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It's real simple, folks. We do it the way the Tea Party did in moving the Republican Party to the right. And it has nothing to do with denying our votes to "centrist" candidates on Election Day. You know how to do it?

Win some primaries. It's not hard to grasp. You think some Democrats aren't left enough? Beat 'em. Did someone you believed was a strong progressive end up voting or governing more to the center than the left? Back a primary challenger. Beat 'em. Knock out the Democrats you don't like and replace them with someone to their left. That's how you move the country left. Then work yourselves to the bone so that those progressives you helped win that primary beat their Republican opponent on Election Day. Because every election, whether the primary or the general, is about a choice. The way to advance progressive values is to back the most progressive candidate who can win. That's not always easy to figure out, but we have to try.

But you do not advance progressive values by electing Republicans. Ever. You don't "punish" Democrats when you replace them with Republicans. In doing so, however, you do punish their constituents—in particular the vulnerable among them—who lose their voice in fighting for their interests. And, going farther, if the Republican who gets elected provides the margin of victory on a bill that passes by one vote, well, then that means everyone in the city, or state, or country is affected by that election. Electing a Republican will not move the Democrats to the left.  

So, let's review. Support the progressive candidate in Democratic primaries. In the general election, again, support the more progressive candidate. Almost always, this will be a Democrat in a contest against a Republican.

Here's the thing we also have to accept. If the progressive candidate loses in the primary, that means the more progressive ideas may not be as popular as we think they are among Democrats actually who vote. That sucks. It means we have to fight harder next time, after we vote for the better candidate in the general.

The reason why Tea Party candidates were able to win a bunch of primaries was—and this ain't rocket science—they got more votes than the less radical, establishment candidates. As I said above, they moved their party to the right not by withholding votes on Election Day, but by getting out their votes on Primary Day.

That's the lesson we progressives need to learn. And remember.

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  •  Tip Jar (283+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WeNeedKerry, DemInDuluth, Abby Hemani, shortmama, Bob Love, joedemocrat, Gale Hollis, oldpotsmuggler, RLMiller, GoGoGoEverton, BlackSheep1, Susan Gardner, moviemeister76, arizonablue, sfinx, Arilca Mockingbird, elwior, RJDixon74135, gizmo59, CenPhx, vivadissent, Jon Sitzman, theKgirls, rbaillie, terremoto, Caddis Fly, martinjedlicka, Sylv, Hammerhand, defluxion10, dawgflyer13, stellaluna, PsychoSavannah, voicemail, kenwards, BlueJessamine, SoCalSal, Aaa T Tudeattack, camlbacker, Laurence Lewis, Hey338Too, NBBooks, glitterlust, ratcityreprobate, howabout, Gowrie Gal, Heianshoka, edwardssl, Chitown Charlie, erratic, radical simplicity, Diogenes2008, sebastianguy99, clinging to hope, SaintC, greengemini, AZ Sphinx Moth, Dave in Northridge, monkeybrainpolitics, puakev, Keone Michaels, gramofsam1, TomP, paulex, virginislandsguy, raptavio, Amarente, nailbender, sulthernao, Lujane, middleagedhousewife, fb, jiffypop, belinda ridgewood, Radiowalla, Laurel in CA, Zorge, commonmass, Rhysling, peachcreek, vahana, Onomastic, tofumagoo, K S LaVida, BMScott, flowerfarmer, buckstop, pixxer, ModerateJosh, mumtaznepal, pcl07, jan4insight, 3rock, jck, dle2GA, Railfan, Byblis, princesspat, mungley, artr2, FG, Jeff Simpson, awcomeon, kevinpdx, Dolphin99, begone, wader, tegrat, twigg, duhban, Mimikatz, kalmoth, CalBearMom, lineatus, mconvente, Skyye, cfk, MBNYC, Lefty Coaster, caseylaw, Larsstephens, science nerd, tin woodswoman, thomask, where4art, WB Reeves, Denise Oliver Velez, rogerdaddy, Tony Situ, joejoe, La Gitane, stevenaxelrod, Matt Z, travelerxxx, Executive Odor, renbear, TheMeansAreTheEnd, bogbud, GayHillbilly, ATFILLINOIS, Egalitare, etherealfire, MartyM, cordgrass, rapala, LinSea, CDH in Brooklyn, Cedwyn, NCJim, Ahianne, jbob, Shelley99, GeorgeXVIII, Diana in NoVa, emmasnacker, richardvjohnson, Habitat Vic, samanthab, oortdust, annan, onionjim, blue in NC, Ohiodem1, Catesby, anodnhajo, Ohkwai, RandomNonviolence, raina, blueoregon, SottoVoce, Jake Williams, Eddie L, Hoghead99, Odysseus, Leftcandid, CwV, JWK, Byron from Denver, joe from Lowell, OIL GUY, psnyder, J Ash Bowie, J M F, Glen The Plumber, Cat Servant, CoolOnion, ewmorr, Lysis, Dr Swig Mcjigger, mattc129, hardart, Nag, catwho, OllieGarkey, 2thanks, blue aardvark, No one gets out alive, mallyroyal, enemy of the people, Fabienne, Pilotshark, Steveningen, MKinTN, profundo, markdd, deepeco, Penny GC, Terri, HeyMikey, madtowntj, surfbird007, Catte Nappe, tarkangi, doingbusinessas, most peculiar mama, mkor7, LilPeach, Aquarius40, Mostserene1, AgavePup, left of center, PatConnors, Marihilda, artmartin, justme, serendipityisabitch, NM Ray, humanmancalvin, LABobsterofAnaheim, doroma, Duccio, thanatokephaloides, hyperstation, papercut, Subterranean, KarenJG, orlbucfan, offgrid, el dorado gal, Airmid, roses, letsgetreal, CA Nana, slowbutsure, Sun Tzu, bethann, political mutt, cybersaur, dewtx, ladywithafan, molecularlevel, CookieThumper, opinionated, Yohannon, highacidity, Jim Riggs, randallt, psyched, aitchdee, livingthedream, Blue Bell Bookworm, ArthurPoet, TheLizardKing, Unbozo, rainmanjr, skyounkin, Zinman, Darth Stateworker, twocrows1023, icemilkcoffee, JugOPunch, rsmpdx, Arkenstark, Calamity Jean, GoldnI, matador, tomephil, SirReal, happy camper, srkp23, PSzymeczek, jodylanec, JuliathePoet
      •  Oh jeez! Why didn't we think of that... (24+ / 0-)

        You think we haven't been trying this for years?

        Where hare you been exactly?

        You think we can win primaries against the Democratic establishment machine, spending all that Wall Street money? But it's not just money. It's patronage, connections, favors corruption etc etc etc.

        Sorry. Been there done that. In fact, we've tried this multiple times right here at Daily Kos. You shoulda been there.

        •  Keep plugging away (37+ / 0-)

          When centrist Dems howl and scream, it means  our work is having an impact. All the arguing and complaining is absolute evidence that we're doing the right thing and making them respond.

          Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

          by Betty Pinson on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:06:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  more than plugging (13+ / 0-)

            is required.  We need to have street conversations as individuals with non-Democrats about the need for campaign finance reform.

            I am making a list of Senators who will back an amendment to the constitution on CU.  Currently I have 8.  We need 67 for the amendment

            we cannot raise more money than the Republicans. So we must outthink them

            by GideonAB on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:19:53 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Gideon - you also need a super majority (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Ian Reifowitz

              in the House.

              "let's talk about that"

              by VClib on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:02:16 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  sure (8+ / 0-)

                and action by the states.

                But I am starting with the Senate

                we cannot raise more money than the Republicans. So we must outthink them

                by GideonAB on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:07:02 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Wouldn't it help to un-gerrymander districts? (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Ian Reifowitz, AliceLeft, rabrock

                  Wouldn't it be worthwhile to reform the process of establishing districts - take it out of the hands of those to stand to gain by rigging it?

                  Wouldn't that help in every state? I mean, don't we want to start on a more level playing field?

                  The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any. -Alice Walker

                  by LibrErica on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:58:01 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  If we can grow the left we would not have to worry (5+ / 0-)

                    about that as much.  I myself have converted a couple of Republicans:))

                    This "Trickle Down" thing has turned out to be somebody pissing on my leg and tellin' me it's rainin'.

                    by swtexas on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:21:36 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  This is not a Left-Right issue, (0+ / 0-)

                      it's the Plutocrats vs the rest of US. Because of wealth aggregation at the very top, we can't possibly outspend our opponents. And the only way to change lobbying and enact finance reform is to ask those in power to relinquish the economic power that personally benefits them. Not going to happen. Especially since Dems are whoring for corporate money just as much as Republicans, though Obama seems to have tapped into medical & pharmaceutical corporations as well as the classic military profit machine that fed Republican administrations.

                      Basically, we can't take over the government either. They have too much technology and firepower on their side, and believe me, people still working in upper middle class jobs are NOT with us on this. Right now, the government can electronically disable any blog, any commenter, any writer, and any cell phone of it's choosing. They can stop communication between all cell phones used in a massive protest, or just selectively stop the protest leaders from tweeting, blogging, emailing or texting.

                      So what can we do? We can still "take back" our government, if we're willing to concede on some leftie points and create a massive third party in the middle that appeals to Independents.

                      Here's what we'd keep: Women's rights, gay rights, & workers rights with higher expectations of earnings for those willing to work, a return to the American Dream, so to speak. We'd keep or even expand Social Security and other self supporting programs.

                      Here's what we'd have to give up: intergenerational welfare, Social Security Insurance (SSI, not SSD - SSD is for those who paid in, SSI is more of a form of welfare), Social Security for spouses (earn your own entitlement), Section 8 single family housing (switch to communal living with dorm-like space and shared kitchen resources with work requirements and drug/cigarette/alcohol free requirements. We'd also have to let go of this huge push to placate illegal aliens and the Hispanic immigrant community. Tribalism is not healthy in a democracy. NAFTA , the 1986 illegal alien amnesty and noon-deportation policies have destroyed lower class wages, but now Obama wants to bring in millions of tech workers to complete the destruction of middle class wealth (the basis of our political power). We need to scale back immigration as a whole, get tough on hiring of illegal aliens and start retooling our out-of-work but already educated workforce for those high tech jobs that Google, Amazon, HP, IBM, Dell, Intel, automakers, etc. want to fill with foreign laborers who don't complain about unpaid overtime and lower wages. We need to bring back production in America by fighting the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) before the plutocracy traps us in a struggle of desperation wages for the next century. Our democracy won't survive that.

                      If we did this, we'd scoop up most of the moderates who think liberal welfare programs are a waste of money, we'd get all the intellectuals who know that corporate welfare is even worse, and we'd have sensible social policies for the two hot-button Republican fundraising issues (gay marriage and right to abortion). Then we could kick the insurance companies out of ObamaCare, set up the public option that we all HOPEd our Prez would give us, and move on to fully transparent government (no secret meetings, all donations public, corporations cannot act as people in politics).

                      Damn, I need a blog for the rest of my thoughts. But I know it's doable, and I think if we don't jump on this fast, we're going to lose our fledgling democracy within one generation.

                  •  Gerrymandering keeps as many Dems in power (0+ / 0-)

                    as GOP.  Depends on the state, of course.  But, here in Illinois for instance, there are several DEM congress critters who would not have a seat if it weren't for gerrymandering.

                    •  Dems vs Reps in gerrymandered districts (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Terry S, JJ In Illinois

                      I think when you look at the entire country, there are now more Rep gerrymandered districts.

                      However, this is the bedrock and based on a few conversations, which I recognize is not "research", I suspect that the sheer idiocy of gerrymandering is unattractive to a lot of voters.  Partly because it is patently tilting the playing field, and while people closely aligned with the Democratic or Republican party apparatus may support gerrymandering, ordinary voters are considerably less willing to accept unequal voting.  It is our elected officials and their big money supporters, coupled with some of the folks who run campaigns regularly, who keep gerrymandering in place.

                      I would take my chances on a fairly established district, and if the ideas I support don't win, I would still feel better than living in a state where gerrymandering three years ago was done with the full intention of eventually rolling back every possible legal right for minorities and women, not to mention cutting education, refusing to expand Medicaid, and creating more and more patronage jobs for the cronies of those who then took power.

                  •  We tried that in Florida. A citizens referendem. (0+ / 0-)

                    It passed but the courts had the ultimate say and republicans controled the legislature so we still ended up with gerrymandering.  

                  •  can't do that til 2020 n/t (0+ / 0-)
            •  Constitutional amendment is highly unlikely (7+ / 0-)

              It's a long, laborious, complicated process, easily exploited by the expenditure of billions in corporate backed advertising.

              There are other ways of enacting campaign finance reform and overturning CU that have a greater chance of succeeding.

              Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

              by Betty Pinson on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:39:15 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  And when progressives howl and scream (5+ / 0-)

            that means it's Tuesday.

            You never trust a millionaire/Quoting the sermon on the mount/I used to think I was not like them/But I'm beginning to have my doubts -- The Arcade Fire

            by tomjones on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:23:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  And the centrist Dems are in the midst of (14+ / 0-)

            a veritable epidemic of howling and screaming here! The Wreck List is full of it! We are not sufficiently loyal to our right-center president! We are not sufficiently loyal to our right-center DLC! We are not sufficiently loyal to the Washington Democratic establishment! We are not clapping loudly enough!

            "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

            by blue in NC on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:50:24 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  At the national level it is a numbers game (6+ / 0-)

              Maybe I am cynical, but i don't think politicians really have their own ideas anymore. Their positions are calculated on how much money they need to raise and how many votes they need to win. It is about the math, not any serious attachment to ideology or ideas.

              I do believe that some are more ethical than others, but I do think we would see more politicians taking truly progressive positions if they had confidence that the votes and the money are there.  In some states, the answer to that question is yes. In some states the answer is no. If there aren't enough progressive votes and contributions, they have to move their positions further to the center to make the math work.

              •  No, I actually agree with you in spite of the (5+ / 0-)

                negative tone of my comment.

                My point was that many folks here pen actual comments and diaries excoriating us liberals for daring to criticize the ConservaDems, even here in this relatively closed echo-chamber.

                We are slammed if we call them out for being "corporatist" or "center-right" or "in bed with Wall Street". We are told we don't belong here if we criticize President Obama for caving in to the banksters, if we criticize him for his "savvy businessmen" comment, if we call him out on the banksters, corporatists, and Washington ConservaDems he's appointed to cabinet and other administration positions.

                I still harbor the quaint notion that the "better" part of "more and better Democrats" holds at least some sway here, but there are regularly Wreck-Listed diarists for whom the word "Democrat" is sufficient, hold the "better", please.

                In spite of it, I am still pragmatic. We will have an election for US Senate in November that might well be generational in its significance. Sen. Kay Hagan is running for reelection against a clown-car of rightwing teabag loonies and sociopaths, one of whom will emerge from the Republican primary. Senator Hagan is a ConservaDem. I really don't like her all that much. She has never shown any inclination to advance a liberal agenda.

                But I will vote for her in November. There are enough idiots in North Carolina that her seat - and with it, our nation's future - are in real jeopardy. I will even campaign for her. But I will also criticize her, call her out, and do what one constituent can do (admittedly not very much) to move her own legislative Overton Window even a micron to the left.

                There are those here on dKos for whom voting for Sen. Hagan - and other Conservadems like her and President Obama and Hillary Clinton - is not enough. They expect us to praise her, cheerlead for her agenda, and clap louder. Ain't gonna happen.

                "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

                by blue in NC on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:15:14 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Well, yes (7+ / 0-)
                  We are slammed if we call them out for being "corporatist" or "center-right" or "in bed with Wall Street".
                  People often do react negatively when they are insulted and called names.

                  “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

                  by Catte Nappe on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:21:26 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  WE are saying the same thing (4+ / 0-)

                  you are pragmatic and understand that given the demographics of NC, Kay Hagan is about as progressive as we will get. Same with Arkansas and West Virginia.

                  The key, I think, is to win as many elections as possible. Not because we will get more progressive policies, but as a sort of firewall against the crazy.  Getting more progressive policies will involve getting those Dems in safe seats to push more progressive policies, educating the electorate and unfortunately, getting more money. The conservadems are never going to be a source of good policy, or reliable votes. They are only placeholders to prevent the alternative.

                  Unless of course we could manage to get citizens united overturned -- I have officially left reality now.

                  •  Agreed again! My point was just that, while (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    thanatokephaloides

                    I'll vote for a ConservaDem and even (as in the absolutely crucial situation of Sen. Hagan) campaign for one, I will still call her out on her rightwing and/or corporatist positions, both on this site and publicly.

                    The "Rahm Emanuel" wing of the party, well-represented here on Dkos, would say that to do so is

                    fucking retarded.
                    Oh, and isn't the thought of Citizens United being overturned a beautiful dream?

                    I wonder if, should HRC be elected in 2016, that dream could actually come true? Considering that the original case was about that HRC documentary shameless lie-filled propaganda hit-piece, it would be such sweet irony if the justice HRC appoints to replace, say, Scalia were to be the deciding vote to throw out Citizens United and restore our representative republic. :-)

                    "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

                    by blue in NC on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:27:51 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Excuse me but this is part of the problem (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      sviscusi, Merry Light

                      First you posit something called the "Rahm Emanuel wing of the party" which you assert is "well represented here on Kos". You then further assert that Emanuel's "fucking retarded" stupidity is an accurate summation of the view of the putative "RE wing."

