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Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:30 PM

How pragmatic were the pragmatists when it came to the Iraq War and gay marriage?

We hear a lot from the "pragmatists" about the importance of accepting political reality, because the pragmatists like to talk about reality so much I think it is fair to take a look at whether or not they truly have a grasp on the reality they like to insist they are in touch with.

I remember the lead up to the Iraq War and I remember watching the pragmatists rallying behind Bush to show bi-partisan support for the war. Many of us in the progressive community loudly objected to the rush to war, but we were dismissed as the "far left" and our love for our country was called into question. Those of us who did not believe the administration's claims on WMD's were dismissed as conspiracy theorists, while the so-called pragmatists insisted that the Bush Administration's case for war was rock solid.

Well it turned out the pragmatists were not so pragmatic after all and they helped Bush in creating what may well be the worst foreign policy disaster in American history. Thousands of Americans dead, hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis, trillions of dollars in depleted treasury, and our nation's reputation in tatters. That is what the policy that the "pragmatists" told us we should support gave us.

Then there is the issue of marriage equality. Just a few short years ago the pragmatists called support for gay marriage a far-left extremist position, they insisted that advocating for such a thing would guarantee the Republicans election victories for years to come. Well it turned out that support for gay marriage was not as extreme a position as the pragmatists insisted it was and now gay marriage is legal in a number of states and it is looking more and more likely that it will be legal across the nation.

Then there is the issue of marijuana legalization, just a few years ago those of us who talked about this were often ridiculed by the pragmatists who insisted that promoting legalization would not only make us all look like pot heads but also create a society filled with mass drug addiction and higher crime rates. Well guess what? Two states have now legalized pot and the massive problems that were predicted never came to pass, now people across the nation are saying they want legalization in their states as well. Once again, the pragmatist policy proved to be not nearly as pragmatic as they thought it was.

There are a number of other "far left" positions that the so-called pragmatists tell us that are not realistic to push for. They tell us single payer health care is not realistic despite the fact that many other countries have adopted it and most Americans want it. They tell us that fighting back against the extremists in the NRA is not realistic because it will cost us votes despite the fact that in the last election candidates with F ratings from the NRA outperformed candidates with A ratings. They tell us that calling for an end to NSA spying is not realistic despite the fact that most Americans value their privacy. I call bullshit to all of it, the arrogance of the so-called "realists" in continuing to pretend they have a better grasp on reality than the rest of us despite the fact that they are wrong so often needs to be called out.

The pragmatists are not nearly as pragmatic nor as realistic as they claim to be, it is time to stand up for what is right and stop letting people who have been wrong so many times tell us what is and is not realistic.

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Reply How pragmatic were the pragmatists when it came to the Iraq War and gay marriage? (Original post)
Bjorn Against Apr 2014 OP
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #1
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #2
Walk away Apr 2014 #82
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #115
Walk away Apr 2014 #116
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #117
Walk away Apr 2014 #119
Capt. Obvious Apr 2014 #5
Bjorn Against Apr 2014 #8
Capt. Obvious Apr 2014 #10
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #14
Bjorn Against Apr 2014 #21
yardwork Apr 2014 #80
dsc Apr 2014 #87
KittyWampus Apr 2014 #101
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #22
Scuba Apr 2014 #64
Walk away Apr 2014 #84
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #86
Walk away Apr 2014 #95
Bluenorthwest Apr 2014 #24
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #39
bullwinkle428 Apr 2014 #44
Sgent Apr 2014 #50
KittyWampus Apr 2014 #102
AgingAmerican Apr 2014 #109
AgingAmerican Apr 2014 #108
Capt. Obvious Apr 2014 #3
Adam051188 Apr 2014 #4
Capt. Obvious Apr 2014 #6
Adam051188 Apr 2014 #9
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #13
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #7
Adam051188 Apr 2014 #11
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #16
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #25
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #29
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #32
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #36
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #38
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #40
bobduca Apr 2014 #47
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #110
fascisthunter Apr 2014 #103
Doctor_J Apr 2014 #41
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #42
zeemike Apr 2014 #51
Autumn Apr 2014 #54
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #56
Downtown Hound Apr 2014 #61
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #65
Ed Suspicious Apr 2014 #43
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #66
Ed Suspicious Apr 2014 #68
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #69
Ed Suspicious Apr 2014 #70
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #73
treestar Apr 2014 #63
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #71
msanthrope Apr 2014 #74
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #75
LanternWaste Apr 2014 #88
woo me with science Apr 2014 #12
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #18
Zorra Apr 2014 #20
woo me with science Apr 2014 #45
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #78
woo me with science Apr 2014 #107
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #121
jeff47 Apr 2014 #48
woo me with science Apr 2014 #52
jeff47 Apr 2014 #53
zeemike Apr 2014 #55
Oilwellian Apr 2014 #111
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #77
jeff47 Apr 2014 #89
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #91
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #76
KittyWampus Apr 2014 #104
Zorra Apr 2014 #15
Bluenorthwest Apr 2014 #28
Luminous Animal Apr 2014 #34
Ed Suspicious Apr 2014 #49
Autumn Apr 2014 #57
Oilwellian Apr 2014 #114
gwheezie Apr 2014 #17
Doctor_J Apr 2014 #19
Walk away Apr 2014 #85
Doctor_J Apr 2014 #99
Walk away Apr 2014 #105
Tierra_y_Libertad Apr 2014 #23
ProSense Apr 2014 #26
Skidmore Apr 2014 #27
Bjorn Against Apr 2014 #30
DCBob Apr 2014 #31
Bjorn Against Apr 2014 #33
DCBob Apr 2014 #35
Bjorn Against Apr 2014 #37
Pholus Apr 2014 #58
Proud Liberal Dem Apr 2014 #67
blkmusclmachine Apr 2014 #46
Marr Apr 2014 #59
MisterP Apr 2014 #60
treestar Apr 2014 #62
Fumesucker Apr 2014 #72
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #81
treestar Apr 2014 #90
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #79
treestar Apr 2014 #92
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #93
treestar Apr 2014 #94
rhett o rick Apr 2014 #96
DanTex Apr 2014 #83
Zorra Apr 2014 #97
DanTex Apr 2014 #106
JoePhilly Apr 2014 #113
KittyWampus Apr 2014 #98
Capt. Obvious Apr 2014 #100
Zorra Apr 2014 #112
stevenleser Apr 2014 #118
bvar22 Apr 2014 #120

Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:37 PM

1. Actually, the pragmatists knew that if Obama supported marriage equality before the 2008 election

... its very likely he would have lost.

They also knew that after he was elected, ending DADT temporarily with a executive order would have taken congress off the hook to repeal it permanently. DADT is gone, and DOMA will be following very soon.

On Iraq, we knew it was not going to be possible to remove the troops immediately, as some demanded.

Oh ... none of DU's pragmatists thought the Iraq war was a good idea. We didn't support it.

We do think the ACA sets a foundation from which we can add public options at the state level, and even some single payer efforts too. And when those take hold, add PO to the federal exchange. What did the idealists demand ... Universal health care, or nothing. They were wrong.

We've got another 10 million covered so far, and we aren't going to stop finding the next steps needed to move forward.

Now, if you have a plan for how we make actual progress on some issue, please feel free to share it.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:41 PM

2. Do you consider Hillary a "pragmatist"? n/t

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:24 AM

82. I believe Pragmatists think that ripping apart Hillary Clinton and dragging...

her name through the mud is a very stupid thing for any Democrat to do since she is our likely candidate for president.

Pragmatists realize that the chances of Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders winning the primary against her are very small. Considering the odds, why would a real Democrat spend all their time doing the Republican's work for them?

No one says that you can't criticize Mrs. Clinton or disagree with her policy but it might be nice to show a little respect for her as a human being. And it might be smart, if you really want to get control back of the House and keep the Oval Office, to stop attacking her so viciously.

Maybe Warren, Sanders or whoever else will magically run and win the primary. If they do then they don't have a chance to win the presidential election without the Clintons (they actually don't have much of a chance anyway).

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Response to Walk away (Reply #82)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 05:06 PM

115. In what way did I voice any opinion of Hillary Clinton?

I asked a simple question, now I'm "ripping apart"?



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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #115)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 05:20 PM

116. I'm sorry that you didn't understand that I was using a collective "you"...

since most of the ideologues here can't help themselves bringing her up and the bashing her.
I was answering your question in a general sense.
I should add that, in light of today's SC decision, yes Hillary Clinton is a pragmatist and those of us who consider her a viable Democratic candidate are definitely realists.

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Response to Walk away (Reply #116)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 05:47 PM

117. I appreciate your sorrow over my intellectual shortcomings

It makes me feel... special.



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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #117)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 06:21 PM

119. I didn't mean it facetiously. Perhaps I was wrong and you...

were bringing Hillary up to illicit pro Clinton posts so that you could heartily agree with them. If that's the case then....gee I'm sorry.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:49 PM

5. Obama could have come out as gay in 2008 and won

It was a landslide. He was the right candidate at the right time and nothing was going to stop that. Maybe if he came out in support of marriage equality like his earlier position he may have lost Indiana. But probably not - the country was in panic mode, ready to move on and scared to death of McCain/Palin.

I always assumed his "evolving" on marriage equality was for cowardly show - being overly cautious just like his NCAA bracket picks.
He didn't have to rub salt in the fucking wound early on though.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:52 PM

8. Your first claim you have no evidence to back up

You say you "knew" that if Obama supported marriage equality in 2008 he would have very likely lost, but you have no proof of such a thing.

I do not buy the claim that none of DU's "pragmatists" supported the Iraq War for a second, the politicians the "pragmatists" support were nearly anonymously in support of the war. To his credit Obama was not a supporter, but he was barely known to anyone outside of Illinois at the time. Unless all of DU's "pragmatists" were in opposition to the large majority of the rest of the Third Way/DLC candidates they promote then I think it is safe to assume that at least some of them supported the war, perhaps not all of them but I have a really hard time believing that all of DU's "pragmatists" went against the large majority of the "pragmatic" politicians.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #8)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:55 PM

10. Here, I'll help you out with a football analogy

Tony Romo is a terrible fucking quaterback.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #8)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:59 PM

14. Nor does your claim.

You claim supporting gay marriage back then would not have jurt him ... you have less data for than I do for that argument. After all, Obama stayed coy, and won. You want to claim if he had supported earlier, he still would have won ... you have no evidence to back that up. I however, have the actual events.

As for Iraq ... pretty much everyone here knew the war was BS by the time it happened ... the problem is that the Iraq war vote happened long before anyone could really know for sure. So what happened is that at the time of the vote, there wasn't much data for anyone on the internet (recall the year) ... but by Jan of 2003, we knew ... the vote had already passed.

I guess we could claim that anyone who voted for Kerry in 2004 thought the Iraq war and the associated vote was a great idea. That would not be true, but I guess one could claim it.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #14)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:09 PM

21. You are putting words in my mouth

First of all I never made the claim that support for gay marriage would not have cost Obama the election in 2008, I personally don't believe it would but I never made that claim because there would be no way for me to prove it. What I did suggest is that support for gay marriage was a realistic goal for people to pursue and those who insisted otherwise were proven wrong.

You are totally wrong on Iraq, there were many of us that knew it was not justified from the moment that it was proposed.

Your statement about Kerry is a complete strawman argument, I voted for Kerry because our two party system more or less forces us to choose between the lesser of two evils, that does not mean I supported all of Kerry's policies.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #14)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:16 AM

80. I never had a moment's doubt that invading Iraq was a bad idea

Never.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #14)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:11 AM

87. correlation isn't causation

a rooster crowed and the sun rose that doesn't mean the rooster caused the sun to rise. I have no idea if supporting marriage would have caused Obama to lose or not, but neither do you. The fact he refused to support it and won only means that refusing to support it didn't cause him to lose, it doesn't prove the converse.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #8)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:50 PM

101. political currents changed dramatically over time. Pretending otherwise is dishonest.

gay marriage would not have passed 10 years ago, and you know it.

When faced with extremely strong opposition, sometimes one has to inch one's way forward.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:10 PM

22. Those that claim they are pragmatic are really saying they love the status quo which is killing

the middle class. You have a choice, fight for our freedom, or be pragmatic and accept the republican vision.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #22)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 05:15 AM

64. Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #22)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:40 AM

84. That a pretty irresponsibly idealistic view of the world.

You want to fight but you don't care to make a realistic judgement as to whether you can win. It's not only your life that's on the line. There is a great deal of collateral damage that the poor, elderly, sick and children can suffer if you lose.

