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Last Friday, Bill Maher blasted both conservatives that cheat to win elections, and obnoxious liberals who turn off people from voting for their side.

Look at all the big issues Democrats have on their side by big margins. 71% want to raise minimum wage. 88% want background checks for guns. 80% support a path to citizenship for illegals. 90% support an equal pay law for women. Republicans are against all of it. So how do they win?

I'll tell you how. They employ a complex multifaceted technique political scientists call "cheating". (audience laughter) Gerrymandering the districts, voter ID laws, purging the voter rolls, shortening the voting period, preventing anyone who's been to prison from voting, eliminating same-day registration, putting up billboards in poor black neighborhoods that say "Don't Vote. There's Ghosts In There!"

Video and full transcript below the fold.


And finally, New Rule: somebody has to tell me how do they do it?  How do Republicans win elections?  According to a new poll, only 6% of likely voters think Congress is doing a good job.  Only 14% think it's passed any legislation that will improve their lives.  Yet all the experts predict that come November, the House will remain Republican-dominated, and the party will clean up.  Which is ironic, because all the actual cleaning up of America is done by Democrats — and by that I mean environmentalists and Mexicans.  (audience laughter)

Now, I can understand how people used to vote Republican.  Eisenhower seemed like an OK guy, and even if Republicans weren't all that interested in black people, women, or dolphins, you could still see how half the people could vote for them half the time.  But how the hell do they do it now?  They're so much crazier.  And there are so many more of us.

Look at all the big issues Democrats have on their side by big margins.  71% want to raise minimum wage.  88% want background checks for guns.  80% support a path to citizenship for illegals.  90% support an equal pay law for women.

Republicans are against all of it.  So how do they win?

I'll tell you how.  They employ a complex multifaceted technique political scientists call "cheating".  (audience laughter)  Gerrymandering the districts, voter ID laws, purging the voter rolls, shortening the voting period, preventing anyone who's been to prison from voting, eliminating same-day registration, putting up billboards in poor black neighborhoods that say "Don't Vote.  There's Ghosts In There!"

(audience laughter)

But that is not the only trick Republicans have up their sleeve.  Even more than cheating, what Republicans have done is tap into the deep, rich vein of cultural resentment that runs through America's heartland like an artery clogged with hate-butter.  And liberals, to be fair, sometimes make it pretty easy for them to do that.

When Gwyneth Paltrow said her divorce was a "conscious uncoupling", even I wanted to jump in a truck, crank up the Lynyrd Skynyrd, and shoot up a farmer's market.  (audience laughter)

And as a comedian, I don't like it when political correctness Nazis hound me to censor every joke, and apologize for every slight.  And when I have to learn how to pronounce words like "chai" and "quinoa", I just want to shove a head of kale up their ass!  (audience laughter)

They mean well, but sometimes when I'm at Whole Foods, I don't want to sign petitions and give to charity.  I just want to go in and get a $15 dollar lentil sandwich that'll make me fart for a week!  (audience laughter and applause)

I also, for example, think it's ridiculous that Facebook has now decided we have to choose in our profile from 56 different genders — including transgender, cisgender, and of course, Bruce Jenner.  (audience laughter)

You know that I once almost ate at Chick-Fil-A?  Just because so many people were telling me I shouldn't eat at Chick-Fil-A!  But then I remembered, it's Chick-Fil-A.  (audience laughter)  But even atheists make me roll my eyes sometimes, like when they sued to have a cross taken down from a building.  Oh, for fuck's sake, we're atheists, not vampires!  (audience laughter)  You can't handle seeing a cross now, and then you pick the wrong country!

So I get it, liberals can be obnoxious.  And that's why lots of Americans say we don't want politicians nagging about what we can name our football team, or how big our soda can be, or what we can eat, or who we've offended.  We have wives for that!

But don't cut off your nose to spite your face.  One of the Republicans' strongest voting blocs is low-income whites who didn't go to college.  These are people who desperately need a minimum wage hike.  Need unions.  They need health care.  But not if it's got Obama's name on it!

Remember, for every liberal with a cause who makes you go, "Oh, just shoot me!", there's a conservative with a gun who will.

Originally posted to Electronic America: Progressives Film, music & Arts Group on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (111+ / 0-)
  •  Okay. (13+ / 0-)

    Now I'm going to start watching him again.

    Best Scientist Ever Predicts Bacon Will Be Element 119 On The Periodic Table

    by dov12348 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 05:12:54 AM PDT

  •  When the legislative branch has an approval rating (25+ / 0-)

    of 6% and a judicial branch approval rate probably lower, you ain't got a representative republic or democracy.

    You have a government of "everybody for themselves."

    It is supposed to be "We." Not, "Me."

    Many times I’ve returned. Never was I the same in any of my guises. I feel inside, my times before, with no memories of each journey. My soul’s shadows haunt all the paths it has traveled.

    by Wendys Wink on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 05:18:16 AM PDT

    •  why "probably" when you can google it (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AlexDrew

      http://www.gallup.com/...

      Americans' trust in the executive and judicial branches of the federal government are both down five percentage points in 2013, to 51% and 62%, respectively.
      It's really unlikely that judicial branch approval has fallen 50+ points in the past year or that it's fallen beneath the other two branches of gov't.
    •  It does seem pretty incredible (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GleninCA

      that no matter how awful most people think Republicans in Congress are, it seems pretty impossible to get rid of them- or even to stand up to them.  They are repeatedly treated by the media as "Very Serious People" with "Very Serious Ideas" and Democrats are treated with much more skepticism and as though their ideas are always so much more "radical" than what Republicans are proposing (what ARE they proposing, anyway?)- even when they're not.  It's even more mystifying that they might even take the Senate as well this year (though their chances seem to be diminishing somewhat in the wake of ACA shaping up better than expected).

      •  One theory (0+ / 0-)

        I don't know how legitimate it is, but some say that many Republicans are so enthralled with the idea of the apocalypse happening during their lifetimes that they continue to promote this agenda -- pitting Americans against each other by class, promoting war, encouraging deep international conflict.

        •  I've heard similar things (0+ / 0-)

          Sort of like they are figuring that they are soon to be "raptured" so whatever they do isn't going to matter and they shouldn't even try to help anybody because we're all going to be gone anyway.  Pretty depressing outlook on life if you ask me.  Of course, that is just a belief system and not a matter of scientific fact but then again they don't care about science and rationality anyway, so.................

        •  "some say" (0+ / 0-)

          Link?

          New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

          by AlexDrew on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 01:51:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I have heard this line of reasoning (0+ / 0-)

          with regards to how evangelicals view environmental protections.  We are living in the End Times after all, so none of it really matters.

          I, for one, have read the Bible front to back many times, unlike many evangelicals, and I know that the admonition in Genesis tells us to do two things at once.  We are to be stewards of the Earth (fine, great idea, go for it humanity!), and to subdue and hold dominiion over it (bad idea all around, but it's sort of what we've done for all of recorded history).  You cannot do both.

          Sort of like the ranchers out here in the Mountain West.  They want all the wolves eliminated (they kill sheep and cattle), and all the bison eliminated (they compete with sheep and cattle for resources).  There is enough land and water to either support the natural world as it existed before Westerners arrived, or to support modern agriculture.  Not both...

