  •  There's nothing worse than someone who complains (0+ / 0-)

    about a problem, has the ability to change said problem, but doesn't.

  •  Can't find words for subject line (0+ / 0-)

    I wanted to say to show my emphatic support of this diary.

    First Idea was RIGHT ON!, but then the word right can be taken in a bad way

    Next Idea was PREACH IT! but the religious right makes has trashed that phrase a bit

    Anyways, Kos has nailed the problem and messege with perfect clarity.

    I've long railed against weenie liberals who cling to their high-minded ideals as if they're more important than winning the next elections, and this is the reason why—you don't change the world by allowing the other side to win elections and codify their version of the rules. You fight will all available tools and resources, and when you win, THEN you rewrite the rules to shape a better society.

    But too many liberals would rather stay pure and lose, than get down in the mud and win, and that's one of the biggest electoral advantages conservatives enjoy.

    Read my profile, I came from the dark side recently, and I all too well understand that you need to get down and nasty or be prepared to be run over and left for dead by the wingnuts.

    Those who want to maintain their purity they wear as a badge of honor can still vote, you don't need to g out and sling the mud and fight.  But at the same time don't disparage the fighters who do the work you refuse to do!

    BTW about my recent past, today I was labeled for the FIRST time of being a liberal! (The wingnut dumbfuck was supporting rMoney and his record at Bain, even GST Steel)


    A few months back I became a trusted user, which made me feel that my road away from the darkside was along its way, NOW for the first time ever I was labaled as a liberal!


    Never underestimate stupid. Stupid is how reTHUGlicans win!

    by Mannie on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:08:18 AM PDT

  •  Because Buffet will definitely suffer (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Just look how poorly he's done thus far under a Conservative Regimes.

    I remember the Reagan Years when you'd see ol' Warren sitting on the side of the road eating beans out of a can with his fingers.  Poor man.

    And under George H.W. when he could barely make his Honda Civic payments and was turning in bottles and cans for the deposit money.

    And don't even get me started on the Dubya years... I mean, you couldn't use the words ""Warren Buffet" and "Second Richest Man on the Planet"in the same sentence!

    He better understand how much he has riding on this, pronto!!

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:08:36 AM PDT

  •  Where does it stop? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wisper, OutcastsAndCastoffs

    The conservatives decided that the end justifies the means, but now they've gone off the edge of the real world. What indicates that the left would do any better? Is there something important we can learn from our wingnut brethren besides "being a bastard works"?

    Once our honor is abandonned, will we even know it, and will it then be too late to recover it?

    "Fighting fire with fire" sounds good, and inspiring.
    But you know what? I'm a volunteer firefighter. It doesn't work.

    I'm not gainsaying Kos; this is only my expression of our quandary.

    I'm the plowman in the valley - with my face full of mud

    by labradog on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:08:52 AM PDT

  •  Didn't Soros split with O over HCR? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    And maybe Buffet's crunched the numbers and come to the conclusion, which I have (from the bottom of the economic pile mind you), that the unlimited far right money is basically a retirement package for ad brokers and will only maximize the base unless there's a message to get out. HIPPIES, GAYS, BLACK PEOPLE, TERRIRISTS is the only message they've had lately and Romney may yet out Palin Palin. It's gonna be another base election - let's do it with boots and energy and common sense. Door to door education.

    As for a pushing an agenda in the House: At least they have an agenda. It's pure evil but at least it's an agenda. What the centrists did with their 2 years was wishy washy their way to basically almost nothing and Soros, if memory serves, was not impressed.

    Give Buffet an ideological reason to get on board. What are we proposing besides less insane evil polluting far right corporate stooges? (which would be enough for me but ...) I'm not saying he would but "put a billion dollars in the pockets of the broadcasters for some more centrist do-nothing" isn't exactly inspiring.

    We need a new coherent ideology and plan. Yeah ... I know ... if I had more then that sentence this would at least be a diary.

