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julialnyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:37 AM
Original message
Sen. Barack Obama's post at dkos (great read)
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 10:38 AM by julialnyc
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julialnyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:40 AM
Response to Original message
1. full link
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julialnyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:15 AM
Response to Reply #1
9. snipped..
"My dear friend Paul Simon used to consistently win the votes of much more conservative voters in Southern Illinois because he had mastered the art of "disagreeing without being disagreeable," and they trusted him to tell the truth. Similarly, one of Paul Wellstone's greatest strengths was his ability to deliver a scathing rebuke of the Republicans without ever losing his sense of humor and affability. In fact, I would argue that the most powerful voices of change in the country, from Lincoln to King, have been those who can speak with the utmost conviction about the great issues of the day without ever belittling those who opposed them, and without denying the limits of their own perspectives."
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julialnyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:42 AM
Response to Original message
2. I like his ending
"In that spirit, let me end by saying I don't pretend to have all the answers to the challenges we face, and I look forward to periodic conversations with all of you in the months and years to come. I trust that you will continue to let me and other Democrats know when you believe we are screwing up. And I, in turn, will always try and show you the respect and candor one owes his friends and allies."
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:43 AM
Response to Original message
3. well thought out piece - but he is wrong on the extent of the need for
Dem spine, aggressive Dem Tone, and looking like you have real guidelines for future action. I am a "moderate center-left liberal on social issues deficit Hawk progressive tax hawk" and much of what he says centerest voters want is "wrong" in that it is not what drives their vote.


Cross-posted on the Senate blog: http://obama.senate.gov/blog / - rather long

<snip>I think this perspective misreads the American people. From traveling throughout Illinois and more recently around the country, I can tell you that Americans are suspicious of labels and suspicious of jargon. They don't think George Bush is mean-spirited or prejudiced, but have become aware that his administration is irresponsible and often incompetent. They don't think that corporations are inherently evil (a lot of them work in corporations), but they recognize that big business, unchecked, can fix the game to the detriment of working people and small entrepreneurs. They don't think America is an imperialist brute, but are angry that the case to invade Iraq was exaggerated, are worried that we have unnecessarily alienated existing and potential allies around the world, and are ashamed by events like those at Abu Ghraib which violate our ideals as a country.



<snip>The same principle holds with respect to issues other than judicial nominations. My colleague from Illinois, Dick Durbin, spoke out forcefully - and voted against - the Iraqi invasion. He isn't somehow transformed into a "war supporter" - as I've heard some anti-war activists suggest - just because he hasn't called for an immediate withdrawal of American troops. He may be simply trying to figure out, as I am, how to ensure that U.S. troop withdrawals occur in such a way that we avoid all-out Iraqi civil war, chaos in the Middle East, and much more costly and deadly interventions down the road. A pro-choice Democrat doesn't become anti-choice because he or she isn't absolutely convinced that a twelve-year-old girl should be able to get an operation without a parent being notified. A pro-civil rights Democrat doesn't become complicit in an anti-civil rights agenda because he or she questions the efficacy of certain affirmative action programs. And a pro-union Democrat doesn't become anti-union if he or she makes a determination that on balance, CAFTA will help American workers more than it will harm them.<snip>




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Guaranteed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:10 PM
Response to Reply #3
21. I agree. I think he's underestimating the need for leadership
in our party.
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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
4. the comments are worth reading
and Senator, look to Paul Hackett's race to see
where the wind's blowing (for those in the Senate
who hold their fingers in the wind before voting)
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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:05 AM
Response to Reply #4
8. I left my comment.
Senator, many of us are ahead of others in this country because we are political junkies and we keep informed about all current issues. We are often right and before the rest of the country catches up. We are not going to cease criticizing the actions and words of politicians put into office by voters just because the rest of your constituents haven't been paying attention.

We are almost the only advise and consent left aside from the special interest groups that represent many of us.

Doing the right thing, telling the truth, whatever political costs, is what we are about and we hope and expect our elected officials to have the same courage of conviction, not just pols who make decisions by putting their fingers to the current winds.