          •  HOLD DOMINION over the earth? (0+ / 0-)

            That has never happened and will never happen. When we can control hurricanes, tornados, floods, mudslides, tsunamis, earthquakes, disease, starvation, genocide, wars and rumors of wars and the worst of all the arrogance of humans to think they are more advanced because they have greed, gluttony and an over wrought opinion of our place in this world. Exceptional? Yes. Killed 50 million Indians, millions of Africans (over 400 years), hundreds of thousands of citizens of Nippon (in less than a wink of the eye), and (millions affected by radiation that went on for decades).  Uncontrolled private greed fathered by a lack of Government regulation, and  laws designed to promote greed for a oligarchy without consciousness or morality. Many more humans with the darwinistic 'only the strong survive' will die inhumanly
             Is this the dominion we hold over the earth?  I'm afraid we can't subdue our greed, prejudices and lack of respect for one another.

            •  You're right, this "holding dominion" is a stupid (0+ / 0-)

              and destructive mindset, but that does not stop people from adopting it. montanajarhead wasn't defending this, he was simply pointing out that many people think this way.

              Republicans - A pathology, not a party.

              by storeysound on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:03:46 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  That's one of the reasons they don't give a rat's (0+ / 0-)

          ass about the environment.

          They figure that they'll get "Raptured" before the world becomes unlivable, so why worry about climate change, pollution, or any of that.

          The funny thing is, they are all so certain that if there is a rapture, they'll be part of it. Now, if Revelations turns out to be correct, what are the chances that there are any spaces left amongst those 144,000 "elect" after nearly 2000 years of Christianity, and quite a few thousand years before? It would only take around 80 righteous individuals per year to have filled that quota just in the Common Era.

          Republicans - A pathology, not a party.

          by storeysound on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 04:58:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  The real problem is that Republicans march in (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eyeRollz

        lock step, focused on their dear leader, while Democrats stroll along, each thinking for himself and often not focused on anything at all.  If Democrats could get organized for the midterm elections like we did to elect Obama twice, and we could STAY organized for more than a presidential campaign season, we might accomplish something in the hallowed halls of government.  But there's no Obama team out there in midterm elections to pull people up and out and get them to register to vote and then get them to go to the polls.  And until we get that, we won't reliably win over Kock/Adelson/Walton/etc. supported Republicans or Tea Partiers.

        "Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives." - John Stuart Mill, 1806 - 1873

        by Terry S on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:32:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  But (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude, Wendys Wink

      At least what remains of the middle class still has a voice in the public forum, some representation in govt. It's tragic that this generation was so successfully divided by pitting the middle class against the poor, workers against the jobless. Divide and conquer. Who will fight back against whom?

  •  Seriously (38+ / 0-)

    Why do I come onto Daily Kos only to have people say we're wasting our time voting, Obama's as bad as Bush, etc.

    Maybe you're old enough to remember the grand time of the New Deal. I'm not I've only had Bush and Obama to vote for. So I'm damned proud of my vote for Obama, and I want to continue voting for people like him. And yeah I want them to become ever more progressive with time. But all I feel is what's the point? When I get onto Daily Kos to have everyone tell me it's all the same.

    http://jasonluthor.jelabeaux.com/

    by DAISHI on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 05:51:42 AM PDT

    •  my thinking too (5+ / 0-)

      i agree with much of what he says, but he isnt saying it right either.

      dont know if it is because he has to make everything into a joke ( or jokewannabe) or if it is just because he is obnoxious
      and offensive
      part of me wishes we had will rogers back.

      •  LOL me too (12+ / 0-)

        I often agree with him, or the sentiment, but he can be so obnoxious and, frankly, offensive that I often don't care what he says.

        He can be hilarious though...and most often picks the right targets.

        So, as for him scolding "obnoxious liberals" well - pot, meet kettle. :-)

        "one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress" -- John Adams

        by blue armadillo on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:00:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  He wasn't scolding liberals for being obnoxious (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          paradox, high uintas, TimG831

          I just listened to the segment, the point of his criticism was that republicans keep winning elections, despite obstructing all important priorities that majorities say they want, because white working class voters without a college education keep voting for them. He says this is because those voters find liberals obnoxious.

          He was saying to them, "OK, yes sometimes liberals can be obnoxious (he even made a little fun of himself in the middle of the tirade), but that's not a good reason to keep voting for republicans."

          He makes the obvious point that they are cutting off their noses to spite their faces. Because they need jobs, better pay, unions, health care as much as anyone. He was making fun of the dumb votes who care more about hating liberals (and Obama) than they do about voting for their own best interests.

          I figured his jokes about obnoxious liberals wouldn't go over well. And it's true he's a king of obnoxious sometimes ... I don't think he'd deny that. I don't watch his show anymore and haven't for a long time. Not because he's obnoxious, which I don't usually mind. Acerbic humor can be great. I stopped watching because he let conservatives and idiots run their mouths totally unchallenged, as a host he seemed lazy and was too often woefully uninformed about the topics they were lying about.

          So even though he can be funny at times and I like the New Rules bit, I don't generally defend him. Just saying in this case, liberals were not the target, and if people get upset about the ribbing... well that kinda makes his point. haha...

          •  Yeah, he kind was (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CS in AZ

            But, that's OK, IMO. We can be obnoxious sometimes but we are still 1000% better than the best R.

            Sometimes we can be nags, but like he said, we mean well. We aren't the guys passing anti POC, women, human legislation. We just want to save the planet if it isn't too much bother.

            I love Bill Maher, faults and all because he often says what I am thinking. Just waay better than I could.

            Some humans ain't human some people ain't kind. They lie through their teeth with their head up their behind. You open up their hearts and here's what you'll find - Some humans ain't human some people ain't kind. John Prine

            by high uintas on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:57:30 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  You stopped watching him because he didn't (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AlexDrew

            challenge all talking points?  Really?

            Racheal Maddow does not even challenge all incorrect talking points.   Or Chris or any of the liberals/progressives on MSNBC.

            I sometimes want to scream at the T.V. "How can you let them get away with that false point".

            You don't always have time to push back on everything said that is false or incorrect.

            •  Where did I say "all"? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MPociask, high uintas

              I stopped watching the full show and panel discussion portion because Maher pretty much NEVER challenged them, doesn't seem to care if they are wrong, and it's a talk show; listening to pointless talking among uninformed people is not entertaining or interesting to me. I didn't enjoy listening to them spew their bullshit unchallenged. Is that ok with you?

              Rachel Maddow does amazing reporting and is extremely well informed, and she often does challenge them. But frankly I don't watch those segments on her show either. I watch her reporting, not so much the interviews.

            •  No (0+ / 0-)

              Poverty isn't a mere talking point. It's a crisis that has been growing, as a direct result of policies we chose and now ignore. This is, in fact, the greatest threat facing "democracy as we know it." Discussing poverty is critical to reversing the agenda that is ending the US.