What if the President put his foot down about Single Payer and your predictions didn't pan out. Do you feel okay about the 47,000 people who would die every year without health insurance? It's easy to live idealistically when you don't have any of the responsibility.
Democrats and the country paid a dear price just to get Obama Care. Look what the republicans have done to this country and the poor since 2010.

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Response to Walk away (Reply #84)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:01 AM

86. You lost me at "irresponsibly". nm

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #86)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:54 AM

95. I'm not surprised.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:15 PM

24. People who called themselves pragmatists were sure Obama could not support marriage

equality until after 2012, and they were certain of this until the moment before he gave his big endorsement. That's just a fact. Also, in 2008, people claiming to be 'realists' and 'pragmatists' personally endorsed the idea that civil unions were the only possible answer for at least a generation. 'Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good' they'd say, up until the day Obama changed their minds for them.
When I came to DU in 2008, this place was a mile to the right of Dick Cheney on LGBT rights. So if you want to talk who persuades whom around DU that's where I'd start. Self appointed 'pragmatists' were against marriage equality 'I'm for it, but let' be pragmatic....'.
The word is over worked as a self compliment and sideways slam at those King Pragmatist disagrees with, who are of course not realistic at all. Emotional, like women and homosexuals.......

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #24)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:48 PM

39. Obama is a pragmatist, right?

So under a pragmatist, we've seen DADT end, and DOMA is circling the bowl.

In 2012, folks said it was a risk to endorse gay marriage, in 2008 they said he'd lose.

And in the end, the pragmatist is getting it done.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #24)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:05 PM

44. And the change in policy in 2012 was way more the result of an

"oopsie" (Biden opening up his "big mouth") than any kind of "12-dimensional chess". Don't let anyone tell you otherwise!

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Response to bullwinkle428 (Reply #44)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:13 PM

50. No it wasn't

Dick Cheney was in favor of civil unions in 2000. If Barack had disagreed with Biden, or the timing, he could have distanced himself from the position.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #24)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:52 PM

102. And political currents have changed. And you darned well know it. Opposition collapsed.

And your pretending that isn't the case doesn't change the facts or history.

And if societal change hadn't occured, political changes wouldn't either.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #102)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:00 PM

109. Those whose principles change

...with the prevailing winds, had no principles to begin with.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #1)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:59 PM

108. You have proven the OP correct

Thanks!

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:44 PM

3. When team wins - it's due to pragmatism

When team loses - it's the idealists' fault.

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Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #3)


Response to Adam051188 (Reply #4)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:50 PM

6. It's always the idealists who stay home

ergo...

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Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #6)


Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #6)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:58 PM

13. ...

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Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:52 PM

7. Here ... I'll help you ... with a Football anaolgy.

The idealists know that, ideally, the fastest way to score a touchdown from your own 5 yard line is to throw a bomb. So that's all they want to see the offense do. And, when the offense calls running plays, draws, screens, the idealists get angry and conclude that the offense doesn't want to score at all.

The pragmatists, will on occasion throw the bomb, but they also understand that the offense has to find and exploit the defense's weakness. So they run, they throw short passes, and sometimes, they go long. They don't always score, and sometimes they have to punt.

If the pragmatists kick a field goal, the idealists get very angry because clearly the offense didn't want to score 7, and compromised with the defense to get only 3 points.

btw ... the ACA, based on today's data ... was a long drive, taking 10 or more plays, grinding it out ... for a touchdown.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #7)


Response to Adam051188 (Reply #11)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:03 PM

16. Not all of them. But certainly some are.

As for the ACA ... it will save my niece's life ... and thousands like her who had cancer as a kid. She's never been able to get coverage, until the ACA ... now she's getting treatment for issues she's had that were considered "pre-existing".

The next play on the ACA ... adding POs to the blue state exchanges. ACA provides the foundation for it.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:16 PM

25. The idealists fight for life, liberty and freedoms. The pragmatists groveled before George Bush

as he leads us to war and torture. Clinton-Sachs was being pragmatic and a million Iraqi's died. It's a good thing our founders were candy-assed pragmatics.

Your analogy suffers. The pragmatist is happy to kick a field goal and lose by 20 points. Pragmatists dont give a shit that we have 40% of American children living in poverty. They rationalize that it's the best we can do. I say bullshit.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #25)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:25 PM

29. Obama .. the pragmatist ... just got 10 million people ...

... insurance coverage that they could not get otherwise.

The idealists would have held out for single payer... got nothing ... helped no one ... and then stroked their principles.

That's the fact from today's ACA sign up data.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #29)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:35 PM

32. How do you know that we would have gotten nothing? With your thinking we still would be a colony of

England. Pragmatists are cowards, willing to kiss the asses of the oppressors for a little bread.

We can not endure the momentum toward total oligarchy. Obamacare is better than what we had, but we have lost ground with the 1% taking our wealth. Obamacare wont matter if we all become paupers.

Sooner or later we will have to fight or die. The pragmatists will cower on the sideline.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #32)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:42 PM

36. You're on the sideline right now.

Demanding the bomb.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #36)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:46 PM

38. I am on the field trying for a touchdown, it's you on the sideline content with a 20 point

loss. It's pragmatists that groveled before Bush when he led us to war, claiming that was the best we could have done.

We need Medicare for all. If that's demanding the bomb, then I am guilty.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #38)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:49 PM

40. no on claimed that.

Face it, the Pragmatist in Chief is making a difference, and you are complaining from the stands.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #40)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:10 PM

47. and this is where one "team's" argument breaks down to its constituent parts

Bullshit & bluster

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #40)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:01 PM

110. Isnt the definition of pragmatism, "sitting in the stands"? My complaint isnt with the yardage

we have gotten, but not trying to win the game. We are losing our middle class and some among us are justifying their ambivalence with so-called "pragmatism." Afraid to try harder because they are afraid they might encourage the wrath of their leaders.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #38)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:52 PM

103. They are on the sideline with PomPoms

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #29)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:50 PM

41. 7 million out of 50 million, at a cost of a half trillion dollar per year giveaway to big insurance

Heritage/Gingrinch/Rmoney plan. If that's the "best" he could do, he is a really, really bad negotiator.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #41)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:51 PM

42. How many you helping?

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #41)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:28 PM

51. And the insurance companies still call the shots.

And can still charge what they want and make high deductibles for the insurance.
I suspect that there will not be as much actual health care delivered as we might think...but hopefully I am wrong.

But no doubt about it the insurance companies love it....that half a trillion dollars is 30% theirs...and maybe more with some creative bookkeeping.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #29)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:40 PM

54. Where are you getting 1O million? I saw 7 million earlier today.

Is 10 million a new update?

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Response to Autumn (Reply #54)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:57 PM

56. medicare expansion and state exchanges

Moves it past 9.5M

And the folks who now have until mid April.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #29)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:12 AM

61. Um, bullshit

For the first two years of Obama's presidency, he had a Democratic Majority in the House and a filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate. They could have very easily passed single payer if they wanted to.

I'd even venture to say that a lot of Democratic losses in 2010 were because disenchanted progressives and centrists sat out the election, precisely because they were disappointed in the lack of real change.

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Response to Downtown Hound (Reply #61)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 07:21 AM

65. Dems had a super majority for about 72 days, not 2 years.

There's no reason to debate some one on why single payer was never going to pass, if they don't even know that simple fact.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:54 PM

43. When the defense is playing to stop your ground game it is a perfect time to throw the bomb.

Or if the defense jumps off sides and loses the house the senate and the presidency, well thats a free play. Let it rip.


This is a fun game.

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Response to Ed Suspicious (Reply #43)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 07:24 AM

66. The Pragmatic President just got about 10 million people, health care.

btw ... Dems spent about the last 50+ years throwing the bomb on health care ... got nothing.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #66)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 08:55 AM

68. I'm glad he got the ACA. I spend much of my day defending it against actual people

who are different from me in my critique of the system, who are much more unassuageably critical than myself. I say things like

I've shown you examples of countries who operate more and less efficiently than ours. I can't for a fact say the ACA will without a doubt take us from 46th in the world to top 5, but I can remind you of the Israeli example that, again, is reminiscent of the system we're adopting and I can show through the numbers that they are doing something right.


and



We spend over 17% of GDP on healthcare pre ACA with unacceptable outcomes. No country in the top 5 ranks eclipse 10.5%. But don't take my word for it. See for youself. http://www.bloomberg.com/visual-data/best-and-worst/most-efficient-health-care-countries

and



and I cite sources that demonstrate success like

http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-mh-10-million-insured-20140103,0,4855449.story#axzz2xZM854mM


and

ACA sign ups spreadsheet. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/pub?key=0AheStIw2-5S0dGkwbEJTalVNcERJQjBlWUcxbFp6M3c&output=html


so believe me when I say I am not an enemy of hard-fought progress.

But I am left wondering, if now was the time to make universal health care happen, the repulse were deemed offsides in the recent election, if dems had a mandate, wouldn't a bomb be appropriate instead of a reasonably decent approach that had corporatist roots, republican roots. A system some call Heritagecare? What if we went for it? We got a first down lo those few years ago, but we had a quarterback who didn't throw the bomb. I'm happy, I was even going to try to avoid critique for a few days, but you BOG people drive me mad!

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Response to Ed Suspicious (Reply #68)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:10 AM

69. Ok, let's work through something here ...

You said ...

.. if dems had a mandate, wouldn't a bomb be appropriate instead of a reasonably decent approach ...


The word IF is important.

Let's go back to 2009 (including up until Feb 2010). The Democrats had a 60 vote, veto proof majority for about 72 days during that period. Many forget that. Franken wasn't seated until July of 2009, and Kennedy died that August, was replaced about a month later with another Dem, and then Scott Brown (R) won the special election for Kennedy's seat and was seated in Feb 2010. When you do the math, the Dems had about 72 days to implement any "mandate" you think they might have had.

And then ... we have to discuss the 5-6 blue dogs in the Senate. Those folks were never going to vote YES for a Public Option, let alone Single Payer or Medicare for all (the latter 2 being the goal of throwing a "bomb").

So for your line of thinking above to work, we had to get 5 or 6 Dems to vote YES during that 72 day period. How do you as President make that happen? To demonstrate how hard it well be to get all of thoe votes, I'm going to spot you ALL of them, except one, Joe Lieberman.

You are now the President. Its 2009, and you have 59 YES votes for your "bomb" (a PO, single payer, or Medicare for all, doesn't really matter which). All YOU need to do is figure out how to get Lieberman to vote YES.

When you try to explain how you get his vote, please discuss these three facts.

1) Lieberman campaigned against Obama in 2008, campaigning for McCain instead. McCain was going to make Lieberman either SecDef or SecState (Lindsey Graham was getting one of these spots as well). Do you have something this big that Lieberman wants? He's pissed you took these away from him.

2) Lieberman is not running again and has said so. Which means polls and threats of removing support inhis next election is irrelevant. He's setting up a 7 figure think tank position for after he leaves congress (and where is he now ... in that 7 figure think tank position). And a vote for your "bomb" will get in the way of that.

3) Lieberman's nickname was "Senator from Aetna". He has family members who's careers are bound tight to the health insurance industry. A vote for your plan puts those in jeopardy.

So there it is ... I've laid out the defense that you face. Explain how you as President get Lieberman to vote YES. btw, I've put this test to many on DU, no one has ever come up with a viable path.

But please try.

(Its not the BOG causing you issues, its facts.)




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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #66)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:13 AM

70. Here's the continuum. The way I read it is they think we went too far,

you think just far enough, I think not far enough, I feel like it is my job to be a bit of a thorn in your side to make sure your section of the party, the preferred faction in the party by the president, don't rest where we are. we want more.

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Response to Ed Suspicious (Reply #70)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:19 AM

73. Absolutely ...

... and as most of us in my "section" have been saying ... the next steps are to add public options to the state exchanges. And VT is already working on a single payer model, which the ACA allows.

Once we get public options in a couple blue states, we should be able to get one added to the federal exchange. When that happens, the red state Governors will flip out. They refused to create their own exchanges, forced the federal exchange to cover their states, and will now end up getting a federal PO, instead of one controlled by their state.