We have high hopes for you Obama, but we won't vote for you just because you're bi-racial, attractive, write and speak well. We'll vote for you because you have the courage of conviction
in word and deed and you pay attention to the truth and truth-tellers.

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julialnyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:17 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. well said!
N/T
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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:19 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. thanks. nt
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never cry wolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:54 PM
Response to Reply #8
26. Baloney
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 07:58 PM by never cry wolf
I agree with your first paragraph, sans the last sentence. I too am a political junkie and consider myself right and ahead of the rest of the country. I also happen to be one of his constituents, proud to have voted for him AND have been paying close attention. Should I have voted for Alan Keyes?

I will also guarantee you that Obama is better informed than either you, I or almost anyone on this board. He knows everything we see from our slant and more, he also knows, in addition, how things are viewed from the right's perspective, as well as the middle. This is important to be an effective legislator. To spew the DU line on the floor of the senate would marginalize all his efforts. Power is won through public support and like it or not, your views and mine, and Obama's as well are not seen as such in the majority of the sheeples out there. He has outlined, brilliantly IMHO, the correct way work in a system controlled by the cons and corporate media to achieve progressive goals.

It is a broken system, I agree. Big money buys many pols and our two party system tends to morph towards the money. But AFAIK the only way to change it is through the system and that requires broad popular support. Like it or not (and I certainly don't) given the choice between Gore or Kerry and bunnypants, enough of the population voted against their own best interests to allow stolen elections.

I believe Obama will tell the truth but will do it in a statesmanlike way. NOT in order to win re-election but in order to be effective in making real change. His heart is pure and he is working for our goals in the way he feels will best achieve them.

Edited because I forgot to add that Paul Simon was his mentor and he honestly admires paul Wellstone. Could we really ask for more?

"My dear friend Paul Simon used to consistently win the votes of much more conservative voters in Southern Illinois because he had mastered the art of "disagreeing without being disagreeable," and they trusted him to tell the truth. Similarly, one of Paul Wellstone's greatest strengths was his ability to deliver a scathing rebuke of the Republicans without ever losing his sense of humor and affability. In fact, I would argue that the most powerful voices of change in the country, from Lincoln to King, have been those who can speak with the utmost conviction about the great issues of the day without ever belittling those who opposed them, and without denying the limits of their own perspectives."[/i}
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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-02-05 10:43 AM
Response to Reply #26
34. I don't see much disagreement here....
Edited on Sun Oct-02-05 10:45 AM by realFedUp
Unfortunately the Senators have to vote on
legislation often before many Americans have
had the chance to understand what's in a bill,
and as we've often seen, the Senators have
to vote the day after the midnight
backroom boys stick their language in.

These votes don't wait for the rest of America
to be educated and have their voices count.
Political junkies and political groups
are often the first and sometimes only voices
in opposition. We are a check and balance,
a firewall, an opposing voice with hopefully
the truth about what that vote will mean to
American's futures.

Obama may take the long view of compromise,
civility and political statemanship, but
frankly, it's the vote, stupid. It changes
the future. With this administration in the
majority in all the branches, there really
isn't the time for politicians to wait until
the sheeple catch up. They have to
know the truth, and vote based on it. It takes
courage, but being a Senator is a priveleged
job in this democracy and it shouldn't be held
by those just willing to take the long view.

I like Obama and I have high hopes for him, for
his youth, intelligence and energy and I want him to do his best,
not settle for just doing the politically wise
thing.
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Guaranteed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 07:58 PM
Response to Reply #8
32. What an unbelievably OUTSTANDING, heartfelt, SOLID, couragerous
post.

NICE FUCKING JOB. You had the nerve to take a close look at Obama's post and the fact that he did so.

