(Originally published at Blast Off!, which explains the odd narrative form wrt Daily Kos; I opted to leave it as is rather than try to edit around it here.)
It's no secret that I've not been much of a fan of Daily Kos ever since the front-pagers there took on their holier-than-thou attitude about progressivism, essentially becoming almost DLC-ish in their refusal to confront misbehaving (i.e., insufficiently progressive) Democrats. Long-time Blast Off! readers -- both of you -- might recall my little flame war (okay, I diaried, they flamed) back in '06 when I dared to criticize then-Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for taking impeachment off the table. Oddly, the Kossacks changed their tune a year later ... but I digress.
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It seems the latest flap amongst the ideological purists who dominate the so-called "Orange Satan" is over -- horrors! -- the Code Pink protesters who attempted to remind Speaker Pelosi of her oath to uphold the Constitution. According to eyewitnesses, they were chanting things like "Impeachment!" when Pelosi spoke, but they were hustled out of the room before the next speaker, Al Gore, came to the podium.
Naturally, our orange pals were incensed that reality interfered with their lovefest:
If Code Pink's goal is to prevent people from wanting to join Code Pink, they're succeeding -- [Bill in Portland Maine]
I don't necessarily mean to pick on Bill personally -- he was plenty nice to me online when I appeared on a certain TV game show a couple of years ago -- but his attitude, evidently shared by the vast majority of commenters at dKos, demonstrates the biggest problem I think we as progressives face today: an almost pandemic unwillingness to "make waves" -- a fear of controversy and confrontation, whether it's against Republicans themselves or against those on our own side who incessantly enable and kowtow to Republicans. I left a comment over there, of course, but I figured I'd expand on it a bit ...
Why is it so objectionable when a progressive group attempts to make a statement to one of those enablers (in this case, Speaker Pelosi) about her utter ineffectiveness? We progressives like to wave the Constitution around and say that we, unlike people on the Right, adhere to the values and ideals contained therein, yet there are some among us (I'm looking at you, Netroots Nation) who would restrict a group's freedom of expression for the sake of politeness?
I for one am tired of treating our piss-poor congressional leadership with kid gloves, like their shit doesn't stink. The fact is, Code Pink and those like them are right -- impeachment not only should be on the table, the hearings should have been underway for weeks or months by now. The Speaker has utterly failed to justify the faith that I, and so many of my progressive friends, placed in her upon her ascension to that lofty position. And now her apologists at Daily Kos still say that we have to be nice?
That's why I didn't go to Netroots Nation. I've no desire to be told that I need to sit still and be quiet and not advocate that our Democratic leaders wake up and smell the coffee. I knew it would be like that from the moment I heard about the conference. So I chose to stay home rather than put up with the Politeness Patrol.
Look where "playing nice" has gotten us already, folks. You can have your Netroots Nation -- I'd rather chant with the sinners than fluff with the saints.
(cross-posted at Pax Americana and, as noted above, at Blast Off!)