                      Several problems with this. First is attributing a single political character to such critics, thus changing the focus from the substance of a criticism to the supposed politics of the critic. Very close to, if not in fact, a classic ad hom.

                      The reference to Emanuel's slur is more of the same. Unless a critic either quotes or directly cites Emanuel, the characterization has no basis. Certainly none for asserting that it is "well represented" here.

                      What it amounts to is a false dichotomy built on a series of assumptions. One is either a progressive, whatever your definition of that may be, or one is a Rahm Emanuel acolyte.

                      Further, this line of thought provides a rationale for dismissing any criticism of supposedly "progressive" opinions out of hand. Differing opinions are automatically labeled as the propaganda of an opposing political faction and anyone voicing such is assumed to be and labeled as a "corporatist", "apologist for the status quo", a member of the "Rahm Emanuel wing" or a host of far more defamatory epithets.

                      I have personal experience of this having been a stone radical throughout my adult life. Imagine my surprise when the first time I dissented from an ostensibly "progressive" opinion here I was deluge with accusations of being a corporate stooge, etc. My favorite was the commenter who claimed my use of the term "the Left" while making a general criticism "proved" that I was a Right Winger.

                      Nothing human is alien to me.

                      by WB Reeves on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 03:27:23 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  In West Virginia (0+ / 0-)

                    In West Virginia our governor is a democrat.  Both US senators are democrats.  The majority of our legislature are democrats.  Have you seen the havoc that's been raised here?  Our mountains are still being blown up, our rivers arevstill being poisoned.  It has made not one iota of difference that democrats are in charge.  I will NEVER vote for a corporate party again.  Never.

        •  Yeah, it's all over Eeyore (13+ / 0-)

          We should just stay home and do nothing...

          Or, better yet

          Become anonymous bloggers on a website and spend our day dragging everyone else down with us.

          /snark

          If you have a plan I would love to hear it...

          But if you don't, have the decency to follow the old meme, "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all."

          -Thanks

          You can get animals addicted to a harmful substance, you can dissect their brains, but you throw their own feces back at them, and suddenly you're unprofessional. -Amy Farrah Fowler/The Big Bang Theory -7.50, -5.03

          by dawgflyer13 on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:06:28 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  lets all sing along (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            YucatanMan, TracieLynn, mightymouse

            “Industry does everything they can and gets away with it almost all the time, whether it’s the coal industry, not the subject of this hearing, or water or whatever. They will cut corners, and they will get away with it. " Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D, WVa

            by FishOutofWater on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:11:49 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Actually (14+ / 0-)

            I have it on good authority that Obama decided to endorse gay marriage because of a comment I made in a diary about cats which didn't even make the rec list. Behold, the power of blogging!*

            *citation needed.

            You never trust a millionaire/Quoting the sermon on the mount/I used to think I was not like them/But I'm beginning to have my doubts -- The Arcade Fire

            by tomjones on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:26:51 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  It's not over (48+ / 0-)

            I'm sorry man. maybe I shouldn't be so sarcastic. But I'm tired and it's late, and Daily Kos has been really annoying today.

            What I was actually saying is that, one, this is not a new concept. We've been trying to primary in so-called "better" Democrats for generations now. It's doesn't work.

            We're outspent, out machined, and just shut out.

            Second, and I forgot to mention earlier because I was pulled away, is that we can't mimic the friggin Tea Party.

            The Tea Party was an operation orchestrated by billionaires. It wasn't a genuine grass roots movement. It didn't really even exist for the first year.

            It was a payed for, billionaire produced TV show.

            I'm sorry I get so frustrated. But this kind of silliness just starts to piss me off after awhile.

            There is, and has always been, only one way to get a better Democratic party. And that is to make them be better.

            The best Democratic party we've ever had was in 1935 when they passed the many, major reforms that would be the New Deal.

            It was this Democratic party that created the Reign of the Democrats, a period that lasted almost 70 years, give or take a few elections.

            How did we get this great Democratic party that worked for so many and created a Democratic hegemony that lasted 70 years?

            Did we give them all the love and support they needed, thereby melting their hearts, and making them do good? Did we primary them in, knowuing that they would be the ones, because, the voters of 1932 were such good judges of character?

            No. The way we got the best Democratic party ever was by threatening them that if they didn't pass some serious, meaningful, New Deal effing reform, we were going to throw their sorry asses out into the streets.

            Oh, and we meant it too. The voters were prepared to split the ticket and cost FDR his 1936 re-election. And they didn't care who came into office. People tried the boogey man argument. "But but bu...the Republicans could win."

            It didn't work. The people wisely understood that if you let the party take you for granted, screw you over, and just pretend to work in your favor, you will never get what you want.

            And they also understood that you would only have to throw them out once. And from then on, no one will take you for fucking granted ever again.

            But it didn't even come to that.

            FDR, the Democrats, the ruling establishment, all became so afraid that the reforms the people demanded sailed right through. It was like butter.

            FDR didn't even want to sign the Social Security Act. But doing so gave him FOUR terms in office. If he hadn't died, he would have got five.

            The people who tell you that the way to support the Democratic party, the way to beat Republicans, is to demand nothing, support everything, cheer lead and give yourselves blindly, are leading us to weakness and failure.

            The way to grow the Democratic party, to win more elections, and most importantly, get good policies that help the most people instead of helping Wall Street assholes, is to DEMAND a better Democratic party.

            There's an old saying. There are carrots, and there are sticks. Politicians aren't horses. They'll just eat all your fucking carrots, and then shit in your yard.

          •  nothing....nothing....nothing....nothing..... (0+ / 0-)

            If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

            by CwV on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:43:35 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  The Plan (0+ / 0-)

            The plan is this:  don't vote for either major party and don't decide to not vote.  If you decide to not vote, nobody will know why (outside of your circle), and nobody will care.  The major parties will take the lack of opposition as a mandate.  Encourage everyone you know to vote third party.  Votes cast for third parties can be quantified.  They can show the opposition to current/proposed policies of the major parties.  A significant third party vote (even if it's not for the same third party) can show the dissatisfaction of the electorate, forcing the major parties to begin to pay attention.

        •  Not everybody is as old as you and I (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          3rock, WB Reeves

          Things change. If you've been there and done that and don't want to try, fine.

          I'm from the Elizabeth Warren wing of the Democratic Party

          by voicemail on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:07:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  On many fronts the progressive left has not (16+ / 0-)

          been willing to take kamakazi-like actions like the Tea Party. The progressives will not aggressively primary incumbents unlike the Tea Party who does it routinely even when it puts safe seats at risk. It's the core of the Tea Party's power.  

          Here is another real example. The CPC stated that it would not support the ACA without a public option. They drew a line in the sand. When it really counted they folded like a cheap lawn chair. Contrast that to Democrat Bart Stupak who had ten unnamed votes that would not vote in favor of the ACA without stronger anti-abortion language, beefing up the Hyde Amendment. In the end the Speaker and the President accommodated Stupak because when he drew a line in the sand, he meant it.  I didn't support Stupak's position, but when every vote counts those who will not bend have the power.  

          "let's talk about that"

          by VClib on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:01:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  The Tea Party did it. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ahianne

          Yes they had GOP help when they started, but then they kept going and winning even after the establishment wanted them to lose.

          “The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day.” Gloria Steinem

          by ahumbleopinion on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:13:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  The Working Families Party in New York State (13+ / 0-)

          Has been running progressive candidates in democratic primaries and winning. NYS Attourney General Eric Schniederman is a good example of this. He beat a democratic party leader's pick in the primary with grass roots backing from the working families party. He is still working closely with them to bring progressive ideas into state policy. See this NEWS ARTICLE

        •  Not helped by candidates who remain mum. (6+ / 0-)

          The Dem candidates up here continue to refuse to take policy positions except to make generalizations that are worthless.

          As long as we let candidates get away with mealy-mouthed platitudes rather than specific policy positions (and, no; "I support the middle class" is not any more specific than "I don't eat babies" is.), then we will not make progress.

          So, the double-barreled approach to primary the right wing Dems and withhold votes if they win is called for.

          •  Tell me about it (0+ / 0-)

            I just got an e-mail in the last half-hour from my rep Sean Maloney, saying how he opposes fracking in our district...until it is proven safe. Who's going to be doing the proving? He doesn't say.

            Hige sceal þe heardra, heorte þe cenre, mod sceal þe mare, þe ure mægen lytlað

            by milkbone on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:39:47 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  The Tea Party did it. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ian Reifowitz

          They are not geniuses. I suspect we could do it too. It  won't be easy, but it is doable.

          Patronage? This was a huge factor growing up in Chicago under the Daley machine - today, not so much..Rahm still pays the game to a minor extent, but the huge Federal investigation of Daley Junior, pretty much ended the large scale use of patronage.

          If patronage concerns you, perhaps its been a long time since you campaigned for someone.

          Here's my take on it - the revolution will not be blogged, it has to be slogged. - Deoliver47

          by OIL GUY on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:13:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Bottom Line, as always: Campaign Finance Reform (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ian Reifowitz, wilywascal

          To wit:

          ..the Democratic establishment machine, spending all that Wall Street money?
          It's the answer that's always smack in front of us yet it's rarely presented. Take their money away, insert publicly financed campaigns and you get rid of on-the-take politicos and perhaps get people actually interested in governing, save billions because lobbyists are suddenly neutered and gives the common Joe or Josephine a chance to make it to DC (or state or town) on merit.

          It's difficult, but really, isn't it the one viable way and shouldn't it be mentioned each and every time "Wall Street money" is used as an excuse? Get the meme going.

          Human rights, democracy and peace are a single entity. When one disintegrates, they all disintegrate... Daisaku Ikeda

          by Take a Hard Left on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:57:40 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  It is Really Simple (0+ / 0-)

          James, perhaps you and your colleagues have tried this in the past - doesn't mean it is foolish to try again.

          Elizabeth Warren won against the odds and the Tea Party money.

          And the younger generations know how to use the net in a way we haven't seen it applied before.

          Don't forget about the documentaries on Income Inequality and it's impact.

          And, yes, we do need to vocally challenge Fox News and also ABC, NBC, CBS who have use the airways as a trust from the citizens and in exchange are supposed to be presenting balanced views.    We know this doesn't happen and we need to launch campaigns against them.

          I do believe alternative media (My fav indy show is Democracy NOW) is also needed, but to get into the mainstream, we need to make the classic networks air progressive issues.

          We are all in agreement.    As Churchill said:  Never Never Never give up.    

          If you do, they automatically win.  

        •  Diarist ignores the fact (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, Don midwest, simple serf, pennyck

          that the tea party is an artificial construct funded nearly entirely by right wing billionaire money. If there ever was a definition of an AstroTurf movement this is it. Often it is compared to the very real leftist organically   created OWS movement which was lambasted for not having proper funding or falling lock step behind the establishment. The movement was crushed by the Democratic Party, and entrenched powers. This diary is naïveté and condescending to people who have been organizing for 10 years plus. Gee whiz. Wish I knew it was that simple. Got a billion dollars?

          “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

          by Tool on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 12:11:31 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Seek recognition all over of this one point (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          pennyck

          The R or D beside the name do not matter.  If the candidate takes corporate money, and votes along corporate lines he/she is our enemy. I would rather have a rabid tea party candidate, if he was willing that to bite the corporatist hands that feed him (doesn't happen much I'll give you) rather than the most liberal and "progressive" corporatist democratic candidate.

          Also we must smash through the socialist, communist and anarchist stigma.  For in those ideals is where any real Left will be found if it is to do any more that apply social band-aids.

      •  Ian - I think you are correct on this (7+ / 0-)

        I am not sure it's an approach I support, but there is absolutely no doubt that the Tea Party wing of the GOP has real leverage (well beyond its numbers) because they will run Tea Party candidates against incumbents, even when it puts safe seats in the House and Senate at risk. That has scared the living hell out of Republican members of Congress.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:45:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Ian I disagree (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        divineorder, saanvik, Tool
        The reason why Tea Party candidates were able to win a bunch of primaries was.....
        They LIED and confused the people with "death panels", "birth certificate", "socialism", "Communism"...
        and NOW they laud a Communist president over Pres. Obama. sigh

        "Tax cuts for the 1% create jobs." -- Republicans, HAHAHA - in China

        by MartyM on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:00:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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

      ...the mainstream media is fully owned by the oligarchy.  It's a real uphill battle.

  •  Start with the best. Work down the list. Avoid (10+ / 0-)

    the worst.

    There can be no protection locally if we're content to ignore the fact that there are no controls globally.

    by oldpotsmuggler on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:24:54 PM PDT

    •  The best this cycle is Shenna Bellows, ME Sen; (28+ / 0-)

      she may be the best so far this century, as far as I'm concerned! She's the living embodiment of what Ian is promoting here, and she's got a hell of a shot at Collins.

      I was at a fundraiser for her the other night and was totally blown away.  She started by talking about the plight of the lower middle class and poor (when do you hear that from any pol these days?), and she was scintillating, which is no small feat with that subject matter.  Then she went on to seamlessly cover all the major issues that we must deal with on an emergent basis right now: from dealing seriously with climate change to getting big money out of politics to reining in the security state, to a dozen other brilliantly framed positions, she was engaging, prepared, knowledgeable, charming - and she exudes integrity.

      I'm fully convinced that she is in Warren's league, maybe  even a bit stronger.  She's the best genuinely liberal candidate I've ever seen or met.  

      Now, I'm no Pollyanna when it comes to the daunting nature of any candidacy that dares to take on Collins (I worked on the Pingree campaign in '02), but this young woman has all the hallmarks of a groundbreaking politician, from her life story to her career path, to her commitment to real democracy; she can beat Joe Liebermans BFF, Susan Collins because she is the kind of leader that only comes every other generation or so. I know she has the ability and the character to do it. If Collins is foolish enough to debate her, it will be a cakewalk for Shenna.

      She should be a keynote speaker at NN14, and would be an excellent choice as the closing speaker, in fact. Here's her website. Read it and get blown away, but know that in person she's as formidable as anyone you'll ever encounter in politics.

      She outraised Collins in the last quarter, I shit you not, like a bolt out of the blue. And she has vowed not to take any money from any fossil fuel corps or from any banks that led us into the Great Recession.  Most of her donations are small, like those that this site engenders.  She's a true grassroots pol, a populist in the very best sense of the word.

      I encourage everyone here to take some time to get to know her and, if you come away impressed, give her some money and tell your friends.  It will be the best political investment you can make this cycle, I'm convinced.

      And someone in the NN14 organizing group, for crissake, invite her to speak.  It would also be great if MB or someone could interview her and maybe set up a Q&A with her here.  

      Here's her campaign video. Watch it.

      "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi, 6/30/07 // "Succeed?" At what?

      by nailbender on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:05:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Very well done! Completely positive diary. (39+ / 0-)

    This in particular:

    But you do not advance progressive values by electing Republicans. Ever. You don't 'punish' Democrats when you replace them with Republicans. In doing so, however, you do punish their constituents—in particular the vulnerable among them—who lose their voice in fighting for their interests. And, going farther, if the Republican who gets elected provides the margin of victory on a bill that passes by one vote, well, then that means everyone in the city, or state, or country is affected by that election. Electing a Republican will not move the Democrats to the left.  

    So, let's review. Support the progressive candidate in Democratic primaries. In the general election, again, support the more progressive candidate. Almost always, this will be a Democrat in a contest against a Republican.

    Here's the thing we also have to accept. If the progressive candidate loses in the primary,  that means the more progressive ideas may not be as popular as we think they are among Democrats actually who vote. That sucks. It means we have to fight harder next time, after we vote for the better candidate in the general.

    While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

    by GoGoGoEverton on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:26:11 PM PDT

  •  Apologies, but I've got to call it a night. (22+ / 0-)

    I hope my long record of almost always engaging with comments will give me a pass here. I'm exhausted after a long day and then writing a spontaneous post. I need some family time.

    But I'll be back to read and reply in the AM. Thanks for stopping by.

  •  I'd add something though (46+ / 0-)

    Great stuff, but I think there are two points to make in line with what you're preaching here.

    You say: "If the progressive candidate loses in the primary,  that means the more progressive ideas may not be as popular as we think they are among Democrats actually who vote."

    I'd say: "If the progressive candidate loses in the primary,  that means the more progressive ideas may not be as popular as we think they are among Democrats actually who vote... in that district, right now."

    And my second point ties in with that one: It's up to us to make each district more open and embracing of progressive ideas. We need to fertilize the soil, plant the seed. Strong progressive messages—focused on making conditions better for all Americans, not just the 1%—will eventually bear fruit. Maybe not this cycle. Maybe not even the next cycle. But eventually, if strong progressive messages are heard, day in and day out, in non-election years, the message will get through. And real progressive candidates will start reaping the results.

  •  Necessary But Not the Whole Tea Party Story. (34+ / 0-)

    Because of billionaire power, the RW advances to a large extent during offyear elections especially at the state and local levels.

    Progressives have to find a way to do that absent both billionaire and party support, and lacking any populist institution analogous to evangelical Christianity.

    Not impossible but a very tall order.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:30:58 PM PDT

    •  Correct. The Tea Party was a creation of the (27+ / 0-)

      ultra-wealthy in the first place.