In my opinion- just mine- you should be very, very proud of yourself.
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FreedomAngel82 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:03 PM
Response to Reply #4
19. Yep
Most definitley.
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radio4progressives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 01:08 AM
Response to Reply #19
30. Interesting.. I think we should talk about IRV instead...
You said:

"It is a broken system, I agree. Big money buys many pols and our two party system tends to morph towards the money. But AFAIK the only way to change it is through the system and that requires broad popular support. Like it or not (and I certainly don't) given the choice between Gore or Kerry and bunnypants, enough of the population voted against their own best interests to allow stolen elections."

Dollars to donuts, I would wage that the majority of American citizens, Left Right and "Center" - would support the abolition of the Electoral College, and would support, once effectively informed, IRV / Choice Voting - Proportional Representation.

Once all Americans come to understand that ours is not a representative democracy, that ours is a system designed solely for the wealthy elite - that the two party electoral system does not a democracy make, that the closest thing we can get to a representative demcoracy is through Proportional Representation - then this long standing premise would finally reveal itself as false dichotomy and disinegrate before all of Americans eyes.

All it would really take to see this actualized I believe, is for us to start discussing it very seriously everytime the subject of elections, (any elections) comes up - which is really very frequent.

I believe it was in the mid seventies, when Congress came very close to shutting down the Electoral College system, it lost by a very narrow margin if memory serves. Democrats was in the majority - and they enjoyed that - we need to get the Democrats to take another look and reconsider.

Because third and fourth parties are here to stay. If registered Democrat voters and activists, really believe in democracy as we say we do, we can't continue demonizing third party challengers - it isn't going to work for the simple reason is that the DLC seems to be calling the shots on presidential candidates (rightly or wrongly) - and unless some one here to fore unmentioned and unknown emerges as a leader - we had better start calling for IRV and Choice Voting (Proportional Representation) and the abolition of the Electoral College now.

Then the very erodite and charismatic (but very junior) Senator from Illionois can run on his convictions and senseabilties without ever having to concern himself with disappointing his constituents or lecturing progressive activists on the art of diplomacy in politics.

And the DLC can have their way with the "center", while the Progressives will challenge the status quo and activate for real change.
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Hokie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
5. I wish Obama were my Senator
I have that corporate whore Mitch McConnell and Jim "I am Certifiably Insane" Bunning.
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Qanisqineq Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:54 AM
Response to Original message
6. I thought it was very good
I especially liked this paragraph (emphasis mine):

"I am not drawing a facile equivalence here between progressive advocacy groups and right-wing advocacy groups. The consequences of their ideas are vastly different. Fighting on behalf of the poor and the vulnerable is not the same as fighting for homophobia and Halliburton. But to the degree that we brook no dissent within the Democratic Party, and demand fealty to the one, "true" progressive vision for the country, we risk the very thoughtfulness and openness to new ideas that are required to move this country forward. When we lash out at those who share our fundamental values because they have not met the criteria of every single item on our progressive "checklist," then we are essentially preventing them from thinking in new ways about problems. We are tying them up in a straightjacket and forcing them into a conversation only with the converted."

He kinda lost me for a second on the mention of faith-based programs.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:38 AM
Response to Reply #6
13. I don't like the warnings to progressive groups.
It bothers me. Kos and those who front-page there have been making this their goal. Women are not even supposed to get concerned about anything anymore.

The checklist appears to be a talking point to quiet progressives down.
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Qanisqineq Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:44 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. I didn't take it as a warning
I took it as saying, hey, not all democrats believe the exact same thing. You can disagree with them, not like them, or not vote for them but quit saying they aren't democrats just because of a few votes.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:48 PM
Response to Reply #14
25. But if you follow it through.....
It went on to say that even though some of us don't like the idea, they are going to start using ideas of the Republicans....such as faith based and business based policies. Of course, the social programs came to mind....