    If you didn't like the news today, go out and make some of your own.

    by jgnyc on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:09:34 AM PDT

  •  Right on the freakin' to speak... (0+ / 0-)

    "But too many liberals would rather stay pure and lose, than get down in the mud and win, and that's one of the biggest electoral advantages conservatives enjoy." (quote copied from the post above)

  •  Sorry, Kos, but just because you have... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wisper, cdembrey

    ...a lot of dough, that doesn't mean you have to give much or any of it to a political party.

  •  The high road? How pathetic! High road my ass... (0+ / 0-)

    One could describe it as the spineless road or the stupid road but frankly for a guy like Warren Buffet to stay at the top of his game for as long as he has, he can't be spineless or stupid.

    So what's the alternative?  The shrewd road.

    Think about it, other than showy appearances with our POTUS, serenading himself (Buffet that is) with sound of his own voice and treating his aging eyes to his interviews in print - what action/s has Buffet really taken to help further liberal Dem causes lately?  For Obama specifically?

    Plus if Obama loses, won't Bershire Hathaway etc benefit from all the new, plutocracy-friendly "laws" that will be rammed through the next several Congresses?  Sorry to sound super cynical and doubt the guy but I come from the school of you walk your talk or sit down and STFU.

    Unless Buffet is silently working behind the scenes to draw mega buck donors in for Obama, then he's part of the problem just like all the other 1%ers on the GOP side of the aisle.

    Is anybody listenin' ? - by Tori del Allen

    by Dumas EagerSeton on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:14:18 AM PDT

  •  There's an old saying... (0+ / 0-)

    .....don't wrestle with a pig.  If you do, you both get muddy and the pig enjoys it.

    Of course sometimes you have to tussle with Rove.

    (Ha Ha Charade He is!!)

    Eff Ayn

    Aldus Shrugged : The Antidote to Ayn Rand.

    by Floyd Blue on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:15:05 AM PDT

  •  Dems in Congress, not Dem billionaires, blew it (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cdembrey, Shahryar

    Dems in Congress, when we still had large majorities, had an opportunity to vote to overturn the effect of the U.$. $upreme Court (also known as the U.$. $upreme Court, Inc.) decision that permits unlimited (and secret and foreign-source) campaign expenditures.  What was the roll call vote in the 2 Houses when Congress voted on that?  Several Democrats voted against it or otherwise opposed the effort.  Why should Democratic candidates or anyone else expect Democratic billionaires to bail them out of their short-sightedness?

  •  They have more billionaires than we do (0+ / 0-)

    I would like to see Buffet come around, but the fact is they're going to outspend us no matter how many wealthy donors come off the sidelines.

    Obama is counting on a better ground game to win the election. For better or worse, that's all we're going to have anywhere that Republicans are willing to spend money.

    It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness - Eleanor Roosevelt

    by Fish in Illinois on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:18:22 AM PDT

  •  This is largely why I'm not a Dem... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    superscalar, cdembrey
    But too many liberals would rather stay pure and lose, than get down in the mud and win, and that's one of the biggest electoral advantages conservatives enjoy.
    Libs care more about being admired by everyone, than they do about winning and making sure that the American people are provided the quality of life that 250 years worth of hard work and personal sacrifice by our ancestors has created.

    Whining that the bullies aren't playing fair is not how to win, it's how to get one's ass kicked by a bunch of bullies.

    Frankly, at this point I've all but completely given up on the utterly broken political process in this country, and am biding my time until more people finally own up to reality and are finally willing to take this class war to a playing field that working Americans can actually win on.

    "We see things not as they are, but as we are." - John Milton

    by Jasonhouse on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:18:58 AM PDT

    •  I'm a progressive, not an effing liberal, and ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      don't gave a flying effe what the establishment politicians think. YMMV.

