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Cross posted at out new beta site Voices on the Square and The Stars Hollows Gazette.
In lieu of meaningless political convention coverage, my title is absolutely still true. Decades and decades of history refutes any excuses about the so called political expediency of wasting any crisis economic or otherwise. That is one of the only things I agree with Rahm Emanuel on when he said it at the beginning of this administration. Sadly, the White House only listened to his hippy punching BS. The prospect that this economic disaster wouldn't go to waste or enrich bankers was where the hope used to reside when there was any at all to confide in as far as any real economic recovery is concerned.

But when we mention these real world problems still abound from these failures we hear the same old tired excuses trotted out to excuse this administration from loyal partisans who are proud of what they never learn. This involves excusing the the bailout, housing, and foreclosure crisis. Ironically, this is why there is any chance at all for insane Republicans to make hay in this election at all so it might be smart to pay attention to it at some point even if the media won't cover it. The bottom line is that coddling too big to fail banks with trillions in bailouts and more bailout guarantees on top of that (29 trillion globally when counted all up) to make Capital whole at the expense of laborers didn't help and many of us knew it wouldn't from the get go.

During an election it is treated like a crime to say so. You know, other countries have actually learned this lesson as we have forgotten from the past. Alas Iceland handled their crisis well, like Sweden, and like we did during the S&L crisis but not in 2008 where our fate is now a lost decade or two. With too many loyal "Democrats" looking the other way, this administration and their point man in the Treasury let Wall St have the most say even though public anger at Wall St was and is still at an all time high. This explains why the public was against the bailout, and how it failed in the House at first.

There was plenty of advice given  to the contrary from Paul Krugman, James Galbraith, and others in those days but they were ignored. Many of us who worked to elect the president were floored because we thought at least the rhetoric about regulating Wall St might have had some semblance of truth. Who knew it was uncouth to reject Rubinites like Larry Summers and Tim Geithner both hired (even though we were told we couldn’t have the same people from the Clinton era from this president) leaving all of us mired in recession and depression now and in the future.

The private debt crisis is carrying on unabated leading to another bubble and crash shorted for those with connections to inside info like always? And this time, as Nouriel Roubini noted in my last diary, possibly in 2013 the political room to maneuver will not be there making the next crash worse because the last crash compounded with all the poor underlying economic factors factored in was absolutely and idiotically wasted. It's sad that no Democratic politicians were speaking like this in 2008 when there was a chance to turn this around.

In order to enact lasting life changing policies, Democratic politicians only get 1 in a 20 to 30 year chance to use a crisis at its absolute breaking point(financial panics happen now every 5 years or so but not when all underlying factors tie in with the chance to do something serious about it), but it does take having honest leaders who mean what they say and do during such periods of crisis where the seemingly impossible is actually possible. BTW this is not opinion. This is a matter of economic and historical fact if one has the intellectual curiosity to look it up. The only opinions involved involves whether one chooses to acknowledge this or live in a partisan fantasy world.

These crisis decisions are more important than any election though elections are a minor part of the tail end of things if they are used with the said crisis to gain power and expand life changing policy. It may be hard to swallow when all anyone wants to talk about are elections and political conventions, because realizing this does actually involve looking at and reading major periods of history that forever defined both parties today. This knowledge of should lead the way. For instance, the last time there was this much private debt overhang on consumers from the bust of a huge asset bubble was during the Great Depression recognized by economist Irving Fischer in his papers on debt deflation.

The factors leading up to the Great Depression(1912-1929) involved the changes in Agriculture which once employed a significant part of the work force until farm mechanization and thus overproduction led to overall price deflation for crops. Because of this deflation of farmer income, some of whom had mortgages to pay on their land, were drastically not able to measure up to any standard of living given the cost of living at the time. So therefore a familiar dynamic we know of today arose when it came to a lack of sustainable income to service a standard of living. Farmers turned to creditors and credit out of understandable desperation like unemployed factory workers, Latinos, and African Americans leading up to the Great crash of 2008.

Economists Joseph Stiglitz and Bruce Greenwald lay this out well in this must read piece reexamining the causes of the Great Depression.

The Book of Jobs: Forget monetary policy. Re-examining the cause of the Great Depression—the revolution in agriculture that threw millions out of work—the author argues that the U.S. is now facing and must manage a similar shift in the “real” economy, from industry to service, or risk a tragic replay of 80 years ago.

At the beginning of the Depression, more than a fifth of all Americans worked on farms. Between 1929 and 1932, these people saw their incomes cut by somewhere between one-third and two-thirds, compounding problems that farmers had faced for years. Agriculture had been a victim of its own success. In 1900, it took a large portion of the U.S. population to produce enough food for the country as a whole. Then came a revolution in agriculture that would gain pace throughout the century—better seeds, better fertilizer, better farming practices, along with widespread mechanization. Today, 2 percent of Americans produce more food than we can consume.

What this transition meant, however, is that jobs and livelihoods on the farm were being destroyed. Because of accelerating productivity, output was increasing faster than demand, and prices fell sharply. It was this, more than anything else, that led to rapidly declining incomes. Farmers then (like workers now) borrowed heavily to sustain living standards and production. Because neither the farmers nor their bankers anticipated the steepness of the price declines, a credit crunch quickly ensued. Farmers simply couldn’t pay back what they owed. The financial sector was swept into the vortex of declining farm incomes.

And because they did, they were ripe for abuse and fraud by Wall St Commercial and Investment Bank monster hybrids in the days before Glass Steagall. This is what pumps asset bubbles up and led to the Great Crash of 1929. Afterward not only did people still have insufficient income, they were then in massive debt. That means no spending which meant no income for anyone or sustenance to sustain their livelihood.

This led to massive unrest among the populous, and a massive demand for something new; a New Deal and a new candidate named Franklin Delano Roosevelt with a New Deal coalition behind him. I don’t need to tell what happened after that, though FDR being elected was certainly not the end of the public’s woes. However, despite an assassination plot, in FDR’s first 100 days he still enacted the 1933 banking reforms, including Glass Steagall and FDIC (which he was pressured to enact by Huey Long’s filibuster in the Senate among other things) which brought on 50 plus years of stability stopping panics as we knew them until the Reagan years and the so called Great Moderation(where banks like Lincoln Continental started failing and were bailed out).

The WPA and CCC direct work models were obviously successful though they could have been more successful if expanded more(1937) given that the gold standard was rightfully abandoned to give room. The Home Owners' Loan Corporation and the Federal Housing Administration were helpful for the housing crisis of that day. HOLC set uniform national appraisal methods and simplified the mortgage process. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation seized failing banks, cleaned up their balance sheets, and later transferred these institutions back to private ownership rather then just handing them trillions of dollars. In addition to that, the culmination of collectivist ideas over the years from Eugene Debs to Dr. Francis Townsend’s national pension plan took route in the New Deal from massive political pressure although in a lesser form that would be built upon over the years.

All this was possible because FDR was a leader who recognized that with a great crisis comes a great opportunity to enact life changing legislation that we can still feel today. It defined the Democratic Party as we know it and is still proudly embodied in the platform. After all, this set the trajectory of the Keynesian Golden Age (1945-1973) which saw wages rising with inflation until the Great Divergence.

Speaking of the Great Divergence, that is where the sordid tale of how to use a crisis for monetarist evil comes in. In 1971 Nixon basically ended the reserve peg of US dollars to gold which made up the Bretton Woods system and the whole system ended. The turbulence of the international adjustment to floating exchange rates was a big factor along with the oil shock of 1973 that led to the stagflation epidemic.

Regardless of what you hear, there was nothing the Fed nor any neoclassical/Monetarist economic theory could have done to prevent it, but given that the original Keynesian Phillips Curve technically didn’t coincide with the results of this supply shock, a massive successful propaganda campaign to discredit Keynesian intervention was successfully waged globally, but especially in the US and the UK.

Brilliant Modern Monetary Theory economist Bill Mitchell explains:

The CON merchants who buttress the neo-liberal ideology

The rise in acceptance of Monetarism and its New Classical counterpart was not based on an empirical rejection of the Keynesian orthodoxy, but in Alan Blinder’s words:

was instead a triumph of a priori theorising over empiricism, of intellectual aesthetics over observation and, in some measure, of conservative ideology over liberalism. It was not, in a word, a Kuhnian scientific revolution.
The stagflation (coincidence of inflation and unemployment) in the 1970s (the so-called shift in the Phillips curve) associated with the OPEC ructions led to a view that the OECD economies were failing and provided a strong empirical endorsement for the Natural Rate Hypothesis, despite the fact that the instability came from the supply side.

Any Keynesian remedies proposed to reduce unemployment were met with derision from the bulk of the profession who had embraced the new theory and its policy implications. The natural rate hypothesis now became the basis for defining full employment, which then evolved to the concept of the NAIRU.

