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My Voting Strategy – Democracy

Following the My Voting Strategy Series, here is my own:

E. B. White: Democracy is itself, a religious faith. For some it comes close to being the only formal religion they have.

George Orwell: In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.

George Washington: As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality.

Jesse Jackson: In politics, an organized minority is a political majority.

John Bright: Demand the ballot as the undeniable right of every man who is called to the poll, and take special care that the old constitutional rule and principle, by which majorities alone shall decide in Parliamentary elections, shall not be violated. Continue reading

Our PUMA Anti-Convention

Lady Boomer NYC as Miss Piggy Puma, courtesy of Gary and Mawm

.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.

Our PUMA Anti-Convention

“So, how’d it go at the Democratic Convention?”

I get that a lot from my family and friends. They know I had been working the entire year to get Hillary Clinton elected President while “raging against the machine,” and that I was going to Denver to protest. I replied,

“Ummm . . . good. . . . I, I wasn’t really at The Convention.

We were like . . . the Anti-Convention!”

Post-Denver, although still mourning for what could have been, most hardcore, grassroots Hillary supporters have moved on — in one way or another. They know, or are deciding, what they will do with their votes and/or their efforts. Will they work for one campaign or other at the top, or just support down-ticket candidates? They are mulling over whether to: vote nothing on top, vote third party, write in Hillary’s name, stay home, or cast a protest vote for John McCain. For most, that would be their first Republican vote ever, and they do not take it lightly. The only reason they would do it is to protest Barack Obama and Democratic Party leaders who subverted the democratic process and 18 million voters.

But I can’t fully move on yet. This story is roiling around inside me, unwilling to be forgotten. One week plus is old news, past prime, but I keep getting these “little messages.” Last week I ran into my neighborhood Brazilian Café and struck up a conversation with husband and wife owners, Marcello and Juliet. I’d been socked away in my “Puma Den” for the last six months, making rich stove top espressos at home on the cheap.

Marcello asked, “I heaven’t seen you for a while. Where have you bean? What have you been doing?”

I hesitated protectively, having lived undercover using my handle for so long that I had to consciously produce my real name in my head before saying it. “Actually, I’ve been doing a lot of writing most of the year, political writing. Do you know what blogs are? I have a blog and contribute to other sites and efforts.”

They continued the conversation as they scurried about their business, “Oh really, and who were you supporting for President?”

My personal self gulped inside my political self having been so underground and divided, “Actually, I was supporting Hillary Clinton, working to get her elected. I still support her and believe she would make the best President.”

They both jumped to attention and gravitated back to the counter to face me, “Really? We’re for her too!”

(See why I can’t stop?) “That’s great,” I cooed, as I came clean, telling them about my blog and links to others, our efforts prior to and during Denver, and our work to ensure a roll call, a floor vote, and a record of the truth about this election.

They pointed out to me, “It’s just like 2000, Gore and Bush!”

“Right!” I answered, “and now from our own. It seems so much worse that way. Did you know that Democrats have a weird gene that makes them eat their own?”

They laughed. We talked about the delegates. They had seen the same things that Puma and Just Say No Deal Coalition members have been uncovering, observing, highlighting, and shouting about all year long: the subversion, bullying, and undemocratic processes. They could not believe when they saw the vote halted and delegates switched. “We voted. We went in and pulled the lever. Why should we even bother?”

“I KNOW. How do they do it in Brazil?”

“We vote. It gets recorded. Somebody gets elected. That’s it.”

Continue reading

It’s a Conflucian “Caption This!”

I know my Conflucian bretheren can come up with something for this photo:

 Here’s my caption:

UPDATE: Join Matt tonight at 11PM ET, where he interviews Philadelphia lawyer Phillip Berg, http://www.blogtalkradio.com/My-Two-Cents 

H/T to Ben for suggesting this song, which sums up a lot of our feelings lately:

This is an open thread.  What did you do today other than hang out here? 