Anyone can demand single payer or Medicare for all with no plan for how to get there.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #7)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:18 AM

63. good post you Eagles fan!

Or should I say "Iggles"

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Response to treestar (Reply #63)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:15 AM

71. I can't figure out ...

... why didn't we TRADE Jackson!!??!!

Ok, he's in a gang ... so TRADE HIM and get something ... THAT would have been the PRAGMATIC thing to do!!!!!

Release him, get nothing ... and now he's with the Skins.

You'd think one of DU's ideologues was running the Eagles.

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #71)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:24 AM

74. I am utter, humble awe of the ass-kicking 4th and 26 you have been on this thread.

You have been a Brian Dawkins mutherfrackin' broom!

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Response to msanthrope (Reply #74)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:32 AM

75. I grew up playing football ...

... in a Philly cemetery.

And man I miss Dawkins. Blitz 10 and let Dawkins cover everyone else!!!

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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #7)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:12 AM

88. labeling someone who works in accordance with deeply held convictions as an idealist is convenient..

I imagine labeling someone who works in accordance with deeply held convictions as an idealist is rather convenient to one's biases, regardless of how inaccurate it may be.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 08:56 PM

12. It's absurd to keep pretending that Third Way Democrats have the same goals

as traditional Democrats. Their actions clearly, relentlessly show that they don't.

They are a deliberate, planned, corporate-bankrolled infiltration of the Democratic Party, and their goal has *always* been to usurp and retool the party to serve those corporate interests.



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Response to woo me with science (Reply #12)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:03 PM

18. You say that like it's a bad thing?

A corporation is immortal, of course worshiping and serving the corporation makes perfect sense, they are like gods in so many ways Immortal, amoral, capricious, vain, jealous and so on. Anyone who has read Greek "mythology", let alone the Norse or Abrahamic stuff, knows corporations are godlike in the extreme.



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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #18)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:07 PM

20. Interesting food for thought.

Thanks.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #18)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:08 PM

45. Heh. Well said.

Those *are* the qualities of a wannabe god.

Except for the immortal part, those adjectives also describe most tyrants the world has seen...and many cheerleaders, too.

Is a wannabe god really a god if the people refuse to worship?

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #18)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:10 AM

78. I offer a different view. We live in a society that is heavily authoritarian influenced.

Many Americans are never encouraged to think for themselves. Parents, teachers, Boy or Girl Scout leader, political leaders, religious leaders etc. find it much easier to control people with authoritarian leadership. God is the top authoritarian. Corporations are becoming the top authoritarian. Just as humans have learned that using a god as their justification, they can control people, those running corporations have also learned the same.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #78)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:58 PM

107. +100000 And the pressure and propaganda to that end are constant.


Note the absurd, deliberate drumbeat by the corporate brigade that the duty of an American is to shut up and not criticize during election season...as though election season weren't the time when it's MOST important for our voices to be heard.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #78)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 07:16 PM

121. The moment you start thinking for yourself you become an enemy of society

The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out... without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, intolerable.

-HL Mencken


And yes, I know Mencken had some odious opinions.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #12)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:10 PM

48. It's absurd to keep pretending that the Third Way Democrats are on DU.

DU has people that generally want to reach the same goals. They argue over how to reach those goals.

The folks who want to use a series of small steps to reach the goal get tarred as not trying, or settling for too little, or being stealth Republicans.

The folks who want to push for larger leaps get tarred as wanting all-or-nothing - they'd rather the suffering continue if they can't get everything.

Neither is correct, when it comes to DU.

When it comes to politicians, there's a lot who sell their soul for donations. They're the ones who cheer micro-steps and are surprised when real Democrats, such as everyone on DU, are upset.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #48)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:29 PM

52. "Micro steps." " a series of small steps to reach the goal"

Nope. The goals are not the same. The direction is not the same.

That fiction doesn't fly anymore.


Absolutely false. Overall, this country is being moved relentlessly in the wrong direction.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=4712258

To claim that progress is being made but is merely incremental is overwhelmingly untrue in the most important areas of policy. We are being thrown bones on social issues but inequality has been escalated viciously through policy, the power of corporations is being relentlessly increased, our fundamental civil liberties are being dismantled, journalism is under assault, peaceful protesters are being surveilled and brutally suppressed, whistleblowers are being persecuted, our president has claimed the right to imprison indefinitely and even kill without due process, militarization of our police forces has been expanded, our public education system is being corporatized and even dismantled, corporate power over the internet is being enabled, our environment is being opened to drilling and fracking, and a new pipeline is on the horizon. In addition to all this, this government is engaging in mass surveillance against its own citizens and assaulting us with propaganda and disinformation.

Corporatists have been installed in virtually every area of government by our Democratic president.

The most significant policy proposal on the horizon is the most predatory free trade agreement in history, which will force Americans to compete with workers in Third World countries. It will kill jobs, reduce wages for over 90 percent of American workers, restrict freedom on the internet, make obtaining life-saving medications more difficult and more expensive, and allow multinational corporations to sue for profits and overrule national decisions on everything from wages to regulations for environment and safety. It is an assault on all of us, and it is unconscionable coming from a Democratic president. However, it is wholly consistent with this administration's long record of working on behalf of corporate interests.

I expected your response, though. The unwritten rules for Third Way messaging on this board require that any post like the one I wrote be countered immediately. We are relentlessly badgered to uphold the illusion that our corporate Democrats really do care about the same issues, principles, and goals that we do, even though their actions relentlessly pursue the opposite. As much as we are told by the corporate crew working this board that War is Peace and the chocolate ration has been increased, we have lived with our eyes open during these past five years, and we have watched first-hand what the flooding of our party with corporate money has done to its behavior...and to us.

Nothing is fixed until we are honest about what is happening. All the propaganda notwithstanding, more and more courageous liberals are standing up to do just that. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Robert Reich....the launch of FirstLook....Bill Moyers' excellent work. The new statement at the Daily Kos that they will work to defeat the malignant influence of the Third Way in our party....These are all positive signs.

People who care deeply about this country are telling the truth about what we really are facing...the corporate hijacking of our party and our government....because the rose-colored glasses are malignant. The rose-colored glasses are a deliberate corporate lie, and they prevent real change.


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Response to woo me with science (Reply #52)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:37 PM

53. A microstep is "Don't ask, don't tell".

It doesn't really do shit, but some pretend it's a big deal.

A small step is the ACA. It sets us up for a battle for single-payer in the states. Where we can win in the blue states. Those victories will show just how well it works, and that will help us spread single-payer to more and more states. Then we can return to the federal battle in a strong position.

Essentially, the ACA isn't the end. Just like Social Security wasn't "done" in 1935. Nor was Medicare "done" in 1965.

According to you, my belief in getting single-payer via a series of smaller steps mirroring Canada's path makes me a corpratist out to stop single-payer.

Alternatively, you could actually read what people like me write.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #52)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:48 PM

55. Absolutely correct.

But the illusion of making small steps is maintained to keep us occupied.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #52)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:18 PM

111. This!

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #48)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:00 AM

77. I think you are giving The Team way too much credit. Let's use indefinite detention as

an example. The liberal extremists screamed bloody murder stating that if Pres Obama approved it, it would institutionalize one of the Bush Republican policies that clearly violates our Constitution. The other side didnt offer any debate about how Obama's choice was best for the country, but restricted their arguments to ad hominem attacks. The "baby-steps" argument doesnt work here because we are going in a bad direction as we are with the Patriot Act, another issue The Team doesnt discuss.

How about the TPP? What "baby-steps" are The Team recommending? The liberals are fighting this and The Team once again settles for ad hominem attacks.

Social Security is an issue that upset the liberal extremists when the President put cuts on the table. The Team didnt debate the "baby-step" benefits, their argument was limited to denial that he would actually pull the trigger.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #77)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:16 AM

89. Your example is perfect to show what I'm talking about.

It perfectly shows how you aren't responding to what posters write. Instead, you're attacking what they did not write.

The liberal extremists screamed bloody murder stating that if Pres Obama approved it, it would institutionalize one of the Bush Republican policies that clearly violates our Constitution. The other side didnt offer any debate about how Obama's choice was best for the country, but restricted their arguments to ad hominem attacks.

That's because "the other side" on DU was not saying it was best for the country. Republicans were the ones saying it's best for the country.

The other side on DU was saying Congress passed laws forbidding the spending of any money to close Gitmo. Which has the benefit of being true.

You're blaming Obama for a problem he did not create, and Congress forbade him from fixing. When people point out that you're blaming the wrong person that is not an ad hominem attack. When you continue to blame the wrong person after people point out the Congress problem, they're going to start looking for reasons you keep blaming the wrong person.

If Obama asked Congress for a law declaring that puppies and kittens are cute, Congress would refuse to pass that law. Obama demanding Congress pass a law allowing him to close Gitmo will go nowhere. And so W's stain continues, thanks to Congress.

How about the TPP? What "baby-steps" are The Team recommending? The liberals are fighting this and The Team once again settles for ad hominem attacks.

Except that again, you are conflating "the other side" with Republicans. "The other side" on DU has not been claiming the TPP is wonderful.

Social Security is an issue that upset the liberal extremists when the President put cuts on the table. The Team didnt debate the "baby-step" benefits, their argument was limited to denial that he would actually pull the trigger.

Which means they didn't support it, despite what you appear to be implying.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #89)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:34 AM

91. You seem to be trying to rationalize what I am saying. My point is that one side does not

enter the pro vs. con discussion but uses ad hominem attacks to try to shut up the other side.

When the President put Social Security on the table, The Team didnt object. They didnt state they were against the move by the President. They simply tried to end the discussion via ridicule and ad hominem attacks.

"Except that again, you are conflating "the other side" with Republicans." I said no such thing. "The other side" on DU has not been claiming the TPP is wonderful." Exactly, they dont say anything about the issue. That's my point. They dont agree with the liberals so where do they stand?

Today I doubt we can get anyone from The Team to say that the President was wrong institutionalizing "indefinite detention."

I will state that I oppose the TPP. I have asked The Team what they think and they refuse to answer.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #12)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:47 AM

76. Third Way Democrats are re-branded Republicans. Corp leaders arent stupid.

They recognize in a two party system, one crazy party and one conservative party is the perfect system.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #12)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:53 PM

104. It's absurd to think that Ideologues can have a reasonable discussion. There are so many DU'ers

that I respect who tend to be very much "Idealists" and passionate advocates.

Then there are the Ideologues who see things in black and white and delight in divisiveness and name calling.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:00 PM

15. 163. Here goes.

Sapphocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-09-11 05:57 AM
Response to Original message
163. Here goes.

I've been on the fence about speaking up -- I think the last time I posted anything of significance on DU was last summer -- but I was alerted to this discussion by a few friends, and asked to say something. As of a couple of days ago, while monitoring Smarmie's thread, I said the hell with it, after seeing the two moderator posts in that thread, which pissed me the off to no end. (Perhaps, by the end of this post, everyone might begin to understand why.)

Still, because of those friends who contacted me, and because many of the old-timers who have managed to hang on here hold a special place in my heart, and after my wife and I discussed that thread at length, I caved, so here I am.

(I warned one of my friends this will be an "epic" post -- but, using some good judgment, I decided not to call out specific names. I can do that, at any time, with links -- so, David, if you need more supporting evidence than I give you here, say the word, and I will be more than happy to oblige.)

I won't join the ongoing discussion; I'll just lay it all out in one post as I see it -- and as my wife (NMMNG, better known as BuffyTheFundySlayer) sees it; Buffy says I can speak for her here. (Now, this is trust: She's at work now, and won't see this 'til tomorrow morning -- but, yes, I can say with confidence: we are both so very much on the same page, I know she will more than approve -- which is why, in case anyone was wondering, she disappeared around the same time I did -- when we both finally realized that the best part of banging your skull into a brick wall over and over and over again is when you stop doing it.)

Brief background for those who don't know me:

I'm one of those "who decided to leave on their own because it sucked to be here" -- although I lasted longer than most who departed voluntarily.

I lurked on DU from Day One, 2001, and finally registered in 2002. At one time, I was an extremely active poster; there were also many times my frustration with the climate of homophobia on DU (both overt and "stealth," the latter being much harder to shrug off) grew so great, I took breaks of six months or more. I also wrote more than a couple of GBCW swan songs -- and I meant every word at the time, but I always came back. There just wasn't anything like DU out there for a politically-minded lesbian.