      They also had free and extensive coverage on a prominent national news network (I said prominent, not good), as The Daily Show mocked when FOX News cut away to a Tea Party rally with... zero participants.

      0.  None.  Nada.

      Meanwhile, left and populist protests largely get ignored even when there are tens or hundreds of thousands of people.  (Why Occupy had to camp out.)

      Not saying we can't do it, but we need a full understanding of the dynamics at work.

      © cai Visit 350.org to join the fight against global warming.

      by cai on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:49:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This is true, and also note (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        pennyck

        ...how much free publicity the D and R candidates get from the mainstream news media in an election year. It's like they can barely fart without the media talking about it, and then asking their D or R opponent for his response, and then getting some pundit to talk about them both... and every time the media fawns over them their names get pounded into your head.

        Again.
        Again.
        Again.
        Again.

        Meanwhile, qualified independent and third-party candidates (meaning "qualified to run", but sometimes also qualified to serve in office) barely get a mention. Ask voters on election day if they considered any of them and the usual answer will be "who's that?" In future elections, the media will use the excuse that nobody cares about the alternate candidates they won't talk about to justify not talking about them.

        None of this is a coincidence.

    •  Agreed: Cannot Take Tea Party Approach (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder, AoT, Ian Reifowitz, pennyck

      It is clear: the Tea Party had the huge influence on the republicans because they had a lot of money from wealthy sponsors.  It is fair to say that money bought those early primary that put the Tea Party on the electoral map

      And above all, money moves politicians to action.  

      Want to get the attention of the Democratic Party?  The method is simple and obvious: shower the party with money.

      This is problematic in two ways.  1) The are no large financial interests that have a stake in progressive causes like safeguarding voting rights, or keeping religion out of science classes.  2) Using money to make politicians dance to your tune is inherently corrupting and has already destroyed the democratic process in American politics.

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

      by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:28:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  meaningless slogan (26+ / 0-)

    Republicans: We will lower your taxes.
    Democrats: We, um, support policies that encourage a fairer distribution of growth and....and....working man....party of FDR....um....
    http://www.motherjones.com/....
    There are two problems with the Democratic approach. First, it's too abstract to appeal to anyone. Second, it's not true anyway. Democrats simply don't consistently support concrete policies that help the broad working and middle classes. Half of them voted for the bankruptcy bill of 2005. They've done virtually nothing to stem the growth of monopolies and next to nothing to improve consumer protection in visible ways. They don't do anything for labor. They're soft on protecting Social Security. They bailed out the banks but refused to bail out underwater homeowners. Hell, they can't even agree to kill the carried interest loophole, a populist favorite if ever there was one.

    Sure, Democrats do plenty for the poor. They support increases in the EITC and the minimum wage. They support Medicaid expansion. They passed Obamacare. They support pre-K for vulnerable populations. They expanded CHIP. But virtually none of this really benefits the working or middle classes except at the margins.

    I sing praises in the church of nonsense, but in my heart I'm still an atheist, demanding sense of all things.

    by jbou on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:36:14 PM PDT

  •  Why not join Progressive Democrats of America? (17+ / 0-)

    http://www.pdamerica.org/

    We seek to build a party and government controlled by citizens, not corporate elites-with policies that serve the broad public interest, not just private interests.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:42:33 PM PDT

  •  What a strange perspective. The onus for (5+ / 0-)

    moving the party is not on the base.  The party machine must move to the left if it wants the votes of Dems who are unhappy with the leadership's rightward move.

  •  We'll get the Koch Bros to fund us. (16+ / 0-)

    Or find other billionaires who strongly support social justice.

    Right.

    The Tea Party wouldn't exist without billionaires funding it.

    I'm still waiting for my Soros check.

    “Industry does everything they can and gets away with it almost all the time, whether it’s the coal industry, not the subject of this hearing, or water or whatever. They will cut corners, and they will get away with it. " Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D, WVa

    by FishOutofWater on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:51:05 PM PDT

  •  We're doing it now! (15+ / 0-)

    No one has yet declared themselves a candidate, so we're dong the standard activities - discussing key primariy issues and talking about possible candidates to carry them forward.

    Two strong possibilities are Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, with others also talking about Ron Wyden.

    In case you hadn't noticed, these discussions are causing some folks here to get angry.  Oh well,  thats politics. This is how we do it.;-).

    So, yep, we've already started working on it! Thanks for the encouragement!

    Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

    by Betty Pinson on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:54:13 PM PDT

    •  I hadn't really noticed people getting angry about (10+ / 0-)

      discussing Warren or Sanders.  I've seen discussions where some people say we should believe Warren when she says she isn't running.  Or where they say Sanders should run in the primary as a democrat so as not to be a spoiler in the general.  I've even seen people who've had the opinion that Warren and Sanders are not as wonderful of candidates as others believe.  I've even seen people say that Warren and Sanders would disappoint the disappointed also--if they were elected.  But I've never seen anyone angry about the discussion of these two as possible candidates.  Disagreement isn't anger.  Pointing out facts or having different opinions isn't anger.  So by all means lets continue these discussions.  Lets just not see anger when others just mean to disagree.

      "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

      by stellaluna on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:10:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Um, yes, some here are very angry (7+ / 0-)

        anytime a diary is written in support of Elizabeth Warren. Kos himself wrote a diary recently telling everyone to get behind HRC and stop talking about other possible candidates.

        Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

        by Betty Pinson on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:14:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I saw Kos' diary on Warren not running. (14+ / 0-)

          And I saw the one saying that HRC is going to be the nominated candidate.  I still think they were opinions.  Probably pretty close to correct opinions.  But I didn't see any anger.  I think we can agree or disagree as to whether Kos is right without characterizing it as anger.  But even more importantly, I think, if he is right (that Warren isn't running and that HRC will be the candidate) we need to talk about strategies for getting progressive ideas into her platform.  It's not unrealistic to say that the time for influencing the Presidential democratic candidate in a primary is long passed.  We really are probably too late to run anyone who has a chance of being the candidate.  So we need to talk about running someone who can help get progressive values into the discussion.  Sanders in the primary could do that.  Or we need to figure out ways to get HRC to pay attention to the most important of our progressive values.  But to fight about how unfair it is that we are stuck with HRC, or how hopeless it is, or to get into arguments with each other about how it ought not be the way it is, isn't productive.  But that still doesn't mean people get angry when they talk about it.  I think they do get angry when they are accused of not wanting progressive policy just because  they recognize that HRC is the likely candidate.

          "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

          by stellaluna on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:32:21 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Make sure "CAKE" is printed on the box? (4+ / 0-)

            "But even more importantly, I think, if he is right (that Warren isn't running and that HRC will be the candidate) we need to talk about strategies for getting progressive ideas into her platform."

            Oh, fer chrissakes, it doesn't matter what's in the platform. What matters is what the candidate will do if elected.

            Take a look at the Democratic Party platform we have right now and ask yourself just how faithful the party has been to it:

            We believe every American deserves a secure, healthy, and dignified retirement. America's seniors have earned their Medicare and Social Security through a lifetime of hard work and personal responsibility. President Obama is committed to preserving that promise for this and future generations. During their working years, Americans contribute to Social Security in exchange for a promise that they will receive an income in retirement. Unlike those in the other party, we will find a solution to protect Social Security for future generations.
            President Obama and the Democrats are committed to working with states and communities so they have the flexibility and resources they need to improve elementary and secondary education in a way that works best for students. . . . We Democrats honor our nation's teachers, who do a heroic job for their students every day. If we want high-quality education for all our kids, we must listen to the people who are on the front lines.
            [T]he President and the Democratic Party believe in the right to organize and in supporting America's workers with strong labor laws. . . . Democrats believe that the right to organize and collectively bargain is a fundamental American value; every American should have a voice on the job and a chance to negotiate for a fair day's pay after a hard day's work. We will continue to fight for the right of all workers to organize and join a union.
            We will not back down from making sure an oil company can't take the same reckless actions that led to the kind of oil spill we saw in the Gulf of Mexico two years ago. We will not back down from protecting our kids from toxic mercury pollution, or making sure that our food is safe and our water is clean.
            The failed policies of the past decade and hands-off approach toward the excesses of the financial industry helped create the deepest economic catastrophe since the Great Depression. . . . Today Democrats are holding Wall Street accountable, bringing new transparency to financial markets, and ending taxpayer-funded bank bailouts and the era of "too big to fail." . . . Mitt Romney and his allies in Congress . . . would roll back financial reform and let Wall Street write its own rules again.
            We are committed to the most open, efficient, and accountable government in history, and we believe that government is more accountable when it is transparent.
            We support campaign finance reform, by constitutional amendment if necessary. . . . President Obama and the Democrats are fighting to reduce the influence of money in politics, and holding Congress to higher conflict-of-interest standards.
            We know that global climate change is one of the biggest threats of this generation—an economic, environmental, and national security catastrophe in the making. We affirm the science of climate change [and] commit to significantly reducing the pollution that causes climate change. . . . Our goal is an effective, international effort in which all major economies commit to reduce their emissions . . . .
            America's leadership extends beyond our economic prosperity and military might—it is also rooted in our enduring commitment to advancing a core set of universal values. These include an individual's freedom to speak their mind, assemble without fear, have access to information, worship as they please, and choose their own leaders. They also include dignity, tolerance, and equality among all people, and the fair and equitable administration of justice. . . . We must always seek to uphold these values at home, not just when it is easy, but, more importantly, when it is hard. Advancing our interests may involve new actions and policies to confront threats like terrorism, but the President and the Democratic Party believe these practices must always be in line with our Constitution, preserve our people's privacy and civil liberties, and withstand the checks and balances that have served us so well. . . .  As we continue to perfect our union here at home, setting an example for others to follow, we will also continue to champion universal rights abroad.

            "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

            by Geenius at Wrok on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:29:23 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You are so right, I misspoke. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Ian Reifowitz

              We need to get progressive policy enacted.  HRC, Warren and Sanders combined serving as a Presidential triumvirate can't do that.  To do that we have to win the house, the senate and the state houses.  We need the judiciary too for those States that don't elect progressives.

              The focus on Presidential politics as being the savior or bogeyman for progressives is just wrong-headed.  Instead of complaining about not having any real choices in 2016 we need to be out in the street now, before the 2014 election.  This thread was about Sanders and Warren and whether or not people get angry when they are mentioned as candidates.  And I don't think they do.  I think people do get frustrated with the very simplistic political opinion that the left has been sold out because the name at the top of the ticket isn't sufficiently liberal.  But angry, no.  Because they see all of that whining as a waste of time.

              "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

              by stellaluna on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:48:18 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  It's not that the name at the top of the ticket (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                greenbastard, pennyck, Tool

                isn't sufficiently liberal.

                It's that not only is the name at the top of the ticket sufficiently committed to enacting the liberal policies that he has included in his platform, a large portion of the party, including members of the party's leadership, don't seem particularly effective at or interested in getting those policies enacted either. Meanwhile, a small faction of the party actively undermines those policies, and the leadership seems to do nothing about it.

                If the party has no interest in getting certain policies enacted, why does it include them in the platform?

                "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

                by Geenius at Wrok on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:47:29 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  right (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Tool

                  all very frustrating.

                  i think the leadership is stuck in the "center right nation" past.

                  we NEED to have the next gen. of leadership be progressives.
                  that takes discipline.

                  i think in this regard the number of times we have been burned is not relevant to what the future holds unless we allow it be.

                  •  Counting on the triumph (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    pennyck

                    of HOPE over experience?

                    "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

                    by Geenius at Wrok on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 03:44:20 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

        •  I'm not at all angry about (4+ / 0-)

          the idea of Warren running, in fact I'd be dancing in the streets if she did. But she isn't, and she has said so.

          Given how reluctant she was even to run for Senate, the chances of us convincing her to run for President are subatomic. But if trying is how you choose to use your time and energy, I won't try to stop you.

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:10:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  You're welcome, and thank you for that comment. (0+ / 0-)

      You're absolutely right. I still haven't given up hope on Warren getting into the primary for Pres.

    •  Oh god, not Wyden (0+ / 0-)

      Have you seen the way he manages to say nothing substantive about the TPP every time he's asked? He's got too much power already, considering that he doesn't seem to know what to do with it. Time to reach for the eject button.

  •  Thank you Ian. (12+ / 0-)

    Wonderful, positive, assured prose with a perfectly apropos message for our current situation (and more broadly, the challenges we often face).

    Someone - I forget whom - has the signature:  Purity is for primaries.  Our worst are better than their best.  I agree with them, and you, fully.

    Or in the manual of the US military - and, oddly enough, T-mobile - "Team Together, Team Apart."  That is to say, behind closed doors, we debate vigorously and defend our ideas to our last breath.  Then, once the decision is made by majority vote, we fall in and support the decision.  Like it or not.

    There's an old saying:  "Democrats fall in love.  Republicans fall in line."

    I'll readily say I think it sucks that we may have to "fall in line" and vote for a candidate whom we don't feel truly represents progressive values and policies.  But if said candidate is the alternative to a repressive, plutocratic, theocratic, authoritarian GOP candidate, I'll pull the lever for "D" with a smile and with pride.

    We can't win if we cut our own legs out from under ourselves.

    Thank you for entering the debate with this great perspective!

  •  Overly simplistic (9+ / 0-)

    Should have an addendum: Support the most progressive candidate who can win.

    TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D)

    by Le Champignon on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:03:03 PM PDT

    •  Really? (4+ / 0-)

      “Industry does everything they can and gets away with it almost all the time, whether it’s the coal industry, not the subject of this hearing, or water or whatever. They will cut corners, and they will get away with it. " Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D, WVa

      by FishOutofWater on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:17:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Should we devote resources to candidates (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Onomastic, Aquarius40, doroma

        who cannot win? Setting yourself up to lose is a strange strategy. Or is it one of those moral victories that we get to feel good about while watching another Repub destroy?

        While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

        by GoGoGoEverton on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:59:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I prefer the wonky detailed demographic diaries (8+ / 0-)

          that don't make the rec list but provides me with information and ideas that make me think. This diary is written with the level of naivety I would expect from a high school freshman.

          Sometimes you have to run and lose before you can win. Wendy Davis comes to mind. Even if she doesn't win the first time she runs for governor the voter registration and the organization will help Dems overall.

          “Industry does everything they can and gets away with it almost all the time, whether it’s the coal industry, not the subject of this hearing, or water or whatever. They will cut corners, and they will get away with it. " Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D, WVa

          by FishOutofWater on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:21:40 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Agree (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mightymouse, divineorder

            Wendy Davis also has coat tails which will help downstream dems in certain districts.  If the Dems were serious about going progressive they would put resources into building a Democratic Party presence even in the reddest towns and states.  We should be running progressive candidates in every school board and dog catcher race in the country, just to build candidate name recognition and get ideas in front of people.  

    •  Do you remember HERE (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JesseCW, samanthab, AoT, Ian Reifowitz

        on this site how many dissed Elizabeth Warren as unwinable? Notice spelling on unwinable. What in the hell is unwinnable? Le correct way to spell?

      March AGAINST monsatanOHagentorange 3/25/13 a time warp

      by 3rock on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:31:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  ...thus moving everything to the right. (0+ / 0-)

      "Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana." --Townes Van Zandt

      by Bisbonian on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 02:04:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's the exact qualifier that is so subjective (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, Ian Reifowitz

      that it is inevitably used by the Serious Wing of the Dems against progressives.  

      Why is no one ever heard to say, "Support the most centrist candidate who can win"?

      Look at the far right extremists who hold office, and then tell me with a straight face that we can't elect better people by uniting behind good candidates with a grassroots effort that can defeat any amount of TV money.  Some of those districts--think rural--may need progressives that don't pass every litmus test issue for us, but who can speak to those residents effectively.

      I'll agree with your premise in that there are some districts that are currently so uncompetitive that no Dem will have a chance to win this cycle, or even next.  But over time, even the reddest districts can be won by a progressive candidate & campaign with real integrity that mobilizes people & loudly proclaims the most important mesages against the will of money.  There are no guarantees, but the persistent effort--the 50 state strategy--pays off eventually.  

      It's time to start letting sleeping dinosaurs lie, lest we join them in extinction by our consumption of them.

      by Leftcandid on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:59:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We can't (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Aquarius40, Ian Reifowitz, dizzydean

        You do not run progressives in red states. They lose. You run progressives in blue states. They win.

        This is not rocket science, people. Most districts are not competitive for progressives. We are not the majority - and neither are conservatives. We are, at best, a plurality, and even then only with millennials. America writ large has a plurality of self-described conservatives. Do you really think these people are going to vote for a progressive?

        I'm frankly tired of pie-in-the-sky outlooks about progressives suddenly winning in districts that are blood red. It doesn't work that way.

        As an aside, the 50 state strategy does not say "run progressives everywhere". It says run democrats everywhere. We won big in 2006/2008 because we ran centrist democrats in places that would elect a centrist democrat. That's why our majority in the House and Senate was so brittle - we had to convince conservadems to go with the President. That wasn't always possible, and we pushed them too far. 2010 was the result.

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

        by Le Champignon on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:06:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You can run an economically progressive, socially (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, Ian Reifowitz, Tool

          moerate/quiet candidate in some (not all!) red districts and win.  Red state/rural district voters are not pro-Wall Street, even if they have absorbed much conservative messaging that is pro-Wall Street.  We have to be able to stomach economic progressives who aren't as vocal on issues like abortion & civil rights as we'd otherwise prefer.  They are required to make the necessary progress, & one way to get them in is in places neglected by the national party's priorities.