It didn’t have to be that way, but third way Democrats left an opening for this non empirical economic garbage to be pushed onto the US and the world. Jimmy Carter was able to capitalize on the moral crisis the country was in after Nixon, Vietnam, and Watergate to stake to an election victory, but sadly Carter showed the first third way to abandon full employment policies. This move rendered the Humphrey Hawkins Full Employment Act toothless at the chagrin of Keynesian Neo Chartalist economist James K. Galbraith who helped write the law. True blue Keynesian Democrat Hubert Humphrey also tried to convince Carter to fight for its full implementation to no avail.

Sadly, much like our current president, Jimmy Carter bought into the Monetarist economic garbage of austerity and balanced budgets even though the Bretton Woods system ended ending the need for such a thing (because no more gold had to be dug up to put in bank reserves or sent off because of trade imbalances of our current account). So then this epidemic continued and Carter eventually brought on Paul Volcker with his brutal anti-inflation campaign at the Fed impoverishing what was left of US industry and unions basically winning the 1980 election for Reagan before it begun.

I don’t think I need to tell you what happened next, but from 1979 on wages went flat and all income gains went to the 1%, .1%, and .01% shown by the Great Divergence above. Bill Clinton and the Congress he worked with would exacerbate this trend finishing much of what Reagan started destroying the New Deal regulations of 1933. This fueled while two more credit bubbles while masking the lack of real income for the 99% further creating the conditions that would lead up to the great housing bust of 2008.

You see, the Friedman-ites at the Chicago School knew how to use any crisis. They used a supply shock/floating exchange rate adjustment no one could have stopped to erroneously discredit Keynes with their propaganda as they have been planning for years since going toe to toe with their nemesis Keynesian economist John Kenneth Galbraith and losing out in the 60s. To push for more austerity, Republicans and Democratic Austerians point to this stagflation period in the 70s as a failure of Keynesianism when it really was not.

The Chicago school used this economic agit prop to push for their economic shock therapy in Chile among other Latin American countries where they were involved in the coupe to overthrow and assassinate Salvador Allende as chronicled by Naomi Klein in The Shock Doctrine. That book is well sourced and a must read proving the thesis of this diary.

Smiley faceMilton Friedman's disciples in the Bush administration used Katrina, 9/11, and every other crisis to push trickle down austerity economics, deregulation, and a national security state that Democrats obviously now sadly love and refuse to get rid of. This administration is expanding the global war on terror state while their unquestioning supporters cheer them on. You have to ask questions. You can't just go along with whatever your party decides to do because it's campaign season. You have to stand for something if you ever want real progress and not just soaring rhetoric.

You have to welcome TBTF banks’ hatred and at the right time when a crisis such as 2008 hits, you have to make the leaders who claim to be Democrats live up to their rhetoric or you won’t get the chance for another 20-30 years for the time to be right during a crisis when a Republican is in power and the public rightfully blames them for everything as with GWB.  That moment can be used for life changing policies like the New Deal was or it can be wasted like this President wasted the crisis starting in 2008 to now.

Some people use the excuse, a poor one, that there was not enough public unrest during the disastrous Bush years for President Obama to take advantage of that crisis when eh came into office as he was pleaded to do by every credible economic and political authority out there. If that was true, President Obama would have never been elected in the first place, and it is ironically insulting to hear from people ironically who say they support him no matter what. It either was a historic moment everyone took part in, including me working the phones to elect him, or it wasn't though that it really is pretty hard to deny the historical significance of it despite whether some of us are happy with him or not.

So basically that’s why we can’t get over it. That’s why we will keep talking about how TARP and the 7.7 trillion in loans and loan guarantees in the US failed Main Street along with HAMP, HARP, and its failure on the housing and foreclosure crisis. That’s why we will still be talking about how the stimulus didn’t measure up. That’s why we will still keep calling the Bush/Obama tax cut sellout and the debt ceiling sellout detrimental. That’s why we will keep calling deficit terrorism what it is.

The right knows how to use a crisis. Their supporters know how to pressure them to use a crisis for evil at the right time, so why can’t you admit that you need to pressure our Democratic leaders to use one for good when it matters? It's not purity.

It's not a pony. It's not that I'm ignoring some wonky pseudo version of "how things really work in politics" even though they don't work that way ever. This was a moment in time some of us won’t ever see again in our lifetimes and it was a moment wasted like a lot of our time and money was wasted in 2008.  So don't tell us to get over it. We may not live to get over it, because as Keynes said, "In the long run we're all dead."

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (22+ / 0-)

    ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

    by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 08:18:40 AM PDT

  •  My standard response .. (9+ / 0-)

    whenever the topic of the President's performance comes up, especially among Republican leaners, is that there are lots of issues where I criticize the President, but there's not a single one where I expect the Republicans (least of all Mitt Romney) to offer even a modicum of improvement.

    "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

    by Demi Moaned on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 08:29:16 AM PDT

    •  Agreed (6+ / 0-)

      I can list all the things I'm unhappy about with Obama.

      At least half were affected by the obstructionism of the Rs but not all of it.  He's drunk the DC Kool-aid on national security and seems to also on national debt.

      But there is not a single issue, in the areas where I'm unhappy OR the areas where I'm satisfied with Obama's performance where having more Republicans in the legislature, judiciary or executive offices will send things in the right direction.

      If we don't at least get Obama's veto pen, rather, thing are going to get much worse, very quickly.

      •  But where is the bar? (8+ / 0-)

        Seriously, I need a drink listening to lesser of two evils rationale and the context of metrics. It works both ways.

        ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

        by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 08:47:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Why? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mallyroyal, jiffypop, rexymeteorite

          What don't you get about it? The lesser of two evils means one is greater. In Mitt's case he is showcasing just how evil he is.

          What is there not to get? It's a platitude for a reason.

          In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God ~RFK

          by vcmvo2 on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:03:52 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  At what point is supporting the lesser... (7+ / 0-)

            going to fulfill x to get to y?

            y=full employment.

            x=a reason to care.

            Both candidates talk about deficits and austerity and have no real solution.

            One step forward won't matter much when you are 100ft in deep shit. It's a weak platitude about the evil of two lessers.

            ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

            by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:19:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Your logic is flawed (7+ / 0-)

            Obama's gone so far to the right that he has surpassed even republicans in such metrics as prosecuting whistle blowers and with NDAA.

            When the two choices for president become so close in policy that the contrast is lessened, and it becomes basically a choice of three bad policy positions rather than four, voting for the "lesser" evil isn't accomplishing a whole lot.

            At such a crossroads, a new logic must be found, because continuing on the same path just makes the Dems think that all they have to do is have one or two positions to the left of the other candidate, and they will automatically get the vote of the base. This rewards them for malfeasance and corruption that comes from all the money from wealthy donors.

            So how do we break the cycle? How do we get the party bigwigs who would rather have lunch with industry titans than, say, a poor homeless person, to remember who they are supposed to work for? The answer is NEVER, if we keep automatically voting for them, like dependable automatons, year after year, thus cementing in place this awful trend of moving further and further to the right.

            There is only one way out, barring massive walkouts and strikes (which isn't a bad idea either if you could get complacent Americans away from their TVs) is to withhold the vote. Yes, that means people like Romney would win. But it also means that the next time a so-called Democrat runs, she will remember what happened to the last candidate who lied during the campaign, then hobnobbed with the wealthy class after getting into office. Sometimes, when a bit of pain is the only path forward in order to lessen the pain in the future, it is the path to take.

            The alternative is to continue down this awful path of rewarding candidates for serving not our interests, but the interests of the most wealthy among us. This trend will not stop until we make our votes mean something again. We need the political handlers to say to their candidates, "No, you can't throw the basic values of the base under the bus to get those juicy campaign dollars, you must stay true to the people who elect you or you'll lose." This means some initial losses until the message drives home, but politics have always meant there would be losses. But the way we're going, winning means nothing.

            The path we're on now, of voting for the "lesser of evils" is completely unsupportable by logic, when considered with the long view.

            "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

            by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:36:28 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You are assuming the pendulum will swing back (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Demi Moaned

              and if we keep voting in worse and worse people, something good will come of it someday.

              History shows many, many examples where it never got better.   Where actually the more evil got emboldened by success and eventually ended any chance of being removed from power short of a revolution or invasion.

              Give the more evil some defeats and sometimes things shift back the other way.  At minimum, things stay the same with the lesser evil.

              Withholding a vote for the less evil enables the more evil.  The more evil is HAPPY that you are sitting it out.  It means you aren't canceling the vote out of some jerk who WANTS things to go more evil, due to either being sold lies or honestly believing, say, that richer people are more moral or are favored of god or whatever.

              •  The path we're on now (5+ / 0-)

                is "swinging" us to the right wing. When votes are given away asking nothing in return, and virtually guaranteed no matter what our candidates do, no matter how corrupted by corporatism they become, this is the logical result. Why expect a different outcome in the future? It is the logical outcome.

                And the logical outcome of demanding quid pro quo in return for votes is the only way to get quid pro quo for votes. This has always been the law of electoral politics.