          •  Or consider (0+ / 0-)

            We have a very real poverty crisis. What lib media ignores when it comes to elections: Clinton/Gore targeted the poor, giving us 8 years of Bush.  The poor didn't vote for Bush; he was elected/re-elected by the middle class.The poor voted third party or withheld their votes. They did  overwhelmingly vote for Barack Obama in hopes that he could launch a legitimate discussion about US poverty. He did try, a number of times. Lib media maintains its Middle Class Only focus.  With the latest budget, 89 Dems voted to cut food stamps to the elderly, disabled and working poor.  Again.

        •  Have to admit (0+ / 0-)

          he had me laughing 'til I cried many times in that segment,  but he always manages to piss me off, too.

      •  I honestly think the problem is "the wedge". (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Subterranean

        It has put people together in a coalition that don't naturally go together.  Since the Republicans are running their party like a religious organization, this situation isn't really fixing itself anytime soon.  

        The best pop culture analogy I can give to illustrate this is to imagine an X-Men comic where Xavier and Magneto team up for over 200 consecutive issues of the run.  

        The conflicts that manifest themselves are because approaches are seriously different.  It looks like it is going to be this way for a long time (20-30 years) since Republicans aren't interested at all in reform.

        I'll always be...King of Bain...I'll always be...King of Bain

        by AZphilosopher on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:06:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  No (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        live1

        For lack of a better word, I've been a Will Rogers "fan" for years, reading everything available by or about Rogers. His message, as stunningly accurate as it is for today, would not resonate with the public, including the "left." For example, he (dare I say it?) was not opposed to poverty relief because he figured out that poverty was not a mere "lifestyle choice" -- it is the result of a failed, free-from-rules capitalist system.  He did not wave the Middle Class Only banner. The last time I listened to Mahar, he was busy ridiculing the very poor.

    •  Different kinds of obnoxious (11+ / 0-)

      Surely you're not comparing his kind to, say, George Will's or Ted Nugent's?

      "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

      by kovie on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:13:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  He called liberals obnoxious (0+ / 0-)

        Surely you'r;e not comparing  George Will and Ted Nugent to liberal's?

        NOTE: you of course are free to, and might even be right,  but you seemed to be applying a viewpoint based measure of obnoxiousness.i

      •  Unfortunately many of us can be whiny (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Subterranean

        That reflects badly. I know conservatives seem to have cornered and smoothed down the "you have to admit, he has strong opinions" angle. They also have the sheer volume to say, he can't be TOTALLY wrong if he's this confident...I've been suckered by this in a nonpolitical context & know it's easy in a political context.

        Confidence, well, WORKS. So does overconfidence. As someone who's been shouted down when I tried not to be a jerk, I realize it's not fair or funny, but that's how it can be.

    •  Heheh ... why doesn't he shut up then? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gardnerhill, ewmorr

      Lessee ... Maher

      - Takes all the conservative liberal stereotypes
      - Repeats them
      - Suggests liberals should be less obnoxious
      - Doesn't include himself  
      - Isn't that funny

      Maybe it's time he switches over to fart jokes?

    •  Yeah (0+ / 0-)

      I don't think he's that much of a hoot.  But sometimes he makes a good point, or a funny.

      Like arteries filled with "hate butter".  Now that's funny.

    •  Doesn't mean he's not right, though. (0+ / 0-)

      Republicans - A pathology, not a party.

      by storeysound on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:09:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Where I live will be under water in a century, but (15+ / 0-)

    I should worry about Bloomberg wanting to prohibit super size Soda and G. Paltrow making up divorce terms.

    Who doesn't want to scream wake the fuck up!

    •  I think he refers to the bullshit causes (4+ / 0-)

      Such as, electromagnetic fields and cell phone towers "causing cancer," artificial sweeteners causing demonic possession, vaccines "causing autism" . . . you know, left-wing (and occasional right-wing) woo-woo science.

      As for the Big Gulp ban, it was stupid. All you have to do is put on a tax . . . and the One Percent will go apeshit but it will have the same desired effect. Getting the vending machines full of sugary sodas and candy bars out of public schools is a legitimate aim, however.

      And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

      by Pale Jenova on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:32:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah, a wee bit of hippie punching there. (6+ / 0-)

      Why would anyone think that among the teaming millions of liberals none of them would ever say something new agey about divorce?  Liberals are actual people, not imaginary people of uniform personality.  And since when is Bloomberg a liberal?  

    •  Because (0+ / 0-)

      Unless ordinary people can somehow pull together to fight back, we'll all drown. This generation remains profoundly divided, middle class vs.the poor. This does apply to the left. It always does come down to well-being/survival. As long as we ignore poverty, we ignore the issues that cause it, so we remain unable to turn things back around.

  •  Voting has worked SO well so far... (4+ / 2-)
    Recommended by:
    live1, Laconic Lib, ZhenRen, AlexDrew
    Hidden by:
    freakofsociety, TexasTom

    /snark.

    Al Gore WON the election in 2000...the Oligarchy didn't like it, so they reversed it.

    Tell me, again, how voting works? Joe Stalin was right.

    Bill Maher is a second-rate comedian and a third-rate mind (compare him to George Carlin, Lenny Bruce or even Louis CK if you want some real, biting wit) who is essentially a mouthpiece of the 1%.

    I'm sorry, but voting is a fools gambit. Yeah, yeah, I know what the official party line of this place is. I stand by what I say.

    A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

    by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 05:56:04 AM PDT

      •  Truth can be painful, can't it? (0+ / 0-)

        A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

        by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:08:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

          •  FWIW... (0+ / 0-)

            I voted for Al Gore and Barack Obama, twice.

            I shan't be voting again.

            It's not working...at least not for the 99%.

            A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

            by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:22:59 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  And THAT is precisely (30+ / 0-)

              what those who try to fix the vote want from you.

              "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

              by Gentle Giant on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:28:23 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  So did I. (11+ / 0-)

              That's two out of three by my count.

              What we got from those last two results is "not working" as well as you or I might have hoped; I'll accept that.

              That it isn't working better than the alternatives: I don't accept that.

              •  One of the problems with the way all of this... (0+ / 0-)

                is approached by many here is that they view it as a sporting event.

                Wins and losses, keeping score.

                But yet they don't see that the playing field itself is tilted in the favor of the Oligarchy.

                A few scraps thrown to the rabble, here and there, including what FDR did, is NOT ACCEPTABLE to me.

                I'm sorry that it is acceptable to so many here. You have no idea how that saddens me.

                A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:33:21 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'm not sure... (5+ / 0-)

                  ...that these things are really the case:

                  ...they view it as a sporting event...they don't see that the playing field itself is tilted in the favor of the Oligarchy...it is acceptable to so many here.
                  It may be the case that "Voting was NOT [the] primary means of change" for Martin Luther King, Malcom X, and Frederick Douglass, as you say below, but I doubt very much that they passed on the opportunity to do so if it was available to them.

                  I am sure, however, that any given election may be viewed by many as a choice merely between "bad" and "worse." But, hell: if that's my choice, I don't see any value in bowing out of the process so others can choose the "worse."

                  I therefore wonder two things:

                  - What, exactly, is it you expect from voting? That even if your candidates of choice are elected, they'll magically know the minds of millions of citizens and do just as each of them wishes? That's obviously not possible, even if those citizens did explicitly express their wishes between elections (which they generally don't).