          We have to work on making inroads everywhere.  When Dean said get the votes of guys with confederate flags on their pickups, he was right, even if some just can't bring themselves to believe it, let alone talk to Those People.  

          Centrism isn't popular; it's what we're told is popular.  A populist message is unpopular with centrists, but it can win with sufficient grassroots effort.  Far from pie-in-the-sky, the proper approach--realistic about the present, AND goal-oriented re: the future--is always called for, everywhere.  Sure, there are financial priorities, but no place should be left to fester.  

          I must completely disagree with your 2010 diagnosis.  We didn't push hard enough on the conservatives.  We shuold have hammered them into submission, but the White House's preemptive concession strategy gave the Tea Party life, & our base a case of apathy.  If we had better results, we would've gotten far more votes.  We didn't attack, because as usual our party can't bring itself to believe it's in a war.

          It's time to start letting sleeping dinosaurs lie, lest we join them in extinction by our consumption of them.

          by Leftcandid on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:27:57 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I've said it before, but educating folks about (9+ / 0-)

    what progressive/liberal values are is more important than primarying anyone.  

    Our voter base is mixed.  The GOP's is not.  We rely on independents who who get sucked into the whole "they're both equally at fault" or "why can't they just work together" bullshit, without seeing that the GOP is off the fucking deep end.  

    It really comes down to a need for a new Narodnik kind of movement--a going to the people effort, that includes door-to-door stuff like the Mormons do as well as the use of social media.   We have to make our base and indy fellow travelers become more in tune with what we are about.  We also should do outreach to groups, including religiously-based ones--to welcome them into the fold in the name of meeting our objectives.

    To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

    by dizzydean on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:04:24 PM PDT

    •  It's like people slept right through 2008. (11+ / 0-)

      All we had to do was sell a center-left platform like we meant it.

      We completely dominated both Houses and took the White House by the largest margin in a generation.

      We did it.  It worked.  It wasn't even that hard.

      Because a large majority agrees with us already.  They don't need to be educated.  

      They need to motivated by seeing Democratic Politicians follow Democratic policies.  That's all.

      Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

      by JesseCW on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 11:57:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And here I think you are wrong (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Aquarius40, Ian Reifowitz, doroma

        If you actually look at how the party won both houses, you'll see that we had lots of Democrats in seats that were usually red districts or states.  The reality is that while we won with a motivated electorate, it was not such that we could overcome the blue doggies and conservadems.  We needed them to win the House and Senate at the time, so guess what?  They were not going to go along with the magic center-left platform.  Why?  Because they knew that they would lose their voters.  

        Seems like a lot of folks don't have a grasp on what really happened in 200.

        To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

        by dizzydean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:44:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  2008 n/t (0+ / 0-)

          To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

          by dizzydean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:45:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  And then what happened? (9+ / 0-)

          They didn't go along with "the magic center-left platform", and in 2010 they were gone with the wind.

          Maybe, just maybe, if they'd been a little less Blue Doggy, and stood up for the things they'd been elected on, some of them would have survived. Not all, it was a midterm after a watershed election, but some of them.

          The Blue Dog in the seat nearest to where I live couldn't even find the courage to vote for the ACA. Now his seat is held by a Republican with such serious ethical problems that the big question is whether he'll be indicted before Primary Day - and the local GOP is still supporting him.

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:20:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I disagree, especially on this point (0+ / 0-)
            Maybe, just maybe, if they'd been a little less Blue Doggy, and stood up for the things they'd been elected on, some of them would have survived.
            Not to defend the BDs, but look at their districts.  What did they run on?  A center-left platform or did they kowtow to the social conservatives in their districts and then maybe talked about change.  This was especially effective given the mess the economy was in in 2008 (anyone remember Johnny Mac calling the meeting with W and Obama and then saying nothing?).

            And look at who is in trouble in this election cycle in the Senate--the more conservative Dems who did NOT run on center-left positions in states where center-left doesn't fly.  Anyone want to try center left in Arkansas?  West Virginia?  

            And look at who we are running in our hopeful pick-up states.  Anyone think that Michelle Nunn or Alison Grimes is going to be center-left?  

            To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

            by dizzydean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 03:12:52 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  In West Virginia (0+ / 0-)

              it doesn't matter that we have elected democrats.  We have NO progressive candidates.  The entire state is run by coal.  Oh, they "speak progressive", but witness what they've allowed to continue happening.  It makes absolutely no difference if we elect Ds or Rs...they govern the same way.  The decision has been made to sacrifice West Virginia for the rest of the country's energy needs and profit.  What is the point of electing ANY democrat?  Answer: there is none.  Neither party will get WV cleaner water, make the coal companies stop blowing up our mountains, or get the money out of politics.  I am so sick of hearing, "a democrat is better than a republican", "you have to vote democrat to keep the GOP out",  "put on your tin foil hat",  "what are you smoking?","you're wasting your vote on a third party".  There are NOT two parties.  There are two wings of the same corporate party...one slightly more progressive than the other..well, at least they give progressive ideas lip service. In the meantime, our state is quickly becoming a wasteland.  Vote democrat?  Not just "no", but "hell, no"!

        •  Yeah. Voters who support our platform turned (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, milkbone, Tool

          out even in red districts and states.  

          They're willing to give us a shot and see if we mean what we say once in a while.

          You think right wing voters crossed over.  You're wrong.  People who rarely vote turned out.

          That's what wins elections.  Not pandering to some convincible "swing voter", but getting that large majority which already agrees with us on issue after issue to go to the polls.

          Failing to deliver on said platform gave us 2010.

          Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

          by JesseCW on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:14:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  See my response above (0+ / 0-)

            I would argue that complaining about the party without doing the work necessary to prepare the way for greater acceptance of liberal ideas is going to be a losing battle.

            To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

            by dizzydean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 03:13:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  That's the biggest mistake the left makes. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ian Reifowitz, nextstep

        2008 was NOT an endorsement of a center-left platform- it was a repudiation of Republicans.

        We could've run literal houseplants and still would've taken back the Presidency and Congress.

        But just because the people rejected Republicans doesn't mean they endorsed liberals.

        "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

        by Whimsical on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:01:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  When the voters are repudiating Republicans (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Odysseus, cybrestrike, AoT, JesseCW

          does it make sense to tack to the right?

          "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

          by Geenius at Wrok on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:31:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Ah but the voters didn't KEEP repudiating (1+ / 1-)
            Recommended by:
            Aquarius40
            Hidden by:
            DeadHead

            Republicans, did they?

            It's gonna take more than a single election for politicians to get the message, I'm afraid- and what happened in the next election after 2008?

            That's right, a Republican landslide (due in large part to non-stop Democratic bashing by "progressives") which convinced most Democratic politicians that 2008 was a fluke and that the country actually wanted Republican policy- just not Republican policy as proposed by the people running in 2008.

            If "progressives" had some patience, frustration tolerance, and a clue, and hadn't depressed turnout so bad in the midterms and the Republicans had once again gotten shellacked, things would've played out very differently.

            "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

            by Whimsical on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:30:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Meteor Blades has debunked your fail (7+ / 0-)

              fail about progressives causing the loss.

              Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

              by divineorder on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:00:47 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Don't you love the fantasy world in which (8+ / 0-)

                progressives are utterly unable to contribute anything positive, because we're powerless and few...

                yet fully responsible every time any Democrat loses any race, because we're so damned omnipotent?

                Voters didn't support a center-left platform.  It didn't matter to them at all.  They just voted against Republicans.

                However, progressives caused the 2010 bloodbath by pointing out a center-left program had been largely tossed aside.

                HHHMmmmmmm.........

                Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

                by JesseCW on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:21:29 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Here's the only power "progressives" have (0+ / 0-)

                  you can decide to be happy with a little bit better
                  Or you can ensure things will be a whole lot worse.

                  And for 40 years "progressives" have ensured things get a whole lot worse because a little bit better wasn't good enough for them.

                  I'm sick of it, and I want it to stop.

                  "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                  by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:06:00 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Nope. (0+ / 0-)

                Meteor Blades went to the same strawman that's always used when "progressives" realize I'm right.

                He then promptly debunked a strawman. He didn't come within a MILE of my ACTUAL argument.

                "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:02:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Not after the dems tacked to the right, no (8+ / 0-)
              If "progressives" had some patience, frustration tolerance, and a clue, and hadn't depressed turnout so bad in the midterms and the Republicans had once again gotten shellacked, things would've played out very differently.
              Stop spreading this nonsense. Progressives turned out in 2010, anyone who says otherwise doesn't know what they're talking about.

              If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

              by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:01:24 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Reading comprehnsion fail (0+ / 0-)

                I've never claimed that progressives didn't turn out in 2010.

                "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:06:53 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  "and hadn't depressed turnout" (0+ / 0-)

                  So its just the fault of progressives that there was low turnout but they actually turned out?

                  If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                  by AoT on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:23:18 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes (0+ / 0-)

                    They turned out, but their poor attitudes and constant Democratic bashing are directly responsible for the "enthusiasm gap" and lack of turnout among ordinary Democrats and the middle- in far greater numbers than they themselves actually delivered by turning out.

                    "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                    by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:27:26 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Progressives just didn't cheer loud enough (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Meteor Blades

                      Right. Maybe the politicians should work on getting enthusiasm up instead of leaving it to the people they keep going back on their promises to. Of course whining about how progressives are to blame for everything is totally the best way to get them motivated. If only you could shame them into doing the right thing. It sure worked for the Democratic congress.

                      If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                      by AoT on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 02:46:00 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  No shame involved. (0+ / 0-)

                        Just simple calculation.

                        If you actually want to make progress on progressive issues, you'll do what's necessary to do so, no matter how unpalatable it is to you. (hint: Democratic bashing and the resulting Republican victories guarantee a lack of progress on progressive issues)

                        If you'd rather enjoy the high of bashing Democrats for not going left enough fast enough to suit you, then quit whining about the results.  Especially when the results of non stop, non deserved Democratic bashing are both so easily predictable and so correctly predicted.

                        Your call.

                        "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                        by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 04:41:06 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  So there will never be progress (0+ / 0-)

                          Because what you ask will not happen. Silencing the criticism of progressives is simply not going to happen. So you should probably just give up and figure out another way, because yours isn't going to happen.

                          If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                          by AoT on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 05:39:00 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Again, backwards. (0+ / 0-)

                            As long as "progressives" engage in Democratic bashing, progress on their goals isn't going to happen.

                            But thanks for confirming what I've known for a long time- that "progressives" care more about bashing the Democratic party than making progress on thegoals they claim to want.

                            There is no other way.  

                            Either we rally behind the Democratic party and celebrate every little move left, no matter how tiny, or "progressives" keep driving turnout down with their bashing, thereby driving the Democratic party right until collapse.

                            I used to have such high hopes for this country.  Thanks to "progressives", the best I can now hope for is that I die before the collapse they're working for (wittingly or not) comes.

                            It makes me both sad and angry.

                            "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                            by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 06:37:45 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm saying that progressives aren't going to buy (0+ / 0-)

                            your line, not that they are more interested in bashing the Dems. You want to convince everyone of something that you just aren't going to believe, which means we're all doomed to failure.

                            Thanks to "progressives", the best I can now hope for is that I die before the collapse they're working for (wittingly or not) comes.
                            I love it, the republicans do all these horrible things and you blame progressives for not cheering loud enough. And you wonder why progressives won't listen to what you say.

                            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                            by AoT on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 07:08:17 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  If "progressives" would quit enabling (0+ / 0-)

                            Republicans to win elections, Republicans wouldn't be able to do horrible things. They bear just as much responsibility as Republicans for the horrible state of things in this country.

                            And of course "progressives" wont listen to me- they'd rather bash the Democratic party then make progress on their goals. That much is obvious.

                            If they actually cared about progress on the goals they claim to want, they'd put my theory about the results of their piss-poor attitude to the test, and once they saw how correct I was, they'd do it my way.

                            But all they do is provide lip-service to the goals they claim to want while at the same time actively working against them.

                            "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                            by Whimsical on Tue Mar 18, 2014 at 02:50:20 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No, they wouldn't rather bash Dems (0+ / 0-)

                            They just don't believe you. Your making claims that aren't really backed up by anything, why should anyone believe your way is the way?

                            Obviously you believe it, but you aren't convincing the people you need to convince. Simply blaming the people you disagree with for not agreeing gets you no where.

                            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                            by AoT on Tue Mar 18, 2014 at 06:49:59 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  Evidence, please. n/t (0+ / 0-)

                      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                      by Meteor Blades on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 10:42:00 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I have just as much evidence as you. (0+ / 0-)

                        In fact, given that you and yours apparently talked to hundreds of voters in the state of California while me and mine talked to thousands of voters across the country, I'm going to go out on a limb and say I have more.

                        "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                        by Whimsical on Tue Mar 18, 2014 at 04:05:37 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

            •  The people they elected didn't DO the things (7+ / 0-)

              they promised to do once elected, did they?

              Voters don't turn right or turn left in significant numbers.

              They show up or they don't show up.

              You keep displaying a profound lack of understanding of how elections are won.  It's like watching Chris Mathews.

              Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

              by JesseCW on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:18:47 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  That would be funny if it wasnt so sad (0+ / 0-)

                coming form the wing directly responsible for pushing the Democratic party so far right.

                I know how elections are won.  "Progressives" are the people that seem to think handing over power to people who make the world worse is the way to make it better.

                Remove the beam in your own eye before you worry about the imaginary mote in mine.

                "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:08:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  The next time you trot out this rancid chestnut (5+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              AoT, DeadHead, PhilJD, cville townie, Tool

              I'm going to HR you for deliberately lying.

              Hige sceal þe heardra, heorte þe cenre, mod sceal þe mare, þe ure mægen lytlað

              by milkbone on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 12:12:38 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Please do (0+ / 0-)

                But you better come prepare to rebut my ACTUAL argument, and not use the strawman that "progressives" always use because they don't have an answer for what I'm ACTUALLY saying.

                "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:00:42 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Zombie lie... (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              PhilJD, cville townie, pennyck, Tool
              If "progressives" had some patience, frustration tolerance, and a clue, and hadn't depressed turnout so bad in the midterms and the Republicans had once again gotten shellacked, things would've played out very differently.
              ...was debunked.

              Please see this comment by Meteor Blades for details.

              HR'd. Take it up with the author of this comment, if you object.




              Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. ~ Garcia

              by DeadHead on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 03:57:33 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Reading comprehension fail (0+ / 0-)

                Ive never claimed that "progressives" didnt turn out.

                I've claimed and still continue to claim that their poor attitude and constant Democratic bashing kept others from turning out in much greater numbers than votes they delievered-because that was my experience. And that's NEVER been debunked.

                Its also been my experience that "progressives" don't want to look at the consequences of their bad attitudes, so instead they deliberately misinterpret what I say and go to the straw man because they don't have an answer for my actual argument.

                HR me based on straw men all you like. "Progressives" refusal to examine the consequences of their poor attitudes only hurts progress on the goals they claim to want, and proves my point further.

                "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 08:58:09 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I have an answer for your "poor attitude"... (0+ / 0-)

                  ...claim. Back in June of 2010, while working door to door and on the phones in the 100 Los Angeles precincts a group of us had adopted, starting with the Gray Davis recall, we started encountered lots of very brief and/or very bored or angry conversations with people we contacted. They weren't happy with the way things were going. These were Democrats and non-aligned Independents, people we had previously contacted at least four times since 2006.

                  When I started to report that November was going to be a problem, I was accused of trying to suppress the vote by saying that the Democrats were in trouble. Some of the accusers claimed that I was Democrat-bashing by saying this. And some kept saying there was nothing bad coming at the polls in November. They kept saying this until mid- to late-October when it became obvious to everyone that the party was indeed in trouble.

                  Consequent to that "shellacking" as I called it weeks in advance of Obama using that term to describe the 2010 election, the left got reamed for being at fault for driving down the turnout at the polls. Which was, and is, bullshit.

                  My little group and large numbers of other liberals and progressives that you have been smearing forever at Daily Kos while arguing in favor of things like drilling in ANWR and against approaches like those used to get the New Deal and end Jim Crow worked our asses off to GOTV in 2010. We didn't suppress the turnout.

                  Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                  by Meteor Blades on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 11:13:52 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  My experience says otherwise. (0+ / 0-)

                    The people I worked with and myself doing GOTV in 2010 talked to thousands of voters who had no intention of voting because when they went looking for a counter to right wing messaging all they could find was bullshit about how the Democrats were just as bad as the Republicans.

                    Better messaging from "progressives" would've mitigated if not outright reversed the losses. But "progressives" don't want to hear that because they'd rather bash then make actual progress.

                    As for smearing, given how you have consistently misrepresented my argument, and apparently not just on this, your claims are laughable.

                    "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                    by Whimsical on Tue Mar 18, 2014 at 03:03:55 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  "...all they could find was bullshit about... (0+ / 0-)

                      ... how the Democrats were just as bad as the Republicans."

                      All they could find, eh? Such bullshit.

                      As for smearing, you're still doing it.

