Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 12,761
Number of posts: 12,761
Atrios thinks he could have if we pay attention to his Joe Lieberman type votes...
The Good Old Days Are Back
...We spent the aughts trying to get horrible Democrats to not be quite as horrible, and the media covering the whole thing to not be so horrible. If we couldn't stop the horrible things we could maybe at least stop the Democrats from owning all of them. Saving them (and us) from themselves was a big part of it. I didn't know if we could stop Republicans from privatizing Social Security (we did! yay us!) but we had to do our best to make sure it wasn't all bipartisany. It's the usual "if everyone is to blame, then no one is" combined with the Democrats' love of running on the slogan, "Not quite as evil as the other guys!"
... basically last night 13 Democrats in the Senate voted against allowing cheaper drug imports from The People's Republic of Canadia. Some hope you don't notice, and some don't care if you notice. Some do care. I bet Cory Booker, who took some time off rescuing pets in front of TV cameras and posting inspirational quotes on the website twitter dot com to show how woke he is to help to make sure you have to pay more for lifesaving drugs, cares quite a bit if you notice. Someone's gotta be the Dem candidate for president in 2020, after all.
His DC office number is:
His Newark office number is:
They care a lot more if they get calls from people they represent generally. People who have worked in Congressional offices always say this and mostly they're right. But when the phone lines are jammed because so many people are calling they don't have time to care about who is calling, they just want it to stop.
So call, call ,call.
Posted by Larkspur | Thu Jan 12, 2017, 11:31 PM (99 replies)
Assuming that HRC wins the Democratic nomination for President, I'll hold my nose and vote for her in the GE, but I will never trust her. She is nothing but a lesser of 2 evils choice for me.
I think the next phase Progressives need to take is that the nanosecond after HRC wins the GE, is to implement a “No Honeymoon for Hillary” plan. That plan is to scrutinize every appointment she makes to staff agencies and cabinet positions as well has be a hawk on her policy positions right after she wins the GE. Since she is campaigning on being able to hit the floor running as President, HRC has no need for a honeymoon period.
And of course, the rest of the Democrats in Congress, especially HRC’s super delegates, need to be scrutinized and pressured as well by Progressives.
After all, that is how American Democracy works. The end of the election is not the end of democracy.
And we'll know we are doing our job when the Ed Rendell's, Rahm Emmanuels, et all screech their complaints to the media about us.
Our response to the Turd Way (old DLC) whiners needs to be the famous saying of Frederick Douglas, "Power gives up nothing without a fight, never has, never will." If they don't like American Democracy, then they can move to China.
Posted by Larkspur | Sun May 8, 2016, 03:17 PM (27 replies)
Thought this was a very good analysis of the differing views between Hillary and Bernie.
And why Hillary’s “Bernie is a single issue candidate” line of attack most likely will not work.
The "Meta-Issues" Behind the Sanders-Clinton Contest
Sanders' stump speech … drives home a single theme -- the fact that the American economy and politics are dominated by a handful of billionaires who have "rigged" the system to support their interests at the expense of the majority. With this foundation laid, Sanders calls for a political "revolution" that will mobilize voters to demand a leveling of the playing field, offering such expansive programs as universal health care and free college education. He proposes paying for these by imposing taxes on the very wealthy and on excessive Wall Street behavior. And he emphasizes a more restrained foreign policy that avoids irresponsible, costly, unwinnable wars.
Sanders' edge is that he offers "bumper sticker" clarity. Because his programs and proposals all flow from a coherent economic and political philosophy, his message more easily resonates with many voters. This clarity is something that Republicans have long owned and Democrats have missed. While Republicans could speak of "small government and individual freedom," Democrats could only respond with a bewildering array of causes and programs that lacked a central over-arching theme. With Sanders, Democrats can respond with theme like "a government that cares" and "we all matter."
So Hillary’s critique is off the mark. Bernie is a multiple issue candidate who has a single theme and coherent economic and political philosophy. I suspect her “single issue candidate” critique of Bernie has to do with her very close ties to Wall Street and other Big Money interests, whom Bernie is hammering. They do have easily bruised egos on Wall Street. I wonder what she said in those speeches to Wall Street?