                  - Is your purpose here to be talked back into participating, or to discourage others from doing so? If the latter, I can't imagine what benefit there is in it.

                  •  I believe that in a true Democracy where... (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Laconic Lib

                    money doesn't rule the day and that we aren't ruled by an Oligarchy, voting can be effective.

                    My purpose here is two-fold. To enjoy discussions and offer my opinion.

                    To learn and inform.

                    While I've not any of my deep opinions changed, and I have no idea if I've changed anyone, either, I have learned a great deal.

                    I also enjoy the community. It is a big community here. My most enjoyable part of the dKos experience, believe it or not, has nothing at all to do with politics (I'm a member of the dKos Sangha.)

                    Having said that, I believe that our planet is in extreme and dire straits. Everything from climate change, resource depletion (especially water), over population, and extreme wealth inequality.) I care about these things and I am trying to find a way to change things for the better.

                    At this point in time, I do not believe that voting makes any statistical difference.

                    I hope that answers your questions, if not, please let me know if I can clarify.

                    A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                    by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 08:58:13 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Not really. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      UnionMade

                      It appears to take a step back from them, and to comment instead on some more general issues.

                      By "your purpose here," I had in mind your original post this morning denouncing voting as "a fools gambit." I'm not sure what sort of responses you expected, but - nothing personal - it's encouraging to me that they were generally unsympathetic to the idea.

                      I do appreciate those more general comments, and hope you find that "way to change things for the better." I know that there are any number of us - if too few - who do engage in other ways of effecting change, yet do so in addition to, rather than in lieu of, voting. That would seem to me to be the more productive course, no matter how little difference that one specific civic exercise appears to make at any given time.

                •  It's not about who you want; it's about (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  marina, UnionMade

                  ...what you'll get. There is value in choosing even when you know you won't get even close to your desired outcome, or all your needs being met.
                  I like voting to let the guy who is going to win in my congressional district know that he isn't THAT popular. I like voting to let the person who will win the presidency that they ARE that popular. Then after the fan mail votes (and anti fan mail) I like to get local and try to make a difference. I wanted Monsanto to have to label in my state. It didn't win but was worth a try. I wanted Prop 8 to die. I want better judges who can make a big difference (SCOTUS and on down).
                  I think of this like a public opinion poll with more teeth. Or it would have more teeth if everyone could get off their skeptical cynical lazy asses and make their opinion known.  (If you faced I surmountable obstacles getting to vote I'm not talking about you.)
                  And no, it doesn't stop there. Don't assume everyone ONLY votes. There are many other ways to make change and some may be more effective even than voting. But voting is still an effective way to make your opinions known. And sometimes you get lucky.

                  Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

                  by pam on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 08:51:12 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Thank you for your thoughts, Pam (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    pam

                    I don't assume that everyone only votes.

                    Please, also, don't assume that because I will no longer be voting that I am not and will not be involved in other forms of social change.

                    BTW, Henry David Thoreau is one of my heroes.

                    A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                    by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:09:31 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Thoreau (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      joegoldstein

                      was rather anti-statist, and is considered an anarchist in basic philosophy. He would be very likely in complete agreement with you on the relative futility of voting.

                      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                      by ZhenRen on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:25:24 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  So the thousands of lives that (6+ / 0-)

              will be saved by some of the provisions of Obamacare are just for decoration?  A major start to healthcare  policy that has been denied for centuries and you can't see anything?  A solid step forward in a policy area that history shows improves incrementally as it adapts over years and decades?

              There is a path through your cynicism, but you have to want to leave that cold comfort of cynical anger.

              I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

              by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:15:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  What I want is Universal Healthcare (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Laconic Lib

                as a basic human right. I bow down to no scraps from the 1%, even when the scraps are delivered by those with a "D" by their names instead of an "R".

                The very fact that all we are offered is a "D" or an "R" should inform you of the deceit which is being perpetrated upon us.

                A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:29:00 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Frankly yes (0+ / 0-)
                So the thousands of lives that will be saved by some of the provisions of Obamacare are just for decoration?
                As far as the insurance companies are concerned it is. Profits are up. And therefore bribery will be up in the foreseeable future.
                And by the way, it is only because we are willing to accept second best that we get second best. If we had been willing to accept the consequences of punishing the Democrats for refusal to perform (like the republican right) yes, we would have been in the woods for a time, but we would have come out (like the Republicans) and would be in power today. (unlike now)
                Of course that's all spilled milk today. Today we cannot afford to  sacrifice a few elections to clear out second rate Democrats; the danger is too high. We should all stop this suicidal argument and formulate a strategy that leads to the survival of the American democracy and the human race.
                That said, corporate Democrats are as deadly as Republicans. They are not the answer.
            •  The problem is your definition of "working" (4+ / 0-)

              Because people voted for Obama we got Obamacare and now there are thousands of people who will not die from preventable causes.  No, it's not as good as single payer and there are still people who are going to die from preventable causes, but there is a difference between "not working" and "Not working as well as you would like."

        •  so what is your suggestion if it isnt voting? (8+ / 0-)

          it is all we have. seriously. it will never be easy as long as humans and greed are involved. but voting is always way better than violent means to rule

          •  I think we can be greatly informed by... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            nocynicism

            the life and works of Martin Luther King, Malcom X, and Frederick Douglass, for starters.

            A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

            by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:21:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  They didn't believe in voting? (12+ / 0-)

              Frederick Douglass didn't see Lincoln's election as being meaningful?  

              You're just saying one really stupid thing after another here.  

              When truth is only a matter of opinion, advantage goes to the liars.

              by Sun dog on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:01:28 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  They would fight on all fronts (9+ / 0-)

              including the voting booth.

              Cynicism in the end, is a cop out.  It's "just another specimen of naiveté".

              I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

              by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:20:48 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  They were not informed by studies... (0+ / 0-)

                using multivariate statistical analysis to the absolute futility of voting and its resultant influence on policy.

                In that case, they can be excused. What's your excuse?

                A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:35:34 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Pardon me your highness (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Sun dog, Sir Roderick, Calamity Jean
                  What's your excuse?
                  Now I understand the naive comments.  You've been locked up in the palace too long and don't get out much to join us here in reality.

                  I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

                  by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 08:18:23 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You asked me why... (0+ / 0-)

                    I thought the three fine and brave gentleman I spoke of believed in voting.

                    I answered you. I, too, used to vote. In fact, I've voted in every single election which I was eligible for since I first voted for Jimmy Carter and continued to do so through the last Presidential election. Depending on your age, I'm guessing that I have actually voted MORE in my life than you have (I'm 53, if you're older than me, then I apologize for this assumption.)  In each of those elections, I voted Democrat because I believed that was the best choice and because I believed it made a difference.

                    I'd like to think that Dr. King, Malcom X and Frederick Douglass, if they were alive today and were aware of the studies and works showing the ineffectiveness of voting would come to the same conclusions I have.

                    You continue to do something which I believe is ineffective. I believe it is you who is naive.

                    I have to laugh a most hearty laugh when you accuse me of being "locked in a palace." I suspect that you are as accurate about your assessment of me as you are about your belief in the effectiveness of voting. In other words: not at all.