                      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                      by Meteor Blades on Tue Mar 18, 2014 at 07:49:38 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  Not the way I saw it at all (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              cville townie, pennyck

              08 was a repudiation of neo-cons. But what caused the rise of the Tea party in 10 was not bashing of Dems by disaffected progressives. It was a number of things quite opposite to that argument. First Obama came in and said he wanted to "reach across the aisle". Any of us would have told him that wouldn't work, that they hated him. Even Rush Limbaugh was very vocal about the Republican strategy; say no to everything. Stop the gears of government, make him fail. Did  Obama fight back even a little? No. Then he put the people most responsible for the crash at the helm of the economy they'd just destroyed. Then Rahm Emmanuel called us fucking retards and Obama didn't take him to the woodshed implying he supported Rahm's assessment. Then when AIPAC spoke Obama cowed. Then when the health care debates started Obama the great speaker suddenly couldn't string two coherent sentences together and caved on single payer even allowing the blue dog Bacchus to have doctors and nurses who wanted to testify in favor of single payer thrown in freaking JAIL! Then after caving on single payer he caved on the public option as well. Then he caved to the joint chiefs and surged in Afghanistan. Then when the Teabags got funding and training to disrupt town hall meetings on health care and claimed Obama was silencing them he didn't even fight back once ever at all at all at all!!!By that time we realized we'd been had and it was only the summer of 09. Now a lot of us went out and voted anyway in 2010. But all we can do in this stupid system is vote for the candidate that is running in our particular district. I live in a Democratic district. We had a Democrat before 2010 and we got a new one after 2010. But we are not allowed to vote against Boner, or Cantor, or Ryan or Paul or Gohmert or Cruz (stop me if you see where I'm going here.) Also in 2010 a progressive was running against a blue dog in Arkansas and Bill Clinton went down there and campaigned for the blue dog. Things would have "played out differently" if in January 09 Obama called all the conservative Democrats into the White House and told them straight, you vote progressive or I will primary you in 2010. At that time Obama had huge public support and could have made it stick. It's not the progressives fault my friend.

              •  The enthusiam gap is almost entirely (0+ / 0-)

                the progressives fault.

                When people go looking for alternatives to right wing messaging and all they can find is messaging saying that the Democrats are just as bad as the Republicans they throw up their hands and stay hoe in greater numbers than the progressives can deliver.

                "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

                by Whimsical on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:04:33 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Right..... When non-voters showed up to (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT

          vote in droves it had nothing to do with the hugely popular politician running for President on a center-left platform, or his coat tails.

          Didn't happen.

          Had nothing to do with the fact he was running on policies like Job Programs and a Public Option that America supported two to one.

          Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

          by JesseCW on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:16:52 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Actually, it didn't. Remember the economy (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            pennyck

            collapsing?  And Johnny Mac's inability to even remotely look like he knew what to do?  Throw in some Bush fatigue and there you go.  Just go poke around the Dems who won their Senate seats in 2008 and are up for reelection right now.  Look at Begich's webpage and tell me that's center left.  http://www.markbegich.com/...

            I don't blame progressives for 2010.  In PA where I live, voter turnout was abysmal and we did not put some of the better candidates up for the Senate or governorship.  

            To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

            by dizzydean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 03:24:59 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It had to do with one of the most well run (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              dizzydean, pennyck

              progressive campaigns in the history of this nation. Both in terms of propaganda and in terms of ground game. Obama inspired people with well worn progressive slogans and blew all the lefty dog whistles.

              Honestly, if he had the power to force it through the senate he could have nationalized banks if he had wanted to, and gotten re-elected.

              If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

              by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:26:25 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I honestly think that is rewriting history (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                AoT

                Take a look here at the polls from 8/2008 to election day:

                http://www.realclearpolitics.com/...

                Johnny Mac and dipshit were actually ahead going into the first week of September and virtually tied through the third week of that month.  It was only after the polls began to reflect the fear caused by the Lehmann Brothers failure on 9/15 that Obama's numbers start to solidify at +6 or higher.

                If you look state by state, Begich won in AK by less than 1%, Franken had the lengthy recount in MN.  Hagan in NC and Udall in Co had tough fights until the end.  

                Now, go look at what pick-ups were made in the House:  http://en.wikipedia.org/....  Notice all the conservative districts?  There were 48 blue dogs in the 110th Congress out of 233 Dems (the GOP had 202 seats) and 54 in the 111th Congress (out of 235 seats; the GOP had 198). How do you get 54 BDs?  Was that about a center-left agenda, or was it dissatisfaction with the ruling party combined with fear of an economic collapse?

                The 2010 election left us with 26 BDs--a massive drop as the districts which typically elect GOPers went back to doing so.  The Dems went from 255 to 193 seats--a loss of 62, out of which 28 were BDs.  

                That's the reality that no amount of center-left policy prioritizing was going to change.

                So, to make a long story short, I stand by my original assertion in this thread--to get more and better Democrats, we need more and better Democratic voters, and that only happens if we do more outreach to the people and not just wait for the party to come to the left.

                But then, 2010 happens and there were only  

                To be free and just depends on us. Victor Hugo.

                by dizzydean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:26:26 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Those polls in aggregate show Obama (0+ / 0-)

                  firmly ahead for the entire time, with on brief dip at the beginning of September.

                  And the real test with those would be adjusting them after the fact for actual turnout vs. predicted turnout by demographic. I'd bet that if you did that you'd see a different picture completely.

                  If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                  by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:00:49 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  You are confusing 2008 with 2006. n/t (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT

          2008 was an endorsement of hope and change in the form of finally having liberal policies enacted by what many young voters thought was going to be a trans-formative presidency or the second coming of FDR. Not watered down center right corporatism masked with glossy platitudes .

          2006 was a rejection of Bush and republicans. 2008 was about hope and change. 2010 was about the disillusion that dems felt over being betrayed by the Blue dogs. How many Blue dogs lost their seats in comparison to the progressive caucus? Wasn't there like 9 or 11 left after the election?

          “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

          by Tool on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:14:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I don't think being just like the Tea Party (7+ / 0-)

    is a recipe for success. Its not working real well for Republicans.

    KOS: "Mocking partisans focusing on elections? Even less reason to be on Daily Kos."

    by fcvaguy on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:10:19 PM PDT

    •  It worked for 30 years. (0+ / 0-)

      If we could establish a track record like that, I'd be satisfied.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:21:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We did. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sidnora, pennyck

        It lasted from the 1930s until the 1960s. Yay us!

        "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

        by Geenius at Wrok on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:32:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, we did until we didn't. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, Geenius at Wrok, Ian Reifowitz

          I came of age just at the point when people thought the Democratic hegemony would be permanent. That thinking led to some disastrous complacency.
          Instead, I've spent my entire adulthood under an increasingly powerful Republican hegemony. I'll be grateful if I live long enough to see that tide reversed once again. If it doesn't, we're all headed over the cliff, no matter what our party or ideology may be.

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:00:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  the tea party is only five years old (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sidnora, AoT

        they don't have a 30-yr track record.

        this diary is not historically sound.

        the GOP started going conservative in 1964. the Goldwater people, who were opposed to the Rockefeller Republican types. (the roots were from years before that.) It gathered steam in the 70s. and it's grown since then.

        much of this was funded by business people.

        the comments all over here about how we should get Soros funding or whatever if we are to be like the Tea Party and previous GOP insurgents are spot on.

        it would help if Markos & Co. would publicize better D's running in primaries.

        An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

        by mightymouse on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:12:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Much of what you say is true, (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, mightymouse, Ian Reifowitz

          and if you search out my other comments in this thread, you'll see that I am taking a much longer view than the diarist's.

          You do say one thing I disagree with:

          much of this was funded by business people.
          All of it was funded by business people.

          And just as today, most of the money came from a very small group of extremely wealthy men. The names Coors, Olin, and Mellon Scaife were as involved in that era as the Kochs, Popes, and DeVoses of today. Maybe even more, since they were building a completely new political infrastructure from scratch.

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:00:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  they are good at what they do (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AoT, sidnora, Ian Reifowitz

            around here it's popular to make fun of the GOP.

            that always creeps me out. they have successfully warped our politics. they did what they set out to do.

            yes - you have a lot of trenchant comments in this diary.

            An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

            by mightymouse on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:19:42 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thank you, (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mightymouse

              sincerely, but I wasn't fishing for compliments! Just pointing out that I'm aware that there's quite a bit of history that got us to where we are today.

              I'd prefer to say, they've been very good at what they've done. I very much want to believe that they are approaching the end of their hegemony, since by conventional political-science thinking they should be in a terrible position today: ideologically exhausted, fragmented, with no clear leader and shrinking in numbers. Which leads me back, as it always does, to questioning why the left seems to have such a hard time making any gains.

              Making fun of them, while it may be fun, does nothing to advance that goal.

              "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

              by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:42:39 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  hey you are welcome (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                sidnora

                It's nice to think they're at the end of their run, but I'll believe it when I see it.

                In my area (suburb of NYC) GOP organizing on the local level is impressive. They are ahead of the D's on some "popular" issues like doing something about the explosive growth of the local ultra-orthodox community. Also Cuomo's support of common core/testing hurts Ds on another local-type issue.

                I don't see them flagging around here.

                That may be just a local thing, but then I think how they've gained midwest state houses and so on.

                An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

                by mightymouse on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:18:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'm in NYC (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  mightymouse

                  I believe what you're telling me, and I find it worrisome. I'd love to know more about the GOP "doing something" about the growth of the ultra-orthodox community. What does "doing something" mean? Sounds a bit sinister.

                   I'm no fan of the ultra-orthodox, but I have worked with some of them on political campaigns, and they seem pretty canny about using their political clout.

                  BTW, have you ever considered coming down to the city for a meet-up? We're having one next Sunday, 3/23. We're a jolly bunch - join us!

                  "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                  by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:02:40 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  "doing something" is vague (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    sidnora

                    basically the GOP leveraged the issue of ultra-orthodox in the Town of Ramapo to win the Rockland County Executive race a few months back. Ed Day won by a wide margin using the ultra-orthodox as kind of a bogeyman. It is true the ultra-orthodox are problematic. In Ramapo they control school boards, restrict spending on public education, and all the while their neighborhoods are growing explosively and putting pressure on town services, etc.

                    And politicians find it hard to say "no" to them because they deliver votes like nobody's business.

                    The Town of Ramapo Supervisor, who is widely seen as corrupt and in bed with the ultra-orthodox, is a Democrat.

                    It's gotten so that some Ramapo liberals vote with Republicans.

                    What will actually happen as a result of Ed Day's win is anybody's guess. Some speculate that he'll be like most other Rockland pols and make peace with the ultra-orthodox in return for the votes.

                    thanks for the invite! it's hard for me to get away but you never know.

                    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

                    by mightymouse on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:12:16 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I had a feeling (0+ / 0-)

                      you were referring to Ramapo, which has drawn attention here in the city. But I wasn't aware of the election or its results. The situation sounded bad enough even without getting party politics involved. The ultra-orthodox here generally follow a similar pattern, negotiating with whoever's running and then turning out as a bloc for whichever candidate offers them the best deal.

                      Of course, we also have Simcha Felder down here, a State Senator who is Orthodox, and represents a heavily ultra-orthodox district. Although elected as a Democrat, he announced immediately upon winning office that he would be caucusing with the Republicans. So it almost doesn't matter which party they support.

                      By the way, I gave you the wrong date for the meetup. it's this Sunday, March 16 as you would have noticed if you click through on that link. We have people who come from as far away as Princeton, NJ, Fairfield, CT, and even Phila., so don't feel you need to live in the city to join us! If you'd just like to be notified when we're having them, Kosmail me with an email address for that purpose. It won't put you on any other mailing lists, I promise!

                      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                      by sidnora on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 04:31:12 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

    •  It's not being "like the Tea Party"; it's doing (0+ / 0-)

      what works.  Far be it from me to criticize the Tea Party for doing what works, if for reprehensible purposes; the right thing, for the wrong reason.

      It's time to start letting sleeping dinosaurs lie, lest we join them in extinction by our consumption of them.

      by Leftcandid on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:02:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  you mean (13+ / 0-)

    we can't save the patient by killing the patient?

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:11:22 PM PDT

  •  Um (8+ / 0-)

    Wait. This would require getting off the couch, wouldn't it? Nice try. Telling me I should get involved to make change is just another form of silencing dissent.

    It's my God given right as an American to tell it the wind. Especially when it's not even windy.

    /snark

    You never trust a millionaire/Quoting the sermon on the mount/I used to think I was not like them/But I'm beginning to have my doubts -- The Arcade Fire

    by tomjones on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:14:06 PM PDT

  •  And there I was thinking pitchforks and torches.. (4+ / 0-)

    Silly me.

    My plan involves getting big money out of politics. You should also take a gander at my plan for a perpetual-motion machine.

    It has exactly the same potential chance of working as fixing anything in the District of Columbia and our two-party "Democracy."

    Apologies in advance to Denise and her top of the Rec-list rant. I'm going to stick around if just for the shits and giggles.

    Dear future generations: Please accept our apologies, We were roaring drunk on petroleum -Kurt Vonnegut

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:39:40 PM PDT

  •  Many on the "Left" have not figured out that you (19+ / 0-)

    ...have to win elections in order to enact lasting a meaningful change.

    And after you enact that lasting change, you still have to win to protect it!

    Like it or not, in this country the principles and values that matter belong to those who win elections an that is true at every level of politics.

    The politicians may be bought, and the system corrupt, but it is our duty to fix these things.

    by sebastianguy99 on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:53:10 PM PDT

  •  Agreed (9+ / 0-)

    My simple idea is to hammer on concentration of wealth as the issue of our time rather than income inequality.  It's old school progressive.  And it is more descriptive of the actual issue.  I think.  And we have a history of dealing with this issue in a way that benefits all of society.  Teddy and Franklin.

    •  I love that idea, (6+ / 0-)

      but you have to be careful about the framing.  No one wants to hear words like "oligarchy," but they do respond to words like "fairness."  Keep away from insider jargon and go for the heart.

      It's the Supreme Court, stupid!

      by Radiowalla on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:00:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Economic royalist worked for FDR (4+ / 0-)

        Oligarch is too technical

        •  But keep in mind (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Bisbonian, Aquarius40, Ian Reifowitz

          That FDR's policies ultimately hurt a lot of people as well, which rarely gets talked about around here. FDR made a deal with the racist rich white Southerners which resulted in a lot of poor white and black Southerners starving more than their counterparts outside the South. You mention FDR to some people from the South who remember stories of what happened to their parents and grandparents losing their land and going hungry, and they will immediately shut you out.

          Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

          by moviemeister76 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 12:17:40 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well in my family FDR bordered on secular (7+ / 0-)

            sainthood. Of course they were all off the land already by then. Still, they were rural small town folk. I remember how shocked I was when first confronted by folks who held an opposite view.

            A number of years ago I made a sentimental journey to Warm Springs and visited the "Little White House". I'd been there once before as a very small child.

            In the kitchen, on the wall just inside the side door, there's a penciled inscription. As if someone had jotted it down just before walking out the door. They've bolted a glass plate over it for purposes of preservation.

            It was left by FDR's cook. She wrote that she had prepared the first and last meals eaten there by President Roosevelt, signed her name and dated it.

            Nothing human is alien to me.

            by WB Reeves on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 12:58:09 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yeah (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Ian Reifowitz

              Growing up was weird for me in learning about FDR. My maternal grandparents believed he was practically a saint. My paternal grandmother, though, had a very different opinion.

              Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

              by moviemeister76 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:13:57 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Went to my party convention on Saturday. (16+ / 0-)

    Pushed for the progressive candidate.

    That's how it's done, one person at a time.

    "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

    by raptavio on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:08:49 PM PDT

  •  Getting back to the question.................. (6+ / 0-)

    the answer is to win elections. Each time moving the needle a little further to the left or occasionally a lot to the left. At the same time we try to keep the needle from moving further right by denying Teabaggers and other Rethugs electoral victories.

    Too many on here do not remember the disaster that was George McGovern's POTUS candidacy. He was a good man, with the right ideas and polices for the time but he proved to be unelectable.

    Yes the deck, in terms of national parties, wall street, the lamestream media etc., is stacked against us. All we have is a majority of the citizens who, when questioned as to their opinions, prefer liberal and progressive policies.

    Educate, organize, GOTV!

    Oh and before anyone things I am shilling for the National Democratic Party; wrong!   I don't send a penny to the DNC, the DNSC, or the DNCC. In general elections, I support candidates that I chose.

    The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation--HDT

    by cazcee on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 08:32:43 PM PDT

  •  good vs. bad (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3rock, Ian Reifowitz

    Progressives need to stay above the cesspool of distractions used by Conservatives, and we need to make their tactics and their actions open and ridiculed.
    We need to use the goodness that's within us all (or hopefully a landslide election amount of us) to focus on what the nation can do for the country's social fabric and how we can re-achieve the best middle class life style in the world.
    We need to slay the demon of corruption, or money as some call it, that is dividing us and bankrolling the GOP. And, we need to show the connection between Corporations, right wing churches and politicians that too readily vote in their behalf at the detriment of the electorate.

    Ian, I think you have the process well targeted. However, what is most needed are simple distinctions; people are good, money is bad. Money is not free speech. Corporations are not people. Government has a purpose besides being a piggy bank for scoundrels.
    Government of, for and by the people is under attack and that's bad. But, if the people unite, the gov't can withstand, and that's good. Get to work.