It was a great post and a good way to start communicating. But there was a big "but" implied about their doing things Bush was advocating.
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Warren Stupidity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 06:36 PM
Response to Reply #14
31. It isn't just a few votes.
Edited on Sat Oct-01-05 06:37 PM by Warren Stupidity
Obama carefully chose two senators, feingold and leahy, whose votes were anomalies in otherwise fairly progressive records. Had he instead cited the usual dlc-corporate whore suspects, his essay would be seen for what it is: more spineless sentimentalist nihilism (to use Cornell West's terminology) for going along and getting along with things as they are. Once again Obama disappoints me, although he is as usual well spoken and intelligent in doing so.
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WildEyedLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 05:54 PM
Response to Reply #13
16. Oh come on.
I thought you despaired whenever DU or Kos villainzed Democrats? That's what you say all the time, anyway, that we need to work together, unify, support all our progressive leaders. Now you're criticizing Obama for saying that very same thing?

That's exactly what Obama is talking about - the lefty bloggers tendency to react with shrill condemnations every time a politican votes on anything that they, personally, do not like. We hear DINO, traitor, Vichy Dem, and see demands that they resign, or even get voted out of office. Obama is spot on - for the side that supposedly is the "big tent" and promotes freedom of opinion and thought, the lefty blogs can be every bit as knee-jerk, reactionary, and censorial as the rightwingers.

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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:32 PM
Response to Reply #16
23. I am speaking of the attitude about women at some blogs.
I don't consider that shrill, sorry that you do. I really think you are not understanding what I said.

There is a lot of it directed to get the various activists groups to be quieter. There was some in his post, but it has become a recurring theme at the sites of several bloggers.

If you have not noticed, keep an eye out. It is not safe to criticize candidates who are anti-choice, many are not allowed back if they do.

I am very pleased he posted and communicated. And a point of fact, I often get criticized here for standing up for Kos. When he was attacking Kerry, you guys blasted me for saying it was his blog.

I still feel that way, but I am being honest in saying that I see the way the wind is blowing and it is definitely anti-choice.

There were a lot who had to leave. I am sorry you disagree with me, but that is quite often now. Last time you disagreed because I was standing up for Markos. Please do a search if need be.

I have no especial loyalty to Kos or Obama, or even Howard Dean if they allow our rights to erode. Again, not sure what you mean.
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WildEyedLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:19 PM
Response to Reply #23
28. I guess I didn't get that you were talking about women's issues
I think there may have been a misunderstanding. I'm not sure what you're saying about Kos, either; I did disagree with you about Kos then, because I felt his attacks on Kerry were completely infantile and Rovish (and I still do). That kind of ties into what I was saying above - I think blogs (like Kos) often spend more energy excoriating Democrats they don't like (Kerry, Obama, whoever else has been on the Kos shitlist) for not doing whatever it is that Kos wants them to do. If Kos weren't seen as so influential, I wouldn't really care; he's entitled to his own opinions, no matter how dumb. But the fact that obviously he's seen as "the most major liberal blogger," and the fact that he selectively picks and chooses which Democrats to support and which issues are important, bothers me tremendously.

I agree that women's groups shouldn't be silent about anti-choice candidates, but going back to Kos, that's another issue he seems to think is throwaway; women's rights. I've seen Kos pooh-pooh the concerns of women in regards to Casey in PA for example, or Reid; yet, he also becomes incredibly self-righteous and blustering when a politician he doesn't like does something that he decides is unacceptable. With Kos, it seems like more of a contest of who he likes vs. who he doesn't like. His blogs often read like a child's rant. Honestly, if it weren't for other intelligent, talented posters there and the whole diary system, his website wouldn't be a fraction as successful as it is now, because he certainly has no special insight or talent.

But getting back to your post, I saw Obama's words as an admonition to bloggers, who so often tend to react with blind rage at every Democrat who doesn't vote the way they want 100% of the time, not as an admonition against certain activist groups.
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Seansky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 10:55 AM
Response to Original message
7. no kidding, this is great reading, NOMINATED.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:35 AM
Response to Original message
12. It is good post, but he does not see the need to fight so hard.
He made good points, but I feel that people are angrier than he lets on.