Carville: If this party has a message they did a hell of a job hiding it

While we get news from Riverdaughter’s night at “The Beautiful Protest and Rise” and Gary & Mawm’s PUMAmobile adventures, here’s this:

UPDATE (h/t MadamaB!)  James Carville’s full quote per Jake Tapper/ABC News:

On CNN this evening, Clintonista James Carville voiced his displeasure with tonight’s proceedings as having no theme, no message.

“James Carville seems the least satisfied Democrat in here right now,” noted CNN’s Anderson Cooper. “What’s going on James?”

“Well if this party has a message it has done a hell of a job of hiding it tonight I promise you that,” Carville said.

“How do you mean?” asked the anchor. “You haven’t heard about Iraq? You haven’t heard about John McCain?”

“…George W. Bush, you haven’t heard any of this,” said Carville. “I mean we are a country that’s borderline recession, 85% 80% wrong track country, people, health care, energy, I haven’t heard anything about gas prices, I mean maybe we are going to look better Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday but right now like I say we are playing hide the message pretty good.”

“David Gergen said this a short time ago, that in the first two hours what is the message?” said Cooper.

“And you know what? David didn’t get to where he was in life because he’s stupid  He was exactly right. I look at this and I am about to jump out of my chair…There’s no message coming out of here, there is no sense that the party has a sense of urgency, and we’ve only got four nights this is 25% of the whole thing.”

But, but James, it’s important for people to get to know the REAL Barack.  Besides, Democracy is so 90s. 

Dealmaking and drama lead up to Clinton speechBy SCOTT LINDLAW, Associated Press Writer

The Clinton and Obama camps agreed to limit Wednesday’s divisive nominating process for president, allowing some states to cast votes for both Obama and Clinton before ending the roll call in an acclamation for the Illinois senator.

In one scenario, Clinton herself would cut off the voting and urge the unanimous nomination of Obama, according to Democratic officials involved in the negotiations. They discussed the deal on condition of anonymity while final details were being worked out.

But some Clinton delegates said they were not interested in a compromise, raising the prospect of floor demonstrations that would underscore the split between Obama and Clinton Democrats.

“I don’t care what she says,” said Mary Boergers, a Maryland delegate who wants to cast a vote for Clinton.

“There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that this is Barack Obama‘s convention,” Clinton told reporters. And yet, she said, some of her delegates “feel an obligation to the people who sent them here” and would vote for her.

As part of the deal, Obama and Clinton activists teamed up and circulated three petitions on the convention floor Monday night — supporting Clinton, Obama and his running mate, Joe Biden. Each needed 300 signatures.

Clinton said she wouldn’t tell her backers how to vote, but she told them she would cast her own vote for Obama. “We were not all on the same side as Democrats, but we are now,” she said.

The lineup for the second day of the convention features 11 governors and prominent House and Senate leaders. The convention’s keynote address will be given by former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner, a former supporter of Hillary Clinton‘s.

James, you didn’t get the memo?  The message is “destroy all things Clinton.”  So what if she won the popular vote with 18 million votes and was the candidate that won the most votes in primary history.  Hogwash!  She needs to go to the back of the line and make room for Gov. Mark Warner!  But what is the presumptive presumptuous Preciouzzz doing to smooth any differences?

Obama has taken the minimum public steps necessary to accommodate the Clintons, including giving them prime-time speaking spots. 

But he has taken few of the extra steps that Clinton allies say would have gone miles toward fostering goodwill.

He did not work hard to help her retire her $24 million campaign debt.

He did not make a high-profile statement repudiating any suggestion that Bill Clinton played “the race card” in the nomination contest — an allegation that the former president considers grossly unfair and that continues to infuriate him.

Just as significant, Obama has maintained a certain cool diffidence toward the former president. They spoke by phone last week. But for weeks before that, associates said, Clinton had heard nothing and did not even know when he would be speaking at the convention. The Obama campaign’s only communication was a form letter sent to all delegates.