That's certainly changed in ten years; now, if my own blog doesn't satisfy my need to express myself, I'll cruise over to Prop 8 Trial Tracker, where I've found a genuine, compassionate, caring, highly intelligent LGBT community (and the discussion is not at all restricted to Prop H8) or Queerty, if I really want some high drama (and where I can say nearly anything I want to the trolls), or Box Turtle Bulletin or LGBTPOV or any number of sites where LGBT equality (often mixed with just plain fun) is the focus, and where LGBTs and our allies are in the majority, and always will be.

I'll still cruise through DU to check LBN, GLBT, and R/T from time to time, but in all honesty, DU just isn't that important to me anymore. (So why am I here? Because I was asked to weigh in, and this is probably the only chance I'll ever have to say everything I've been thinking for the past ten years -- even though I know I'll remember a lot of things I wanted to say as soon as I hit the post button.)

DU was very important to me at a time when there was nothing comparable to it, at least for LGBTs; now, while DU is, I readily admit, invaluable and irreplaceable as a meeting place for hardcore Democrats, it has, in my experience, been far surpassed as the best (or even a fair-to-middling) place for LGBTs (and not a very good place at all for those of us who place principle above party -- or even party above personality).

In other words, I've moved on. And while the events of any given day can (and do) make me very angry, my blood pressure is considerably lower now that I'm no longer a DU regular. I know where I can go for in-depth information and analysis of the latest wrinkle in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, and where I can go to simply commiserate, and where I can go just to have fun. I know the unwritten rules of each site I frequent -- I would never cut loose with a string of profanity at BTB (although I feel free to call a hypocrite a hypocrite), while at Queerty I can say pretty much any damned thing I want. Wherever I am, I stay within boundaries. It's easy when 1) a site sets the tone for you (concentrating on content without laying down a new set of arbitrary rules every other week), and 2) there are so many flavors of sites out there, I know just where to go, whether I'm feeling introspective, analytical, argumentative, morose, or just silly.

DU was once the first site I would turn to for information and, often, solace. Now, I cannot imagine baring my soul here; that would serve simply as an open invitation for some to call me all sorts of names, and/or run back to their own little private forums to make fun of me. (As I once told one DUer who didn't think I knew about one of the many "private," "alt.DU" forums out there: There are no secrets.)

What I would suggest is that someone (David) needs to decide, once and for all, whether or not this is a a message board for dedicated Democrats, who put party above all else, or whether DU is going to spend the rest of its life trying (and failing) to herd all cats. If the purpose of DU is, above all else, to put Democrats into office, period, I think it would be kinder to make this understood now, and avoid giving LGBTers (and non-Dems and genuine liberals) the false hope that DU will ever be anything other than what it is: Democratic Party Central, and nothing else.

DU will always have LGBTs around -- but I truly believe that LGBT DUers who believe DU can sustain a vibrant LGBT community within the confines of a site that is devoted primarily to the Democratic Party are going to be deeply disappointed. I'm not trying to steer anyone away from DU -- DU serves its purpose for Democrats, and it's a fine source of news and discussion about non-LGBT topics.

To expect any more from DU may be placing an unfair burden on Skinner. He didn't create DU for us, and as much as he might like us to be here, and sing Kumbaya with everyone else, DU was not designed for us.

I think LGBT DUers would be better served to use DU only for (what I perceive to be) its intended purpose -- as an unofficial organ of the Democratic Party, and find LGBT-specific discussion elsewhere... where people openly hostile to LGBTs are the rare exception, and where we can speak freely, without looking over our shoulders all the time.

You can talk and you can talk, and this entire thread can end up in one big group hug. And that's fine. But if you think the real problem -- the people whose disdain for LGBTs is so thinly-veiled, you could read a book through it -- will ever go away... it won't.

And there's nothing Skinner can do to change that. No matter how much he understands, or wants to understand. He can't make anti-gay assholes go away. Well, he could, but, judging from the events of the past couple of years, it appears we have quite a difference of opinion on what constitutes a "toxic personality."

That said, I'll get to specifics.

David:

Re EarlG's email: I must protest the idea that "It's common knowledge that LGBTs favor(ed) Clinton over Obama during the Dem primaries." That's like saying, "It's common knowledge that black voters were responsible for passing Prop 8." It's a broadbrush generalization, and one cannot make that assumption across the board. Look at the posts in this thread, and in Smarmie's, to find LGBTers who admit they were hardcore Obama supporters -- and then, there are LGBTers like Buffy and me, who voted for HRC in the primaries because there were only two candidates left, and HRC seemed like the lesser of the two evils.

(Onlookers: Don't try to bait me with the old "Oh, you think HRC would have been better...?" It's a moot point now -- we'll never know, and you will never convince me that Obama is the bee's knees by trying to force me to speculate about what Hillary might or might not have done. She is not the president; Obama is.)

Otherwise, EarlG's timeline is generally accurate -- but flawed in that it is truncated... at the beginning. The 2008 primary wars were only the crescendo (or, more accurately, the nadir) of DU Hell for LGBTs. The problems began long before anyone reading this had ever heard of Barack Obama.

Before the 2008 primaries, the period that stands out in my mind as the most shameful in DU's history occurred in the fall of 2006.

A few reading this will know exactly what I'm referring to, while the majority are no doubt scratching their heads as they try to remember what big whoop came down in the fall of 2006 (besides the mid-terms themselves, of course).

I'll tell you in a moment. But first I want to tell you who are wracking your brains why you don't remember.

The other day, I read an article by David Mixner, which began thusly:

Throughout the history of the LGBT community geographic places have taken on meaning for us like military battles to history. We can go through the litany of names like Anita Bryant in Dade County, California and Proposition 8, Massachusetts ruling on marriage equality, Wyoming and Matthew Shepard and the White House fence. ...

At the same time I was nodding in agreement as I read this, I was wondering: How many straight people with little more than a passing interest in LGBT issues would be able to associate our other battles with other "battlefields"? Colorado? Texas? Arizona (2006 and 2008)? Arkansas? Maine?* As I said to a friend recently, some straight folks may know a fair bit about Stonewall, but how many have even heard of the Compton Cafeteria riot?

Why should most non-LGBT people know about these battles? They are our touchstones, and while I would be thrilled by the opportunity to educate any interested party on any of these places/events, I don't expect every person in the United States to be as up on LGBT history any more than I am up on the history of any other American minority group. I may be able to tell you all about the Chinese railroad builders and gold miners of the Old West, show you where the strawberry fields were that used to be near my home and tell you how the Japanese-American farmer who owned them had to abandon them for an internment camp, and recite the basics of Brown v. the Board of Education, but I'm not going to pretend to be an expert on anyone's history or culture but my own -- nor am I going to pretend I understand "The Black Experience" or "The Latino Experience" or "The Any Other Experience" that is not my own. I can relate in some ways -- draw striking parallels, even -- and cultivate some understanding, but it is an understanding at a distance. The distance isn't deliberate; it's just fact: I can never claim inherent understanding, because I will never be anyone or anything other than who I am.

David, I think this is what you mean when you say "being able to make an emotionally detached evaluation of an issue like gay rights is one of the privileges of being a white, heterosexual male." But I also think you still suffer from a big disconnect, pinning much of the blame on the 2008 primaries, and on the idea that "that having a Democratic administration would be a big change for DU."

I don't deny that losing a common enemy in Bush and a Republican-controlled Congress is accountable for much upheaval on DU, but I think you're overemphasizing the importance of that change as far as its impact on LGBT DUers. No, I don't speak for anyone but myself (and, in this case, Buffy), but the harsh reality is that Obama's win did not provoke, or even alter, the very problems viz. LGBTs on DU that continue to this day -- it merely intensified the same problems that have been going on since day one, and brought them into sharper focus.

If you truly believe "it is apparent that the problems we're facing really got their start sometime during the 2008 Democratic Presidential primaries," then you weren't listening for the first seven years -- and, apparently, the problems of DU's first seven years still haven't even begun to register with you yet.

You're right when you say: "We did not see what was happening right before our eyes" -- but there was an awful lot happening right before your eyes long before then.

And it's not as if we weren't telling you. When there was a problem that shouldn't have been shared publicly, I used to PM you directly. I know of others who PM'd you directly. We all used to get responses from you (which, I'm sure now, would be an unreasonable expectation, since the board has grown so big). We were telling you -- and if not in PMs, then in the 300-plus-post threads in which we killed ourselves trying to make others hear us -- but you weren't listening.

Next...

I think this is the most telling point of your OP:

"For me, politics has never been about people or personalities or photo-ops or inauguration speakers. Those were all window dressing -- part of the show."

Like Obama's cozying up to Donnie McClurkin (and Kirbyjon Caldwell, and T.D. Jakes, and Rick Warren, and yes, Jeremiah Wright, whose "garlic nose" remark, among other things, did not sit well with this Italian-American), you mean?

I think you're starting to get it -- that these moments were not "window dressing" at all; EarlG spells it out: "In retrospect it seems obvious: The LGBT community had to place their chances for equality in the hands of a religious man who opposed gay marriage and who courted known homophobes during and after his campaign. As far as they were concerned, this was not a promising development."

Exactly. These were not merely symbolic moments. These were hard slaps in the face -- delivered again (and again, and again) by Obama supporters who went ballistic on our asses and refused to accept that this cozying up to raging homophobes was a legitimate complaint, and not an excuse for racism by a bunch of some rich, white, privileged crybabies.

I think, from the rest of your post, you are beginning to realize that your earlier attitude was misguided, at best. You know what Tip O'Neill said: "All politics is local." Well, all politics is personal, too -- at least for those whom it impacts directly. As one who is indeed impacted directly by the decisions made 3,000 miles from my home, I understand that every decision means the dividing line between whether or not a person will go hungry, whether or not a senior citizen will get a COLA this year, or whether or not -- at the whim of a bigoted, ignorant populace -- my wife will get to decide whether or not to pull the plug on me if I end up in a coma with a brain as useful as overcooked cauliflower.

That politics would ever seem like "window dressing" (or a "show," or, as I read it, a game) to someone who is apparently so deeply involved in politics as you are, David... That disturbs me, a lot. It scares me -- because there are millions of people not nearly as intelligent as you are. What in the world must they see it as?

I think you know now this isn't a game, David. It's my life in the balance. If you could sit down with Buffy and me, see how we live, see what our worries are, see how we cope, see how we try to develop an impenetrable plan that will protect us, watch us try to figure out this "income-splitting" we are now mandated to do on our federal tax returns, watch me come to my choice to skip health insurance for yet another year (this will be Year Eleven) because it it would count as taxable income for Buffy (which we can't afford), plan out-of-state trips in order to avoid the places where we would be legal strangers to one another -- the things you never need to worry about, the things you and your wife and your child can take for granted by sole virtue of your plumbing -- you'd realize even more that every single decision made in Washington makes or breaks our very lives.

And we've spent a decade on a Web site where we're told to sit down and shut up about our "special rights" because we might "hurt" a goddamned political party? (Oh, yes, we have, repeatedly -- wait until you get to the quotes below.) What kind of stupid masochists have we been expected to be? How stupid have we been to put up with this for so many years?

As for being "skeptical" of the president... it goes far beyond that. I could write volumes on the subject (and have, in my blog), but I'll skip most of it and just say: Deciding not to defend DOMA is fine -- but it's going to take a hell of a lot more than that before I would ever dream of trusting a man who sways in the wind like a leaf.

He's got a lot to make up for, and his call on DOMA isn't the be-all and end-all -- especially after his DOJ pulled out every card from rape to incest when it was defending it. (If he's so het up on equality, why isn't he using all the muscle he has to push a DOMA repeal through Congress the way he strong-armed everyone right down to Kucinich to vote for his miserable excuse for a "healthcare" plan?)

And there are other things LGBT people care about, you know -- the economy, the wars, Gitmo detainment, et cetera, et cetera -- and so far, on every one of these issues, President Obama has run this country even further into the ground than I'd ever feared.

One declaration against DOMA doesn't make up for... much.