                    A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                    by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 08:50:42 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  So, to sum up (3+ / 0-)

                      We should learn from the example of these figures in history.  But not from what they did but from what they would have done had they known what YOU know.  

                      When truth is only a matter of opinion, advantage goes to the liars.

                      by Sun dog on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:21:40 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  ... (3+ / 0-)

                      *  I did not ask if those three "believed in voting".  I asserted that they knew the wisdom of fighting for social justice on multiple fronts (in not so many words).  I know how they felt about voting.

                      *  I merely traded insults about "your highness" because you started putting on an insulting, pompous attitude:

                      What's your excuse?
                      I don't converse with people who want to take it there.  Since you seem to be backing off a bit,  I'm responding.

                      *  You say you've got  "statistics" numerous times but haven't produced any.  If you wanted an honest conversation, why don't you produce those and take the time also to highlight the most salient and relevant supports to your contention?

                      Better yet, write a diary because this comment thread is starting to hijack the diary if it keeps going on.

                      *  Here is what cynicism gave us:

                      Pres. Bush, Iraq invasion, the Roberts Court, Citizens United, McCutcheon, rolling back voter rights protection, rolling back affirmative action, the Great Recession.

                      With just a few thousand more people willing to care enough to vote in 1-2 states, none of that would have happened.  Half of the voting age population did not vote in 2000.

                      I'm not going to slice and dice the Obama led years, but one thing we did get from the Dems:  ACA.  If you think that isn't a BFD, then we just agree to disagree on that.

                      *  And by the way,  if your nonvoting is your honest, long held belief then you are being inconsistent with the purpose of this site.  You can read about site violations and you may want to pay attention to the one beginning with:

                      Daily Kos is dedicated to building a stronger, more progressive Democratic Party from the outside.

                      I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

                      by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:07:09 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I think we both went "tit for tat" on the... (0+ / 0-)

                        /snark...so we can let that slide.

                        However, I'm not backing off at all. So let me disabuse you of that notion.

                        Here is a reference for the study of which I am speaking.

                        Al Gore WON the 2000 election. Yet we ended up with George W. Bush and the resultant fiasco. That's because we are an Oligarchy, not a true Democracy.

                        As for my "long standing belief", I told you that I voted (for President Obama, in case I was not clear) in the last election. So it can hardly be called a long-standing belief. It's a belief which has come to fruition over quite a long time, to be sure, but it wasn't really cemented in my mind until the last couple of years, to be quite frank with you.

                        As for my being "inconsistent with the purpose of this site" or being, possibly, in some sort of rules violation...whatever. If this place is such an echo-chamber that alternative points of view can't be discussed by serious-minded people, well, I'll let others come to what conclusions that they may.

                        MY purpose is to work toward social justice and a better world,  for ALL sentient beings (to quote Jean-Paul Sartre via Malcom X) "By any means necessary." If you don't get that, at this point in the development of this world, you're simply not paying attention. And that is really, really just sad.

                        However, you are correct, I don't want to be threadjacking this diary, so this will be my last response. I might just take up your suggestion of writing my own Diary, though, thank you for your excellent idea!

                        Feel free to have the last word. I won't respond anymore to any of this in this thread. I've said all I need to say and I think it is quite clear to anyone who reads my words what I believe.

                        Good day.

                        A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                        by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:42:09 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I read part of that study (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          joegoldstein

                          It covers a favorite topic by one of the authors, Page.  I have heard him speak at Northwestern years ago.  There is a nice writeup on the study at Vox.

                          (BTW, I never said Bush won the election.  More votes however could have secured it better.)

                          good luck.

                          I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

                          by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:14:04 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

            •  You mean three men who, at one point (7+ / 0-)

              could not vote at all? I don't believe they'd be so nonchalant about dismissing a right that so many would deny them.

              Like Malcolm said, "By any means necessary."

              Come on... vote. It's good for you.

              We don't see things as they are; we see things as we are.

              by EighteenCharacters on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:32:36 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  See my above response to Satya1. (EOM) (0+ / 0-)

                A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

                by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:36:06 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I understand your frustration (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Calamity Jean

                  but if you don't put your small voice in with others like yours, we won't have even a whisper of a chance. And the powerful will make their decisions without your even having tried to influence them. Separately, we may feel powerless, but together we are a force.

                  People have died for the right to vote. It seems ungrateful to not respect that.

                  These are chaotic times for a number of reasons, and sure, it's hard to keep one's balance among all the flotsam and jetsam of overlapping and conflicting issues and policies.

                  Still, we must try. Not trying is not an option.

          •  I always want to ask Mike Malloy that question (7+ / 0-)

            He rants about how useless voting is . . . but what is the alternative? Sitting at my keyboard and bitching? Daily Kos pie fights?

            Well, that is effective. Not.

            And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

            by Pale Jenova on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:33:46 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks (6+ / 0-)

          for the truth that disaffected people provide nothing towards a better outcome.  Maybe your "truth" can convince more people to not vote so in spite of improving demographics we can can continue the spiral downward.

          •  I appreciate that you think I, personally, ... (0+ / 0-)

            have that much power. I'm just giving my opinions on things on a discussion forum. Just like you. Nothing more and nothing less.

            I think it's pretty self-evident to anyone who actually lives in reality, reads what economists and other experts in the field say as well as a recent study using multivariate statistical analysis shows, that my opinion tracks pretty well with reality.

            But by all means, continue voting, patting yourself on the back that you have done all you can do, and, yes, we will continue the downward spiral.

            A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

            by joegoldstein on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:17:10 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You assume voters think voting is all we should do (4+ / 0-)

              --that's kinda insulting.

              But in NC in this primary, votes--and nothing but the sheer number of votes--will decide whether the NC Supreme Court becomes even more solidly conservative for years to come. This at a time when NCSC will decide questions on marriage rights, voting rights, teacher contracts, fracking, etc. etc. etc.

              The incumbent faces two conservative challengers, and could get knocked off the November ballot if enough like-minded people refrain from voting.

              That's real. Nothing else one person can do this week in NC will matter more, or have a more real effect, than adding a vote to Robin Hudson's tally.

    •  If he's the third rate mind (6+ / 0-)

      Then that makes yours sixth?

      http://jasonluthor.jelabeaux.com/

      by DAISHI on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:23:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  wow (21+ / 0-)

      Consider if more people had voted in 2000 then the Oligarchy would not have been able to "steal" the election.  So to recap your post voting doesn't matter enough and requires some effort but complaining about it does what?  If you think you are frustrated now just wait, it will get worse. If too many people continue to expend the bulk of their effort complaining rather than trying to push the conversation to the left AND vote in all elections (don't forget the primaries) thing will improve how? Is waiting for things to get so bad that a popular revolution is the only option your plan?  I'm sorry to say that if people can't motivate themselves to vote consistently at the chance to improve their lot than what makes you think they will risk their freedom and lives for it?

      •  well said rostar (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        UnionMade, Calamity Jean

        I'm a little bored about going over the obvious for these folks who've been led into deep, paralyzing cynicism.  I can understand how it happens (I've had my own phase of cynicism), but I just have to wonder if they are trolls that just want to hyjack some diaries for fun.

        The DK rules, I thought, made it clear that this blog is for electing Democrats.  Logically if someone is refusing to vote or aid any Democrat campaign, then they don't really belong at DK anyway.