                Broadcast that your vote can be taken for granted, and those forces WHICH CANNOT BE TAKEN FOR GRANTED, i.e. the big money donors, will control the candidate. Simple.

                And the way forward is simple and unassailable in logic. We must restore the meaning of the vote. We must use the vote as a tool of negotiation. And we must send a message when the agreements are broken.

                Any other way is illogical and political and strategic insanity.

                "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:39:56 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Withholding your vote (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Deep Texan

                  makes it easier for the big money to buy the rest.

                  If every single citizen had had to vote, if they were REQUIRED to vote, we'd have better policy in this country.

                  But because the actual voting public is often a relatively small fraction and does not represent the total public, all you have to do is brainwash the ones who do vote.

                  The reason money owns elections is that a certain % of people get all their information from paid political advertisements.   Another % supplement that only with right wing media outlets (which are the only source of talk radio these days, and often the only TV played in public places where they live, such as nursing home TV areas, or bars, or whatever).   What is worse, this % of people is more likely to vote than the average population.

                  As long as this is true, if you have enough money, you can make these people vote the way you want.  Paid political advertising works, and is hideously expensive.

                  If more high information people voted, this tactic would be less effective.  If enough people became high information that the tactic became INEFFECTIVE, money would have a hell of a lot less influence on politicians.  (you can see this with the current situation, when money past a certain threshold stops moving polls.  See Fiorina and Whitman in California, 2010.  Problem is that it takes a LOT of money before it stops helping)

                  The bigger the actual voter pool, the less influence the big money guys have.  Because the people not voting right now are precisely the people not moved by the advertising, except perhaps to be moved to not vote at all by depression or "plague on all their houses" thinking.

                  I just plain don't agree with your premise.  Not voting does not get the attention of any politician, on either side.  It removes you from their radar completely.

                  Vote for the best candidate in the primary.  Vote for the best (lesser of two evils if necessary) candidate in the general.   VOTING gets attention.   If a deeply progressive dem gets a lot of votes in a primary, and that happens in a lot of places, it moves the party even if the same old corporate tool gets the seat.

                  Look at how the Paulites are starting to be noticed.  They're not being noticed by not participating or running third parties. They're being noticed by getting a significant voting block WITHIN the party.   They're still too small to make policy.   But that was true of early Tea Partiers too...and now they're running the show.

                  Look to the tea party on how to subvert a political party.  It's a hell of a lot harder if you don't have deep pocket astroturfers helping.   But they've pretty much wrapped it up.  They're getting a huge portion of representatives voted in, and have their man on the vice presidential ticket   If they'd not split their votes among various Not Romneys, they could have ended up with a Santorum/Ryan ticket this time around (or pick your other favorite clown car candidate)

                  If they'd instead stayed home and not voted, the R's would be identical to what they were in 2008.

                  If their votes can push things harder right, your votes can push things harder left.  But only your votes.  Not voting doesn't do a damn thing.

                  •  That horse is out of the barn (4+ / 0-)
                    Withholding your vote (0+ / 0-)

                    makes it easier for the big money to buy the rest.

                    Big money secured their control over candidates a long time ago. That war was clearly lost when Bill Clinton signed the repeal of Glass-Steagall and fought for NAFTA.

                    Continuing to make the argument that votes for Dem presidents keeps the moneyed interests at bay is like saying drinking tequila keeps away alcoholism.

                    It's too late for that. Water under the bridge. Time for a new, smarter strategy. You're still acting as if  voting for this makes a big difference. Take a look around. Global warming is raging. The banksters looted our treasury during a Democratic administration while the people at the bottom lost their homes, and while Obama had dinner with ceo's of such institutions like Goldman Sachs.

                    It's too late. The Great War of the Corporations against the People was lost a while back while we all were greedily investing in 401k's of the Clinton years.

                    The only way to change this is to go back to basic voting rights, and such things as massive strikes and sit-ins and walkouts. That is the only action that has worked, historically. Point to a time in history when incremental building of electoral politics significantly moved us forward. Then compare those tepid gains with the massive gains that occurred during the labor movements of the early 20th century (which are now in jeopardy of being undone).

                    Oh, and I'm not withholding my vote, but I'm not allowed to indicate too much about my plans on this forum.

                    "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                    by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 11:52:39 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  The labor movements of the early 20th century (0+ / 0-)

                      Had a lot of deaths, a lot of failures and had communism and socialism as the up-and-coming modes of government.

                      Communism is now completely discredited.  Socialism as practiced in liberal democracies seems to work moderately well, better than unbridled capitalism.  But in this country it's been made into a dirty word, especially, ironically, in the working class voter pool.  That was emphatically NOT the case in the 20s/30s.

                      A lot of the reforms in the 30s happened because governments were actually afraid of a communist revolution if they didn't do something.

                      That fear is 100% lacking today.

                      The closest thing we have to those movements are two religious movements (evangelical dominionists in the USA, the various muslim-oriented parties in the middle east and some parts of Eurpoe) and maybe libertarianism.

                      None of these are helpful for a progressive agenda.

                      You want to make real change, you need a movement.  If you are working to make such a movement, more power to you.

                      I'm just saying...movements who vote trump movements who don't vote.   If the Teahadists can move the Rs to the right by co-opting their primary system, your movement should be able to do the same thing on the left to the Ds.   In this country, a third party isn't going to work without massive funding from somewhere.    Perot was a billionaire.  If you can find one to back your movement, that'll help.

                      •  The odd thing about pointing out what won't work (3+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        priceman, gooderservice, gerrilea

                        is that this argument is so often used to defend what has been a miserable failure. This is a form of circular logic.

                        "We can't take a different path, we must stay the course, because the alternatives don't work!" And people repeat these platitudes as if they aren't self-fulfilling prophesies. If enough people believe it will work to change voting patterns, it certainly will have a profound effect. Things don't work until they do. These belt-way notions are based on short term observations, not the longer cycles of history.

                        At some point in history, they will work. History is full of such examples. Things don't change until they do. And I think we're due for one of those historical periods of change in the years ahead.

                        But one thing is clear: The current approach is putting the planet in jeopardy. It clearly is not working. And to repeat the mantra that any other suggestion won't work is like a guy in a sinking ship who shoots down every idea except continuing to bail, even as the water floods in faster than the bailing.

                        The first thing we can do is hold elected officials accountable. We can do that. That's what votes use to mean. That's what votes are supposed to accomplish. When voting became "vote for what is served up to us by the rich and powerful party elites" the meaning of voting was greatly diminished.

                        And I think you're out of touch with the youth. There is change afoot in that demographic. And as to "communism" being discredited, actually what was discredited is state capitalism, which is what the Soviets really had as a system.

                        Why do you think the working class in those early eras found socialism and anarchism so tolerable as a solution? Because they experienced the hard life of labor without any rights or protections.

                        And they fought for and won those rights. Under the right circumstances, people will fight again. These labels are just labels.

                        What was really at the root of the labor uprisings wasn't socialism or communism or anarchism, but poverty and brutality and extremely harsh living conditions, and people visibly saw the economic inequality. You think those motivations aren't returning? I can assure you, they are, and as the inequality increases, as it certainly has under Clinton/Bush/Obama, the discontent will increase.

                        "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                        by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 12:58:42 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I don't disagree with a lot of what you say (0+ / 0-)

                          But to me "holding elected officials accountable" short of armed revolution

                          is done in two ways.

                          1.  Popular movements that change the minds of enough people that they're felt at the ballot box.

                          2.  Co-opting existing political parties during the primary process to get your kind of representative on the ballot.

                          How does not voting at all accomplish either?  That's the disconnect I have with your reasoning.

                          •  Well... (4+ / 0-)

                            To quote Howard Zinn, he remarked once that he saw a bumper sticker that quipped, "if God had wanted us to vote, he would have given us candidates."

                            I am going to vote. But I will not vote for a person who has, to give just one example, prosecuted more whistle blowers than all the previous administrations put together.

                            A line must be drawn. That is simply true. I've never encountered in my difficult life a situation in which the need to draw a line wasn't necessary at some point.

                            And usually, when the need to draw a line arises, it is almost always an impossible choice that is very hard to make. But at some point, the stark reality becomes crystal clear, and then one is compelled to act.

                            That time has come.

                            "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                            by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 01:22:04 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Thanks for being a good sport... (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            priceman, gooderservice, gerrilea

                            Rare these days.

                            Gotta go.

                            "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                            by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 01:47:29 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  Now I'm truly getting nauseous, I just read your (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      priceman

                      provided link and got as far as 1.3 "Military Tribunals"...

                      I can't read it anymore...I feel like I'm in some alternate reality.  It's bringing tears to my eyes.

                      What the hell do we do?  Is voting on proprietary machines going to undo these crimes? Will they be held accountable, ever?