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Guaranteed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:09 PM
Response to Reply #12
20. He seemed to be saying two things at once.
He said a lot of the right things, but also said the wrong things before them.

So...I think making the post was more of a gesture on his part, than anything.

On a scale of 1-10, I give it a 5.
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BigBearJohn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
15. I loved it. Especially this part:
My dear friend Paul Simon used to consistently win the votes of much more conservative voters in Southern Illinois because he had mastered the art of "disagreeing without being disagreeable," and they trusted him to tell the truth. Similarly, one of Paul Wellstone's greatest strengths was his ability to deliver a scathing rebuke of the Republicans without ever losing his sense of humor and affability. In fact, I would argue that the most powerful voices of change in the country, from Lincoln to King, have been those who can speak with the utmost conviction about the great issues of the day without ever belittling those who opposed them, and without denying the limits of their own perspectives.

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WildEyedLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 05:59 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. That's a lesson lefty blogs could learn
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 06:00 PM by WildEyedLiberal
They call Bush Hitler, and say that Kerry would've won if he, too, had called Bush a fascist murderer. Given Obama's popularity due to his unifying speech at the DNC, this is clearly not the case. In fact, I had people tell me they voted against Kerry because they thought HE was being TOO negative - and they cited Michael Moore as the example, nevermind that Michael Moore was not involved in the campaign and not employed by Kerry (though having him at the DNC didn't help that perception).

I'm sure I'll get told I'm full of bullshit by some instransigent leftists here, but it is precisely that myopic viewpoint - "I am right and if you disagree with me you are STUPID and EVIL!!!!1" - that we hate in freepers, and that I, sadly, am seeing in increasing numbers on the left. If we become the left wing equivalent of freepers, we will have lost everything, no matter what we eventually win.
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Ladyhawk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:47 PM
Response to Reply #17
24. I can see the need to fight hard, but I'm also beginning to see that
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 07:48 PM by Ladyhawk
it's easy to give in to hatred. Hatred is counter-productive.

I'm having a difficult time separating anger and hatred. I think anger can be used to effectively motivate while hatred saps us of energy.

I've been thinking hard on this particular issue for the past few weeks. I still feel many of our Democratic representatives are not fighting hard enough, that they could be doing more without giving in to hatred and ad hominem attacks. At the same time, I feel that many of us--myself included--have allowed hatred to burn up our humanity and deprive us of energy.

I'm still thinking it out. I'll let y'all know if I reach an epiphany. ;)
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enigmatic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 06:32 PM
Response to Original message
18. Great read
And I agree w/ him.
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Guaranteed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 07:15 PM
Response to Original message
22. Folks, it's flattering that he would take the time out to post this on Kos
but I don't think that he gets it. I understand what *he* is saying, just as he understands what *we're* saying- but, I don't think that he understands what we're saying. :)

I don't think he understands the way that leadership tends to trickle down through society. He's right that most people don't look at politics through ideological lenses. But, what they do see is their culture being shaped around them by their political leaders. He seems to be trying to avoid that.

I think that this was a gracious post on his part, but, it was political, and, unfortunately, coming from the wrong perspective.
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never cry wolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 09:43 PM
Response to Original message
27. Kick for the evening crowd. worth reading the diary... n't
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:22 PM
Response to Original message
29. I agree and disagree. Dems need to project strength.
Part of that is standing up for each other, but the greatest portion is standing up for our principals, even if some currently appear to be headed "against the wind."
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bpilgrim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-01-05 08:21 PM
Response to Original message
33. how come the 'tone' works for reTHUGs then? has he EVER listened to RUSH
or ANY of his clones that PERMEATE 'our' airwaves?

"I am convinced that, our mutual frustrations and strongly-held beliefs notwithstanding, the strategy driving much of Democratic advocacy, and the tone of much of our rhetoric, is an impediment to creating a workable progressive majority in this country."

who on our side, with such a HUGE MEDIA PLATFORM to spew their propaganda smells as foul as them?

:shrug:

still reading, though ;->

peace
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