A couple of other things from your OP:

"I know that the 'gay purge' is often held up as the watershed moment here on DU. If we are honest, I think we know that things had gone off the rails long before then and we were all miserable. But what happened was incredibly sad and tragic. In hindsight, I do believe it could have turned out differently, especially if there had been some line of communication like the Ask the Admins forum. The precipitating event -- a group of people basically ganging up on a moderator -- "

Stop. To this day, I believe that particular moderator was way out of line -- and, IIRC, this was not the first time there was at least borderline similar behavior by that same moderator. I can't argue the point with you, because I cannot see what you can see, David -- I do not have access to deleted posts, deleted threads, deleted subthreads, or moderator discussions of same. I'm telling you my impression over some ten years of hanging around DU, which ought to amount to something.

I can't pinpoint every post, and every poster, who has contributed to the indelible impression built in my mind over a decade that DU is not gay-friendly -- that is the culmination of many, many incidents that probably went right past you, and I cannot pull every incident out of a Kray computer to back up my impression. But that is my impression.

And what happened during that thread was despicable. I too think sundog's banning was utterly inexcusable.

"But as soon as I told people that they needed to knock it off, or else, we were on the brink. I had no further room to maneuver and left myself no choice but to ban anyone who continued -- and people did continue. I regret that it happened, and I regret my role in it. I believe I could have handled it differently."

OK, that's cool.

"But like so much else that has happened over these last three years, I did not do it entirely by myself."

But: It is still your board, and every final decision is yours. You make the rules. You are -- and were then -- entirely capable of saying, "Whoa, I really fucked up!" and entirely capable of switching directions. You are never backed into a corner -- you have the last word, always. Nobody can ever ban you for fucking up before you have the opportunity to take something back.

You know, I once worked my ass off on a help-desk phone line... and these days, when I have to deal with somebody on a help desk, I often find reason to tell him: "You know, it's OK to say 'I don't know the answer to your question,' but I'll find out.'"

You are never backed into a corner that isn't of your own making. You can always say, "Whoa, I really fucked up!" -- and if you had, then, a lot of this damage might have been avoided.

That said...

So... What happened in the fall of 2006?

Answer: Lewis v. Harris.

Still doesn't ring a bell, folks? OK, then: On October 25, 2006, the Supreme Court of New Jersey decided that denying same-sex couples all the same rights and benefits (or, as I like to call them, privileges) was unconstitutional. Chickening out on full-fledged marriage, the SCoNJ decided that NJ must provide civil unions -- marriage in all but name only -- within the state.

No, civil unions were not good enough -- not because we gays cannot be satisfied with all-or-nothing-at-all, but because -- despite all the good intentions of providing marriage-like "rights" -- the reality of civil unions fell (and still falls) far short of the "all rights and benefits" promise. Go ahead -- just ask any "civil-unioned" New Jersey couple who has ever applied for health benefits administered by a company headquartered in a state where there is no legal recognition of same-sex relationships, via marriage, civil unions, or domestic partnerships. Just ask.

(And read: State Farm to Widower: "You Can Drop Dead, Too.", September 11, 2007; One More Time: Civil Unions Aren't As Good As Marriage. Period., September 27, 2007)

Four days after the New Jersey decision, on October 29, 2006, I launched the Lavender Liberal Forums. That's no secret now: I launched a private, by-invitation-only message board where those of us so distraught by the shit we were asked to swallow on DU in the wake of the New Jersey decision could let loose and vent. It was never set up as an "anti-DU" board -- it was a decompression chamber. We couldn't talk here about what was going on here, so we let it all loose there.

There was a need for it. And I would bet money that LLF, serving as a place to vent, kept 1/3 to 1/2 of our membership from being banned from DU during LLF's existence. (Not surprisingly, after LLF's demise, a good number of LLFers were TS'ed from DU. I honestly believe LLF postponed those tombstones -- mine included -- because we had somewhere else to go.)

LLF lasted about a year and a half, during which time there was a steady core of some 30 DUers (and another 30 or 40 who came and went), mostly LGBTs, along with some very loyal straight allies.

What killed LLF? Two (main) issues:

1) LLF was too "nice," so I was told. People craved conflict -- the kind of conflict found at DU (and not the sort -- then, at least -- that would have resulted in banning; in the "old days," everyone got away with far more than they do now. There was much more leeway than there was before The New Rules were implemented).

2) Obama. As admin, it never occurred to me that every LGBTer did not see what I saw. I was wrong. The percentage of LLFers swept away by TeenBeat Obama Mania matched, I would guess, about the same percentage on DU. As you said, David: "As I watched events unfold, from the start of the Democratic primaries and through the beginning of the Obama administration, the ferocity of the disagreements seemed utterly nonsensical to me" -- but for an entirely different reason: How could anyone LGBT not see right through Obama?

When the impasse between Obama supporters and everyone else became clear, LLF was dead. I killed it officially in 2007.

It was a grand experiment. It was my baby. I miss it. I mourn it. But it's as dead to me as the DU GLBT forum.

The point: There was a need for LLF. There was a need for it before I ever entertained the idea. We were starved for a place where we could unload, because we couldn't speak freely here, and when we tried, we were ignored, mocked, ridiculed, and sometimes banned.

If a whole lot of people keep telling you the same thing over and over, you can choose to believe one of two things: Either everybody is crazy except you, or maybe, just maybe, all those people might be right.

And if the same group of people are blowing their tops to the point where they engage in behavior deserving of banishment, you have to ask why -- especially when it comes to people with years of fairly clean records.

Or: If you've had a long string of failed relationships, at some point you're going to realize all those relationships had one thing in common: you.

Next:

Rather than re-write history, I'm going to quote at length from a blog post I made May 20, 2008. The context: A reader asked me how I thought the California Supreme Court's ruling on marriage equality would "play in the (2008) presidential campaign." I replied at length; this relatively short excerpt sums up the gist of the entire post:

There will be (and always is) the same rending of garments and gnashing of teeth as there was immediately after the Massachusetts Supreme Court decision in November, 2003, which got much worse once Mass actually started issuing marriage licenses in May, 2004 — not even six months prior to the last chance we had to throw George W. Bush out of office.

When the New Jersey civil-unions decision came down just two weeks before the November, 2006, mid-term elections, the howls of doom became deafening. The timing was somehow our fault, and it was our fault the Dems were going to lose the mid-terms, big-time. (As I told some hysterical naysayer at the time: “If only we queers had as much power as you credit us with, we’d rule the world. What do you think we did, influence a state supreme court by mass telepathy?”)

For that post, I dug up scores of posts from DU to illustrate my point. Here are just a few (none reveals any poster's name, and none is linked, so you'll either have to take my word for it that these are real posts, or go find them yourself) -- bold emphasis mine:

From 2003:

“I am not anti-gay rights but…. I don’t think this is a good time for the gay-marriage issue.”

“Please don’t get me wrong. I’m not gay, but I’m not homophobic either. I’m just thinking that this decision is bad, bad timing politically. ...”

“It is too soon for gay marriage”

“Why not advance the idea of civil unions first. Let people get use to that idea and then push for marriage.”

“This isn’t the time. Our number one priority has to be getting bush the hell out of office. This won’t help that cause.”

“I’ve never met anyone, liberal or not who didn’t express utter disgust at the idea of gay marriage. This includes people I know who are otherwise open-minded and liberal on most every other issue.

“Some form of gay rights such as a civil union of some sort would be more acceptable. But for 99% of the people out there the very idea of gay marriage is just repulsive with capitial R. The gay marrige issue would severely cripple any democratic candidate’s to beat Bush if they support it. Let’s not go down that road."

“... These are much more pressing issues then whether a gay person should be allowed to marry. I’m not homophobic, but I feel that gays ought to think about the well-being of others much less fortunate than themselves.”

“How should we handle wedge issues? Like gay marriage, flag burning & abortion… I say we dismiss them completely. Firmly say that it’s manufactured to divide us & leave it at that. When pressed, just say you won’t take the bait. If someone feels so strongly about it, they can join a special interest group.”

From 2004:

“The gay marriage issue hijacked our party. I think the gay and lesbian community decided to make this a visible issue on state ballots because they thought they could ride on the coattails of the Mass. court decision and Kerry. They ended up hurting him. They could have waited until an off Presidential election year to go ballistic. This issue ended up being identified directly with Kerry on the Ohio ballot and ten other states. Many Democratic Christians who would have normally voted for Kerry went with their family and moral values. I’m not homophobic…”

What would be hilarious if it weren't so utterly ridiculous: This poster seems to believe gay people were responsible for putting anti-gay marriage BANS on twelve state ballots in 2004! These were marriage BANS, not marriage-equality bills!

“You DO need to get over it! You are a citizen of the United States before you are gay. You owe a responsibility to your country FIRST!! Yeah, you’re gay, many people are, we cannot allow the you know who’s to use gays as the new ‘blacks’ to divide our country with the gay marriage issue.”

“I think the Democratic Party should not even come close to this issue. The farther away the better. If this becomes a major issue with leading Democrats crusading for gay marriage, George McGovern will end up looking like a successful candidate.”

“my gay friends, delay marriage … Just delay till December. Why hand Republicans 5 percent more of the vote, when you can stay quietly on the sidelines and deny them this issue?”

“I Am Outraged By Gay People … Well, not really. But I am kinda annoyed by their (meaning those forcing the issue, not all gays) impeccably bad sense of timing. … By pushing this into an unpopular culture war during an election year, these gay activists are screwing up their own agenda. If they demonstrated a few months of patience, it would serve them well.”

Another one who thinks we were responsible for the timing of the Massachusetts SJC decision, and/or putting anti-gay marriage bans on the ballots.

“The gay marriage issue is a disaster waiting to happen. We will lose on this issue if we allow it to become an entrenched part of the debate. So here’s the question: will the gay community, and those who heavily support gay rights, keep quiet during the primaries and the election? Will they trust the Democratic party to do the right thing once they are in office? ...”

“... The country is not ready for this yet. Maybe in a decade, not now.

“Keep believing that the gay marriage issue didnt cost us Ohio, when it clearly did. Since Ohio cost us the race well what else can I say. … The turnout in southern Ohio was beyond the wildest dreams of Karl Rove and they all turned out for the gay marriage ban.”

Whose idea do you think putting marriage bans on state ballots was? Hint: His initials are K.R.

“Homos will just need to have a little patience and trust us in the long run.”

"Homos"?

From 2005:

“You are impatient.”

“It’s political suicide to come out in favor of gay marriage.”

“Everyone just needs to shut up about their ‘own issue’ and stand behind the party.”

“Get a grip on reality! This is not a winning issue right now.”

From 2006:

“This issue is going to lose us elections right now and we should lay off until a good chunk of the old farts who oppose it die off. In about 10 or 15 years the Nation will be ready for this fight but right now it’s too early.”

“Why not take what you can get with bills like Howard Deans for the meantime and hopefully in two years you will get someone like Dean or Gore as President, who will change the law and give you all the same rights Married people have without changing the name and pissing off all the fundies?”

“Goddamn it…gays I love ya’, but couldn’t you have waited. WTF. Why is it that the gay marriage issues always crops up right before the election. I fully support homosexual rights, but this ruling by the NJ Supreme Court just energized the Christofascist vote and will likely result in an erosion of Dem wins in Nov. Next time, can we just table the homosexual marriage thing until mid-election cycle?”

“(T)his victory is likely to cost us control of Congress or the Senate. What good is this victory when it just sets us all back and puts more anti-gay politicans in office? Make NO MISTAKE there will be push-back on this…just like in 2004.”

“Politically speaking this victory just handed Rove a MAJOR campaign issue.”

“(T)he Christian fundamentalists are sure to turn out in droves because of this decision now. They were the ones who might have helped us win the election, by staying home. So I wouldn’t be surprised in the next week or so that it becomes widely accepted we are going to lose. Worst fucking time for this, you have to wonder why this happened right before the election and not after the election.”

“You will see. I would say this decision has put a Democratic win in the House in Jeapordy.”

In reality, as I wrote in my blog post: "Contrary to all the Criswell-like predictions, Democrats swept the 2006 mid-terms, picking up 31 seats in the House (putting Republicans in the minority for the first time in twelve years), the largest gain for the Dems since 1974.

"Meanwhile, Democrats replaced Republicans in five open gubernatorial races, and booted the Repub incumbent, Robert Ehrlich, out of Maryland’s governor’s mansion.

"Not a single Democratic incumbent in Congress, or in any gubernatorial race, lost his or her seat.