        Voting is only one out of many tools for pushing our society leftward.

        I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

        by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:04:51 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  No close elections (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Satya1, Calamity Jean

        The bigger the vote margin, the harder it is for the swine to steal an election.  Given the small electoral margin and the large number of votes in Florida, the outcome is probably within the margin of error for the vote counting process; any little irregularity or mistake can swing the election one way or the other.  Elections that close discredit the election process since it's always easy for the losing side to say, rightly or wrongly, that they were robbed.  

        Anyone interested in having a democracy ought to be working to make the election process as bulletproof as possible so that "stolen" elections become a rarity.

        Individual voters can also do their part by never taking an election for granted.  Running up the score is a good thing: elections aren't a youth sporting events.


        My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
        "Shared sacrifice!" said the spider to the fly.—Me

        by KingBolete on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:44:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I kind of want to HR this badly. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      UnionMade, Satya1, roberb7, Calamity Jean

      Telling people not to vote is the worst thing you can do. And it's totally against the core mission of this site.

      I love president Obama!!!

      by freakofsociety on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:00:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  HRed for discouraging people from (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      roberb7, Calamity Jean

      Voting. I do truly believe this comment needs to be hidden as no one should be doing this. Especially on this site.

      I love president Obama!!!

      by freakofsociety on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:32:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Voting is obviously not working (0+ / 0-)

      The problem, of course, isn't the concept of voting, itself, but rather the top-down authority we give those for whom we vote: we elect them to a cadre of bosses who can't be easily removed except in the worst circumstances (and even then it is almost impossible). We vote into office people who are coerced to serve the elite peers of their ranks rather than their constituents. Any system with a top-down power structure will always be thus. It leads to the theater that we see played out year after year, in which the elected elites serve not us, but their peers whom they rely on for any kind of cooperation to get any bills passed, while they put on a show for the public to make us think they're trying to get something done.

      Its a complete sham, and its astounding more people don't see through the facade. So it isn't voting that is the problem. If we could vote in a horizontal, bottom up system, with recallable delegates who are mandated from below, voting would work.

      What Bakunin wrote 140 years ago could well have been written today. Here's a sample from The Basic Bakunin, Writings 1869-1871:

             

      From the beginning of history until today, there has never been a politics of the people, and by "the people" we mean the common people, the working rabble whose labor is the world's pabulum. There has only been the politics of the privileged classes, and these classes have used the physical force of the people to dethrone each other and to take one another's place. The people, in turn, have supported or opposed them only in the vague hope that at least one of these political revolutions—none of which could have been made without their help but none of which has been made for their sake—might alleviate somewhat their poverty and their age-old slavery. They have always been deceived. Even the Great French Revolution betrayed them. It eliminated the aristocratic nobility and replaced it with the bourgeoisie. The people are no longer called slaves or serfs; the law proclaims them free-born. But their slavery and their poverty remain unchanged.

                  And these will remain unchanged so long as the masses of the people continue to be used as the tool of bourgeois politics, whether this is called conservative, liberal, progressive, or radical politics, even if it gives itself the most revolutionary airs in the world. Because all bourgeois politics, regardless of its color and its label, has at bottom but a single aim: to preserve bourgeois rule; and bourgeois rule is proletarian slavery.

      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

      by ZhenRen on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:23:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, mebbe so, but (0+ / 0-)

        I keep voting Dem if for no other reason than cancelling out by brother's knee-jerk Repub vote.
        I'm just ornery that way.

        This comment is a natural product. The slight variations in spelling and grammar enhance its individual character and beauty and in no way are to be considered flaws or defects.

        by blue muon on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:56:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'd have to disagree (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        roberb7

        With you. It seemed to work in 2012 and 2008. In 2012 everyone thought Romney was a sure bet. And he would have been had certain people not stood in line for hours and hours.

        I love president Obama!!!

        by freakofsociety on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:25:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Here, have a HR... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      freakofsociety

      ...and please go somewhere else to discourage people from voting.

      Preferably, Red State.

      Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

      by TexasTom on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:05:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What would Bill Maher say about your HR? (0+ / 0-)

        New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

        by AlexDrew on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 02:15:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Just keep repeating that (0+ / 0-)

      Al Gore/Dems didn't exactly fight the decision. When Democrats have alienated so much of their traditional base by embracing NAFTA (job loss) and wiping out poverty relief, how do you make up for the lost votes? Just keep claiming election fraud? I'm not discounting what does appear to be fraud regarding the Gore/Bush election, but pointing out that there are other very important factors. With the latest budget, Dems voted to cut food stamps to the elderly, disabled and working poor.  Again. They aren't even talking about it.

  •  thanks again BK for taking time for transcripts (11+ / 0-)

    :-)  Much appreciated!

    "one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress" -- John Adams

    by blue armadillo on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:01:30 AM PDT

  •  Republicans (11+ / 0-)

    We too often call them right wing conservatives--they are Republicans.  They're not the wing of a more inclusive party--they are the party.  They are Nixon's southern strategy--they are the reaction to a moderate Supreme Court justice--Earl Warren--R and his husbanding Brown v. B of Ed.  Nixon was not as bad as the movement he started--and that's a reflection on how bad Republicans have become.  They are bigots--they are disgusting--they only get called out by comedians.

    Actions speak louder than petitions.

    by melvynny on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:02:17 AM PDT

  •  Maher nails it (14+ / 0-)

    I live in a backwoods redneck state that is poor as hell and republican as hell.  Here, if you make 10 bucks an hour, you are upper middle class, as the thinking goes here.  I live here because it is beautiful and I have ties or else I would move to Colorado for obvious reasons.

  •  Obligatory comment about how (10+ / 0-)

    someone just can't STAND Maher and doesn't understand anyone who likes his politically incorrect (duh!) sense of humor coming up in 5.4.3.2.1...

    Thus proving his point about SOME "liberals".

    Btw, in the long run I think that Repubs are doing Dems and the country a favor by effectively flushing out and exposing all the latent bigotry that still pervades US society. They may be exploiting it for political gain now, but eventually there will be a political backlash that will hurt the GOP over it, at which point it will have become a spent and counter-productive political tactic.

    Even Cliven Bundys and Ted Nugents, and eventually the GOP will be the rump party we've been predicting it will become for years.

    "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

    by kovie on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:12:27 AM PDT

  •  Ghosts? I thought people in poor black neighbor- (0+ / 0-)

    hoods would be scared off by bad grammar.

  •  I like the response... (6+ / 0-)

    You can't simultaneously fire teachers and cruise missiles!-Jon Stewart

    by djtyg on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:15:38 AM PDT

  •  heh Ghosts in the Machine nt (5+ / 0-)

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:30:38 AM PDT

  •  I'll take Bill Maher over (10+ / 0-)

    Dennis Miller any day.

    "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by Gentle Giant on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:31:50 AM PDT

  •  go far enough left or far enough right... (19+ / 0-)

    ... all you'll find are annoying, worthless idiots.  

    Only difference is, you don't have to go quite as far right to start finding them.