  •  I think there is a glaring omission in your (13+ / 0-)

    advice.  There is no mention of political corruption and the co-option of both parties by the rich and powerful.  There is no mention of the fact that the system is so rigged that by the time candidates appear on the ballot they've already been pre-selected by the the elites who finance campaigns.

    In other words, there is no mention of the "Deep State," or the real powers behind the scene.

    Focusing only on voting in a rigged system is not enough.  Of course we need to vote for the best candidates, and for the most part most of the people who frequent this blog do that, but we also need to engage in anti-corruption and social justice activism.

    We need to become aware of exactly how political corruption works; who is paying who to move the agenda of the rich and powerful forward at the expense of the citizenry.  Then we need to expose and oppose the corruption; we need to reach out to other voters and share our findings, motivate them to get involved in demanding clean government.

    As we've seen with president Obama, even when we vote for a candidate we believed in and campaign for, we end up being betrayed.

    Who would've thought he would end up appointing Wall Street crooks to important government positions, for example?

    Who would've thought he would end up prosecuting more whistle-blowers than all previous presidents combined?

    Who would've thought he would end up deporting 2 million undocumented immigrants?

    Who would've thought he would be pushing for a horrendous so-called free trade agreement giving unprecedented power to supra-national corporations?

    We need to do both: Fully engage in politics and vote for progressive candidates, AND fully engage as citizens in opposition to massive corruption.

    •  Ditto (4+ / 0-)

         and keep pointing out when we've been manipulated!

      March AGAINST monsatanOHagentorange 3/25/13 a time warp

      by 3rock on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:18:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I don't feel betrayed by Obama. Speak for yourself (12+ / 0-)

      If you knew anything about money or wealth, you'd know that money can be used for good just as it can for ill. Obama has mobilized wealth for good on balance. He hasn't betrayed us just because he doesn't share your sophomoric view of money in politics.

      I just came from a gathering of wealthy LGBT activists doing great work in places like Uganda. But according to your grade school world view, they're the 1% so they're our enemy.

      That's bullshit.

      •  I can see you are emotional about this and that (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cybrestrike, divineorder

        may explain your clouded judgement, so I won't engage at the same low-brow level.  You of course are entitled to your opinion.

      •  WHAT ABOUT THE POOR OPPRESSED RICH PEOPLE!! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ray Pensador, pennyck

        The fact that rich people do a good thing now and again doesn't mean that they have a beneficial effect on our political system. "A rich guy tipped me well once so you shouldn't criticize rich people!"

        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

        by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:11:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's not about being nice to the rich. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Aquarius40

          It's about recognizing that anyone can do good (or bad), and that the world is more grey than angry stupid people (rich and poor) want anyone to believe.

          •  The issue here isn't that the rich are evil (4+ / 0-)

            It's that the rich have a massively out of balance amount of power because they are rich. Saying that some of them are good is meaningless in this context and only serves to avoid the actual critique of the system being offered. Criticizing the rich is not saying that every rich person is a horrible person. Jamie Dimon is a spokesperson for HRC and he's still scum and part of the problem. What you're doing is throwing the poor under the bus because some rich people support one small part of the progressive agenda.

            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

            by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:45:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yes, it's true that rich folks have a lot of (0+ / 0-)

              power, but I think that is an overly simplistic view of power. Power is a complex phenomenon that is context dependent. There are situations in which you'd have more power than me, and others which I'd have more power than you, and still more in which either one of us could have more than a wealthy person and vice versa.

              •  And the situations in which I'd have (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                orlbucfan, Ray Pensador, pennyck

                more power than a rich person is not the situation of our political system. This whole hand waving "Sometimes the rich have less power" completely elides the point here. Our system is geared to give the rich massive amounts of power. You can dress that up in "situation" and "context" all you want, but the vast, vast majority of the country understands that simple fact and the sooner more people quit with this nonsense equivocating about how good some rich people are the better. Unless they're using their money and power to reduce the influence of money on the country then they're part of the enemy.

                If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:58:29 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Really? So people doing the modern-day equivalent (0+ / 0-)

                  of sheltering Jews in the holocaust are your enemy because they happen not to be doing anything to curb the influence of Wall St.?

                  That's stupid.

                  •  Sorry, I thought this was about American politics (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Ray Pensador, pennyck

                    So when someone switches to talking about a completely and totally different political system that has absolutely nothing to do with American politics it may well make what I say sound kind of stupid given that it's completely out of context.

                    Next you're going to tell me I shouldn't criticize Jamie Dimon because he supports marriage equality.

                    If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                    by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:12:07 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I'm talking about American activists. (0+ / 0-)

                      And your confusion about which political system
                      I'm talking about just underscores my point: power is context dependent. That's not equivocation unless you have a hard time thinking many things at once. I'm not talking about being nice to rich people. I'm talking about people doing critical activism trying to solve a problem that's as serious as a heart attack, and empower people who have it way worse than you could ever imagine.

                      •  The context of this diary (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Ray Pensador

                        is the United states, not Uganda.

                        And your example shows that the rich have more power than I do even in that context. I could never do that because I simply don't have the power.

                        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                        by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:47:01 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Not necessarily. If you were on the ground (0+ / 0-)

                          in Uganda, you'd have a more immediate ability to affect change than rich elites in the US.

                          There are many examples of people who aren't rich who've created real, positive change in the world. The fact that you seem to believe that money is a nearly insurmountable advantage explains why you're pissed and why you think Obama hasn't done anything.

                          I share your anger for Wall St. elites that defrauded everyone, but I think it's self defeating to insist that wealth and money are evil. Money is indifferent, and all too often it corrupts because it affords power. But absolutism corrupts too, and anyone can fall victim to that. I like Obama because he's not an ideologue. He would get nothing done if he were.

                          •  I have no way to get to Uganda (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Ray Pensador, pennyck

                            because I'm not rich. I can't change my context like a rich person can. Power.

                            I'm not sure how this became about Obama. You've decided I have opinions about him that I simply don't have.

                            And again, as I noted before, not all rich people are bad. I'm not sure who you're arguing with now, but it isn't me.

                            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                            by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:55:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I know plenty of people who aren't rich who go (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            mahakali overdrive

                            overseas. They get grants and such if they can't afford it. These things are readily possible if one is determined enough. Indeed, people who could otherwise not afford to attend netroots get to go because of scholarships.

                            Is it harder? Sure. Everything's harder with less, but hardly impossible.

                            Does this mean we shouldn't fight income inequality ? Absolutely not. That we must fight vigorously, but again I think it's self defeating to think that money is evil in and of itself. There are plenty of rich assholes, but demonizing them is just the flip side of lionizing them: all that does is privilege their money by fetishizing it and assuming it affords them some daunting advantage. I think anger at money is unimaginative. Particularly when people mistake angry blogging with activism.

    •  oy (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      serendipityisabitch

      "In other words, there is no mention of the "Deep State," or the real powers behind the scene."

      why would that be?

      could it be that not everyone is in a pathetic fearful crouch about some secret power cabal like you, RAY?

      at this point, you have a schtick. that's all it is.

      yawn

    •  Wow. He didn't write the diary you would have (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HudsonValleyMark

      written, didn't include the main point you would have made. Therefor, he omitted it - made the conscious and distinct choice not to include your most recent pet.

      Ah, but think of the precedent you have created. It is now absolutely reasonable that someone should come into one of your diaries and point out your omission of a point tangential to your main subject that you have omitted. You certainly will not be able to protest that happening, after having done it yourself here.

      What a grand opportunity.

      At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

      by serendipityisabitch on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:35:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  But you say you keep voting Democratic? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pennyck

      If you feel that both parties are utterly corrupt, it does not follow that you keep voting for one of these.

      Why not just vote your conscience?

      It is, in my view, cowardly to not enact ones' own personal sense of ethics, particularly with something as important as voting (or not voting for that matter).

      Click the ♥ to join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news & views written from a black pov - everyone is welcome.

      by mahakali overdrive on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:15:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  well, it's tricky (0+ / 0-)

        If "utterly" means "utterly," then there isn't much point in voting for either major party — but he didn't use that word here, and to say that both parties have been co-opted isn't to say that they are indistinguishable.

        However, it's not that you're putting words in Ray's mouth. He has repeatedly used the phrase "utterly corrupt," as in:

        If the system is utterly corrupt, then an electoral strategy becomes a farce.
        and
        I dream the dream of one day coming here to Daily Kos and reading diary after diary about ...radical ideas about how to defeat the entrenched and totally corrupt Democratic party establishment.... Do... you think the Democratic party establishment is not utterly corrupt to the core?
        (The first part of that latter quotation was quoted from Ray's diary by a commenter; Ray eventually edited it out. Interesting, that.)

        One might infer that Ray is talking out of both sides of his mouth — paying lip service to electoral politics (as he does later in that first comment) while arguing as forcefully as he thinks he can get away with that it is an empty sham — or that he doesn't know how to resolve this contradiction in his thinking.

        I think it's reasonable for someone to say that both parties have been coopted but the Democratic Party is better, and so s/he votes Democratic while working to fix the party. I don't think Ray's analysis coheres.

        "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

        by HudsonValleyMark on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:41:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  While I did not know (0+ / 0-)

      the extent and the exact details, I did know he was a liar, and didn't vote for him either time.  Good God, people STILL voted for him after they knew all the things you cite.  Apologists made sure that everyone knew it really wasn't Obama...it was really the GOP controlled congress.  Those who dissented were labeled "deluded", "not pragmatic", even "idiots".  How have those appellations proven true?  They haven't.  Still, we are told, "you MUST vote democrat, no matter what they do/don't do".  I beg to differ.  I refuse to waste my vote on a candidate who will simply perpetuate the status quo, no matter their rhetoric.

  •  WE (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pluto, Ian Reifowitz, orlbucfan

        1st have to get out of the yolk (excuse the nsa'y Humpty Dumpty pun) of this example:
        I recently was stunned when filing my official comment to whatever agency against KXL pipeline, that the deadline was 3-7-14, a FRIDAY and of course there were the polls in the media… What struck me is that the filing didn't end on Monday.
        WE Democrats have the WH & the Senate and yet the Democratic platform, the soul of FDR is STIFLED by our own!
        Here it is Monday and WE were all dumped into the FRIDAY news dump and it's issue after issue after issue. This rut has been traveled LONG ENOUGH and I will keep calling OUT those that KEEP US Democrats in the repuke MOLD of operaTING! I'm sick of this mind wash!
        Fuck Opera! Nothing against opera, I just DO NOT dig IT NONSTOP!
        In OUR control to change. WE have and do notice!
        The absurdity of funding some right wing fat cats in Canada, off shore, with nasty puke they want to dump on America for nothing we WILL EVER use. I.e. dirty burning, GAS!
        I know a RUT when I see one. I'm 63. BTDT!
        NOT a Friday! STAND UP!
        I'll call BS on the "Oh, but, because, gotta keep the blinders on" It's called a Democrat President letting HIS appointment know WHAT power is! If not, COMPLAINING! Changing the RULES because WE can!
            I want the blinders taken off the "mule" so we can kick ass!

    March AGAINST monsatanOHagentorange 3/25/13 a time warp

    by 3rock on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:09:54 PM PDT

    •  PS (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sharon Wraight

        Having said that and being old enough to remember, this country is a mess, the world is a mess. What is going to win with what we have now as who votes, is anyone with experience, even if the experience is outside the norm, longtime experience in what they know. The repukes know that, which is why they are frantic about their t potty. The mess is at the point of returning the blame to those inexperienced obstructionists.

      March AGAINST monsatanOHagentorange 3/25/13 a time warp

      by 3rock on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 10:25:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sounds good. Who do you recommend we get (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse, divineorder

    to bankroll this endeavor?

  •  The religious right spent twenty years winning (8+ / 0-)

    local offices - in my opinion that is what has moved the political landscape to the right in a country that is center-left. The tea party has done more harm than good to the plans of the far right.

    "Even a man who is pure in heart and says his prayers by night may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms and the autumn moon is bright" Curt Siodmak

    by Wisdumb on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:15:53 PM PDT

    •  Yep From School Boards On Up. Republicans Have (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jbsoul, mightymouse, Ian Reifowitz

      several generations of primed candidates in place from years of working the system to their benefit.  They've played it well.

      Democrats on the other hand it is totally hit and miss, but definitely no planning.

      Republicans still have stealth religious candidates running for school boards.  So they are continuing to build a stockpile of candidates.

      The Tea Party may have slowed them down a little, but in the big picture it's a small dent.

      The big dent is that Democrats have no stable of up and coming candidates.

      I was just thinking how pathetic the Democrats appear in this news conference about Darrell Issa turning off the microphone.  These Democrats look old and worn out.  More pathetic is that only about ten reporters showed up to even see this news conference.  The room is nearly empty.  

      The Democrats appear to be demanding to be noticed.  It has really come to this.

      http://www.c-span.org/...

      "I think that gay marriage is something that should be between a man and a woman.” - Arnold Schwarzenegger 2003

      by kerplunk on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:44:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bingo (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mightymouse, Ian Reifowitz

      The "Tea Party" didn't build a movement, it provided an organizing frame for a movement that had been germinating in GOP for decades.

      Nothing human is alien to me.

      by WB Reeves on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 01:13:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The religious right (6+ / 0-)

      did exactly nothing until they were motivated to do so by some smart, opportunistic politicians in religious clothing, The Moral Majority. In fact, most fundamentalist Christians were opposed to political involvement prior to that, because they felt it was morally suspect. But the GOP saw a vast, untapped well of previously inactive and politically ignorant voters, and they needed to fatten up their shrinking base.

      After they were awakened by Falwell and his cronies, they spent a long time not winning local offices, but being foot soldiers: stuffing envelopes, calling phone trees, and otherwise campaigning for the anointed GOP candidates. It took at least a decade before some of the real religious started running for office and winning, and they, too, were not doing it on their own initiative, but because the GOP had decided they were ready to move them up the ladder.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:41:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  THIS! So fucking This!!!! (8+ / 0-)

    Win a LOT of primaries. Run real progressives on a 50 state strategy.

    Yes. THIS.

    Regulate banks, not vaginas

    by MinistryOfTruth on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:35:26 PM PDT

  •  I'm With You Half Way! (6+ / 0-)

    I absolutely think we need to win primaries. We need to get the most progressive candidates we can. Not only does it increase our chances of getting liberal policy, but it helps inform the public about liberal values and policy.

    But the run-of-the-mill Democrats, the ones that aren't progressive, need to get their help from somewhere else. I simply have no patience left for them. And, I have plenty of progressive candidates to back in the general elections.

    I have limited resources. Non-progressive "Democrats" need to understand that they're barking up the wrong tree if they think I can afford to invest in them.

  •  The Biggest Help (6+ / 0-)

    The biggest help would be a candidate at the top of the ticket running as a real, functioning liberal. The American people want to elect a liberal as President (based on results). But the Democratic Party hasn't presented a viable liberal candidate in years. (I think there was a guy named "Humphrey", years ago, who was fairly liberal. At least he wasn't anti-labor.)

    This is why people like Sen. Bernie Sanders are attractive. He doesn't apologize for being too liberal. We need someone like that running, so that every time our candidate speaks for people running down ballot he or she isn't undermining their message.

    But, I'm not sure where we find that person. Most elected Democrats have forgotten how to talk from a strong liberal perspective. They're too used to thinking the way Republicans have taught them to think.

    We'd have to retrain them.

  •  Ian, don't look now, but there's an (8+ / 0-)

    itzy bitzy fly in your ideal world ointment.

    Sure, ideally you move the party to the left by voting for the more progressive candidate in the primary.

    But, the game is rigged. Entrenched faux-Dem incumbents have a lock on the support of the party establishment and the funding resources available from those corporations most vested in maintaining the status quo.

    In this environment, potential progressive candidates dare not risk bankruptcy and political suicide by tilting at right-leaning wind mills (unless their sole motivation is to run a vanity campaign just to make a "statement").

    There are two tools for moving the party leftward: The first is the obvious one, which you've so ably articulated.

    The second is to identify select conservadems in blue districts/states and, early on, beat the virtual shit out of them. Broadly publicize the votes they've taken, and the policies they've supported, that are antithetical to the economic populism that is demonstrably popular with our base voters.

    Build a movement, well before primary filing deadlines, to threaten these targeted conservadems' reelection. Create the void for other, more progressive candidates to fill. In our current, money-corrupted system, no underfunded, little known challengers are going to step forward, unless they smell blood in the water. It's up to us, who are serious about moving the party leftward, to sprinkle that blood.

    If we don't develop the smarts and the courage to employ, as appropriate, both of these tools, might as well keep bringing fresh sheets and towels to the guest room - Mr. Overton ain't going anywhere.

    What seemingly few of my Democratic brethren understand is that a dollar bill can't literally walk into the voting booth and pull the lever. Your only tool for exacting accountability is the casting, or withholding, of your vote. Don't be an enabler.

    by WisePiper on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:50:14 PM PDT

  •  ian, the tea candidates won because they knew (5+ / 0-)

    what the republican base had been getting from their local and national talk radio blowhards.

    that is the common link between all successful tea party winners- they browse the smorgasbord of ALEC talking points prechewed for them by the local and national blowhards and repeat them to the talk radio base, who go "wow, that's what we're talking about!".

    that is also a reason conservative corporate blue dog dems win primaries in rural states- they don't too far out of the boundaries set by the amplified outrage from those same radio stations.