Clinton loves to offer advice to fellow Democrats. But even in their conversations, Clinton friends say, Obama shows little deference or signs that he thinks Clinton, the only Democrat since Franklin D. Roosevelt to win two terms, has any special wisdom to offer.

“There is a lot Obama could have done to unify the party, and basically he hasn’t lifted a finger,” said one Democratic operative who is close to the Clinton team.

Do you think that the press is finally getting it? 

¡Que viva los PUMAs! (Long live PUMAs!)

When Democracy returns to the Democratic party, so will we. Until then, PUMA!

Hey my Conflucians!  Waiting for reports from RiverDaughter, who’s at Denver’s Cheesman Park “The Beautiful Protest and Rise 2008″ (see flyer on the right hand column), followed by candlelight vigil and from our PUMAmobile Dynamic Duo, Gary and Mawm – stay tuned!  In the meantime, add your Conflucian snark by captioning these photos and read post below if you like:

PHOTO 1

PHOTO 2

 

PUMAs are having a BALL in Denver!  “WE are the one no was expecting,” as the lovely Darragh Murphy from PUMA PAc states.

Here’s a snippet from the New York Observer:

Clinton’s Wishes Don’t Spoil PUMA’s Fun -

In a flat, windswept part of Denver known, depending who you ask, as LODO, for lower downtown, or RINO, for River North, where the city’s yellow cab company once had their depot and where office and loft space now sit in the middle of parking lots and tall body-dumping grass, the PUMA women, and a smattering of PUMA men, held a premier of the anti-Obama movie, “The Audacity of Democracy.” Under pink and yellow neon lights at the sleek Fuel Café, the group’s organizers offered a respectable spread of sautéed spinach, prosciutto-wrapped dates, seasoned mushrooms, falafel, mushrooms and assorted salads, including one fattened with steak. The party had a cash bar, but it carried all sorts of top-shelf alcohol served by a handsome wait staff dressed seriously in culinary whites. A large contingent of foreign press, nearly outnumbering the Clinton loyalists, gave the proceedings an even greater air of sophistication.

A reporter from Le Monde interviewed Edwin Paytner, a round man who blogs as Texas Hill Country, for more than a half an hour. Two German reporters flanked Darragh Murphy, the founder of PumaPac, who has accused Obama supporters of killing bunnies as a scare tactic, scribbling her every word into notebooks. A glamorous Italian reporter talked sympathetically to a white-haired woman in a white Hillary t-shirt .

Taku Tsuchiya, a Japanese television reporter explained the intense international scrutiny.

“It’s interesting,” he said, “Because Obama’s popularity is declining right now and they might have something to do with it.”

And yes for those viewing – IT’S NOT about Senator Clinton, it’s about DEMOCRACY.  We’re not bitter dead-enders.  We are about ACTION.  We are the Democratic Base.  We make things happen in the USA, and we come in every color, size, gender, age, physical ability etc. etc. you can think of.    I wrote this yesterday, posting again because – well, it just says what I want to say:

I stand by my Floridian voter’s opinion:  

If a bank robber was caught stealing money and at their trial, they made a plea bargain to give most of the money back – it still doesn’t exculpate them from the crime they committed.  The robber should be punished regardless.  PUMA was formed to protest the DNC’s hijack of Democracy.  We want Democracy back in the Democratic Party, and you will not get our support and votes until our Democratic leaders start acting Democratically again. 

In Florida, our votes are used like toilet paper since 2000, and since the DNC’s leadership mostly ignores its voter base, they thought the best way they can win an election is by copying the Rove playbook.   How about counting our votes and LISTENING to your voters for a change?   Everytime they do listen, Democrats win the General election.  Had Ted Kennedy been the 1980 DNC candidate, Reagan would have never won nor started the Neo-Conservative movement.   I still resent that the Democratic leadership did not fight for Al Gore’s votes in 2000, had they fought like their Democratic voter base asked and pleaded them to, we would not have 8 years of the most destructive presidential administration in this country’s history. 

