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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 02:41 AM
Original message
Before we give the OK to partisanship
Edited on Fri Nov-10-06 02:42 AM by casus belli
let's take a look at what that means. Let me preface what I'm going to say by saying that I have spent many a night wanting to reach through the monitor and strangle a Bush apologist who has resorted to calling me anti-American or pro-Terrorist. I think we all understand very well the anger that is left over after 6 years of essentially being told our opinions were all but worthless and that we would never again influence what goes on in government.

So it's easy to understand why some people might want to make Bush apologists sweat a bit, or even tell them to take their "we should be bi-partisan" talk and shove it authoritatively up their collective asses.

But here's the thing. We pride ourselves on being progressives. Our biggest complaints against the administration has been how they have diminished civil liberties, lied to the public, caused death and distrust throughout the world, and all the while telling those of us who disagreed that we were irrelevant.

I just want you to take this with you. When the temptation to say "You know what, fuck them. We've had 6 years of this shit" comes over you, try to keep in mind that discounting that congressman, and forcing them into irrelevance, is actually doing so to the Americans who voted to make him their voice in Washington. We aren't dealing with just politicians here. Those politicians represent the interests of hundreds of thousands, and millions of people. Republicans lost complete sight of that when they were the majority. And America let them know they are watching. We have to keep our promises to give voice to every American, not just those with whom we agree. The Republicans forgot that, and America reminded them. That's not to say we should sacrifice our core principles for the sake of being inclusive. But we should never resort to silencing a voice as a form of debate.

And with that I'm off to bed. I'll need my rest for the coming months of impeach vs not impeach debates we're likely to see.
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Maven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 02:48 AM
Response to Original message
1. OMG, not this shit again
Edited on Fri Nov-10-06 03:04 AM by Harvey Korman
WE WON. In politics, someone wins, and someone loses. And the people who win set the agenda. And the people who lose, don't. That's why the majority of people voted for the people who won. CHANGE.

And by the way, these Republicans you're talking haven't "represented the interests of millions of people" since they took office. That's why many of their colleagues were voted OUT. You think the ones who are left won't be "partisan?" :rofl: Bush is already trying to get his spying bill pushed through. Business as usual. WAKE UP.

We have power, and we'll use it to get things done. Any moderates from the other side who want to help rebuild will do so with their vote--they don't need a formal invitation or welcome mat. But I guarantee you the Dem leadership isn't going to stop their plans for a moment to ask, gosh, what does Trent Lott think of all this?

Christ.
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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 03:04 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Nobody gives a fuck what Trent Lott thinks
Edited on Fri Nov-10-06 03:09 AM by casus belli
And you completely missed the point, while confirming what I said.

**why many of their colleagues were voted OUT. You think the ones who are left won't be "partisan?"**

That's exactly what I said. They were voted out because they lost sight of who they are voting for.

We can either push and pull through legislation by telling them we're going to get this shit done with or without you. In which case they become an obstructionist minority, and we end up doing everything as they have for the last 6 years on purely partisan lines. Or, we extend the olive branch, and work on getting as much done as we can that they will agree on and save the fighting for issues which actually count.

If you want to fight for another two years, have at it. I'd prefer to move legislation forward that we can get them to agree with us on easily, and save energy for the bigger fights we have coming.

The point is, we are the majority. We can either rub it in their face like assholes, much as they did to us, or we can lead like adults and restore some sanity and a modicum of respect to the process.

**WE have the power, and we'll USE IT to get things done** The minority has more power than you realize. And you should be glad for that. We'd be competely screwed were it not for the few saves that our minority congress was able to pull off.
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Maven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 03:09 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. you really don't get it.
Edited on Fri Nov-10-06 03:12 AM by Harvey Korman
They were voted out because they lost sight of who they are voting for.


No, they were voted out because the public wanted a sea change in policy.

We can either push and pull through legislation by telling them we're going to get this shit done with or without you. In which case they become an obstructionist minority, and we end up doing everything as they have for the last 6 years on purely partisan lines.


They're going to be an obstructionist minority at. every. turn. Their GOAL at this point is to stop us from getting things done, so that they can paint Dems as ineffective and weak.

What do you think is going to happen when subpoenas and investigations start happening? Bipartisanship?

Please stop being so naive.
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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 03:13 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. Then they will fail. And they'll have only themselves to blame.
Why is holding on to the spirit of democracy being naive?

The point is, we don't HAVE to fight now. So why do it? We get more done when they agree with us, so why don't we exhaust that option first. This is about how much change we can push through in the short time we have before next elections. We have an opportunity here. If the GOP just wants to obstruct, then screw them. But, why is it you have a problem with trying to work with them, if we can do so? You'd rather we just consider polarized politics the norm from now on?
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Maven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 03:22 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. It wouldn't be, under normal, sane conditions
Edited on Fri Nov-10-06 03:27 AM by Harvey Korman
No one is going to stop moderates from voting with the Dems or contributing to the debate or cosponsoring bills. No one is going to stop the remaining cons from contributing to the debate. That's a given.