    But, yeah, I hate some liberals almost as much as I hate conservatives... a few maybe even more.   There are few people on the fringe of anything I'd enjoy getting stuck in an elevator with.   It's never enough to make me stop voting against conservatives, though.

    "Glenn Beck ends up looking like a fat, stupid child. His face should be wearing a chef's hat on the side of a box of eclairs. " - Doug Stanhope

    by Front Toward Enemy on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:35:16 AM PDT

    •  And in the middle too (5+ / 0-)

      The viewpoint does not make a statement obnoxious does it?

      •  the middle tends to be more reasonable ground... (4+ / 0-)

        ...for either party.  Reasonable people concede a point here and there and discuss them rather than dealing in absolutes. So, while the middle's certainly not immune from obnoxiousness, I don't find nearly as much of it away from the extremes.

        "Glenn Beck ends up looking like a fat, stupid child. His face should be wearing a chef's hat on the side of a box of eclairs. " - Doug Stanhope

        by Front Toward Enemy on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:04:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MPociask, happymisanthropy

          Bowles Simpson was the more reasonable proposal, forget hat it was ridiculous and wrong on policy and politics.

          Your statement is ridiculous to me.

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

            You take everything I said and reduce it to Bowles Simpson... as if that was what I was talking about.  That's totally helpful and reasonable.   And not ridiculous at all.  ;)

            See, you are -- as usual -- being a humorless, uptight example of exactly what Maher was talking about.  If it bugs you that you're not valued by absolutely everyone, what can I say, dude... too bad, that's life, ya gon' haveta deal.  We all have different approaches, and not everybody's going to like you just because we're on the same side.  I'm fine with that, and so should you be.

            "Glenn Beck ends up looking like a fat, stupid child. His face should be wearing a chef's hat on the side of a box of eclairs. " - Doug Stanhope

            by Front Toward Enemy on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:10:00 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It's precisely what you were talking about (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              happymisanthropy

              Your words, since you seem to have forgotten them:

              "The middle tends to be more reasonable ground...
              ...for either party.  Reasonable people concede a point here and there and discuss them rather than dealing in absolutes. "

              This is the claim that Simpson-Bowles made. This is precisely what you were talking about.

              I'm sorry that having your reasoning exposed has led you to imagine I give a flying fig whether you "appreciate" me or not,

              A reasonable person would not have tried that maneuver, but I understand that a resort to personal attacks is often all that people have to offer.

        •  Middle ground isn't a font of reasonableness (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Armando, MPociask, happymisanthropy

          I don't know that one's position on the political spectrum makes one reasonable or unreasonable: there are zealots scattered throughout.  


          My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
          "Shared sacrifice!" said the spider to the fly.—Me

          by KingBolete on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:54:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Reasonable ground? (0+ / 0-)

          At one point, I would have agreed with you on the middle.

          However, in recent years we have started seeing certain pundits who have a centrism fetish that is based on finding whatever the middle is between the two parties...whether that middle make sense or not.

          For example, if Democrats proclaim the the Earth is round and Republicans insist it is flat, we will shortly see a column in the Washington Post claiming the the earth is really a semi-circle.

          Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

          by TexasTom on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:10:24 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I'm pretty progressive (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Front Toward Enemy

      But I think it's wrong to totally write people who aren't as progressive as me off. And the Obama bashing from much of the left wing that started like a day after he was elected was extremely annoying. From day 2 certain left wingers have been proclaiming that he was a massive failure. It's really old now.

      I love president Obama!!!

      by freakofsociety on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:35:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  His point of shopping at Whole Foods (3+ / 0-)

    In and of itself proves he is one of the annoying, obnoxious limosuine liberals he spoke of. Yeah, go into Whole Foods and help a known right wing jerk off to profit greatly by preying upon the insecurities and ego of the limosuine liberal crowd. Keep spending your money at Coffee shops like Peets, thinking you are high browed, while the person making your coffee has a computerized schedule aimed to make sure he/she can not get benefits, not make much more than minimum wage, etc. The problem isn't liberals, it is rich liberals who are great at telling us what is wrong but have no actual interest in getting dirty. And it is a relatively small amount in number, but being in the limosuine sect, they are the vast majority we are presented with in the media.

  •  I hope he counted himself (4+ / 0-)

    as one of the obnoxious liberals. He's tye very model of a smug, insufferable left winger.

    •  Why doesn't Bill shut up then (0+ / 0-)

      if he finds himself so obnoxious?

    •  His joke about atheists is spot on, though (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      roberb7

      All an atheist needs to do is remember that the cross was originally a pagan fertility symbol. Christians didn't even adopt it until the eighth century. Remember that when you face a vampire, too . . .

      And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

      by Pale Jenova on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:24:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Funny stuff. (6+ / 0-)

    In reading most of the comments it's clear that some of us think he was being unfair in criticizing liberals.  I don't think that they got that his criticism of liberals was silly as opposed to his criticism of republicans as ugly, bigoted, cheating assholes, but whatever.  I like Bill Maher.  Some obviously don't.

    The GOP will destroy anything they can't own.

    by AnnieR on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:15:07 AM PDT

  •  Was John Oliver's debut last night.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    La Gitane

    worth watching?

    Links?

    No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.

    by Magster on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:21:43 AM PDT

  •  Actually, Facebook has two genders (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Subterranean, happymisanthropy

    "Wench" and "Mate."

    That is, if you set it up in pirate language. Arrrr!

    And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

    by Pale Jenova on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:27:14 AM PDT

  •  Maher doesn't really get it, IMHO (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calvino Partigiani, Armando

    He targets the conservatives sure, but that is all to easy.  These days conservatives make themselves easy targets for criticism.

    But Maher needs to get real about cynicism.  I don't watch him so much anymore because his tone was cynical and I think he promotes a bit of that.  And IMO, that is where progressives have their biggest self inflicted barrier.

    His "cultural jokes" about Whole Foods aren't nearly as effective in humor or in truth.

    Cynicism paralyzes and keeps people from the polls.  If he wants to criticize liberals, that is a more substantial target.

    I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

    by Satya1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 07:27:44 AM PDT

  •  Voting (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    scottdc, reginahny, Calamity Jean

    If we don't exercise our right to vote then the conservatives and right wing have won. They are very busy trying to suppress the vote by any legal means possible. Are we just going to give in and let them win? I hope not. Being involved and voting are the only means I have to have my voice heard. There are more of us than there are of the rich 1%, but not if we stay home and say our vote does not matter.
    We need to speak up, know the candidates, and we need to vote. There is no other solution.

  •  I eat at Chick-Fil-A... (5+ / 0-)

    Well, okay, not at Chick-Fil-A, because the Christian music they play gives me indigestion.  But I occasionally get take out.  Sometimes I'm just in the mood for a chicken sammich and theirs is pretty good.

    I boycotted the place when their chief spouted bullsh*t about gay marriage, but relented when he finally backed down.

    I can't be politically active 24/7.  I'll get ulcers.  So I pick and choose my battles.  My attitude is this: if a company quietly supports something I disagree with politically, that's their business.  It only becomes my business when that company makes a public stand.

    So, for example, my hobbyist wife was perfectly fine with shopping at Hobby Lobby... until they decided to become the public face of religious opposition to Obamacare.  Now we wouldn't shop there if it was free.