    Support the progressive candidate in Democratic primaries.
    there's a general overall weight on all such elections produced by a constant barrage of rw shit from those stations, often endorsed by the local sports teams.

    there can be no real support for progressive candidates in anything but heavy blue without knowing what feces those ALEC GOP managed blowhards are throwing from the local state rw radio stations and then responding to it before it's all over the editorial section as fact.

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:54:05 PM PDT

    •  PS (7+ / 0-)
      If the progressive candidate loses in the primary,  that means the more progressive ideas may not be as popular as we think they are among Democrats actually who vote. That sucks.
      i disagree. that's the effect in many communities across the country of an oppressive well managed overlay from the loudest radio stations.

      the landscape would be totally different if there was even one progressive talk station.

      consider the opposite- if the loudest radio stations were pushing obama to go single payer, if they were pushing for global warming action, and election and campaign finance reform- that progressive reform and those candidates would go somewhere.

      This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

      by certainot on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 10:01:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  incredibly well said (4+ / 0-)

    And something I think those running around complaining and throwing around 'no true progressive' smears should keep in mind.

    And honestly for those complaining there is 'no real progressive' to vote for, may I suggest run yourself then.

    Der Weg ist das Ziel

    by duhban on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 10:04:12 PM PDT

  •  You can't use the same tactics to confront (8+ / 0-)

    Power that you use to serve power.

    The Tea Party succeeded, the extent it can be said to have succeeded, because it carried a message The Money Power wanted carried.

    The argument "Hey, why can't you get billionaires to give you money to pursue aims they disagree with" just doesn't hold water.

    When you allow Republicans - not "less than perfect Democrats" but Republicans who have changed labels without changing views - to get elected as Democrats you destroy the brand value of our party.  

    The fallout is actual Republicans controlling Congress for 16 of the last 20 years.

    Every primary should be hotly contested.

    Everyone - and I sincerely mean this - should also have a point beyond which party platforms and values matter more than party labels.

    There was a point at which it wasn't excusable to vote for an unrepentant racist Dixiecrat, regardless of whether the seat went to a Republican as a result.

    There's also a point at which voting for a sufficiently savage enemy of the safety net cannot be excused, regardless of the outcome.

    Everyone has to draw that line for themselves, but anyone who can't draw that line at all isn't engaged in politics but in some pathetic team sport.

    Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

    by JesseCW on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 11:46:56 PM PDT

  •  Already did it once with Lamont vs. Lieberman. (6+ / 0-)

    Many lessons can be drawn from that example and experience.

    The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

    by lotlizard on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 12:14:04 AM PDT

  •  You're going against the owner of the site (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bisbonian

    who has already anointed Hillary and is against a primary.

    Il est dangereux d’avoir raison dans des choses où des hommes accrédités ont tort. - Voltaire
    Don't trust anyone over 84414 - BentLiberal

    by BentLiberal on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 12:30:38 AM PDT

  •  Could not agree more with you Jesse and these faux (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz, left of center

    Democrats particularly the seven who blocked the Adegbile  nomination. And certainly disagree with Democrats voting against Democratic principles just for reelection purposes...I keep sending emails to these blue-dogs about their voting records. And I am getting very nasty with these guys.....the Republicans never, ever break ranks but our Democrats seem to miss this vital lesson...

  •  You nailed it. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cedwyn, Ahianne, Ian Reifowitz

    Any strategy that results in electing more Republicans is self evidently bad. The argument for primaries is compelling to anyone interested in actually moving the Democratic Party to the Left.  

    You are absolutely right about where the Tea Party's strength lies. You're equally right that it was long process, decades in fact.

    This is something that those who write off the TP as corporate astro-turfing fail to understand. The TP is the fruition of of a process that dates back to Pat Robertson's Presidential bid, which pumped large numbers of reactionary evangelical activists into the GOP.  It was this same base that Pat Buchanan later appealed to, augmenting it with his own racist and xenophobic following.

    As I said elsewhere: The "Tea Party" didn't build a movement, it provided an organizing frame for a movement that had been germinating in the GOP for decades.

    The point is that it wasn't corporate money that brought the Tea Party's base into being. It was activist sweat equity and politicking, year in and year out. That and the Republican Party's cynical embrace of populist outrage.

    Tipped and Rec'd.

    Nothing human is alien to me.

    by WB Reeves on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 02:11:25 AM PDT

  •  We need William Buckleys of the left (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ahianne, Ian Reifowitz

    He use to say he would "back the most conservative contestant in a primary, that he though could win".

    We need to do this on the left. Back the most liberal contestant in a primary we think can win.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)! Follow on Twitter @dopper0189

    by dopper0189 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:19:52 AM PDT

  •  You are absolutely right, but you don't go far (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    enough.

    Ronnie Ray-Gun was a horrible man, and a worse President, but by gum, he knew how you win elections- "never speak ill of a fellow Republican", remember?

    Once primary season is over we need to turn our guns AWAY from our own and onto much more deserving targets- the real enemy of progress in this country- the Republicans.

    "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

    by Whimsical on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:17:12 AM PDT

  •  They (the Tea Party) also had free... (4+ / 0-)

    promotional advertisement 24/7 on their own 'News' network.  We could have the greatest candidate but if he/she is ridiculed on one network and ignored on all of the others then the powers that be will chose our candidate.  We need to take money out of politics and force fairness in the media.  Much like truth in advertising we need to have truth in news.  

    If debugging is the process of removing bugs, then programming must be the process of putting them in.

    by kharma on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:41:16 AM PDT

  •  Do We Need A "PPAC"? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    Do we need a Progressive Political Action Committee?  A PPAC to counter the CPAC?  Something that can garner progressives at least a share of the media attention which gets focused every year on the nutso's in CPAC.  No we don't have to be as crazy to the left as the CPAC wackos are to the right.  In fact our message should be one of political common sense, which tells the public, Hey, we're the sane ones.

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

    by Doctor Who on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:49:07 AM PDT

  •  Ian? You KNOW what the entrenched Democratic (4+ / 0-)

    operatives would call your idea, don't you?

    They would call it

    fucking retarded.
    Please remember: you are not allowed to criticize ConservaDems. You are not allowed to primary ConservaDems. You are not allowed to run issue ads calling out ConservaDems.

    "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

    by blue in NC on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:57:10 AM PDT

  •  I believe a few states have added "none of the (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    above" to the ballot in general elections.  A vote for none of the above is a vote for Republicans because it effectively makes a swing voter a non-voter, and in effect, suppresses a voter.

    I might add that Republicans do a better job getting their voters out in off-year elections, like 2010 and the coming election in 2014.  It is known that Democrats win in high turnout elections.  I believe it is our job to make every election a high turnout election.  This will also move the body politic to the left.

    Republicans are like alligators. All mouth and no ears.

    by Ohiodem1 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:57:37 AM PDT

  •  So, you want to emulate a method that (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pennyck

    Has short term success and long term ruination for both party and message.  Count me out.

    A person's character is measured by how they treat everyone. Not just your pet group.

    by Tempus Figits on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:18:53 AM PDT

  •  It will be hard to compete without funding (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse, Ian Reifowitz

    You saw how the Democratic money machine abandoned Bill Halter.

    I'm no philosopher, I am no poet, I'm just trying to help you out - Gomez (from the song Hamoa Beach)

    by jhecht on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:23:13 AM PDT

  •  There is no way we can use tea party tactics (0+ / 0-)

    Simply because there is no single policy, or progressive thought that appeals to left leaning people that appeals as much as racism, nationalism and christofacism appeals to the tea party.

    We have no Benghazi..Benghazi..Benghazi we have Koch..Koch..squirrel

    Religion is like a blind man, in a pitch black room, searching for a black cat that isn't there.....and finding it.

    by fauxrs on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:25:46 AM PDT

  •  Nothing good will happen (0+ / 0-)

    Until Harry Reid is no longer in control of the Senate. He's the conservatives ace in the hole. His fecklessness in the face of constant filibuster threat (threat mind you, not actual exercise of the tactic) is limitless. The way he just fucked over Gillibrand and the sexual assault legislation (which "lost" with a majority of votes for) is yet another of a long, long list of successful attempts to keep true liberals ghettoized and caged.

  •  Ian, have you seen primarycolors.net? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse, Ian Reifowitz, AoT

    Check this out.

    It's a site that evaluates which Democratic Congressmen and Senators would be the best targets for primaries, based on how progressive they are, how progressive their district is, and the risk of the seat going Republican.

    With cool interactive map!

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:57:44 AM PDT

  •  hopefully this site helps out w/the primaries (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

    by mightymouse on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:01:25 AM PDT

  •  It's looking like it may take 10 more years (0+ / 0-)

    for some to realize that the Democratic Party is unsalvageable. But let's keep pretending it is...

    The Republicans are crazy, but why we follow them down the rabbit hole is beyond me.

    by Jazzenterprises on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:17:21 AM PDT

  •  Also, start at the bottom (5+ / 0-)

    The Goldwater people started working on taking the Republican party more to the right back in 1964 and began by running people at the bottom of the ballot--school board, county judiciary, city council, state representatives and so forth.  We can do that, too, building a base of progressives from school board on up; that way, there will be people "in the pipeline" ready to move up when the time comes.  It's a slow process, but ultimately it's more rock solid.

    •  ^^^THIS^^^ (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, Ian Reifowitz, CoolOnion, dizzydean

      It's a long term strategy - no easy fixes. But that's the way it gets done.

      “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

      by Catte Nappe on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:45:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Low level progressive candidates is not a problem (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Catte Nappe, Ian Reifowitz

        at all from what I've seen. You can go anywhere and find progressive city council people and progressive school board members. The problem is that the party cuts the progressives off once it hits the level of mayor of major cities, or other higher offices.

        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

        by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:01:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, not necessarily "anywhere" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ian Reifowitz

          But parties are about electability, so if progressives aren't electable then the effort has to drop down a notch -  to the voters.

          “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

          by Catte Nappe on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:45:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm talking about California (0+ / 0-)

            and more specifically San Francisco. Which is where my experience is. I don't buy much into the electability argument except if you're in deep red Texas or similar. I'm talking about Neocon shills like Gavin Newsom getting pushed up in beep, deep blue territory when there are liberal alternatives.

            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

            by AoT on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:04:53 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, look at my sig line, LOL (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              AoT

              Granted, you guys have  a better reason to expect a progressive Dem than I do. But even in purplish regions in the so-called "fly over" states, progressives are not as thick on the ground as your experience in your region suggests. So getting some into local leadership is --- progress.

              “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

              by Catte Nappe on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:18:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  thinking about Ian's advice (0+ / 0-)

    in my case ... an NY State resident

    Governor - Andrew Cuomo - entrenched incumbent, no meaningful primary
    Senator - Chuck Schumer - entrenched incumbent, no meaningful primary
    Congress - Nita Lowey - entrenched incumbent, likely no meaningful primary.

    even county legislator is like this.

    No big candidate will run against these people.

    This diary seems well-meaning but glib, not cognizant of the real world.

    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

    by mightymouse on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:24:17 AM PDT

  •  The Tea Party's Signature Accomplishment (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    Has been preventing Republicans from capturing the senate in two straight elections.  I actually agree with the strategy of winning primaries to move the party to the left, but I also think it's important to strategically choose the primaries.

  •  Win primaries. Absolutely. Then what? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    We have all seen how the Party treats the handful of progressives who've made it to DC. Like the Plague. The Democratic Party is the biggest road block to progressivism. Not the Republican Party.

    Party corrupts, and absolute Party corrupts absolutely. The Democratic Party is entirely corrupted, save the few individual congress people (and even they not always) who give us our only reason to support the Party at all. We don't have any other choice; it's Democrats or nobody.

    Also sad but true: The Party will not change its corrupt ways until another choice appears outside this political prison. Facebook rallies and money bombs are actually reassuring to the Party because it knows those populist efforts will eventually reward them.

    So yes, run the most progressive candidate you can muster in the most liberal district, just to establish a true reference point for the real intentions of the movement, then be prepared to watch that candidate and that district get used by the Party as an in house example of ideological idiocy, used to bargain down the freaks in the opposing party, the deniers, the believers, and the killers. You know this story already.

    The Party maintains the status quo by using the progressive platform as an example of what not to do. In this relationship Progressives cannot hope to prevail. They have ceded power at the very first step to national politics, a primary election to the House.  

     

    •  Citation please. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ian Reifowitz

      'We have all seen how the Party treats the handful of progressives who've made it to DC. Like the Plague. The Democratic Party is the biggest road block to progressivism. Not the Republican Party.'

      Also, if it were true, how could it be stopped? More progressives voting for Party leadership.

      While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

      by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:51:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  IMO the best way to get dens to move to the left (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    Is to have their back in the elections. That means voting, donating and working to GOTV.  If they know that their base is strong and motivated they should be encouraged to take more liberal positions.

    It seems like the reason they move to the right is to get the votes of more moderate/centrist voters. They need to appeal to enough voters to win, and if they cannot solidify enough liberal/dem/progressive votes then they have to move more toward the center.

    Just my 2 cents.

  •  I point you to my sig line (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, Ian Reifowitz

    Purity is for primaries; in the general, our worst are better than their best.

    by blue aardvark on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:51:55 AM PDT

  •  "Support the progressive Dem in primaries" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, divineorder, Ian Reifowitz

    I hope folks who are recommending this diary will be so generous with their support when a diary proposes an alternative to Hillary in 2016.

    Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed: everything else is public relations. - George Orwell

    by Wayward Son on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 07:53:25 AM PDT

  •  I agree we need more progressives in the primaries (2+ / 0-)

    There's been some resistance to this in the past because some people thought that primary challengers are bad.

    My only point is that just because you lose a primary challenge doesn't mean you stop.

    None are so hopelessly enslaved, as those who falsely believe they are free. The truth has been kept from the depth of their minds by masters who rule them with lies. -Johann von Goethe

    by gjohnsit on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:13:20 AM PDT

    •  The problem is that... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, Ian Reifowitz

      money wins primaries more often than not.  The established candidate gets the free air time, gets their name recognized, has the support of the 1% Democrats and the progressive one who will not shill for the dollar gets obliterated because lack of exposure and the finances to spread their message.  

      It is not the progressive ideas and the mentality that is the problem (which poll after poll reflects) it is that the people with enough money to influence an election 9and many have enough to influence BOTH primaries)  have a vested interest in making sure that whether a Democrat OR a Republican wins, their interests are covered.

      "Perhaps the sentiments contained in the following pages, are not YET sufficiently fashionable to procure them general favour..."

      by Buckeye Nut Schell on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:56:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Are there that many millionaires? (0+ / 0-)

    "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:45:31 AM PDT

  •  Invite Bernie to Primary Hillary (3+ / 0-)

    Let's not forget Bernie is a capital (I). He may not be interested in joining the party as I think he wore out any patience for Party politics some time ago, But let's look at this pragmatically.

    Bernie wants:

    A clear distinction between current mainstream democrats (and MSM) and real progressive values.

    A soapbox to reach millions.

    Another shot at personal recognition (see filibuster) as he enters the twilight of his career.

    A real shot at the Presidency - I don't believe he is insincere by suggesting a run, and the Democratic Party brings real gravitas to this effort

    The Democrats want:

    A united party including all progressive hands on deck. Does anyone think this will happen by avoiding a primary and anointing Hillary the de facto candidate? I don't.

    Just my 2 cents..  

    -7.5 -7.28, A carrot is as close as a rabbit gets to a diamond.-Don Van Vliet

    by Blueslide on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:47:03 AM PDT

  •  So you mean... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, No Exit
    We do it the way the Tea Party did in moving the Republican Party to the right.
    Let's see, that means we should get a bunch of billionaires to fund an astroturf campaign to (and this would be the main difference) go AGAINST their best interest and then get these same billionaires to buy up all of the major media outlets to spread these lies (truths in our situation) so that the public developes misdirected (actully in this case it wouldn't be misdirected) anger towards the opposition and cover the airways with false (righteous) outrage at whatever they try to do?  

    Hmmm....   That just may work.  Anybody got the phone number to a few billionaires willing to give it a shot?

    "Perhaps the sentiments contained in the following pages, are not YET sufficiently fashionable to procure them general favour..."

    by Buckeye Nut Schell on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:48:15 AM PDT

  •  I have always loved the legislative agenda (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    saanvik, Ian Reifowitz

    of the democratic party:

    Food
    Clothing
    Shelter
    Education
    Healthcare

    These things provide the foundation, and once the foundation is in place, you can build on the foundation, you can improve the foundation, you can provide with the foundation, and you can achieve with that foundation.

    The platform provides for the fundamentals of life, and once you have the fundamentals you can live, you can progress.

    We need to return to our basics, because these are the basics for all of us.

    "The people who were trying to make this world worse are not taking the day off. Why should I?”---Bob Marley

    by lyvwyr101 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:02:11 AM PDT

  •  Also, stop looking at red states as hopeless! n/t (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, Ian Reifowitz

    This "Trickle Down" thing has turned out to be somebody pissing on my leg and tellin' me it's rainin'.

    by swtexas on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:13:21 AM PDT

  •  Money is a problem (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, Ian Reifowitz

    Tea Party candidates are not grass roots candidates without money; they are created and funded by the Citizens United unleashed 501c3's.  It is hard to imagine left wing or progressive or whatever you want to call them candidates being able to raise enough money to mount serious primary challenges.