                      Attorney General Eric Holder has also assured critics that, in the unlikely case that a terrorism suspect is found not guilty by a civilian court, the administration will imprison him anyway, using what they call the president’s “post-acquittal detention powers.” [27]
                      I've felt I've been paying attention, really. Your link and the accompanying facts are just horrifying. I have saved it, maybe I'll have the stomach to read the entire article in the morning.

                      What you've pointed out about Glass-Steagal & NAFTA couldn't have been accomplished if they hadn't passed the Telecommunications Act of 1996.  If we still had 40,00+ alternate news sources we might have a chance.  The media consolidation into 5 major corporations means we get the news they want told to us,  nothing more.

                      I'd suggest that the only real solution would be to stop buying and selling everything. Just stop. Strikes and sit-ins have proven useless, see OWS.

                      What will they do when their tax funding comes to a screeching halt? What will happen when the international corporations have no one to buy their shinny trinkets? They will collapse under their own weight and corruption.

                      The bars on our gilded cages will be revealed.

                      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                      by gerrilea on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 11:38:46 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  I hear and feel there is some (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Deep Texan, The Hamlet

              validity to your arguments.

              But my experience in a real red area of a red state is that all of those suppositions is that you lose once or twice and then you bounce right back with better positions and candidates, isn't what happens around here.  You don't bounce back, nobody spends their time and money running in most instances.  We are very lucky in my district this year to have a Democrat to run for Congress, but the reality is, hitting 25% of the vote constitutes a victory.  No credible campaign in terms of actually winning happens.  It just keeps the door open a little bit.

              And eight years of Republicans has real consequences in Washington.  The Overton Window moves, the false premises are cemented into truth, you have a bigger hole to dig out of, and you get blamed for not digging faster when you do get back in and there's more bs piled up to boot.

              I think what really happens is that absolute devastation has to be visited upon the population before you see people rise up.   The Arab Spring in the Middle East/North Africa happened in part because of conditions that are much worse than what a typical American faces at this point in time.  I am not convinced a popular uprising from the left is just waiting to burst forth.  I am not convinced yet that refusing to participate is the best choice.

              •  Bounce back? (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                priceman, gooderservice, gerrilea

                By giving away your vote without asking for anything in return, there is nothing to bounce back to, so far have DEms gone to the right.

                I have a novel idea: Let's first start by being honest to the voters and telling them the truth. Initially that will backfire, but in the long run, we become the party of wisdom and truth telling.

                We have to lose in order to win. Dems are so afraid of the truth they have resorted to either remaining silent in the face of Republican lies, or have started repeating those same lies themselves.

                This is insane. And really unintelligent and illogical.

                We start telling the truth, and in time, we will win. If we don't, no matter, because this way, we've become that which we're supposedly against.

                We need an electoral correction. We're so far afield we don't even look like democrats anymore.

                "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:26:38 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I don't think the average human (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Deep Texan

                  will re-engage after disengaging.  They won't give money and time to support a message that isn't getting out.

                  Maybe I'm wrong,  but I voted in the Dem primary so I could at least have a choice on my Congressman, to send a message.

                  That means I didn't cast a single vote for a local politician, not the sheriff, commissioner, probate judge, state representative, etc.   How many times do you just sit out and have no say at all while people that spend millions of dollars, who spew the racist shit, the religious bullshit, the government is evil bullshit, and nobody can raise enough money, because there is no party structure, not enough support, etc. to mount the counter offensive.

                  I don't think abandoning the party structure will work as well as you think it will.  And I can tell you, Democrats, as weak tea as you think they are, aren't these people.   And that as group who wants more progressive outcomes, locally and nationally, we can't afford to sit it out a few elections or allow them to hold office and consolidate power and the thinking of voters.

                  •  If voters... (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    priceman, gooderservice, gerrilea

                    don't reengage, then life will become even harsher than it is now during this depression.

                    Go back and review what happened during the last depression.

                    People closed down factories with strikes. And it was during those times that some of the most sweeping reforms were made.

                    I think you're underestimating people. The internet now is becoming the primary method of communicating. People will wake up. If they don't, well, I don't see things becoming that much worse under such things as Romney care. And whether Romney invades Iran, or Obama invades Iran, it doesn't add up to that much of a difference. The system is falling apart. Might as well let the Republicans get the blame for it.

                    But the principle of voting for a candidate and expecting the candidate to honor those votes is about as basic as it gets, and when we drift too far from that sound logical basis of voting, we will continue to get what he have: Officials controlled by the money, because the money, unlike votes, can never be taken for granted.

                    Continuing on the same path we get us the same results. When we sell out our votes, we get sell-out politicians.

                    "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                    by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 11:04:08 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Logic based on a flawed premise (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Deep Texan, lcj98

              is not supportable either. You are working too hard to justify the false equivalence.

              There are more than 2 ways to approach things, more than two viewpoints and sometimes nuance or shades of gray get lost when we spend all our time trying to figure out just how deeply we have been failed by our political system.

              I don't buy it.

              In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God ~RFK

              by vcmvo2 on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:06:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  All one need do (5+ / 0-)

                is look at the last several decades.

                Following the same flawed logic will get us more of the same.

                There is nothing to inhibit candidates from serving the moneyed class that elects them if they know our votes are in their pockets. It is like bees to honey.

                And with your approach, you are essentially telling them out right that they don't need to earn your vote by honoring campaign positions. You're basically broadcasting out loud that they can piss all over you once in office.

                This type of negotiating fails in all other circumstances out side of the voting booth, and it fails inside the voting booth as well.

                It is political insanity of enormous scale, as foolhardy as anything I've ever seen.

                Your way gets us the same thing year after year, and erodes the power and meaning of the vote, so things will get worse.

                My way strengthens and restores the power and meaning of the vote, and brings us back to sanity.

                It's simple.

                "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:19:39 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  It's not a platitude. (5+ / 0-)

            It's a genuine existential dilemma.

            There must be a point at which the lesser evil is still too evil for a person of conscience to support. I'm not saying we've reached that point--maybe we're not even close--but I don't claim any right to dictate to others where to draw their personal lines.

            When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

            by PhilJD on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:13:35 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  How can there be any bar? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Deep Texan, mallyroyal, jfromga

          If you're talking about "greater" or "lesser" evils, there can be no arbitrary bar.

          And if you're talking about voting for politicians, as no human being is perfect (and no representative will ever do everything an individual voter wants), whoever you vote for will always be a lesser evil.

          Even worse, in a system such as ours (non-parlimentary) that seems to be long-term stable with two parties, whoever wins will always be a lesser evil, and a greater evil than some third party choice one might find, who literally has no realistic hope of winning the electoin.

          But that's where we are, and it's the system we have, which is unlikely to change substantially any time soon.  Improving things, therefore, frequently involves voting for the lesser evil out of the two main candidates, and working to change both society and the political parties over the long term.

          •  It's amazing I have to explain this (4+ / 0-)

            When I ask where's the bar it means how you define greater or lesser evil and on what? As in when we're talking about two deficit terrorist candidates, the bar is really low when it comes to offering support. So how low is the bar when we need solutions? How low is the bar when both candidates say the poor are icky and love welfare reform?

            The lesser evil might apply in some instances, but on many things it is not a clear cut question so it's worth asking.

            ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

            by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:57:14 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Ok, here's the bar (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              PhilJD, The Hamlet, Deep Texan

              There IS daylight on a lot of stuff.  I agree that on national security there isn't any daylight.  On every other damn thing though.

              I've covered every major political topic I can think of.

              Obama MIGHT reduce medicare a bit.  So far all he has actually done is removesubsidies to insurance companies.  Still, further tinkering was in some of his grand bargains.  Romney/Ryan WILL turn medicare into a voucher system.   Good luck getting health insurance as a 70 year old at ANY price.

              Obama MIGHT touch social security.  He's made noises about putting it on the table, but if you look at what he is actually saying, he's talking about raising revenues (eg, removing the cap on the tax or applying to capital gains) not reducing benefits.  Ryan/Romney have not said much on this topic but their tax cuts and "cut spending to match" plans are impossible without either completely shutting down all government spending (which won't happen), taking money from defense (which won't happen) or gutting Medicare/Social Security.  The voucher changes aren't enough by themselves.  You do the math.

              Obama increased spending on food stamps, unemployment extensions, CHIPS, Medicaid and has added some regulations on medical insurance companies and banks which might reduce their worst excesses.  He has at least talked about building on both bills to make them stronger.  Romney/Ryan are promising to roll back the ACA and Dodd/Frank day 1 with executive order, to the extent that is possible, and as early as possible with reconciliation-based legislation.

              Obama pulled troops out of Iraq on schedule.  He did exactly what he said he'd do in Afghanistan (ramping it up for a surge, then ramping it down).  So far he's kept his word, although I didn't agree with the surge but he DID say he'd do it in his campaign.  He handled Libya reasonably well. He's kept out of Syria and has so far avoided the temptation to attack Iran.  Romney/Ryan seem committed to attacking Iran or at least doing brinksmanship there.    There is SOME chance we'll see us mostly or completely out of Afghanistan by 2016 with Obama.  There is NO chance with Romney/Ryan and we may well be in Afghanistan.