"We’re still waiting for an apology from all those Democrats who opened with the usual disclaimer, “I’m not homophobic / Some of my best friends are gay / I think you deserve equal rights, but…,” and then went on to blame us uppity gays for what was sure to be a huge loss for the Dems.

"We’re not holding our collective breath."

“The Civil Rights Act cost the Democrats the South for a generation.”

Which reminds me: Isn't it funny how LGBTs are attacked for pointing out the unmistakable similarities between the Civil Rights struggle of the 1950s and 1960s (as if we were equating them, which I've never seen anyone do) -- yet when it is convenient for pinning blame on LGBTs, all of a sudden, such comparisons are perfectly acceptable?

“Right now, the priorities are different in this country, and if gay marriage can detract from other, more pressing issues, yeah, the Democrats are going to eat it yet again in November, because the diversion will have worked. And gay marriage can kiss its own ass goodby for another decade or two.”

“All the special interest issues on the ballots like gay marriage helped keep bu$h close enough that swapping a few thousand votes made it harder to prove it was stolen.”

“How many of those people wouldn’t have even come out to vote if those initiatives weren’t on the ballot? Besides, they see the Democrats as the party of the queers anyway, so it doesn’t matter whether or not Kerry was against it. He’s guilty by association.”

From 2007 to early 2008:

"Handing a huge wedge issue to the GOP … let’s see how the gay community feels knowing they helped put McCain in the White House this November. they will be lucky to have civil unions, much less gay marriage, when that happens."

"This is 2004 all over again. Talk about history repeating itself. WOW. Kerry had his Massachusetts. Obama will have his California. I knew this was going to happen. Well, it was a nice dream anyway."

"I’m All For Gay Rights, Women’s Rights And Getting Our Privacy rights back but I think it would be better to wait till after the election to push these issues."

"If we lose the election, none of the rights will come to pass and we will lose even more. Grow up and have some patience. What the hell is another 6 months when you’ve waited this long already?"

"After we win, we can press Obama and the Congress to do what is right and long over due."

“Personally I believe marriage is between a man and a woman.”
–Barack Obama
"I think he speaks for most of us. I have nothing against gay rights, but marriage is something that should be reserved for man and woman. ..."

"...your priority should be to get a Democrat in the WH first. THEN make gay marriage an issue. Self-righteous indignation accomplishes nothing for gay rights except handing the GOP a massive divisive wedge issue that will almost guarantee another democratic defeat in November."

"And the Democratic Party just possbily lost California in November"

Last I time checked, in 2008, Obama was elected president and the Dems retained control of both the House and the Senate.

But here's my favorite of all, from 2008:

The gay community is fucking it up for everybody else.

Mind you, these comments I quoted were limited solely to the issue of marriage equality, and have nothing to do with any of the other "classic" blow-ups such as the Snickers ad, the neverending "discussion" about why we gays have to act so gay at Pride parades, etc., etc.

I'm sure some reading this will want to jump all over me for digging up posts now as much as eight years old. After all, you will want to say, "But things have changed! Skinner has really been working hard to bring DU together! It's not fair to dig up such old posts!"

Before you do, however, consider these points (and here comes The Big Rant, with "YOU" referring to all those people who think we should sit down, shut up, and let the "grown-ups" decide what's best for us):

1) The posts I quoted above represent the smallest fraction of the garbage we have had to put up with for the better (or rather worse) part of a decade.

2) These posts represent a pattern that has never ended.

3) That I was able to dig up such posts which were then more than five years old tells you that such blatantly anti-gay, offensive, and downright cruel posts were never deleted. Oh, I can guarantee you some (I'm guessing most) were alerted on, but there they remained (and may even exist today -- I don't know).

4) These posts represent the attitude: "It's not about YOU GAYS! It's all about US, and how YOUR issues affect US!"

On that last point, here's the impasse: On DU, LGBT issues are "pet issues," afterthoughts -- and until you (the DU membership at large) see "us" as part of "you," the impasse will always be.

What no one seems to "get" is this: While our battles are not identical, LGBTs, African-Americans and feminists (among others, but these are the Big Three groups) are all being held down, and held back, by the same white, male, heterosexual, Christian (and generally well-monied) patriarchy.

Do some of you actually believe that we LGBTs have no other concerns than our own? That none of us cares, deeply, about homeless people, about the gender gap, about Citizens United, about the Koch brothers, about union workers...? Of COURSE, we do! I blog about all these issues... but when I've got one thing smacking me in the face every damned day, it's kind of difficult to see around that to every other issue that does not directly impact my life, in a real, measurable way, every single day.

No, it's not all about me, me, ME -- but it's not all about you, you, YOU. It's that when one's BASIC NEEDS are not being met, everything else tends to fade out.

YOU, Mister or Ms. Heterosexual, may think of marriage recognition, and ENDA, and everything else we keep "whining" about, as some sort of "luxury" -- something nowhere near resembling a "basic need," but rather something we queers just want -- and if so, you couldn't be further off the mark.

I've heard countless times on DU: "People are dying in Iraq, and all you care about is your special rights...!" Well, guess what, folks? WE are dying BECAUSE we do not have the rights you take for granted.

Some of you think that our "pet issues" pale in comparison to what you perceive as "bigger" issues -- the endless wars, Wall Street, unemployment, poor health, lack of insurance, missing teeth...

Well, what the bloody fuck does everyone think -- that WE do not deal with ALL the same issues non-LGBTs do? That we are somehow spared the business of paying bills, finding home remedies when we can't afford doctors, selling our books and DVDs because we can't find jobs, wondering if our mothers are going to live another day, let alone another year, and then agonizing over what to do about her when she gets too sick to take care of herself...? You think we're charmed? Or that we are all rich, white gay men who needn't worry about all the same things you do?

Let me clue you in: Not only do we have ALL the same problems you do, but ours are magnified exponentially BECAUSE we do not have the same basic rights and protections YOU take for granted.

We are unemployed, too -- and many more of us because we are not protected from being fired (or from rejection at being hired) because of who we are. We are homeless -- and many more of us because in more than half of all states it is LEGAL to deny us housing because we are gay.

And what about our children? Every time somebody posts about another teen suicide as a result of bullying -- whether the kid was gay or just as perceived as gay -- what happens on DU? "OMG! This is horrible! This needs to stop!"

What do you think drives these children, who could be gay, or not -- and who may very well be your children -- to suicide?

Words like this:

"I think (Obama) speaks for most of us. I have nothing against gay rights, but marriage is something that should be reserved for man and woman...."

"...the very idea of gay marriage is just repulsive with capitial R..."

Do you know how much you MAKE us hate ourselves? Do you know we spend our entire lives trying to dig ourselves out from under the internalized homophobia YOU, and YOUR churches, and YOUR repulsion instill in us from the playground to the funeral parlor?

Again, I do not speak for every LGBT person. But if I've ever met one LGBT person who had not seriously considered suicide, I've never known it. Every last one of us has wanted to -- and those who say they never have are in complete denial.

And to deny YOUR part in making US feel we are something less than human is complete and utter denial on YOUR part.

We have been hammered endlessly with the challenge: "Oh? So it's all or nothing, is it?"

Yeah, it is all or nothing. You are with us unconditionally, or you are with our oppressors. And if you are with our oppressors -- the ones who have marginalized and demonized us as anything less than deserving of everything YOU have, then, yes -- YOU have the blood of all those dead kids on YOUR hands.

You may not give a shit about me -- but what if the next one to die by his or her own hand is YOUR kid?

One more thing about gay kids: I was somebody's baby once too, you know. Chew on that.

Bottom line:

We have to deal with ALL the shit YOU have to deal with, PLUS lack of protections, PLUS the active persecution by crackpots who think OUR peace of mind will somehow destroy THEIR lives.

I could write another long essay dealing with what we DON'T have just because we cannot be legally married.

And some people here have the brass ones to tell us to WAIT just a few more months, just a few more years, just another decade, just another 20, 25 years -- oh, no, wait! -- just until after the next election, so we don't ruin it for the Dems!

There will always be "the next election." There will always be reason to wait, wait, be patient, wait...

Well, fuck that. I am nearly 50 years old, with no money, no job, no pension, no health insurance, and, if the repukes have their way, no Social Security. How many years do you think I have left? Twenty, if my health holds without a doctor? Thirty, if I'm very lucky?

YOU tell Derence and Ed why they should wait. YOU get all "pragmatic" and tell them why.

YOU tell Del Martin -- oh, wait, you can't: Del is dead. Del was 87 when she died two months after she and Phyllis were lucky enough to finally be legally married after 55 years of working for it.

YOU tell my wife how lucky we were to be legally married two and a half years ago if I should drop dead of a heart attack tomorrow.

YOU tell her.

Now, if anyone wants to jump my ass and rake me over the coals, have at it.

Over and out,
Sapphocrat


P.S. Congratulations to everyone who was un-banned. It's beautiful to see some long-lost "faces" here. On behalf of Buffy and myself, I wish you all the best.


* Colorado = Amendment 2 (1992), passed by voters to strip LGBTs of all protections; overturned by Romer v. Evans (1996). Texas = Lawrence v. Texas (2003), decriminalized sodomy. Arizona, 2006 = Proposition 107, first anti-gay marriage ban to be defeated by voters, a temporary victory until 2008, when Arizona passed Proposition 102. Arkansas = "Unmarried Couple Adoption Ban," passed by voters to stop gay people from adopting, 2008. Maine = Question 1 (2009); second state (after California) where voters stripped gay and lesbian couples of the right to marry after it had already been conferred. And, yes, I did just write this paragraph off the top of my head -- that's how important these battles are... to me.
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Response to Zorra (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:23 PM

28. A great post from a great DUer....

Thanks for the reminder....I hope many in the Pragmatist's Pessimism Lobby study that post.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:38 PM

34. Thank you, very much, for posting that.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:13 PM

49. EPIC! Rack it! Great post.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 11:02 PM

57. Oh God. Thank you for posting that. I had that bookmarked

I remember.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #15)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:51 PM

114. That was amazing

It certainly illustrates the Third Way insults haven't changed much through the years.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:03 PM

17. Pragmatist here

I was opposed to Iraq and during the 08 primaries constantly stated that any candidate who was not supporting marriage equality could not claim being supportive of gay rights. That being said, only 2 candidates supported marriage equality in 08 and they were Gravel and Kucinich. Neither of them were going to get the nomination,although for old time's sake I was hoping Gravel would last until my primary. I watched the logo "debate" and was disappointed in responses from almost every one else running. I thought out of the bunch who did not come out fully in support of marriage equality, Hillary was the most liberal. But then again, she voted for the Iraq war. So anyway, getting back to being pragmatic, do I support the more pro marriage equality person or the more anti iraq war person. This is not always a clear decision, there are always a multitude of issues with varying positions, like as much as I think weed should be removed from it's class 1 status, would I base my vote on that over a candidate who strongly supports universal healthcare with a realistic plan on how to implement it but does not want to legalize weed? Nope. I think we all have the 1 or 2 issues where we just aren't going to bend, for me it's civil rights, and women's reproductive rights in particular. I have yet to meet a candidate who agrees with me on everything, so I pick my battles.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:07 PM

19. The "pragmatists" aren't very pragmatic

If they really think the Dems should stay away from things like

1. No cuts to SS, Medicare, Medicaid, period
2. No TPP
3. No KeystoneXL
4. Stop profitizing schools

and the like. Their pragmatism has clobbered the party and with it the nation.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #19)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:55 AM

85. I would love to see the list of pragmatic DUers who you base this on.

You actually believe that just because someone is a realist that they don't advocate

1. No cuts to SS, Medicare, Medicaid, period
2. No TPP
3. No KeystoneXL
4. Stop profitizing schools

You are either wrong or just starting to fantisize (not unexpected in someone who's political understanding is based on an ideology)

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Response to Walk away (Reply #85)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:41 PM

99. I don't care whether they believe in these things or not

Regardless, they don't want the president to advocate strongly for them, lest he "alienate the moderate voters". One of the "pragmatists" recently posted that Obama wouldn't have been elected in 2008 if he'd declared strongly for gay rights during the campaign. Talk about fantasy world.

