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sofa king

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Member since: Wed Apr 14, 2004, 03:27 PM
Number of posts: 10,854

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Clearly Senate Democrats do not fear that.

Touching off the nuclear option is a clear, obvious signal that Democrats in the Senate no longer fear the possibility of a Republican resurgence in the Senate... ever again.

I'm totally serious about that. Republicans aren't coming back from this. It's a bit of an anthropomorphic argument, I'll freely admit, but I see it like this: one simply does not use this sort of a rules change if one's opponent is in a position to come back. Instead, we are using it as a hedge for our expected margin of victory: either we bag a supermajority in the next election, or we implement a series of majority-rule changes that have already been tested in practice over the course of 2014.

Democrats have been winning statewide elections somewhere between 2 to 1 and 3 to 1 over the past two elections, and one can use Virginia's off-off year election this November as an indicator that those conditions continue to prevail. Un-sticking the log-jam of nominations in the Senate will break the conservative hold on the courts. It's going to flush out the Bush stay-behinds in the Executive Branch and prevent the next election cycle from being tainted by Republican-generated "scandals" within the Obama administration and make election-theft-by-judge less likely.

The reason for this, and I encourage all of you to begin looking into it, is because thirty years of voracious conservative policy has devoured the American middle class--but it chewed through rural, conservative America first. Over the past twelve years, rural Republicans have been at least as likely as Democrats to lose their good jobs, their homes, their pensions, their retirement accounts, their health care, their farms and property holdings, and so on. Rural America is where Wal-Mart turned on the vacuum cleaners and sucked every small business out of the region, so once they hit the skids in rural America, what do they do?

They wander into the cities, seeking better services and shorter transit times to the things one needs--the "socialist" services they once tried so hard to kill. But once there, the ignorant conservative's vote is completely absorbed by the more realistic people around them, and the more realistic Republicans realize that they are now the targets of Republican victimization. They are learning empathy the hard way: by having the results of their policies fall squarely and even disproportionately among themselves and the vanishingly small number of people outside of themselves that they actually care about.

The conservatives sacrificed their own lives and treasure to keep gay people from marrying in 2004, so it's awfully damned hard for me to summon up a lot of empathy for them and their callous stupidity--but chances are good there was an empty seat at your own table yesterday, because someone you loved--one of the conservatives all know and love and consider part of our families--fell to conservative policy in the past few years. Make no mistake, this is a human tragedy of enormous proportions, and I think Democrats have become the beneficiaries of it by failing to prevent it from happening, though none of us can be accused of not trying. But others may look at it differently.

Some, for example, might see this past four years as a little bit like a past season of the Walking Dead, where an angry authoritarian leader punished his constituents for failure by killing them all. The Republican Party may be on its way to dead, but the evil that animated it for most of its existence is bigger, meaner and more powerful than ever.
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