              Obama has stopped defending DOMA, repealed DADT, came out for gay marriage.  Granted he had to be pushed into the latter, but he did it.  Romeny/Ryan want a constitutional amendment preventing gay marriage and to reinstate DADT (or something stronger).  

              Obama's supreme court picks are Kagan/Sotomeyer.  Romney/Ryan says that even Roberts is too liberal for him, he's going for Thomas/Alito/Scalia for his next picks.  You decide what you'd rather have on the court for the next 20-30 years.  I for one would like to break the hard right majority sometime in my lifetime and reduce it to at least a centrist majority.

              Obama got a cap&trade bill through the house, but not the senate.  His stimulus bill had lots of clean energy in there and his jobs plan relies heavily on this.   Yes, he also supports fracking and offshore drilling, which I'm not thrilled about, but he at least ALSO wants to develop wind and solar power and has shown support for eliminating subsidies to oil companies.  Romney/Ryan's energy plan is all-carbon-all-the time, more drilling, more subsidies, more fracking and defunding anything else.

              Obama's picks for appointments in regulatory agencies are at least trying to do their jobs, those that aren't still leftover Bushies whose replacements have been endlessly filibustered by the Rs.  Likewise his judicial picks in lower courts are to the left of anything Bush picked.   Do you think Romney/Ryan is going to pick better people?  A lot of why corporations are running wild is that all of the regulatory agencies have spent a decade or more being run by people who don't want them to do their jobs.   The packing of lower courts by right wing judges is not a problem that can be addressed by anything but a non-Republican president.  We're not getting liberal replacements but the replacements are all to the left of what Bush or Romney/Ryan would put in.    If we can hold the senate, another four years of getting appointments in would help a lot.

              Obama did his best to keep government jobs from being lost with the stimulus bill.   This proved impossible after 2010 with the House in the hands of republicans.  Pretty much all job loss since 2010 has been in the public sector, mostly at the state level.   Romney/Ryan will increase this trend, not staunch or reverse it.

              •  I forgot immigration (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Deep Texan

                Obama pushed for the DREAM act in the lame duck session.  He's since done what he can by executive order.  This is little enough on Immigration and he's also done right-leaning stuff on more border patrols and deportations.  He has not done enough IMHO to penalize the companies whose business models are based on illegal labor and their legal vulnerabilities  I'd like to see more on that than he's doing. But Romney/Ryan would roll back what he has done and we have the Self Deportation statement, plus the Arizona Law as model for the nation statement to show where he's headed.  "Show me your papers" laws.

              •  It isn't just about Obama (6+ / 0-)

                It's about the future of the electoral process, long term.

                And DADT? Obama was pretty much forced by several court decisions to act on that. Much of the rest was political theater. Obama was practically begging the other side to let him reform medicare and social security.

                And his prosecution of whistle blowers is the last straw for me.  

                And in terms of NDAA, and kill lists, and putting habeas corpus on the chopping block, and handing over detainees to third parties who torture... how can I support this? How can I?

                There are natural limits to what a person can accept, before we, too, become the sell outs. We can't expect our candidates not to sell out, if we sell out so easily ourselves.

                I've had it. I'm drawing the line, because if there is one thing I have learned in five decades of life, it is that one must always know where to draw the line, and usually one will have to be the first to do it before anyone else wakes up. Drawing lines is hard. Always hard. But one must do it. And one must do it while drawing the line still means something.

                "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 11:17:15 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  We have real problems (4+ / 0-)
                Obama MIGHT reduce medicare a bit.  So far all he has actually done is remove subsidies to insurance companies.  Still, further tinkering was in some of his grand bargains.  Romney/Ryan WILL turn medicare into a voucher system.   Good luck getting health insurance as a 70 year old at ANY price.

                Obama MIGHT touch social security.  He's made noises about putting it on the table, but if you look at what he is actually saying, he's talking about raising revenues (eg, removing the cap on the tax or applying to capital gains) not reducing benefits.  Ryan/Romney have not said much on this topic but their tax cuts and "cut spending to match" plans are impossible without either completely shutting down all government spending (which won't happen), taking money from defense (which won't happen) or gutting Medicare/Social Security.  The voucher changes aren't enough by themselves.  You do the math.

                When we're talking about a fake deficit crisis he erroneously puts SS in they are always in danger. Also Obama put both of those on the table for the RW to do whatever with in the grand bargain so that shows  contempt for the programs. He also supports chained CPI for SS which is a cut and a lower metric based on faulty assumptions about seniors buying dog food instead of steak. Also SS can't go bankrupt and Obama touts inter-generational accounting fallacies that put both these programs in danger. yes, I'm afraid Obama and Paul Ryan both want to slash SS and medicare and not just in the way you are referencing.
                Obama increased spending on food stamps, unemployment extensions, CHIPS, Medicaid and has added some regulations on medical insurance companies and banks which might reduce their worst excesses.  He has at least talked about building on both bills to make them stronger.  Romney/Ryan are promising to roll back the ACA and Dodd/Frank day 1 with executive order, to the extent that is possible, and as early as possible with reconciliation-based legislation.
                Yes, Michael Grunwald is pimping this lately, but the problem is is that in many ways although positive it doesn't measure up to true Keynesian policy which Grunwald is unaware of. Obama was warned but he didn't try and was smug about it. I need the proper metrics and so does the rest of the unemployed. Dolecare was created in backroom deals with biog pharma and for profit hospitals and it wasn't what i was told he was going for and is inadequate to our health care crisis. care.

                The bar is low and will not matter whether when jumping a 50 ft chasm if one jumps 10 or 20 ft. I admitted that the bar si clear on some things, but when it comes to full employment and under 350 ppm environmental policy like ending the wars which are not ending despite what you say(especially counting the contractors) it's sometimes hard to define the bar meaning no real hope for any change we can feel in the age of deficit terrorism and terrorists both running.

                ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

                by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 11:45:41 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Not saying Obama is terrific on a lot of this (0+ / 0-)

                  Saying that there is a lot worse to come with Romney/Ryan.  

                  You will see nothing but supply side crap and austerity with them, and climate-denial.

                  Obama is sometimes weak tea in the areas you describe but the trajectory is much, worse, much faster with Romeny/Ryan.

                  And if they get empowered by more congressional control, even if Obama wins, things get pushed further right rather than perhaps stopping, or even moving back in the other direction.   If they get all the levers of government (they already have Judicial), you'll see change all right.

                  Change for the worse.  In every category.  By a lot more than Obama's administration except perhaps in national security, where the trajectory is already bad and Romney/Ryan haven't indicated wanting to take it further.

                  •  To people at the bottom (4+ / 0-)

                    the scare of Romney over Obama isn't working anymore.

                    The fear of experiencing something worse than what is offered by the dems is what locks us into a dismal future.

                    Electoral politics have eroded so much that the threat of three screws to the thumbs rather than two isn't very scary anymore.

                    Either way, we're screwed, and saying that we'll be screwed even more by Romney in order to manipulate people into voting for the lesser of two agonies isn't enough anymore.

                    And, the "lesser of two evils" rationale isn't logical when there is a possible way out, a way to break the cycle, which is by teaching the political elite, that rich class of people with the privilege of support by the moneyed interests, that from now on they must go back to earning and respecting votes. We've essentially taught them the opposite: That we will vote for the lesser of evils even when they are barely distinguishable. And every time we cave to this illogical rationale, we reassure them that they can pretty much do as they please.

                    "Bargain for your ignorance and it's yours"

                    by Field of Dreams on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 12:15:38 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  oops, I should've read further down before (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  priceman, gooderservice, gerrilea

                  posting my comment. I did my comment in response to greblos' comment and THEN I saw yours, oh well.

                  without the ants the rainforest dies

                  by aliasalias on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 01:10:06 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  by the way Obama did a lot more than "make some (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                priceman, triv33, gooderservice, gerrilea

                noise" about SS, in the debt ceiling fiasco he put over 300 million dollars in cuts on the table and he offered up what amounts to cuts in payments changing how benefits are determined (chained CPI, which Bernie Sanders brilliantly exposed as unrealistic math).
                It should be noted that Obama has already promised this...

                But what I’m offering the American people is a balanced approach that the majority agrees with, including a lot of Republicans. And for me to be able to say to the Republicans, the election is over; you no longer need to be focused on trying to beat me; what you need to be focused on and what you should have been focused on from the start is how do we advance the American economy—I’m prepared to make a whole range of compromises, some of which I get criticized from the Democratic Party on, in order to make progress. But we’re going to need compromise on your side as well. And the days of viewing compromise as a dirty word need to be over because the American people are tired of it.