His refusal to insist on a public HC option, to stand up to the thoroughly repudiated Republican party, to prosecute war criminals & banksters, to stand firm on the Bush billionaires' tax cuts, to declare his firm, unwavering support for full rights for LGBT, to declare all of the draconian GOP budgets, and to call out these traitors by name sealed our doom in 2010.

so here are two questions, one for a president who is worried his party's "meh" attitude for November, and one for the fan club

1. Why have you not declared aloud that there will be absolutely no cuts to SS, medicare, and medicaid while you're in office

2. Why are you not telling the president to do just that?

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #99)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:55 PM

105. I ask the President not to make thoses cuts...

But I don't have to ask him to proclaim it out loud when I want him to. It's enough for me that he picks the most expeditious time to do the things I believe in. He and his staff know more about the timing and possibilities than I do. That's what I pay them for.

Remind me again...what are the cuts to SS Medicare and Medicaid that affects recipients for the past 5 years.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:14 PM

23. They were preparing defenses for the NSA and drones. Looking "forward" donchya know?

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:17 PM

26. Being a "pragmatist"

is why health care reform wasn't passed more than 70 years ago.

FDR’s first attempt — failure to include in the Social Security Bill of 1935...We might have thought the Great Depression would create the perfect conditions for passing compulsory health insurance in the US, but with millions out of work, unemployment insurance took priority followed by old age benefits. FDR’s Committee on Economic Security, the CES, feared that inclusion of health insurance in its bill, which was opposed by the AMA, would threaten the passage of the entire Social Security legislation...FDR’s second attempt — Wagner Bill, National Health Act of 1939...there was one more push for national health insurance during FDR’s administration: The Wagner National Health Act of 1939. Though it never received FDR’s full support, the proposal grew out of his Tactical Committee on Medical Care, established in 1937. The essential elements of the technical committee’s reports were incorporated into Senator Wagner’s bill, the National Health Act of 1939, which gave general support for a national health program to be funded by federal grants to states and administered by states and localities. However, the 1938 election brought a conservative resurgence and any further innovations in social policy were extremely difficult. Most of the social policy legislation precedes 1938. Just as the AALL campaign ran into the declining forces of progressivism and then WWI, the movement for national health insurance in the 1930’s ran into the declining fortunes of the New Deal and then WWII.

A Brief History: Universal Health Care Efforts in the US
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10024755799

Activists can fight for the best and most progressive plan. Presidents have to deal with making progress and getting the votes.

FDR had to even make tradeoffs, excluding people from SS, to get it passed.


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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:21 PM

27. Believe me, DU was radically opposed to the Iraq war.

You must not have been around then.

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Response to Skidmore (Reply #27)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:28 PM

30. I was lurking then, the site was much more left leaning in those days

Most of DU's current crop of "pragmatists" were not posting here then either, this site was much more left leaning when Bush was in office than it is now. It wasn't people who were promoting the DLC supporters of the war like Hillary Clinton and Joe Lieberman that were speaking in opposition to the war, I remember a great deal of frustration with the Democrats who went along with this.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:29 PM

31. I wasnt around here back then but I find it hard to believe there were many supporting the iraq war

I know I didnt and im a pragmatist.

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Response to DCBob (Reply #31)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:36 PM

33. Look at the "pragmatic" politicians who supported it

My OP does not even mention DUers, it is about "pragmatists". I did not limit the term to DUers and the fact is that the DLC/Third Way people generally supported Bush, the "pragmatists" were wrong on a national level. That does not necessarily mean there were not exceptions some of whom may have posted at DU, but in general the "pragmatists" of that time period did support the war.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #33)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:40 PM

35. I wouldnt call them pragmatists.. those are conservative Democrats..

Who tend to also be warhawks... ie Hillary Clinton.

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Response to DCBob (Reply #35)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 09:43 PM

37. There is a reason I have been putting the word "pragmatist" in quotes in this thread

I do not think the term accurately describes them, but it is a term I often hear them described as.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #37)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 11:12 PM

58. Self-described, typically.

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Response to DCBob (Reply #31)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 07:55 AM

67. I was here and couldn't believe

Last edited Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:25 AM - Edit history (1)

That Bush was seriously considering going to war in Iraq. I actually thought at one point that Powell would talk some sense into Bush Jr but when he promoted it himself I knew it was going to happen no matter what. I was extremely upset about it but, frankly, there wasn't much anybody could to challenge our "commander-in-chief" at the time. Plus, all of the idiot "patriots" were burning Dixie Chicks memorabilia and shouting down/disregarding anybody who didn't support going to war. It was actually a fairly scary moment for me in terms of what appeared to be happening to our country and our democracy. Had the Iraq War been the "success" that Dick Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz promised us that it would be, I hesitate to imagine what would've happened next. *shudder*
I didn't really pay much attention to the gay marriage debate in 2008. I have always supported marriage equality and I supported Obama even though he was (at the time) publicly in support of civil unions at the time, which seemed to be the most "progressive" position that most politicians took at the time. Things have changed dramatically in a MUCH shorter period of time than anybody had forseen. SCOTUS' broadside against DOMA seemed to have dramatically accelerated the move towards marriage equality and I'm glad to see President Obama and Democrats in general become more aggressive about pushing for marriage equality.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 10:09 PM

46. Third Way Democrats = Republican-lite

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 11:29 PM

59. Self-described "pragmatists" are often just sports fans.

Their sport just happens to be politics. Everything is about their favorite politicians and what will help them win this season. Actually pushing for anything meaningful is always a risk, so when they support anything solid at all, it tends to be lukewarm, status quo sorts of ideas that the establishment can accept on without any arm twisting.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:02 AM

60. it's like "Biblical literalist": just something to brandish, nothing to do with *reading* the text

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:17 AM

62. False Frame

No pragmatist supported the Iraq War. We only recognize the reality that most Americans did at the time.

Idealists seems to think the right wing does not exist and cannot get any power. That's too much sheltering yourself from the opinions of others.

It's like putting people on ignore. Then you lose perspective. The country still has a lot of right wingers and they vote zealously. They do not stay home due to disappointment with Rs not being conservative enough - (yes, there actually are people who think that). Therefore, the right wing has disproportionate influence.

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Response to treestar (Reply #62)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 09:15 AM

72. You appear to be saying that pragmatists are rare in American politics

Since most Americans supported the Iraq war and zero pragmatists did it's quite clear that pragmatists are in the minority.

Also I'm a bit shocked to learn that Hillary is not a pragmatist.





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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #72)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:18 AM

81. If Clinton-Sachs isnt a pragmatist maybe she is an opportunist.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #72)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:32 AM

90. I thought you were aiming at DUers

At the time Hillary supported it, so did most of America. I can admit to when I am in a minority. I didn't even want to go into Afghanistan.

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Response to treestar (Reply #62)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:16 AM

79. It was pragmatic to support the war. What other excuse could Clinton-Sachs have?

Interesting that some want to paint the left as extremists then blame them for being ambivalent. It's not the left that stays home, it's the ambivalent pragmatists.

I put people on ignore because they are trouble makers, here to disrupt. It's interesting how much disruption one can cause pretending to be an Obama supporter.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #79)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:34 AM

92. Were they being pragmatic or thinking it was the right thing to do?

Would you have been against it had there been real proof Saddam had WMDs?

Quit calling Democratic supporters trolls. Of all the nerve.

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Response to treestar (Reply #92)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:42 AM

93. I cant believe we still need to justify not supporting the I-War.

On the eve of the fatal vote, Sen Daschle gave a great speech which laid out about a dozen reasons why invading Iraq was wrong. I applauded his speech. He then stabbed me in the gut by discarding all the reasons and voted to give the idiot king the authority to kill a million innocent Iraqi's.

The point is that there was no proof. What would I have done had there been proof is immaterial. There was no proof. There was no reason to bow and scrape to King George.

"Were they being pragmatic or thinking it was the right thing to do?" What do you think? Seriously, do you think we were justified to go to war with Iraq?

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #93)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:49 AM

94. No I do not, quit misrepresenting just to argue

You can call them naive but they might have believed it.

I am curious if there was real proof Saddam had WMD that convinced, would you still be against it?

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Response to treestar (Reply #94)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 11:57 AM

96. I appreciate the question and will be glad to answer it, however, we are discussing something

else. I am often accused of misrepresentation because I have to guess what the other side's point is.

If you state your point, instead of asking questions, then I will stop trying to guess.

The Democrats that supported George Bush were not naive, nor where they fooled, but that's my opinion. Tell me what you think.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 10:33 AM

83. You might have a point if there were many (any) DUers who supported the IWR or opposed gay marriage

But I don't recall either of those. In fact, I don't remember any Democratic personal acquaintance, online or off, who supported the IWR. I also don't know anyone who was opposed to gay marriage. There were people who understood that Obama taking that position would jeopardize his chances of being elected -- after all, this was a time when Karl Rove was putting gay marriage referendums on the ballot just to increase right-wing turnout.

But most of us who understood that politicians can't just say whatever's on their mind at any moment, also believed that Obama was actually in favor of gay marriage even though he couldn't say so for political reasons -- and lo and behold, he did change his official opinion a few years later.

The thing is, the DUers who support Obama these days are not centrist "Third-Way" Democrats, the way that the anti-Obama crusaders like to portray them. The main difference between the two sides is that the anti-Obama people have completely lost their minds.

They claim Obama is a corporatist president for the 1%, while in reality Obama is fighting for increased minimum wage, higher taxes on the 1%, ending loopholes for corporations and hedge fund managers, extending unemployment, increasing EITC, ending subsidies for companies that ship jobs overseas, and instead giving incentives them to invest in the US, etc. True, a lot of this agenda is blocked by Republicans, but, GOP obstructionism is hardly a reason to lash out at Obama (except on DU, evidently).

They claim that Obama is following Bush's foreign policy, whereas in reality Obama ended the wars that Bush started. Indeed, the idea that Obama is following Bush foreign policy would be news to former Bush administration officials, who continually criticize Obama for repeatedly refusing to throw around military might with disregard for international law, the way that that Bush did.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #97)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:55 PM

106. I'll check it out, but first, thanks for linking.

It's annoying when people just reply with "see post #XYZ".

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Response to DanTex (Reply #83)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:48 PM

113. The don't seem to notice what our

Pragmatic president actually accomplished in these and so many other areas.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:37 PM

98. The prevailing headwinds against gay marriage finally abated. Hence, such dramatic forward progress.

Whilst those headwinds were raging, smart strategy was to get progress where possible by tacking.

If those headwinds had not abated, smart strategy would still be to get progress where possible by tracking.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #98)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 12:44 PM

100. Is that what they call leading from behind?

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #98)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 01:46 PM

112. No, we've had to cut through that type of horseshit every single day to force the issue

or the "pragmatists" would still be telling us to STFU and get with the "pragmatic centrist tacking program" on a daily basis.

Sincerely,
The vast majority of the LGBT Community of the United States, and our allies.
----
Sapphocrat:

For that post, I dug up scores of posts from DU to illustrate my point. Here are just a few (none reveals any poster's name, and none is linked, so you'll either have to take my word for it that these are real posts, or go find them yourself) -- bold emphasis mine:

From 2003:

“I am not anti-gay rights but…. I don’t think this is a good time for the gay-marriage issue.”

“Please don’t get me wrong. I’m not gay, but I’m not homophobic either. I’m just thinking that this decision is bad, bad timing politically. ...”

“It is too soon for gay marriage”

“Why not advance the idea of civil unions first. Let people get use to that idea and then push for marriage.”

“This isn’t the time. Our number one priority has to be getting bush the hell out of office. This won’t help that cause.”

“I’ve never met anyone, liberal or not who didn’t express utter disgust at the idea of gay marriage. This includes people I know who are otherwise open-minded and liberal on most every other issue.

“Some form of gay rights such as a civil union of some sort would be more acceptable. But for 99% of the people out there the very idea of gay marriage is just repulsive with capitial R. The gay marrige issue would severely cripple any democratic candidate’s to beat Bush if they support it. Let’s not go down that road."

“... These are much more pressing issues then whether a gay person should be allowed to marry. I’m not homophobic, but I feel that gays ought to think about the well-being of others much less fortunate than themselves.”

“How should we handle wedge issues? Like gay marriage, flag burning & abortion… I say we dismiss them completely. Firmly say that it’s manufactured to divide us & leave it at that. When pressed, just say you won’t take the bait. If someone feels so strongly about it, they can join a special interest group.”