      •  Awesome... (0+ / 0-)

        ... now if only another 100 millon or so Americans would figure out that appeasing the fatcats who have sworn to destroy their economic wellbeing for personal gain, is nothing but a surefire method to enslave themselves to the fatcat's agenda.  

        I guess when most Americans only know how to make money by creating things with hard work, ingenuity and honesty, it's all but impossible to get them to understand that there is a small but dangerous subset of the population who chooses to make money for themselves strictly by deceiving everyone else and destroying what they created.

        "We see things not as they are, but as we are." - John Milton

        by Jasonhouse on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:55:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  "Becoming the monster" isn't victory Kos. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric K

    They 'win' because they are lying assholes willing to do sell their personal integrity to 'claim' a victory.

    We'd all be dead from some super-weapon or bio-plague by now if pussy liberals hadn't maintained their integrity.

    •  Who's talking about giving up our integrity? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Fighting by the rules of the game, is not losing one's integrity. Citizen United has set the rules. We've got two choices.  Play by the rules, or bow out.  

      And we wouldn't have to worry about Citizens United if Democrats won more elections, and seated more SC justices.

  •  we need super pacs to support (0+ / 0-)


  •  Couldn't Agree More n/t (0+ / 0-)

    "Some men see things as they are and ask, 'Why?' I dream of things that never were and ask, 'Why not?"

    by Doctor Who on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:40:30 AM PDT

  •  Crossing Party Lines in Open Primaries (0+ / 0-)

    We should be doing whatever it takes, including voting for Republicans in open primaries.  The hand-wringing over that little fiasco in Michigan drove me insane, and then right after some people made a big deal of Kos encouraging votes for Santorum the Republicans did the exact same thing in another state's primary.

    Get elected, then change the rules to suit your moral compass so only your morality is the law of the land (or lack or morality as the case may be). The Republicans have been playing this win-at-all-costs game for decades.  We're only just now starting to even think about it.  Dean had the right idea with his 50 state strategy but even that seems to be going by the wayside...

    We also should be the party of open elections and fighting these ridiculous corruption-infested electronic voting machines and promoting election day as a National Holiday.  If everyone votes, Democrats overwhelm the elections, and Republicans know that.

    [Terrorists] are a dime a dozen, they are all over the world and for every one we lock up there will be three to take his place. --Digby

    by rabel on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 11:41:13 AM PDT

  •  and, markos, that doesn't just apply to (0+ / 0-)

    those billion/millionaires - that applies to the little guy/gal liberal/leftist/progressive that does the same thing:  letting their "purity" get in the way of winning critical elections!

  •  Hilarious (0+ / 0-)

    from the guy who refused to donate to Obama in September of 2008.  

  •  Sorry, I do not agree, electing Conservati who ... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    say the they are Democrats, will NEVER help the progressive cause.

    Far Right Corporatist Democrats will re-write the rules to suit themselves and their Wall Street handlers. These people don't give a damn about the 99% and will not support them.

    Ever hear of the law of unintended consequences??? It will be elected Democrats who will do away with Social Security and Medicare. The 1% wants this so it will happen!

    The party of FDR  and LBJ is gone forever, never to return ... count on it!!!

  •  kos all it takes is one or two... (0+ / 0-)

    ...just find one or two billionaires to change their mind and create a massive superpac, donate half their income to it and that alone could outweigh the others who give only a small percentage of their fortunes because they know they'll get bigger returns.

    Maybe Buffett will change his mind or someone else will step up.

    It's a good idea don't give up on it.

    Still, relying on plutocrats to reverse plutocracy might not work.

  •  I usually don't rec your diaries, but (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    this one is an important one.  It just seems a little pointless to rec the diary of the site owner, but this is an important message.

    People think the sledge hammer the Republicans are wielding against democracy is a pendulum that will swing back.  Their Supreme Court and their voter suppression laws demonstrate they have no intention of letting any opposition take their power away once they gain it.  Our moral high ground will mean nothing to the 10's of millions who will suffer because we refused to fight back.  