  •  I am perhaps not as familiar with the history (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TJ, burlydee

    of the Tea Party as I should be, but hasn't their strategy been pretty much explicitly the opposite of what you say?

    "… do it the way the Tea Party did in moving the Republican Party to the right. And it has nothing to do with denying our votes to 'centrist' candidates on Election Day."

    They're utterly willing to back losing candidates. They're eager to do so. They will cut off their noses again and again, until their spiteful face falls in line.

    And it's working. 'Establishment' Republicans are sounding more and more like Tea Partiers. Because they're willing to lose and lose and lose and lose. And they've done a remarkable job branding themselves as a political force to be reckoned with in a matter of a very few years.

    Is it possible that our focus on winning is actually a weakness?

    (I don't know the answer to that question.)

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

    by GussieFN on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 09:14:14 AM PDT

  •  Oh please. I call BS. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT

    The Tea party doesn't vote for anyone that doesn't cater to them.

  •  I'm not sure I agree with the premise (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, Ian Reifowitz

    The "tea party", for the GOP, is like a sugar rush - a bunch of quick energy, then a crash.  The GOP will soon find themselves with even less support than they had in 2008 because of the crash.

    I don't want that.  I don't want the Democrats to shift left for a short while, for a short term gain, that will result in a negative future.

    What I want is what I believe we are already seeing - a  gradual, generational shift towards more progressive political thought.  Encouraging that is the true way to shift our country to the left.

    It's often not terribly exciting, but real change usually isn't.  Sure, there are moments of excitement (like, oh, I don't know, electing a Black president), but mostly, it's a slow grind that never feels fast enough.

  •  That too is progress at a snails pace. Only way (0+ / 0-)

    is a NATIONAL (GENERAL) WORK STRIKE.  

  •  The Tea Party was not grass roots or in any way (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz, AoT

    a product of average Americans.  It was started with a staged rant on a Fox affiliate and was immediately funded by Republican PACs and their associated billionaire benefactors.  The joke wound up being on the GOP in that their dog slipped its leash and is now chewing on the ass of the GOP establishment.  

    While the advice here is accurate to an extent, it can not be ignored that the Democratic Party has shown absolutely zero interest in letting the section of its base to the left of center run anything.  Let alone supporting any sort of movement that would pose any kind of threat to entrenched power interests.  

    The Democratic Party is disinterested in people who want them to have to answer to their constituents.  This is not a Democratic problem.  It's a politician problem.  No one likes to be threatened with primaries and rational actors will take means to prevent them.  In our case that is usually by cozying up to large corporate interests who are capable of making primary challenges less likely to succeed via outside spending.  

    This is especially true since Citizens United.

    I have no idea what should be done.  But to say "go win primaries" to the rank and file when the Party itself is against this strategy seems either naïve or disingenuous.  Just my opinion.

    "If you can find money to kill people, you can find money to help people." -Tony Benn (-6.38,-6.36)

    by The Rational Hatter on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:30:38 AM PDT

  •  I thought about this last night, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz, Sharon Wraight

       it's even simpler, per my above post, because the world is such a mess, EXPERIENCE is what voters are going to vote for. Doesn't even matter what the experience is. What's needed is the theme of CLIMATE CHANGE. The big if is if could we find people, professors, long time environmental activists, people who have worked in even construction of solar or similar, even people who have worked in health for a long time, to run for office. Other than filing for, they wouldn't even have to campaign. The IMPORTANT thing is to have an issue that represents DEMOCRATS, a dialogue, a Democrat base idea to offer the public.
        Simplified, could one of the Democrat organizations JUST fund filing fees for people who want to represent CLIMATE change?
       Young people with no experience may be able to get away with it as long as the theme is CLIMATE CHANGE.
       Can we as Democrats unite behind a theme that unfortunately we're likely to get a boost from, i.e. the disasters?
       They are already happening. Why are we suppressed by RW talking points? Are we NOT better?

    March AGAINST monsatanOHagentorange 3/25/13 a time warp

    by 3rock on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 10:53:47 AM PDT

  •  The strategy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    isn't necessarily to see how many Blue Dogs we can primary (in general, having fewer conservadems is a good thing but it's not the principal goal here).

    The objective is to frighten the Blue Dogs AND the "get along go along" moderate-liberals.  They're where they are to line their own pockets.  We can't change that.  But we can raise the price they pay in the currency of supporting progressive goals.

    Thus, an important objective of a primary-the-DINO is to make sure that the anecdotally-focused media sit up and take notice.  (This is why Dianne Feinstein would make a good choice.

  •  Good points (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, Ian Reifowitz, orlbucfan

    and thank you for not calling for us to nominate HRC to move the dem party to the left, as one front pager has oh so cleverly argued.

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 11:36:40 AM PDT

  •  Better Memes (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz, orlbucfan

    The right has been excellent at coming up with catchy memes and slogans, and at turning around progressive memes and generally distorting language to their own ends.

    One of our biggest successes with memes was Occupy Wall Street making 99% vs. 1% a big meme in this country. We need more successes like that to move the country left.

  •  This is a rather simplistic analysis... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    Although left-wing voters would like to see more liberal Democratic candidates elected to office, today's divisive political atmosphere doesn't allow them the luxury of picking and choosing between centrists and progressives. Democrats are now forced to elect ANYBODY who isn't a Tea Party Republican nut job. The left-wing members of the electorate can worry about how liberal or moderate their candidates are later on. Right now, the emphasis should be on keeping enough Democrats to maintain a majority in the Senate, and winning enough votes to take back control of the House.

  •  If progressives lose in primaries, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz, AoT, twocrows1023

    I don't think it always means the issues aren't popular. Oftentimes progressive candidates are underfunded and have a difficult time running strong campaigns. We need better campaign infrastructure to help candidates that the cautious DCCC isn't necessarily going to get behind, but can win if they have the resources.

    •  And that means (0+ / 0-)

      it's up to us to spend $20 here and $20 there on those candidates.  If enough of us do that we can stand up even to the mighty Kochs.  But we have to be willing to do it and do it consistently.  

      And that's not easy when the economy is in the tank.  Who knows?  Maybe that's been the GOP's plan all along.  But that's all the more reason why we mustn't let them win.

      The price of apathy is to be ruled by evil men - - Plato . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . We must be the change we wish to see in the world - - Mohandas Gandhi

      by twocrows1023 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:08:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Except we don't have the Koch Bros backing us (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz, AoT
    •  And I contend (0+ / 0-)

      we don't want them.

      We do have the internet.  If we harness it effectively, we can bring in 1,000,000 $20 - $200 donations.  That beats one $100,000,000 donation any day.

      One massive donation does just one thing: makes the candidate beholden to just one person.  Let's not go that route.  The GOP has that one sewn up.

      The price of apathy is to be ruled by evil men - - Plato . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . We must be the change we wish to see in the world - - Mohandas Gandhi

      by twocrows1023 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:05:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yeah but the Tea Party had the Kochs (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    Could there possibly be real progressive billionaires out there?  

  •  Oh hey look (0+ / 0-)

    It's the 1% calling. They'd like you to vote for one of their parties. They don't care which one, but they know you do - so they're asking you to vote Democrat.

    Remember, if you don't support the establishment, you're a traitor to your own principles AND you're hurting the American people! ...pssssh.

    There's gonna be a lot more of this shit leading up to future elections. Get used to seeing it.

    •  This is a Democratic site. (0+ / 0-)

      If you don't want to be at a site that argues for voting for Democrats, why are you here? I'm not saying we don't want you here, I'm asking you a legitimate question. What is the purpose of coming to a site that openly states it is a pro-Democratic, partisan site, if you believe what you stated in your comment?

      •  yeah right (0+ / 0-)

        Considering a lot of what this site publishes, I don't see how you can possibly think it argues for voting for Democrats. Democrats aren't going to support any of this feel-good progressive shit y'all are always on about, unless you drag them into it kicking and screaming, and even then they'll probably muck it up. Warren is remarkable for a reason.

      •  Democratic Party -- love it or leave it!!! (0+ / 0-)

        I myself say leave it. And did. I worked for Jill Stein for president in the last presidential election and she rocked.  The propaganda machine media wouldn't evah give her the mic but if they had she would have rocked nationally. But Dem ostriches kept their lesser evil heads in the sand per usual.

        Daily Kos -- think like the bloogers or don't read them and don't comment?  Is that your pernt?

        Not being a troll, just someone who has been away, is back, and left the d*mn Dem party in disgust with it and Obama a serious while ago. First Kos blog I have read in ages but feeling more than a little disappointed.  I participated here long ago when I appreciated the blogs fighting for single payer.  What a heartbreak that effort was re Dem party lack of real support. Hah!!!

        Does this mean Daily Kos has zero tolerance for a range of progressive voices?  The far left police?  Dare we not criticize Obama here?  Dear God!!! Has this site become a bubble-land for Obama?

        That seriously sucks if it is true.

        •  meant bloggers, but blooger is kind of funny (0+ / 0-)
        •  If you're so sure DK sucks, (0+ / 0-)

          why are you back?  You damned well know the stated purpose of DailyKos:  more and better Democrats.  "Better Democrats" is a big part of it but "more" is key to getting the changes we want and has to come first.

          At this point in our country, voting for third parties is a direct path to a complete Republican take-over. If you can't figure that out, you've got more problems than just being a third-party troll.

          They don't win until we quit fighting!

          by Eyesbright on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 11:30:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  My idealistic side would love to agree (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    that it's just that simple.  We liberals just need to become an Opposite World copy of the Tea Party, and BAM, instant liberalism by Democratic political candidates worried about being primaried...

    My realistic side understands that the "grassroots" right that has become the Tea Party is little more than well-funded, uberly complex propaganda and astroturf that has been evolving for 30 - 40 years, so it's clearly not just as simple as that.

    As soon as someone points us to "our" billionaires who are willing to fund such a movement, we can get to work.  We could have done it with union cash and union organizing muscle had we not let the right wing destroy our unions...  No billionaires needed.

    Call me a pessimist, but no matter how much effort we put in, we still simply don't have the cash to pay for a propaganda machine and the manpower and money needed to create an astroturf empire.

    "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

    by Darth Stateworker on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:42:33 PM PDT

    •  I should also note: (0+ / 0-)

      Great diary Ian.  I'm not trying to dump all over it, just point out the logistics as I see it.

      But logistics be damned, we still should be trying, even if we don't have the money and the manpower.

      "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

      by Darth Stateworker on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:45:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If we don't win, we won't get influence. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Darth Stateworker

      That's how it is. Let's be real.

      •  I thought I was being real. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ian Reifowitz

        The willpower we have.  It's the money we need.

        Note my addendum above:  I love the diary, and agree we need to make the push anyway.  I certainly agree on principle.  I'm just adding a dash of what I believe we need realistically to pull it off:  money, manpower, and time.  The Tea Party simply wasn't built in a day, on the cheap, no matter how much the MSM likes to paint it as a grassroots movement the evolved practically overnight.  We all know that.

        So to be realistic about it, we've got to figure out that part, and not simply the activism part.  Do we look for wealthy liberals to start plunking down cash for a long game like the Koches and others started doing on the other side decades ago?  Do we try to re-build unions so we can tap their money and organizing power?  Who finances the think tank network and propaganda mills?  Where to we find the staff for them?  Who starts the "liberal" news network, since Current basically went belly-up and MSNBC isn't really much more than corporate Dem-dom that is long on social liberalism but short on economic liberalism?

        I'm simply trying to look at it realistically instead of idealistically.  I'd love to think that there are enough liberals to influence enough peoples opinion and turn the tides.  I just don't think it's realistic, however.  Let's face it - the John Bircher/Ayn Rand nuttiness that currently infests the Tea Party (and hold mainstream Republicans hostage) was an outlier decades ago, and it's ascension was carefully planned and coordinated, and well financed.  It wasn't an accident, and it wasn't simply grassroots activism.

        It's not just about winning over Democrats.  It's about building a propaganda and PR machine that is big enough to rival the echo chamber machine of the right that the right uses to convince moderate and/or independent voters that they're ideas are "correct."  

        Then there is also the problem that as liberals, we aren't willing to lie to people to convince them our ideas are better or lie to them to scare the shit out of them on the other sides ideas.  As a group, we generally have too much integrity to do that - yet at the same time, that is largely how the right fights it's battles today.

        As I said - I agree with the concept.  I'm thinking more about the logistics of it, and how to manages those logistics.  I simply don't see it being quick, easy, and as simple as basically GOTV efforts among liberals in primaries.

        "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

        by Darth Stateworker on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:25:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I don't think it's only about cash. (0+ / 0-)

      You said:

      We liberals just need to become an Opposite World copy of the Tea Party, and BAM, instant liberalism by Democratic political candidates worried about being primaried...
      But it didn't happen "BAM!" even for the Tea Party.

      Long before the Kochs and the other big donators came along, the Far Right folks were voting in school boards and small town police chiefs and small town town councils.  They started very small and, little by little, made their voices heard.  

      It was only THEN that the Kochs and the Donald Trumps and the other billionaires began to sit up and take notice.  It was only then that the monied interests began to back them.

      So, yes, I think we could duplicate their process IF we have the patience to start small and be persistent.  The money won't come at the beginning - just as it didn't for the Far Right before they got the name Tea Party and before they became an astro-turf organization.

      Or we could sit back and say, "Well, screw it.  The Tea Party wins because we refuse to try."

      And, of course, it would be up to us, once the money began to come in not to get bought as the TP has.  That would be at least as tall an order as getting to the point where the funding begins to flow.

      And as to funding, btw: What did Obama do?  He created a network.  He used the internet.  He brought in the small donations and, if memory serves, during his first election he out-performed the McCain Machine.  
      We could do that again if we put our minds to it.

      The price of apathy is to be ruled by evil men - - Plato . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . We must be the change we wish to see in the world - - Mohandas Gandhi

      by twocrows1023 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 05:01:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't think you're getting what I was saying. (0+ / 0-)

        Point being that "grassroots" on the right has been astroturf from the beginning.

        Follow the Birchers back a few decades.  Who funded the Birchers before the Birchers went mainstream?  Who funded the creation of the SPN and all its individual state propaganda outfit stink tanks?  ALEC?  Koch Family Foundation? How was Fox News born?  Ad infinium.  All by deeply pocketed right wing money men like the Koches and Murdock.  Who's going to do the same today for liberal causes?  Most billionaire "liberals" are nothing of the sort.  They're simply centrists that haven't gone full retard yet.  Period.

        The entire rightward shift of the nations Overton window was one gigantic, coordinated effort.  The Tea Party is simply an astroturf byproduct of that.

        And Obama raising fund for himself hardly has any actual bearing on setting up a long-term liberal machine like the right has done with things like SPN.  While we worry and argue about individual politicians, they worry about the conservative astroturf movement itself independent of any particular politician.  As an abstract concept the "movement" itself is infallible and unimpeachable, even if the individual politician might be.

        "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

        by Darth Stateworker on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:29:42 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Yep. The pundits always say (0+ / 0-)

    it's the diehards who vote during primaries.

    Just as if that's a Bad Thing.

    It isn't.

    The price of apathy is to be ruled by evil men - - Plato . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . We must be the change we wish to see in the world - - Mohandas Gandhi

    by twocrows1023 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 04:47:23 PM PDT

  •  It Won't Happen (0+ / 0-)

    Why? Because Democrats are their own worst enemies. I've never seen a time, with the exception of the ACA legislation, when Democrats had the common sense or courage to vote as a bloc. I've been a Democrat my entire life but the fact of the matter is the only way Democrats will act as one is if you pour a generous dose of epoxy over them. I spent twenty years in politics and I can say with honesty that the majority of Democrats lack the passion of conservatives.

  •  This all sounds really good, but unfortunately (0+ / 0-)

    the reality is that the American people are not progressive. They are too stupid and poorly informed to actually vote to make their lives better.

    "The Earth is my country and Science my religion" Christiaan Huygens. The gold standard ended on August 15, 1971, its time we start acting like it. If we can afford full employment killing Germans, we can afford full employment during peace-time.

    by Auburn Parks on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:06:28 PM PDT

  •  This site shows which ones we should primary (0+ / 0-)

    Bold Progressive. Deal with it.

    by novenator on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 06:44:12 PM PDT

  •  If... (0+ / 0-)

    ...the tea baggers can do it to the GOP, we can do it to the Democratic Party!

    Warren/Sanders in '16!

  •  Never, ever, vote Republican (0+ / 0-)

    I used to occasionally vote for a republican candidate if I thought him or her honest and "good for the job". But the party is bat shit crazy now and we can give them no quarter. NONE. Vote the stupid bastards out.

  •  First you ALL need to show up in Special Elections (0+ / 0-)

    and Midterm Elections.  The first depressing thing I heard this morning was that Alex Sink lost the special election in FL to a Lobbyist.  What does that say about the upcoming Midterms?

  •  Thank you. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian Reifowitz

    I have been trying to convince some third party supporting friends, the kind who declare that both parties are the same, and think we should all vote for Greens, of this very thing. The teabillies didn't start a third party, they took over an existing one with all the infrastructure and fund raising connections required to run candidates in national contests, and that is the key to their success.

    "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

    by happy camper on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 06:46:45 AM PDT

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