From 2004:

“The gay marriage issue hijacked our party. I think the gay and lesbian community decided to make this a visible issue on state ballots because they thought they could ride on the coattails of the Mass. court decision and Kerry. They ended up hurting him. They could have waited until an off Presidential election year to go ballistic. This issue ended up being identified directly with Kerry on the Ohio ballot and ten other states. Many Democratic Christians who would have normally voted for Kerry went with their family and moral values. I’m not homophobic…”

What would be hilarious if it weren't so utterly ridiculous: This poster seems to believe gay people were responsible for putting anti-gay marriage BANS on twelve state ballots in 2004! These were marriage BANS, not marriage-equality bills!

“You DO need to get over it! You are a citizen of the United States before you are gay. You owe a responsibility to your country FIRST!! Yeah, you’re gay, many people are, we cannot allow the you know who’s to use gays as the new ‘blacks’ to divide our country with the gay marriage issue.”

“I think the Democratic Party should not even come close to this issue. The farther away the better. If this becomes a major issue with leading Democrats crusading for gay marriage, George McGovern will end up looking like a successful candidate.”

“my gay friends, delay marriage … Just delay till December. Why hand Republicans 5 percent more of the vote, when you can stay quietly on the sidelines and deny them this issue?”

“I Am Outraged By Gay People … Well, not really. But I am kinda annoyed by their (meaning those forcing the issue, not all gays) impeccably bad sense of timing. … By pushing this into an unpopular culture war during an election year, these gay activists are screwing up their own agenda. If they demonstrated a few months of patience, it would serve them well.”

Another one who thinks we were responsible for the timing of the Massachusetts SJC decision, and/or putting anti-gay marriage bans on the ballots.

“The gay marriage issue is a disaster waiting to happen. We will lose on this issue if we allow it to become an entrenched part of the debate. So here’s the question: will the gay community, and those who heavily support gay rights, keep quiet during the primaries and the election? Will they trust the Democratic party to do the right thing once they are in office? ...”

“... The country is not ready for this yet. Maybe in a decade, not now.

“Keep believing that the gay marriage issue didnt cost us Ohio, when it clearly did. Since Ohio cost us the race well what else can I say. … The turnout in southern Ohio was beyond the wildest dreams of Karl Rove and they all turned out for the gay marriage ban.”

Whose idea do you think putting marriage bans on state ballots was? Hint: His initials are K.R.

“Homos will just need to have a little patience and trust us in the long run.”

"Homos"?

From 2005:

“You are impatient.”

“It’s political suicide to come out in favor of gay marriage.”

“Everyone just needs to shut up about their ‘own issue’ and stand behind the party.”

“Get a grip on reality! This is not a winning issue right now.”

From 2006:

“This issue is going to lose us elections right now and we should lay off until a good chunk of the old farts who oppose it die off. In about 10 or 15 years the Nation will be ready for this fight but right now it’s too early.”

“Why not take what you can get with bills like Howard Deans for the meantime and hopefully in two years you will get someone like Dean or Gore as President, who will change the law and give you all the same rights Married people have without changing the name and pissing off all the fundies?”

“Goddamn it…gays I love ya’, but couldn’t you have waited. WTF. Why is it that the gay marriage issues always crops up right before the election. I fully support homosexual rights, but this ruling by the NJ Supreme Court just energized the Christofascist vote and will likely result in an erosion of Dem wins in Nov. Next time, can we just table the homosexual marriage thing until mid-election cycle?”

“(T)his victory is likely to cost us control of Congress or the Senate. What good is this victory when it just sets us all back and puts more anti-gay politicans in office? Make NO MISTAKE there will be push-back on this…just like in 2004.”

“Politically speaking this victory just handed Rove a MAJOR campaign issue.”

“(T)he Christian fundamentalists are sure to turn out in droves because of this decision now. They were the ones who might have helped us win the election, by staying home. So I wouldn’t be surprised in the next week or so that it becomes widely accepted we are going to lose. Worst fucking time for this, you have to wonder why this happened right before the election and not after the election.”

“You will see. I would say this decision has put a Democratic win in the House in Jeapordy.”

In reality, as I wrote in my blog post: "Contrary to all the Criswell-like predictions, Democrats swept the 2006 mid-terms, picking up 31 seats in the House (putting Republicans in the minority for the first time in twelve years), the largest gain for the Dems since 1974.

"Meanwhile, Democrats replaced Republicans in five open gubernatorial races, and booted the Repub incumbent, Robert Ehrlich, out of Maryland’s governor’s mansion.

"Not a single Democratic incumbent in Congress, or in any gubernatorial race, lost his or her seat.

"We’re still waiting for an apology from all those Democrats who opened with the usual disclaimer, “I’m not homophobic / Some of my best friends are gay / I think you deserve equal rights, but…,” and then went on to blame us uppity gays for what was sure to be a huge loss for the Dems.

"We’re not holding our collective breath."

“The Civil Rights Act cost the Democrats the South for a generation.”

Which reminds me: Isn't it funny how LGBTs are attacked for pointing out the unmistakable similarities between the Civil Rights struggle of the 1950s and 1960s (as if we were equating them, which I've never seen anyone do) -- yet when it is convenient for pinning blame on LGBTs, all of a sudden, such comparisons are perfectly acceptable?

“Right now, the priorities are different in this country, and if gay marriage can detract from other, more pressing issues, yeah, the Democrats are going to eat it yet again in November, because the diversion will have worked. And gay marriage can kiss its own ass goodby for another decade or two.”

“All the special interest issues on the ballots like gay marriage helped keep bu$h close enough that swapping a few thousand votes made it harder to prove it was stolen.”

“How many of those people wouldn’t have even come out to vote if those initiatives weren’t on the ballot? Besides, they see the Democrats as the party of the queers anyway, so it doesn’t matter whether or not Kerry was against it. He’s guilty by association.”

From 2007 to early 2008:

"Handing a huge wedge issue to the GOP … let’s see how the gay community feels knowing they helped put McCain in the White House this November. they will be lucky to have civil unions, much less gay marriage, when that happens."

"This is 2004 all over again. Talk about history repeating itself. WOW. Kerry had his Massachusetts. Obama will have his California. I knew this was going to happen. Well, it was a nice dream anyway."

"I’m All For Gay Rights, Women’s Rights And Getting Our Privacy rights back but I think it would be better to wait till after the election to push these issues."

"If we lose the election, none of the rights will come to pass and we will lose even more. Grow up and have some patience. What the hell is another 6 months when you’ve waited this long already?"

"After we win, we can press Obama and the Congress to do what is right and long over due."

“Personally I believe marriage is between a man and a woman.”
–Barack Obama
"I think he speaks for most of us. I have nothing against gay rights, but marriage is something that should be reserved for man and woman. ..."

"...your priority should be to get a Democrat in the WH first. THEN make gay marriage an issue. Self-righteous indignation accomplishes nothing for gay rights except handing the GOP a massive divisive wedge issue that will almost guarantee another democratic defeat in November."

"And the Democratic Party just possbily lost California in November"

Last I time checked, in 2008, Obama was elected president and the Dems retained control of both the House and the Senate.

But here's my favorite of all, from 2008:

The gay community is fucking it up for everybody else.

Mind you, these comments I quoted were limited solely to the issue of marriage equality, and have nothing to do with any of the other "classic" blow-ups such as the Snickers ad, the neverending "discussion" about why we gays have to act so gay at Pride parades, etc., etc.

I'm sure some reading this will want to jump all over me for digging up posts now as much as eight years old. After all, you will want to say, "But things have changed! Skinner has really been working hard to bring DU together! It's not fair to dig up such old posts!"

Before you do, however, consider these points (and here comes The Big Rant, with "YOU" referring to all those people who think we should sit down, shut up, and let the "grown-ups" decide what's best for us):

1) The posts I quoted above represent the smallest fraction of the garbage we have had to put up with for the better (or rather worse) part of a decade.

2) These posts represent a pattern that has never ended.

3) That I was able to dig up such posts which were then more than five years old tells you that such blatantly anti-gay, offensive, and downright cruel posts were never deleted. Oh, I can guarantee you some (I'm guessing most) were alerted on, but there they remained (and may even exist today -- I don't know).

4) These posts represent the attitude: "It's not about YOU GAYS! It's all about US, and how YOUR issues affect US!"

On that last point, here's the impasse: On DU, LGBT issues are "pet issues," afterthoughts -- and until you (the DU membership at large) see "us" as part of "you," the impasse will always be.

What no one seems to "get" is this: While our battles are not identical, LGBTs, African-Americans and feminists (among others, but these are the Big Three groups) are all being held down, and held back, by the same white, male, heterosexual, Christian (and generally well-monied) patriarchy.

Do some of you actually believe that we LGBTs have no other concerns than our own? That none of us cares, deeply, about homeless people, about the gender gap, about Citizens United, about the Koch brothers, about union workers...? Of COURSE, we do! I blog about all these issues... but when I've got one thing smacking me in the face every damned day, it's kind of difficult to see around that to every other issue that does not directly impact my life, in a real, measurable way, every single day.

No, it's not all about me, me, ME -- but it's not all about you, you, YOU. It's that when one's BASIC NEEDS are not being met, everything else tends to fade out.

YOU, Mister or Ms. Heterosexual, may think of marriage recognition, and ENDA, and everything else we keep "whining" about, as some sort of "luxury" -- something nowhere near resembling a "basic need," but rather something we queers just want -- and if so, you couldn't be further off the mark.

I've heard countless times on DU: "People are dying in Iraq, and all you care about is your special rights...!" Well, guess what, folks? WE are dying BECAUSE we do not have the rights you take for granted.

Some of you think that our "pet issues" pale in comparison to what you perceive as "bigger" issues -- the endless wars, Wall Street, unemployment, poor health, lack of insurance, missing teeth...

Well, what the bloody fuck does everyone think -- that WE do not deal with ALL the same issues non-LGBTs do? That we are somehow spared the business of paying bills, finding home remedies when we can't afford doctors, selling our books and DVDs because we can't find jobs, wondering if our mothers are going to live another day, let alone another year, and then agonizing over what to do about her when she gets too sick to take care of herself...? You think we're charmed? Or that we are all rich, white gay men who needn't worry about all the same things you do?

Let me clue you in: Not only do we have ALL the same problems you do, but ours are magnified exponentially BECAUSE we do not have the same basic rights and protections YOU take for granted.

We are unemployed, too -- and many more of us because we are not protected from being fired (or from rejection at being hired) because of who we are. We are homeless -- and many more of us because in more than half of all states it is LEGAL to deny us housing because we are gay.

And what about our children? Every time somebody posts about another teen suicide as a result of bullying -- whether the kid was gay or just as perceived as gay -- what happens on DU? "OMG! This is horrible! This needs to stop!"

What do you think drives these children, who could be gay, or not -- and who may very well be your children -- to suicide?

Words like this:

"I think (Obama) speaks for most of us. I have nothing against gay rights, but marriage is something that should be reserved for man and woman...."

"...the very idea of gay marriage is just repulsive with capitial R..."

Do you know how much you MAKE us hate ourselves? Do you know we spend our entire lives trying to dig ourselves out from under the internalized homophobia YOU, and YOUR churches, and YOUR repulsion instill in us from the playground to the funeral parlor?

Again, I do not speak for every LGBT person. But if I've ever met one LGBT person who had not seriously considered suicide, I've never known it. Every last one of us has wanted to -- and those who say they never have are in complete denial.

And to deny YOUR part in making US feel we are something less than human is complete and utter denial on YOUR part.

We have been hammered endlessly with the challenge: "Oh? So it's all or nothing, is it?"

Yeah, it is all or nothing. You are with us unconditionally, or you are with our oppressors. And if you are with our oppressors -- the ones who have marginalized and demonized us as anything less than deserving of everything YOU have, then, yes -- YOU have the blood of all those dead kids on YOUR hands.

You may not give a shit about me -- but what if the next one to die by his or her own hand is YOUR kid?

One more thing about gay kids: I was somebody's baby once too, you know. Chew on that.

Bottom line:

We have to deal with ALL the shit YOU have to deal with, PLUS lack of protections, PLUS the active persecution by crackpots who think OUR peace of mind will somehow destroy THEIR lives.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=4766887

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Response to Bjorn Against (Original post)

Wed Apr 2, 2014, 06:42 PM

120. One thing about people who call themselves "pragmatists" or...

..."Members of the Reality Based Community",

they NEVER fuckin LEARN from their mistakes.

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