But yes, it is naive to think that partisanship will not be necessary at a certain point to be effective. We will be reversing a lot of what they've done over the last six years, and they're not going to go along with it with smiling faces, especially once they're being haled into subcommittees for investigations. They'll be just as vicious and deceitful as they ever were. Remember, the modern GOP is a party that operates in lockstep--they punish moderates within their own party for not toeing the line.

More importantly, we need to act as a driving force to prove to the country that we can lead and make good on our promises. We have a short time to do that before the next election.
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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 03:29 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. You don't have any disagreement from me there.
I never meant to imply that we shouldn't be willing to use our majority to force through legislation that we have disagreements on. My point really, was to resist the obvious temptation to lead as they did. I remember an interview with Pelosi, where she was discussing how the GOP position was essentially, "You can set the agenda when you're the majority" and essentially canceled them out of the process. They weren't even allowed to introduce amendments to GOP legislation for voting. That's not any way to run a congress. It would be easy to give into the temptation of giving them a little of their own medicine when congress reconvenes, but I hope that cooler heads prevail. I think that's a given, though, since we now have a woman Speaker of the House. I expect she will handle the chamber very diplomatically, but I have also seen her fired up and am sure she will lay down the law when necessary.
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loyalsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 02:59 AM
Response to Original message
2. Constant retaliation = ongoing deadlock
I witnessed this when our state house switched over. It changed from Dem to GOP a few years ago, and the new majority just wanted to lash out and do everything to Dems that they felt Dems did to them.
It has been a terrible climate. Dems have either been excessively reactive or wimpy.
They have a closer balance, now and might be able to find a better balance.

I agree with you, that it is important to not compromise on values but they need to seek a balance.
I firmly believe that one of our values should be to at least listen to what the other side has to say.
That has been one of my chief complaints about Republicans and Bush, after all.
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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 03:08 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. I agree.
We hold the gavel. If the argument comes down to one where we aren't making any headway on a compromise, then it is for us to decide how it goes. Period. That's not to say that we should run congress the way the Republicans did, by not allowing Dems to introduce amendments to legislation, etc.

We have extended the olive branch. I think it was good of Pelosi to do so, and the power is now hers to wield if she so chooses. She's smart enogh to realize that most of the power comes from not needing to use it.
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Rageneau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 04:00 AM
Response to Original message
9. Give me partisanship or give me death!
Screw a bunch of bipartisanship. The rethugs respond to nothing but power, and the only way they will ever see how wrong they have been acting as the majority is to let them see how it feels to be treated as an irrelevant minority.

IOW, if we treat the pubs like they treated us, they soon want to change the rules to make operations less partisan in the future -- guaranteed. Once we get such assurances, maybe ... MAYBE ... we can allow them to have some say-so again.

Likewise, if we impeach Bush, the rethugs will stop crowing about having impeached Clinton, and they will be much less likely to pull that crap ever again.

The Republicans owe us an impeachment, just to even the score. That would be true even if Bush WASN'T guilty of more high crimes and misdemeanors than Tier Three, Cellblock A, at Leavenworth.

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lvx35 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 04:27 AM
Response to Original message
10. There's sort of an interesting balance that has to occur...
we need to:

a) not be the same assholes that they were, or its all useless.
b) not compromise to people who are assholes.

So we have to boldly, forcefully, be good people.
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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 02:50 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. I completely, totally, 100% agree.
Edited on Fri Nov-10-06 02:50 PM by casus belli
And I believe we can do that without diminishing our leadership ability. There is a difference between being in charge, and making sure everyone knows you are in charge. I'm anxious for the adults to have an opportunity to lead again. We have a real opportunity here to redefine how political discourse is carried out, and I think we should definitely TRY, at every turn, to work with the minority party. The other advantage to that, is that should we find ourselves in the minority again further down the road, we may actually have more respect and a friendlier political environment in which to continue trying to have our issues debated and voted on.
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lvx35 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-10-06 11:15 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. I agree, in fact I think that's the only way to augment our leadership...
ability. The fact is that we do business differently than these guys did, and our way works, it makes sense. Our way consists of not being an asshole...In foreign and domestic policy. Not being an asshole does not mean giving in to assholes in any way, nor keeping assholes from justice, it is about being strong not weak...But its about doing things in an effective way which works because it is respectful of humanity.
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casus belli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-11-06 12:50 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Well said. Key word there is "respect". Something lacking in today's political climate. n/t
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