                You don’t have to think very hard to connect this to a series of comments and specific actions on the economy, specifically on the budget and on social insurance programs, to know where Obama is headed with this. We know the “range of compromises.” They include increases to the Medicare eligibility age, and changes to the COLA that calculates Social Security benefits (unless Joe Biden was speaking for the Administration when he said there would be no changes to that program).

                Obama has ads running touting this “balanced approach.” He speaks about it in press conferences and interviews. He thinks the fact that he doesn’t get enough credit for a willingness to cut Social Security and Medicare in a deal like this represents one of the greatest frustrations of his Presidency.

                http://news.firedoglake.com/...

                On getting us out of Iraq, first of all we ain't out we have a very heavy footprint with military capabilities and a so-called 'embassy' that is a fortress bigger than Vatican City. It also has most of the comforts of America, clean water, electricity, sewage, all things that are scarce outside the walls of The Green Zone.
                What about leaving Iraq? There is the matter of SOFA , or the Status of Forces Agreement which was signed by Bush which committed us to that exit date and thru wikileaks cables we know this administration tried very hard to keep troops in Iraq.

                Regulatory agency appointments by Obama ? The list is long but here's a sample (I'll pick this example because I have a particular distaste for Monsanto)...

                In 2009, in a classic revolving-door move, President Barack Obama appointed former Monsanto VP and head lobbyist Michael Taylor as Deputy Commissioner for the FDA — the board tasked with regulating Taylor’s own industry.

                Taylor joins the growing list of public officials formerly employed by Monsanto, a worldwide food giant oft-criticized for its poor environmental record and repeated aggressive legal action against small farmers over copyright issues.

                “I don’t take a dime of their [lobbyist] money, and when I am president, they won’t find a job in my White House,” Obama said in a 2008 campaign speech. A little research, however, shows that claim to be a questionable one.

                (emphasis mine)
                http://petovera.com/...

                without the ants the rainforest dies

                by aliasalias on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 01:01:51 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks, Priceman. (7+ / 0-)

    I always learn a lot from your diaries.

  •  nevertheless (9+ / 0-)

    to survive a long time you have to survive a short time, so no, it wasn't a waste to have an imperfect Obama administration over a McCain/Palin administration. And it still won't be a waste to have an imperfect Obama administration over a Romney/Ryan administration.  Because Romney/Ryan would certainly threaten more people's survival than Obama/Biden.

    And what is it with people always telling other people they have lost the right to speak.  It doesn't matter how many times a person is wrong or was just really wrong once, error alone is an insufficient reason to lose a 'right'.  Losing rights requires malice, setting out to hurt others.  So if we are democrats, and liberals, let's not couch our beginning statements in 'you don't deserve to speak'.  

    •  You can admit the crisis was wasted (7+ / 0-)

      at least.

      And of course one can speak in this premise, they just won't have any credibility going by the facts.

      ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

      by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 08:44:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I can admit I was disappointed (7+ / 0-)

        that the stimulus wasn't bigger,  I can admit I would have done more for a homeowner's bail out and less for a banker's bailout.  I can also admit, I don't know what would have happened if the President had gone bigger, made more of an appeal for a populist progressive uprising to pressure Congress, because I know that the Republicans pretty much vowed to stop everything to hurt Obama's re-election chances even if it screwed the country, and I believe they are deadly serious to this day about that.  I can't know that the President might have done better to put financial reform and a more progressive economic agenda ahead of health insurance reform.  One can't prove a path not taken would have led to a better outcome.

        For all I know, not enough people would have stood up, no Republican votes would have changed, we wouldn't have had a bigger stimulus, we wouldn't have health insurance reform, and we wouldn't have better financial reform.  I can believe that without facts, but I can't know it or admit it as fact.

        What I can say,  I am still not disappointed that Barack Obama is President rather than John McCain.   And no matter how disappointed I am in some outcomes,  I think this nation is better off for the Obama presidency.   And no matter what disappointments the Obama second term may hand me, I still won't be disappointed that Obama got a second term.

        And since you admitted your powerlessness to stop others from speaking but did not address the issue I raised,  I will reiterate it is not for a diarist to tell others not to speak, it is for all of us to hear the varying opinions and decide credibility and persuasiveness of the arguments for ourselves.

        •  very well said, agreed (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          vcmvo2, jfromga, jiffypop, rexymeteorite

          -You want to change the system, run for office.

          by Deep Texan on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:03:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Amen to that! nt (4+ / 0-)

          In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God ~RFK

          by vcmvo2 on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:05:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  No real effort was espounged (8+ / 0-)

          Medicare failed multiple times before it passed and never did I say I wished John McCain was president. That's so disingenuous.

          No, all we really wanted was some effort, but he didn't even try some time, so we don't have anything close to what we need.

          And I didn't tell people not to speak, just what they won't have credibility on with their words so fail again, but nice try.

          ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

          by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:15:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  read your own headline (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mallyroyal, Deep Texan, jiffypop
            People That Excuse Wasting the Crisis in 2008 Don’t Get to Lecture Anyone +*
            'don't get to', is not the same as, 'have no credibility'.  While the headline may be attention getting,  it is just something I feel strongly about on a personal level.   In this blog, no one who comes in good faith should be made to feel they have no voice.  If wrong, they can be informed, even lectured, but not told they have no voice, that they don't get to participate.

            Medicare failing many times just proves my point.  You can go big and fail as easily as going small and failing.  Sometimes you never get "medicare".  Your entire argument is that is better to go big and fail than to go small and get less than everything you wanted even if you got some of what you needed.   My argument is that I can't admit to facts not in evidence.   There is no proof the administration would have gotten more.  I have admitted I personally would have asked for more,  I can't prove I would have been right.   And despite a lot of other people's informed and well reasoned conjectures, the fact that the stimilus did help the economy,  there is nothing that amounts to proven fact that we would be better off if Obama had pursued a different path.

            And without facts, we are left with beliefs, opinions, and untested hypotheses.   Was the crisis wasted?  That will forever be a matter of opinion and conjecture.  Because in the long run, it may linger on as George Bush's fault just as much as it has lingered on that it was FDR's New Deal.  Just because something doesn't turn out as we expect, doesn't mean the opportunity was wasted.

            •  You don't get to BECAUSE of no credibility (4+ / 0-)

              as in you can, but it won't be worth anything at this point because of what I laid out and have continually laid out over the past year involving facts. CONTEXT. The employment population ratio and the workforce participation rate for instance. horrendous.

              Medicare failing many times does anything but prove your point, because your argument is that the President would fail anyway and then all would be lost so it's not worthy of a critique, when Medicare failed just 2 years before it passed.

              History is a good metric that tells us that bold action is always better during a crisis, whether its an economic one or  a socially moral one like pursuing civil rights and LBJ splitting the party. These things took risk and because those risks were taken there was ultimately a high reward.

              The fact that this election is even a context means one can't blame it all on GWB. Hell most of the deregulation happened under Clinton. And I laid out where FDR's ideas came from from the New Deal, but eh gets credit for using the bully pulpit to push for a version of those platforms.

              It' only up in the air, if you have your head in the clouds. You're never going to get certainty in all avenues pursued in life; it's what you try to do that counts. Like trying to pass a public option instead of making a deal with for profit hospitals and big pharma to kill it and affordable drugs. One can ignore these things, but they can't speak credibly about them when they do going to the true context of my diary.

              ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

              by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:07:16 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  again, all your (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Deep Texan, jiffypop

                arguments about crisis, suppose a level of unrest at the level of the Great Depression (where socialist and communists had some real political clout compared to today) or the civil rights battles that were raging with real violence and heated debate, for years before we saw LBJ get some reforms on race issues, and literally huge portions of the elderly population in poverty that got us Medicare.

                I don't think we had or have that level of unrest.  I think we have amazing polarity,  very little middle ground.  I don't think the situations are as comparable as you make them out.

                What bothers me about your point of view that you keep defending is that is rather absolutist, agree with me or you don't get to speak by which apparently you mean you will dismiss anything because you have predetermined it won't be credible anyhow.  No one hear is positing the earth is 6,000 years old or that women's body shut down rape sperm.   These are arguments over what we believe could have happened if we pursued a different path.

                •  I covered this in the diary (4+ / 0-)
                  Some people use the excuse, a poor one, that there was not enough public unrest during the disastrous Bush years for President Obama to take advantage of that crisis when eh came into office as he was pleaded to do by every credible economic and political authority out there. If that was true, President Obama would have never been elected in the first place, and it is ironically insulting to hear from people ironically who say they support him no matter what. It either was a historic moment everyone took part in, including me working the phones to elect him, or it wasn't though that it really is pretty hard to deny the historical significance of it despite whether some of us are happy with him or not.
                  The Occupy movement also proves that wrong, and shows you really don't know how much unrest there really is out there in this jobs crisis. It's a poor excuse. I'm not just speaking about these things, I have a record of pointing them out.

                  ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

                  by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:33:09 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  you made an argument (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Deep Texan

                    and cite the Occupy Movement.   And believe me, I think the Occupy Movement, helped and is helping.  But it is far from widespread in its acceptance in the voting populace,  its message is reinforced here, but doesn't poll that well in the larger world, and was hardly a massive uprising in terms of number.