Posted by Larkspur | Sat Feb 20, 2016, 02:14 PM (1 replies)
(Hillary Clinton) is not interested in ideas that will "never make it in the real world," reports the AP (“Clinton Steps Up Attacks On Sanders Days Before Iowa”, AP via Huffinton Post, January 21, 2016)
Luckily for us, she was not an advisor to our nation’s Founding Fathers and Mothers. If she was, she would have either derailed the American Revolution, labeling Thomas Paine, John Hancock, Ben Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, etc as extremists, or would have been tarred and feathered by our Founding Fathers and Mothers as a British Loyalist.
When our Founding Fathers and Mothers ignited the American Revolution, they knew that no colony up to that time had ever successfully seceded from its mother country, but that historical fact did not deter them. Willing to fight the odds against tyranny and despair, no matter how great, is how this nation was born and it’s ingrained in the core of our nation’s DNA. It’s what also inspired the succeeding generations of American revolutionists -- the abolitionists, suffragettes, civil and labor rights activists, environmentalists, etc -- to defy the odds again and help make this nation a more perfect union and truer to its founding ideals.
When I was 19, I earned my private pilot’s license. The flight examiner told me that no pilot is ever perfect so the most important attributes, along with technical competence, a successful pilot must have are good judgment, a calm temperament, humility, and knowledge of your whereabouts and destination. Without these, a pilot, his/her plane and passengers are doomed no matter how fancy a plane you fly.
Hillary’s behavior when she sees the race tightening is to panic and viciously lash out at her main challenger and his/her supporters. She did this in 2008 against Presidential candidate Barack Obama and is doing it again against Sen. Bernie Sanders. We are seeing a repeat of Hillary’s “evil Queen of Hearts” persona rising before us. Remember in 2008, Obama’s campaign slogan was “Yes We Can!” Hillary’s attack slogan then and now can be summed up with “No, You Can’t, so shut up and vote for me, the Entitled One!”
I was never an Obama fanatic but what convinced me to vote for him in the 2008 primary was that he displayed a calm public demeanor, an even keel, even when his campaign faced “stormy seas,” addressed his mistakes quickly, countered his opponents’ attacks, and continued to offer us a positive vision of what we can strive towards.
This year, as in 2008, Hillary Clinton has failed to demonstrate to me the temperament that befits a President of the United States, especially one in this Nuclear Age. Freaking out and attacking Sen. Bernie Sanders, a rising populist star in the Democratic Party’s Presidential primary, for having the audacity to campaign on ideas that are as American as Thomas Paine’s and President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s is un-American and leaves me with her vision, a dark vision of a world she rules but is bereft of hope and justice, one that this Democrat associates with Rightwing ideology, and with doubts about her ability to be a competent Commander-in-chief or our Armed Forces.
Posted by Larkspur | Sat Jan 30, 2016, 01:17 PM (2 replies)
so if DWS denies the Sanders campaign access to NGP VAN data, his campaign can switch to Nationbuilder and it would be a coup for both Nationbuilder, the #1 pollitical platform used by campaigns around the world, and the Sanders' campaign.
Posted by Larkspur | Fri Dec 18, 2015, 12:34 PM (0 replies)
Progressives--Don’t Waste Your Money on the Group #BlackLivesMatters. They Are Actually Hurting Minority Progress
What is it about Bernie Sanders that threatens the leadership of BLM more than the other Democratic and Republican candidates? The answer is actually frightening.
The leaders of BLM like the status quo, unless the single focus of future equality is centered on black women; and even more so black, lesbian, women. They like racial tension over a quest for universal growth for all persons struggling, because it gives them power and a voice. This obviously is not what the vast majority of those supporting BLM believe, but it is what the leadership believes. It’s for this reason that the leadership is not standing up against members who claim to speak on their behalf and who prevent Bernie Sanders from speaking at rallies.
The present Democratic and Republican leadership will continue to promote racial divide by keeping all minorities impoverished and weak, and especially black women. Bernie wants to raise the plight of all minorities and those struggling, at the expense of the upper 1%. He is not solely focused on black women. He wants a society where people truly have opportunity; and where race, religion, sexual orientation, and other differences don’t matter. If Bernie were to succeed in this highly ambitious goal, then the leadership of BLM would not have their present power. They would lose their current identity in the movement, and the three founders are terrified of this. In fact, many times when others outside of black women have tried to help their cause and grow the message, they have become infuriated and attacked.