    ------RM

    •  I would boycott Chick-Fil-A (0+ / 0-)

      except there isn't one within 400 miles.

      What do the Defend-NSAers-at-any-cost hope for society to gain from Snowden turning himself in and standing trial? I suspect it'll be a cold day in hell before any of them finally give a reasonable, coherent answer to that question.

      by happymisanthropy on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:32:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Straight talk (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Subterranean

    How is it that comics can so succinctly cut through the effluvium of political BS and our elected politicians seem unable to clearly speak to the heart of any matter?  

    •  Because a comic's entire job description (0+ / 0-)

      is (like any other entertainer in this nasty, brutish & short-sheeted casino-corpitalist pair o' dice) to provide an audience for the advertisers who pay the bills. S/he doesn't have to win a plurality of the vote or baby/badger another office-holder who needs to do the same; s/he just needs to capture enough eyeballs or ears of the proper sort to keep the ad revenue rolling in.

      C'mon, this is not rocket science. It's not even bottle-rocket science.

      The bumpersticker I want: THE LEFT IS RIGHT! THE RIGHT IS WRONG! THE FAR RIGHT IS FAR WRONG!

      by Uncle Cosmo on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:43:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Heck, many liberals I agree with annoy me (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Subterranean

    The sort who say I don't agree with you, and we don't agree. YOU agree with me. Or who run up the score in an argument. They forget it's about decency more than Just Being Right.

    Maher has a lot of Just Being Right, but he's much funnier about it here--the transcripts on DailyKos have really boosted my opinion of him.

  •  Psst. Bill, your White Straight Male is showing. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Armando, redwagon

    This routine has so much of what I loathe about Maher's attitude. Where to begin?

    1) Transphobia - ending with a nasty dig at Bruce Jenner (which he often does, as Bruce apparently commits the crime of not looking masculine enough for he-man Bill).

    2) Maher uses the white-straight-male douchebag's favorite boogeyman "political correctness" which white straight males use to make themselves big heroes for making racist, misogynistic and homophobic jokes. Poor poor Bill's all pouty cause liberals don't like it when he makes racist and rape jokes - and they're funny, just ask any white guy!

    3) Misogyny. Haw haw, wives are nagging shrews am I right men? (Wow, Bill, did you pull that "nagging wife" thing from a 1950s nightclub routine? How brave of you.)

    4) Equating not wanting a football team to carry a racist name with Big Gummint Takin' Our Sody Pops Away. Again, the mating call of white privilege: "What's wrong with a racist-named football team - none of the white guys I know were offended!"

    One of these days someone has to explain to these dudebros that they're not Brave when they say shit like this - they're Bundy.  

    Thank God, the Bob Fosse Kid is here! - Colin Mochrie

    by gardnerhill on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:37:33 AM PDT

  •  The "Annoying Liberal" Myth (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Armando

    Of course Bill cant give any actual examples of the "annoying Liberal" politician - so he has to resort to a string of tired memes about liberals that would sound dated on Limbaugh's show ten years ago. If they even exist in real life, Maher's description of the annoying liberal can't be located outside of California, so - is that REALLY the reason people in the south vote GOPer?
    Another example of Mass media false equivilance  to justify GOP malfeasence- "It's okay that GOPersrig electiosn because, you know, liberals are annoying"
    total crap

  •  Hating On People Is not Cool (0+ / 0-)

    So basically if good Democrats would just join republicans in hating on women and men of color then everything would be happy. If women would only speak appropriately as we judge the hell out of them for their divorces.

    Yeah, what is wrong with Dems according to this asshole is that we do not acknowledge the sheer righteousness of white dudes wanting to beat the shit out of white women and non-white people if such dudes are uncomfortable. If only those foreigners would shut the fuck up about their weird food, or we threatened to rape them. That is not what dems need.

    It is correct that this kind of bullshit is the problem. When "progressives" embrace the desire to "crank up the Lynyrd Skynyrd, and shoot up a farmer's market " because some bitch made them, why don't women and non-white men get off asses and vote these guys into office?  You seriously think, "We are less rapey than Republicans but still TOTALLY RAPEY, don't worry guys!" is winning rhetoric?

    Jesus. What a bag of hate. Maybe not advocating for violating your advocates anally is a good start, you stupid pathetic dudes. I do not think it is funny that he wants to rape people in the ass. And not to surprisingly, I do not think it is effective outreach.

  •  I read kos almost daily (0+ / 0-)

    so there is no doubt in my mind a lot of liberals are obnoxious. So WHAT? I'm obnoxious and proud of it.
    I make quite a distinction between obnoxious liberal and dipshit republican.
    I do hope you know the difference.

    Jesus only performs miracles for people with enough time on their hands to make that crap up.

    by KneecapBuster on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:13:09 AM PDT

  •  He's right (0+ / 0-)

    Of course he is right.  Liberals and their holier than thou attitude piss me off.  Sure I am fallible and I make an occasional sexist joke, eat trans fats (yummy), love a good steak and who cares if its organic.  I Laugh at racist jokes, white or black, I like chick-fil -A, and abhor many "nanny state rules".  However, I really really cant stand the bible thumping, gun toting, no compassion, deport them all nuts on the far right.  If there was a moderate, i'd go that way in a heart beat.  I am just left of center.  There are plenty of just right of center people who given the choice, fall to the right.  While you may see the glorious righteousness of your ways, it can be irritating.  Just saying....    

  •  Gimme a break (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Armando

    Gwyneth Paltrow's choice of words (which I can't see anyone finding personally offensive) equate to "liberals" making it easy for hate mongers to target "liberals"? He just digs himself deeper and deeper into Dennis Miller territory each week. Pick a side Bill.

    "Education Is Not the Filling of a Pail, But the Lighting of a Fire" W.B. Yeats

    by RareBird0 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 01:04:10 PM PDT

  •  Mahar (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Armando

    I stopped listening to Mahar some years ago, when he became part of the problem by ridiculing those who were pushed out of our shrinking job market, into poverty, and had the audacity to seek enough poverty relief to keep their families together, housed and fed.

  •  Obnoxious liberals (0+ / 0-)

    Having worked in political campaigns for liberal candidates as a city guy among suburban and academic liberals, I can painfully attest to Maher's  inconvenient truth about the looking down the nose attitudes of such people.`

  •  Jokes (0+ / 0-)

    Jokes that are funny contain an element of truth taken to the extreme. It is necessary to get right up to the line  at times to make sure the point is made. Easy to go over the line for some or maybe all people. You need to stop expecting a guy making jokes to fuel absolute truth and spur a national movement for justice and democracy.

    Not their job. Our political problems are not the fault of anybody but the politicians themselves and the frighteningly low quality of candidates the parties put forward and the people accept. Some of the actions of Congress and the courts deserve GENERAL STRIKES and massive civil disobedience. USA citizens have very low morals and expectations of justice signified by what we tolerate.

  •  i DON'T CARE... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roberb7

    what Maher is or who he is... HE TELLS IT LIKE IT IS!  SO THERE!

  •  Bill Maher (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roberb7

    Maher is one of the very few personalities with the chutzpah and cojones to "take them on".  I do not see Maher as a liberal.  I see him as a realist.  

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