                    Speaking about them, pointing them out, aren't they the same thing?  I generally read your diaries, I assume you say the same things in non-virtual conversations.  I don't doubt your sincerity, your belief that you are right, I just don't like your attitude as expressed in your words to the validity of other points of view, of the right of others to speak, or your unfortunate habit of descending into devaluing others' experience in these conversations.

                    •  Occupy polled very well in the beginning (6+ / 0-)

                      but I don't rely on skewed polling and having the DHS and all mayors of every city deploy their resources when state budgets are strapped to shut it down doesn't speak well to it not being a massive uprising as far as number. It could have been bigger, but it broke through the corporate media filter which speaks to a lot.

                      I point out why I make the declarations that I do with facts and research. If peoples anecdotal longings to play partisan war syndrome don't coincide with that and feel insulted yet strangely don't bring up anything i referenced correctly in context, then that's just the way it is.

                      these are hard times for a lot of people. It does them a disservice to not be blunt about this. So we can agree to disagree, though I don't agree with anything you laid out which doesn't really have much backing.

                      ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

                      by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 10:53:41 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  actually you have assertions (0+ / 0-)

                        from people I respect and tend to believe are correct about what would have been better.  But since it didn't happen, we can't know what would happen.

                        Here's three links of new articles on the stimulus.  You'll note from the articles that the final bill was smaller than requested, included more tax cuts, etc.  And the reporters pegged it on needing three Republican votes in the Senate.  It passed the House with zero Republican votes, and given the rules of the Senate, needed 60.  Without those votes it would have been dead in the water.

                        You will also note from the date of passage in the Senate, it was done in about three weeks from the inauguration.  So we have a new president, a precarious majority in the Senate,  no Republican votes in the House and an economy pretty much still in free fall, losing anywhere between 500K and 800K jobs a month.  Not a whole lot of breathing room to rewrite the New Deal, or enact massive financial reform, or maybe quibble over another $30-40-100 billion that would never get a Republican vote in the Senate, and therefore, would be no stimulus at all.

                        So since the larger number didn't go forward, an even larger number than the proposal didn't go forward I cannot state as a fact that a bigger number pushed by Krugman and Stiglitz et al,  would fail, but it was a pretty easy conclusion based on facts.  No different than your opposite conclusion, however, because you can't prove what would have happened on a course not taken.    I think Obama put a lot of political capital into getting that deal that quick, and yes,  hindsight proves more money would have been better.  But hindsight can't prove more money would ever have made it out of Congress.

                        And, even too small, it was still huge, more money in one package than just about anything the government had done.

                        So now, I have correctly cited my context, the reality of the votes on the smaller package which was a narrowly done thing.  I don't usually bother with citations in a response, after all, I'm not pitching the diary.   Plus, if you did all that research, I assume those facts turned up.  You chose to ignore them because they didn't fit the hypothesis.  One doesn't change the facts or ignores the facts, one looks for a hypothesis that accomodates all known facts.

                        •  Those are assumptions not facts (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          gooderservice, gerrilea

                          There was plenty of time leading up to it to try a bigger package and the dire nature of the economy just adds pressure to get it right. It doesn't take it away. That makes your bizarre ahistorical point ignoring the public anger against wall St all the more bizzare. No, I'm not interested in assumption by partisans looking to make excuses on what they believe to perceive as fake political reality.

                          there are no facts that state a bigger number would fail, because Christina Romer had a bigger number via 1.2 trillion until Larry Summers stopped it(but he had to hire him right? IN fake pragmatic land, this is true) and in fact the president yelled at her for trying to bring it up. Nope, i suggest checking out Ron Suskind's book on the matter. No one can know what would happen, but we know from history that an effort during a crisis is better served than so called political expediency that doesn't add up.

                          Those facts strangely never came up in your hypothesis. A lot of missing players and context. You won't mind fi i ingore them as drivel since they are merely just an election year fairy tale.

                          ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

                          by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 03:34:10 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  armchair quarterbacking (0+ / 0-)

                            the President probably should have picked better advisors, less old line Clinton people, and heard a broader perspective. But you also assume that he wanted the stimulus to fail.  That he had facts at his disposal and deliberately chose to undercut what he needed.  That's one of those extraordinary claims that needs extraordinary proof.

                            Not one of those articles was a fluff piece, all were written in early 2009.  How can that be an election year fairy tale?

                            What you cannot do, and grow personal about, it prove that a larger package would make it through Congress.  You pooh-poohed that objection, without facts, in the original diary, you continue to denigrate the argument, when contemporaneous news accounts show this barely squeaked, and was pared down from the original request.

                            Further,  between election and inauguraton, with two on going wars, the economy disintegrating, back ground checks on dozens upon dozens of appointments, all started early and there are also contemporaneous accounts of how much Obama's team did get done, it received praise for the thoroughness of its work,  everything about putting a government together, and you assert there was plenty of time.   I think you are the one playing with the fairy dust.

                          •  All were after the fact (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            gooderservice, Nada Lemming, gerrilea

                            Nothing you asserted about what might have happened was supported whatsoever in those articles. The fact that it was a close vote means absolutely nothing. It was always going to be a close vote. Also there were weeks of deliberation(The White House knew there was going to have to be a stimulus package. It wasn't an on the fly idea like, "hey Dude. How about some stimulus") as Paul Krugman and the White House traded barbs on the amount that would be put forth(Krugman was right) and there were those in his administration that were also trading barbs. I at least bought up Christina Romer showing I know what was going on at the time unlike yourself.

                            Given that Larry Summers and Tim Geithner were chosen, that really defeats the whole "ooo backgrounder checks argument" really a poor excuse. Also there are always wars going on and that is one thing that is never an issue because this president loves war and appropriation bills never are a trouble so fail there, too. All I have to say is FDR's first 100 days which Obama will never really accomplish in 8 years given the 50 years of stability form the 1933 banking reforms passed quickly even though he dealt with an assassination attempt.

                            No one knows what could have passed for sure, but it's likely that Romer's 1.2 trillion might have passed, even if it had to be stuck with more tax cuts.

                            So now you know, the history you ignore doesn't speak well to your account which is why I called it a fantasy account. Government is is hard! he didn't have the votes!" doesn't stop the effort needed.

                            So no, I don't need any lectures on this. You need to read Ron Suskind's book.

                            ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

                            by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 04:04:10 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  pretty bold assertion that I didn't know (0+ / 0-)

                            about Romer, who was cut out and quit fairly early in the administration because of it.  She knew her input was never going anywhere.

                            But articles written on the days of the votes are hardly after the time.   You could try looking up contemporaneous.

                            Defend with a single fact the assertion that Romer's 1.2 trillion dollar package might have passed.   And further defend how further tax cuts for middle class or truly small businesses (not the Republican use of the term) were going to be put in over Republican objections?   And we all know no one can defend tax cuts at the upper end as tax stimulative.  The government's own numbers show that tax cuts barely add on a dollar for dollar basis, where things like unemployment, assistance to the poor add lots of bang for the buck.  Things the Republicans have repeatedly voted against just because they do work.  You can't even argue that Krugman and Stiglitz were behind huge new tax cuts.   They wanted spending on assistance, aid to the states, infrastructure.

                            I think you need to do less reading and more thinking.   Because you don't know what facts are, you don't know how to analyze myriads of materials and deduce what is likely and what is not likely to happen.

                            And FDR was a great man and a great President, but his 100 days was aided by a delayed inauguration date in March not January, a much worse economic crisis that had dragged on for three years not three months before he took office, and a much more friendly legislative branch.  And he still made plenty of mistakes.   And the financial reforms weren't the stimulus.  Do you think that if Obama had laid the financial reforms of the New Deal on the table at the same time as the stimulus he would have gotten any of it?

                            Again, anybody can pretend things would pass,  sure, of course it would of passed.  If you say it is so, it must be so.  Kind of like the Janesville Plant closed because of Obama.   And Obama wiped the work requirements out of TANF.  People can say anything.

          •  Medicare only passed (0+ / 0-)

            because Johnson had both historic majorities due to the Goldwater fiasco AND enough not every single republican marching in lockstep to defeat him as a political statement.

            Then for over 40 years, we had repeated attempts to improve healthcare in this country and they not only failed to pass, they didn't even come up for a vote most of the time.

            I watched the entire ACA sausagemaking.  There were NOT the votes for anything much better.    Without filibuster reform in Jan 2009, there would be no improvement in health care today.  ACA isn't much, but it's better than what we had, especially on the minimum coverage, no maximum cap and no pre-existing-condition crap.  The 80/85% revenue into healthcare helps a little too.

            Hell, if the R's had the discipline in Jan 2009 that they had even in FEB 2009, there would have been no Stimulus bill at all either.   The Main twins were stepped on by their leadership after that, but the hope of getting one or two on board to get some leverage against the blue dogs dragged the whole thing out 6 months and wasted the few precious months we had a 60 vote caucus in the Senate.