  •  Warren Buffet can go to the devil (0+ / 0-)

    The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

    by a2nite on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:04:21 PM PDT

  •  I am so NOT with you, Markos. (3+ / 0-)

    Has nothing to do with purity, but with sanity. You know the definition of insanity. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.

    So let's all play "fire with fire", be it small donors or big liberal millionaires. Throw money on money. Nothing will change. Fighting fire with fire creates more fire and creates more distruction. You are too scared that your side will lose, if you don't play within their system. That's the problem. It's also pretty ... ok I don't want to be insulting, but I know what I think about this line of thought.

    If Warren is serious about

    I think allowing unlimited contributions to campaigns is a terrible idea and an important and unfortunate step toward a plutocracy.'"

    he should throw his billions into fighting unlimited contributions to campaigns, but not throw his billions away in supporting a system that eats money with results that demonstrate no justice, no democracy, and is as dumb as it gets.

    You want to play dirty instead of "us purity trolls" playing only "the high road", who are frigging tired to spend any money in your frigging campaign system, then play dirty the right way. Just start revolting, resenting, disobeying, boycotting. Asking billionaires of "your side" to throw their money against the money of the "other side" is the cleanest and pure way of fighting fire. NOT. It's like burning a paper tiger with your 100 dollar bills instead of killing the real tiger.

  •  Losing both ways (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    So, if Buffetts of the world don't contribute, Democrats will be outgunned.

    But if the Democrats come to rely on contributions from billionaires, even benevolent billionaires, then it becomes even more a party disconnected from average people.  

    The point is that Warren Buffett shouldn't set the nation's agenda.  He may happen to agree with me on some points, but in the end, he isn't an average person, and won't set the agenda for the average person.  This isn't a question of leveling the playing field by running nasty ads.  It is structural - a fundamental shift from democracy to plutocracy, and trying for a more benevolent plutocracy isn't the answer.  

    I know this may sound defeatist, but after Citizens United, what little democracy we enjoyed in this country is ended.  We CAN'T win elections, long term, at least not enough of them to pass legislation.  We can't win in the political process.  When we do win, we end up with filibusters and crazy stunts like the debt limit fight.  When we do pass legislation, it will be struck down by the Supreme Court.  This will continue for the foreseeable future.  Grabbing a little money from Buffett won't forestall this very long.

    There is no path to power, except action outside the voting booth.  Things will get much worse before they get better.  Direct action is all there is left.  

  •  Our "liberal billionaires' are wusses (0+ / 0-)

    they couldn't care less about protecting the legacy of liberal-progressives policies. they care about one thing...staying rich.

  •  Oy, give the guy a break (0+ / 0-)

    Unlike the "other" .01%'ers funding super pacs, he really doesn't have to buy himself legislators - those other guys aren't trying to elect somebody, they're trying to corrupt somebody.  Why should he drop $100 million just to get someone to do their job?

    Bold at inappropriate times.

    by steep rain on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:19:19 PM PDT

  •  Russ Feingold and OWS (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Senator Feingold ethical concerns allowed  his opponents to far outraise him while OWS doesn't want to sully its hands by getting involved in the electoral process no matter how onerous one of the party's views are.

  •  Mr. Buffet can well afford (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to issue warnings to the masses about the danger of a plutocratic take over, while he sits comfortably on his billions, because he himself is a plutocrat. He's one of them, not one of us. Unicorns do not actually exist, and neither do billionaire liberals.

    Our strength (such as it is) derives from our integrity, our humanity, and our actions - not from how much money we are able to amass. We will never be able to amass as much money as our adversaries can, it is simply not possible. To the extent that an election can be actually bought, we have already lost it.

    "Here's another nice mess you've gotten me into." - Oliver Hardy

    by native on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:34:41 PM PDT

  •  We weren't always this high minded. (0+ / 0-)

    I think of the machine built by FDR, Truman, and the Kennedys and marvel at the things they were willing to do to win elections.

