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Current location: Seattle, WA
Member since: Tue Nov 23, 2004, 11:22 PM
Number of posts: 9,292

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Call to Action: Letters to editors to refocus on what Repubs in Congress are doing.

Let's follow the lead of George Lakoff!

We've gotta start seeing all the DT lunacy as a side-show intended to distract us from what Congress is doing to destroy crucial protections and cut off resources that benefit us ALL..

One way to refocus attention is through letters to the editor. Letters expressing horror at the dismantling of a specific protection or cut of a specific resource. Letters telling them they need to keep their eye on the ball and do more reporting about the systematic dismantling of basic protections and decimation of public institutions and funding that benefit us all.

Read Lakoff's "Ten points for Democracy Activists" for guidance on how to frame things:

Psychopath / Antisocial personality disorder

His public conduct can be evaluated against the criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder. I think there is very little doubt that he meets the criteria. I also think there is very little doubt that he would score extremely high on the psychopathy scale.

DT breaks "every rule in the book" in pursuit of his own ends. He lies and distorts reality to rationalize and justify his wrongful conduct. To puff up his over-inflated ego he stereotypes and denigrates those he sees as "out-groups." His callous disregard for others and sense of entitlement appears to know no bounds. He weaves grandiose tales of his fearsome power, omnipotence, and unequaled brilliance. He is proudly abrasive and offensive. He clearly enjoys humiliating and embarrassing others, but reacts to any perceived slight to his own person, appearance, or accomplishments aggressively and vindictively.

These are the traits of a psychopath. Of someone with Antisocial Personality Disorder. Sure, he may have other things going on too that would we exposed with extensive evaluation. Narcissistic Personality Disorder is undoubtedly in there too, but I think his psychopathy is more significant. I think labeling him a psychopath is useful. It captures so many of the malignant traits he exhibits.

I don't think labeling him a psychopath unfairly maligns psychopaths. And psychopaths are definitely capable of doing the sort of harm that can only be characterized as evil. So labeling him doesn't "let him off the hook."

My two cents. FWIW

Yes, protest, but we also...

... need to get "up close and personal."

Find out who the scheduler is for your representative and Senators. Connect with leaders in the organizations you belong to. Get some fellow members to join in. Fax the scheduler a meeting request. Tell them who you are, the subject.

I think the first oder of business is to lobby members of the Senate to Filibuster Gorsuch. Trump needs him on the bench to codify his unconstitutional EO's and legislation. We must STOP him. A deadlocked court that can set no precedent is better than one that destroys constitutional protections.

Getting a meeting with the Senator themselves is unlikely. Find out the names of senior staff, and don't them them try to fob you off on some intern or something. (When we were lobbying for rejection of the Ohio electors, Alito filibuster, and impeachment in NJ, we were unable to get meetings with rep/Senators, but did manage to meet with senior staffers).

Don't let them make it a meeting in which you just "have your say." You aren't just going "to be heard." Do everything you can think of to create a dialog. If the rep/senator holds an indefensible/immoral/unprincipled position, formulate questions that force them to defend the indefensible. Hearing their own words has power. If you can't get answers at the meeting, follow up. Noodge. Post the evasions here and elsewhere and ask others to call them. And if the person is on "your side" -- e.g., if they are already on board with a Filibuster -- meet with them to find out what you can do to help make it happen. Who is needs to be pressured? Who's on the fence? Who needs to be shamed as an example to others?

Corporations know the power of face-to-face lobbying. We need to harness that power for ourselves.

Dare we hope? Or will Dems repeat 1/31/2006 refusal to Filibuster Alito?

Yesterday wes the 11th anniversary of our so-called Democratic "leaders" absurd refusal to filibuster Alito.

Dare we hope that more of members of the 115th Senate will "see the light" on Gorsuch and any future Trump SCOTUS nominees?

In DC's bizzaro world, in 2006, 19 members of the Senate irrationally took the position that "opposition" means casting a meaningless "no" vote against Alito on the floor, while refusing join 24 of their colleagues in a winning filibuster that would ACTUALLY stop the war crime defender from ascending to our highest court.

It's an irrational notion that ranks right up there with Pelosi's "I would support Impeachment (Bush) if I weren't the Speaker."

We're already hearing the same noises from some of them. But dare we hope Shumer and Durbin will mount a serious effort to "whip" their colleagues into line against Gorsuch? (And then do the same against any future Trump nominees?)

Dare we hope to see more of them stand and fight on on principle?

Dare we hope they'll make enough noise to show the nation that Dems actually HAVE a few inviolate principles? That there are actually a few things Dems are willing to go all out for, win or lose?

I may be an idiot, but I have a spark of hope.

Let's take a look back at the tragic failure on the part of the 109th Senate. Perhaps there are lessons to be learned that can help us create a different outcome this time around.

The 24 rational/principled members who came through for an Alito filibuster:

8 of the 24 still there:
Chuck Schumer
Dick Durbin
Dianne Feinstein
Patrick Leahy
Patty Murray
Jack Reed
Debbie Stabenow
Ron Wyden

16 of the 24 gone:
Joe Biden
Barbara Boxer
Hillary Clinton
Mark Dayton
Chris Dodd
Russ Feingold
Jim Jeffords
Ted Kennedy
John Kerry
Frank Lautenberg
Carl Levin
Bob Menendez
Barbara Mikulski
Barack Obama
Harry Reid
Paul Sarbanes

Just a note -- Of the above, Menendez and Feinstein were reluctant supporters. I credit the concerted efforts of the many, many people (a good number of of whom were DUers) who confronted them face-to-face and showed them the disgust and disdain with which people outside the beltway bubble viewed the notion that voting yes for cloture and no on the floor constituted opposition. I saw it first hand as part of a contingent that met with one of Menendez staffers. He was a "newbie" being asked to buck the "time honored Senate tradition" of giving support to Alito as a "native son" of NJ. In absence of pressure from constituents, I don't think he would have come around.

The 19 who irrationally cast a meaningless "No" vote on the floor after refusing to ACTUALLY oppose Alito in what would have been a winning filibuster.

2 of the 19 still there:
Maria Cantwell
Tom Carper

17 of the 19 gone:
Daniel Akaka
Max Baucus
Evan Bayh
Jeff Bingaman
Barbara Boxer
Kent Conrad
Lincoln Chaffee
Byron Dorgan
Tom Harkin
aniel Inouye
Herb Kohl
Mary Landrieu
Joe Lieberman
Blanche Lincoln
Bill Nelson
Mark Pryor
Jay Rockefeller
Ken Salazar

(I can't help but note that a far larger percent of the rational folks are either still there, or were tapped for "better things."

Way back when....

Where they stood -- citizen lobbyists at work:

"Alito 8" Democratic Senators who are blocking the filibuster:

Four Groups Award Kerry "Spine" Cerficate for Leading Alito Filibuster Effort.

They keep doing it right, we keep doing it wrong.

"Alito -- NOT a "Done Deal"

It's Worse. He (Alito) showed his true colors in his answer to Biden's question.http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=show_mesg&forum=364&topic_id=146536&mesg_id=148694

Rejecting Alito is part and parcel of defining the crimes
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