As the founders of BLM make clear, the movement (from their perspective) is all about black women. Anyone such as Bernie Sanders who wants to raise the plight of all struggling Americans offends them. They want the sole focus to be on them. They don’t want a peaceful movement that follows the lead of Martin Luther King, Jr. Instead, they want a militant movement that follows the lead of the Black Panther Party.
This is why Bernie frightens the leadership of BLM so much, because he is creating a huge movement of destroying the present system, which racist system gives the leaders of BLM their voice. These same leaders rather keep the status quo. If we at Ring of Fire are wrong, then we ask them to stand up and take a very strong stance against what is occuring at these rallies, and to state what their true goals are, and how we can assist them to help struggling black Americans.
In Case You Doubted #BlackLivesMatter Leadership Wants Progressives and Bernie Destroyed, Read This
As we detailed in our story earlier today, the leadership of this organization wishes to resist the type of change that Bernie and Progressives are striving to bring about for all those struggling in America, including African Americans. They don’t appreciate others who are fighting for their cause and are following in the footsteps of Martin Luther King, Jr. to make change. They want change, if any, to occur solely through the following of the Black Panthers.
Ask yourself why they are only showing up at Progressive events, and not at Hillary or GOP events? Who are the “other Black organizers and non-Black allies and accomplices” they refer to in their press release as helping them shut down Bernie’s event? Why would they be attacking Bernie when he was the one who joined the March on Washington, which featured the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech, in 1963? He is one of only two sitting senators who can say that. Also, he is one of the only elected white officeholders who endorsed Jesse Jackson for President.
It’s pathetic that this organization, which is being supported in the grassroots by so many well intentioned people, is being hijacked by a few militant leaders who solely wish to protect their turf. Until such time as the silent majority of blacks and others stand up to these leaders, they are going to win and set peace and acceptance of minorities back decades. This is what they hope. This is what they demand. It’s the same as fanatic Muslims preventing the voice of the vast majority of true peaceful Muslims being heard. It’s the same as warmongers creating fear to make sure that peace, such as with Iran, will never occur. It’s the same as fanatic liberals supporting unworthy and hate filled people such as the leaders of #blacklivesmatters when they are not deserving of support.
We at ROF will not sit by silently and appease people we believe are wrong, even when they are part of a group that we so strongly support and want to rise up from their plight. We are going to speak the truth, and we are going to yell. Please remember we are angry at the imbalance of power and wealth in this country, and the fact that way too many are living in poverty, and without proper food, shelter and health care, when we are the richest country in the world. We are going to speak out against injustice, even when the injustice it being perpetrated by those we wish to defend.
We have been doing this since our inception, and we never are going to change.
Thank you Ring of Fire for this information.
Posted by Larkspur | Sun Aug 9, 2015, 05:07 PM (87 replies)
Hi, it's me, Larkspur, a white liberal woman, who supports the the main argument of black lives matter -- police brutality is heavy handed and unnecessarily fatal on African Americans and it needs to be corrected.
How does BLM attacking those, both politicians, and regular white people like me, help their cause? You are a political science professor, so explain to me how attacking Bernie Sanders, who supports the core message of BLM, helps their cause, other than creating an atmosphere of anger and potential violence that seeks to hurt Sanders ability to draw large crowds. I see BLM as being coopted by one or more of Hillary's supporters, who are looking forward to lucrative jobs in a Clinton Admin. and see Sanders ability to draw large crowds to his events as a threat to their future fortunes. BLM is doing Hillary's dirty work. They don't seem to mind losing the support of white liberal women like me.
So MHP, where does one draw the line between black civil rights activists and just plain bullies? The BLM women in Seattle were literally using their bodies to threaten and intimidate Bernie Sanders and the event staff. How is that not a form of assault or threat of violence on the person of Bernie Sanders? In the 1960's, MLK and his followers chose the path of Gandhi's non-violence. I read that at the 50th anniversary of the March on Selma, BLM tried to disrupt President Obama but they were quickly and forcibly removed while the audience shouted back at them "Are you registered to vote?" Can us white people say the same thing to BLM bullies?
Oh, and can black people be racist too? Especially, when they call a white Jewish man/women and all white liberals white supremacists? As, I'm sure you are aware, Rev. Jesse Jackson was rebuked when he was caught calling Jews Hymies, so is antisemitism still rampant in the black community? Is that why BLM is really attacking Bernie Sanders?