    If you don't have power or you have it but aren't willing to use it, you're just bullshitting. Republicans get that.

    I went to go vote today and just...well, I wish things were done the way they were done in my pops' day. Turn the electricity off in the building and make everybody go vote.

    I love the old school machine stuff.

  •  The Occupy Movement (0+ / 0-)

    Takes the same road.

  •  Probably not a Super PAC out there that is ready (0+ / 0-)

    to take their money that they can Trust.

    Dear Markos: You've the connections; please go set up the PAC and the associated non-profit and get this ball rolling.

    Then, get on the phone.

    Remind your donors that the can remain anonymous!

    Notice: This Comment © 2012 ROGNM

    by ROGNM on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:38:27 PM PDT

  •  Part of the problem (0+ / 0-)

    is too many Dems don't take Citizens United seriously.  They don't realize just HOW MUCH money the republicans are going to throw at this election.

    And furthermore, they don't think it matters all that much. I've had several discussions here with people who don't think the money mattered all that much in Wisconsin. I've heard over and over on this site about how it's only the media and the strategists who really profit from all those TV ad buys.  I've heard about all the wishful thinking that this money is being wasted by the GOP that I can take.

    Tell McDonalds and Pepsi that TV advertising doesn't work.  Not only that, tell them it doesn't work on repetition.

    We're not going to match the republicans this election cycle, not if you include the super paces, not even very close.  But to sit back and say, oh well, we'll fight with our principles, is to quote Kos, "Loser talk."

    I think Obama is going to pull this thing out, but if we lose the senate, it won't matter much.  The GOP knows this and for all the glitzy numbers around the presidential election, wait till you see what they're going to spend down ticket too.

    •  Damn right advertising works. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      That's why people do it. If it didn't work, people wouldn't spend billions of dollars on it.

      We're lucky we've got a prolific fundraiser and the White House this cycle. Although this White House is probably the least party building White House we've had in ages, having Obama on the ticket is going to help this go round.

      But this is Obama's last election.

      Dems had better understand that this is war and its only going to get more lopsided in the other sides favor unless we jettison all this "we better not become them" crap.

  •  Markos, it's about time! (0+ / 0-)

    That you started holding our movement accountable for its own failings. I think what you mentioned here could have been WELL-APPLIED to the disastrous recall election in Wisconsin that severely disheartened and humiliated progressives everywhere. It also made Independents wary.

    Some people talk about how we'd be just as bad if not for our "integrity" yet I also remember Congressmen Bernie Sanders saying he wishes the Defense budget were less bloated -- but he'll still fight for his constituent's share! This isn't about hypocrisy but about practicality.

    We don't need to lie or play dirty. But we do need to get in the game. If Mr. Buffet is too committed to his values to flush the Dems with cash to elect candidates who'll change the system, then I'm sure he'll regret his decision when more GOP candidates crash into D.C. on the waves of Koch's billions.

    It's just that simple. Either we play to win, or we lose. Our system doesn't allow for it anyone other way at this point. And again, that doesn't mean becoming as bad as the Republicans. It means using the system to our benefit so we can have even the chance to enact lasting, meaningful change.

    In the meanwhile, we should be more critical of what kind of progressive movement we want in this country. A fractured one? Or a whole?

    "When facts are reported, they deny the value of evidence; when the evidence is produced, they declare it inconclusive." -- Augustine, in The City of God.

    by Zek J Evets on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 12:52:44 PM PDT

  •  I disagree with (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shahryar, cdembrey

    your assumption that either Kerrey or Buffet are liberals.  Democratic weenies yes blatant hypocrites yes. In our by-partisan plutocracy, if this is what passes for a liberal no wonder our choices boil down to Koch Bros. or JP Morgan/Chase. As for lefty purist's not doing what it takes to win and then changing the rules maybe they are pragmatic not purists. They have witnessed just how unlikely it is that Democrat's once they win with a majority will change anything that in anyway is liberal or even democratic. As for codifying lawlessness where's my habeas corpus?            