            So don't talk about FDR without looking at his congressional majorities compared to Obama.  Ditto LBJ.   In the house, Obama had zero republicans and had to win over half the blue dog caucus to get a majority.  (or 2/3  blue dogs to be able to ditch the catholic bishop-led conservatives in the Stupak mold)

            In the Senate, Obama had no R votes after the Stimulus, didn't have 60 in his caucus until after Specter switched sides, Franken was seated and before Kennedy died (and even while alive Kennedy was not present a lot of the time and Byrd was also ill a lot).

            This meant that even when he had 60 votes, he had to pander to the likes of Lieberman, Nelson, etc with pretty much zero leverage.   After Brown got voted in, the only thing passed in the Senate was a few painfully drawn out confirmations, a watered down regulatory bill for wall-street that got a couple of rare R votes (from starting with enough R co-sponsors to pass it just there...almost all bailed) and a few things passed in the lame duck session that are normally easy (strategic arms treaty, first responder 911 benefits etc, plus DADT where Obama managed to work around all the usual national security Rs who switched position on the topic because Obama touched it to get a couple votes from unexpected sources).

            Bottom line....

            Single payer had maybe 30 votes in the Senate.  That's why it went off the table fast.  Public Option might have made it through (it did in house) without Leiberman and Nelson.  A medicare extension nearly made it on the table in Dec 2009, but that was also killed off by somebody in the Dem caucus, forget who.

            •  Tired lazy historical revisionism (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              gooderservice, Nada Lemming, gerrilea

              It's really lazy and it makes me sick.

              1. It took 2/3rds to break a filibuster in FDR's day and LBJ's day(It's why the CRAs almost didn't pass.) both of who had to deal with half of thier party being Dixicrats to pass anything. FDR started out with the same number of Senators Obama had. This is legislative history. You left it out. like how many vote tallies switched on medicare at the last minute because Republicans didn't want to be on the wrong side of history like SS. Passing medicare was not easy with the ACA out there even after 1964. It kills the game of making an ass out of yourself by assuming what will happen now if a vote on a public option amendment was ever brought to the floor during reconciliation. It also kills your lazy assumption on what the Republicans would or would not have done if a bigger stimulus was tried.

              2.  The tired ignorant excuse on Obama and the ACA and not having the votes ignores the back deals he made with big pharma and for profit hospitals. It also ignores reconciliation which only takes 51 votes and the public option was already scored so parliamentary revisionism won't work either.

              3. the White House worked to kill Brown Kaufman and water down the Fed audit bill.

              4. I don't care how much you think you saw about the sausage making process, these facts render everything you think you laid out pointless. You need to learn history and the Senate rules.

              ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

              by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 03:23:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  "no matter what disappointments the second term (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          priceman, gooderservice, gerrilea

          may hand me, I still won't be disappointed that Obama got a second term".

          "No matter what...".
           I trust you don't mean that literally, that's a different ballgame altogether.

          without the ants the rainforest dies

          by aliasalias on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 03:06:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  "wasting any crisis economic" (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        vcmvo2, jiffypop, rexymeteorite, jfromga

        doesn't sound right to me.

        Agree with jfromga that your choice of words here will probably limit your audience and thus the reach of your material.

        Realistically, we have two choices.  I don't accept lesser of evil religious bullshit.  

        there is a difference between the parties.  one of them is down right crazy these days. it's a shame but that's reality imo.

        i'll refrain from writing the diary, People that believe in fairy tale reality, don't get to choose our tactics.

        -You want to change the system, run for office.

        by Deep Texan on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 08:59:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Re: the New Deal (5+ / 0-)

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    Thanks Priceman, as always...

    "Once the Lords of Capital are no longer the lords of anything, humanity gets another shot at rational development of the species and the planet." - Glen Ford

    by Cassiodorus on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:02:51 AM PDT

    •  Thank you, too (4+ / 0-)

      I read the piece on the New Deal. I don't entirely agree with it, but it makes some fair points.

      ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

      by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:24:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  fwiw speaking of the New Deal I gotta say my (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gooderservice, gerrilea, priceman

        father worked with the Civilian Conservation Corps and not long before he died ( due to failing health the interview had to be done in parts) he was interviewed by a guy writing a book on the CCC.
        My father was a West Tx. farmer and when all that 'blew away' all that was left to do (legally) was to go to the nearest City which is what too many other people were forced to do, so they just joined the growing ranks of the unemployed locals.  
        Then he heard about the CCC ,and when the interviewer asked him what did he think would've happened if there had been no CCC  (WPA and others) he sat silent for little bit then shook his head and said, like someone that has rummaged thru all their memories for an answer (my impression), "I have no idea!".

        without the ants the rainforest dies

        by aliasalias on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 02:09:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  You write as though the Dems actually (6+ / 0-)

    wanted some other outcome rather than "wasting" this crisis.

    On the contrary, they nicely consolidated the gains of the Banksters accrued during the Clinton/Bush years.

    Seriously, they wouldn't have had it any other way.

    And that's probably why more eligible people (e.g., 90 million in '08)) don't bother to vote compared to how many voted for either party's nominee (70 million v. 60 million Dem/GOP in '08)

    •  No real effort made to (8+ / 0-)

      a) manage the use of the bailout money (e.g., NOT for bonuses), b) embarrass those who misused the bailout money, c) imprison those who committed crimes, including robo-signing, d) establish tough laws to prevent it again, e) regulate derivatives and ON and ON.

      White collar crime is every bit as possible and lethal today as 3.5 years.

      Moreover, the Class War continues unabated.

      There was a two-year window in which the Democratic Party could have raised hell and accomplished a lot more than it did, even if not everything it ostensibly wanted. There was an utter lack of appreciation for the fierce urgency of now. Utter.

      Purging predominantly minority voters and requiring them to present IDs to vote in the face of VIRTUALLY NON-EXISTENT VOTER FRAUD is RACISM! I hereby declare all consenting Republicans RACISTS until they stand up and object to these practices!

      by Words In Action on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:43:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  For arguments sake I did (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gooderservice, gerrilea

      because I'm "so mean."

      Of course you are right.

      ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

      by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 12:26:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This would be a cakewalk had the (5+ / 0-)

    administration and Democratic Congress take the moment to put Supply-side economics in the grave, where it belongs.

    Bargaining with the devil was a HUGE mistake, one we will no doubt suffer from for at least a generation, perhaps for-ev-er.

    That being said, it is what it is.

    If we do overcome the tidal wave of money, lies,  dog-whistles and voter suppression still ahead, we can only hope that the administration and its unquestioning supporters learn something. But I doubt it. I think there are still too many Democrats who DO believe--in their heart of hearts--in Supply-side economics, despite all the evidence and destruction to the contrary.

    Purging predominantly minority voters and requiring them to present IDs to vote in the face of VIRTUALLY NON-EXISTENT VOTER FRAUD is RACISM! I hereby declare all consenting Republicans RACISTS until they stand up and object to these practices!

    by Words In Action on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:33:11 AM PDT

    •  There is a reason (0+ / 0-)

      the progressive caucus is less than half the Democratic party caucus.

      If we restricted the party to the progressives, we'd have been ceding all the levers of power to the R's for my entire life, not just for 6 years of Bush.

      •  the Progressive Caucus is the largest Caucus in (4+ / 0-)

        Congress and 2010 it was the Blew Dogs that got wiped out at the ballot box (I think Progessives lost 1?) because we are not a right leaning Country and any poll that asks the questions in responsible manner instead of using labels shows just that. For example explain universal health care (not insurance policies) to people then see how they vote and the same thing goes with getting out of our wars,raising the minimum wage, not taxing the wealthy like we should, and many other things.

        without the ants the rainforest dies

        by aliasalias on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 03:15:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Another very important diary, priceman. (4+ / 0-)

    With you ALL THE WAY on this. Fortunately, living in Utah, I do not have to vote for Obama.

    Let us not forget. If we manage to win this one, let us press once more to bury Supply-Side economics and defend the "general welfare".

    I also feel compelled to pimp my own diary to the like-minded readers here, because I think it is also important and should be thoroughly discussed as well:

    The Other Dog Whistle? Should Mormonism Be A Campaign Topic?

    Purging predominantly minority voters and requiring them to present IDs to vote in the face of VIRTUALLY NON-EXISTENT VOTER FRAUD is RACISM! I hereby declare all consenting Republicans RACISTS until they stand up and object to these practices!

    by Words In Action on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 09:38:33 AM PDT

    •  Thanks, Words in Action (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gooderservice, gerrilea

      I very much wanted your username to be a reality in 2008. I am pessimistic, but we will see.

      tipped and rec'd.

      ‎A) "Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." - George Carlin B) "The administration should be worried about the level of despair here." ~Markos Moulitsas at NN12

      by priceman on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 12:27:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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