Posted by Larkspur | Sat Aug 8, 2015, 09:01 PM (20 replies)
One of the more refreshing things about politics in recent days is President Obama's "what the hell" attitude. Someone I know in DC called it YOLO (You're only lameduck once.) Unfortunately, he's not just saying "what the hell" and pushing progressive policies he prefers. He's also doing it with neo-liberal policies. yesterday at Nike he pretty much told liberals not "what the hell" but "go to hell." It was the ugliest, most condescending speech he's ever given.
Senator Sherrod Brown wasn't amused:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) issued the following statement following President Obama's remarks on trade at a Nike facility in Oregon:
Digby is right that OBama's speech in Oregon as with most of his attacks on Progressives opposing this terrible trade deal is at best condescending. Warren and Brown are not name calling. Obama is behaving like a flim-flam man.
Posted by Larkspur | Sun May 10, 2015, 01:57 AM (8 replies)
From Kerry to Selena Gomez & Rihanna, Israel’s Claims of Precision, Compassion Are Dissed
Snow's store is the second one on Juan Cole's article.
I like the fact that Snow points out that Israel's use of military action in the past has not resolved the problem with Gaza.
Wish our news anchors could do likewise. Chris Hayes, who also interviewed Mark Regev, the Israeli Prime Minister's propaganda spokesperson, came the closet and I admit Hayes is doing his best with the time constraints he has.
Posted by Larkspur | Mon Jul 21, 2014, 10:42 AM (38 replies)
American Jews are expected by the Israeli government and by its American lobbying arms, such as AIPAC, to unequivocally support Israel against its very real enemies, but also against any criticism whether from abroad or within the American Jewish community. The prevailing mode is “Israel can do no wrong,” and AIPAC demands American Jews march in lockstep. But Israeli policies of the moment can and do betray values held by a large swath of American Jewry, including their independence of mind and the right to dissent, whether as Americans or as Jews.
This sure sounds like the attitude of some DU'rs.
Now comes a “bipartisan” group of U.S. senators determined to join Israel in isolation. They are motivated by little else than electoral fears and campaign contributions. They have offered legislation imposing new, more severe sanctions on Iran at a most inopportune time, and a pledge of American diplomatic and military support if the Israelis attack Iran. Talk about blank checks. Israeli lobby groups such as AIPAC actively support the measure, meaning so does the Israeli government. It seemed inconceivable that anything could surpass Netanyahu’s audacity and obtuseness. Maybe Congress dysfunctional is better than it is functional.
One of my senators, Sen. Blumenthal, is on this so called “bipartisan” group of U.S. senators and it pisses me off that he would put American lives at risk by blindly supporting Netanyahu's self-serving opposition to talks with Iran. The whole purpose of the existing sanctions was to get Iran to the talking table and now that Iran is arriving, these puppets of Israel's neo-con wing seek to derail the talks. War is peace to Israel's neo-con wing and they don't care how many Americans suffer for their lust for war.
Thankfully, there is some push back against this totalitarian mindset that "Israel can do no wrong".
Beyond the international flap, American Jews ought to be concerned about how controversial Israeli positions and statements are causing significant cleavages within our own Jewish community. An undeservedly little-known website, MuzzleWatch, which is devoted to tracking the stifling of open debate about American-Israeli foreign policy, is most instructive.
MuzzleWatch reported an incident at Harvard in November, when the university’s Hillel student organization barred Avraham Burg, the former speaker of the Israeli Knesset, from giving a speech in its building. The governing body, not the students, complained that the talk was co-sponsored by the Harvard College Palestine Solidarity Committee, as well as several Jewish pro-peace groups. (Burg instead spoke at a dorm.) A Harvard student appropriately responded that this was “an attack on free speech in its most naked form.” “I’m not sure what they were afraid of—people with all kinds of political views had a very constructive conversation with Mr. Burg,” she added. Are we to believe that nearly 8 million Israeli Jews think alike?
Israel's neo-con wing will do everything they can to stop their true motives and a more humane view of Palestinians from reaching the American public. But they are on a losing side. A growing push back to their totalitarian mindset is on the rise here. Israel can't fool the Europeans any more and it won't be long before the American public sees a more balance view of the I/P issue and the Middle East overall.
Posted by Larkspur | Thu Jan 2, 2014, 03:07 PM (1 replies)