  •  Uh ... Kos ... what the deuce???? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    You need to make up your doggone mind!

    If you truly meant what you wrote not too long ago and enough people agree with you, Bob Kerrey doesn't stand a chance with or without Warren Buffet's money.

    If I recall, just a week or so ago, you put up a post about why you want Kerrey to lose.  Now you have the nerve to call out Buffet for not spending enough of HIS MONEY to support Kerrey ... even though you want him to lose.

    At least Buffet publicly supports the man ... with or without his loot.  You publicly castigated him and announced to the world that you want him to lose.

    Yes, please continue to make the case that rich Democrats are not doing enough to help Democratic candidates as a whole.  You are right, we need much more of this.

    But under the circumstances, you are the LAST person who should be calling out Buffet, or any other Kerrey supporter, for not doing enough to help him.

    Even though it doesn't cost one red cent, your one vote is worth way more than Warren Buffet's billions ... but if you lived in Nebraska, you wouldn't even give that to Bob Kerrey.  You ain't no better than Buffet.  In fact, you actually come off looking worse than he does!

    •  Some dumbass numbnuts at the DSCC (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shahryar, shaharazade

      cooked up this Kerrey crap. Like he's really gonna parachute in from his perch atop a NYC liberal arts school and go out in Nebraska and win a Senate race.

      What's next? We gonna get behind Harold Ford just in case he decides to dive bomb back into Tennessee after settling in on Wall Street?

      I'm all for the 50 state strategy and contesting every race, but my god we gotta have good candidates.


      •  That's fine ... but (0+ / 0-)

        Don't be ranting about how you want the guy to lose and then turn around and rant about the rich dude being a cheap supporter of the same guy.  

        That's my gripe with Kos, by the way, not you.

        I'm no fan of blue dog/conservative DEMs either.  Besides the fact that it would help towards maintaining a democratic majority, I'm really indifferent ... even borderlining on "I don't care one way or the other" ... whether Kerrey wins or loses.

        Because I don't care for him as a candidate, it doesn't matter to me that Buffet isn't opening up the vault for him ... and it shouldn't matter to Kos either.  That's my entire point.

  •  Im assuming a staffer wrote this, Markos signed it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    that's how it works sometimes. I assume it because of that anti-Kerrey rant of recent days. Markos, you should be smiling because Buffett isn't donating for Kerrey.

    Maybe this was just a bad example, with Kerrey's name accidentally getting in the way of this particular rave.

    but mostly...

    You fight will all available tools and resources, and when you win, THEN you rewrite the rules to shape a better society.
    maybe some billionaires who are sympathetic to liberal causes have noticed that we had the Presidency, the Senate, the House and did not rewrite the rules and that, should we win again, they won't do anything along that line.

    I ask myself, would I be willing to donate $1 million if I knew it would mean a victory for people who would then be nearly as crooked as the other side? Would it be worth that money just to keep Republicans out? That's a lot of money. I'd have to think about it for awhile. If I were thinking about it and someone came along and called me a "weenie" I might be less likely to donate.

  •  amen (0+ / 0-)

    as I've argued it for a very long time now, civility is way overrated, and given the stakes, the highbrow BS is nothing more than a paving of the road to hell with totally ineffective good intentions that leaves rightwingnuts seeing you as a Chamberlain they'll never respect, and indeed at best, will exploit to drive wedges between that type and those of us that think as we do.

    I've seen and experienced this a great deal in my time on the "internets".  Turning the other cheek to them is just an invitation to have both of them slapped off anyway...

    I supposed if masochism is your bag...

  •  I agree entirely (0+ / 0-)

    As has been said, politics ain't beanbag and it ain't the debating society, either. If it was, we'd be talking about Presidents Kerry and Dukakis.

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