We put our trust in a party that we thought valued and represented Democracy and that would fight for our votes and for clean and transparent elections processes.   But since they won’t fight for Democracy, we will.

What happened on May 31st, 2008 was a crime against Democracy.  4 delegates and 600,000 votes were STOLEN in order to cushion Obama’s popular vote and delegate pile.   Had Obama won fair and square, if he had a popular vote lead (which Hillary does and Obama doesn’t)  and had won his delegates without the caucus fraud and DNC/RBC fiasco on May 31st, we’d be a united party. 

As far as I’m concerned, this changes nothing.  We still have an illegitimate candidate that won through illegitimate means.   And PUMA will continue to be a consciousness that lives in all of us here at this little corner of the blogosphere until Democracy is back in the Democratic Party

 

As Carol Diamonds says: PUMA HAKA!

¡Que viva los PUMAs!  (Long live PUMAs!)

Talk to the hand ’cause the DNC don’t understand

Talk to the hand cuz the face don't understand!

Despite Obama having an endorsement lead, the RBC/DNC and Obama campaign still have yet to give back those 4 Hillary delegates from Michigan, plus 600,000 “uncommitted” votes which violates the DNC’s rule of “Fair Reflection.”  If anyone has any news on the extra 4 MI delegates the RBC took from Hillary, please post it in the comments and I’ll update this post.

Here’s how AP is reporting it:

Dems give Michigan and Florida full voting rights

By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER, Associated Press Writer 1 hour, 7 minutes ago

DENVER – Democratic delegates from Michigan and Florida were awarded full voting rights at the national convention Sunday, despite holding early primaries against party rules.

The convention credentials committee voted unanimously to restore the voting privileges at the behest of Barack Obama, the party’s presumptive nominee for president. The states were initially stripped of delegates for holding primaries before Feb. 5. The party’s rules committee restored the delegates in May, but gave them only half votes.

Democrats hope the gesture will strengthen their standing in two important battleground states while ending a contentious chapter of the nominating process.

“The only way we will be successful is if we are unified as a party and all Democrats know we are full partners,” said Chris Edley Jr., a committee member from California who introduced the resolution to restore Florida’s votes.

The party’s move raises questions about whether it will be able to control its primary calendar in the future. A commission will work on the issue over the next two years.

Representatives from Florida and Michigan said they were penalized enough. None of the major candidates campaigned in the states before the primaries, and the delegates’ votes weren’t restored until after the nomination was decided.

“We realize that mistakes have been made, but we’re excited in Florida,” said Scott Maddox, a former Florida Democratic chairman and a member of the credentials committee. “We have suffered enough.”

Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan called Sunday’s vote “a victory for change in the system.”

Levin has been working to challenge the early voting status of Iowa and New Hampshire.

“We had the guts to take the system on, and we made progress this year,” he said.

Obama’s former Democratic rival, Hillary Rodham Clinton, won both primaries. Obama’s name was not on the Michigan ballot and neither candidate campaigned in Florida.

Some of Clinton’s supporters were outraged that the delegates were not fully reinstated in May. They were also angry that Obama claimed some of the delegates won by Clinton in Michigan.

Obama clinched the Democratic nomination June 3 and he has been working to win over Clinton’s supporters ever since.

The credentials committee’s work is expected to win ratification by the whole convention Monday.

Florida has 211 delegates, including superdelegates, and Michigan has 157. Both states are expected to be battlegrounds in the November election.

Restoring their voting rights increases the total number of delegate votes at the convention to 4,419. It will take 2,210 delegates to win the nomination.

Obama ended the primaries with a 365-delegate lead over Clinton. Reinstating the Florida and Michigan delegates will not affect that lead because Obama has more endorsements from the states’ superdelegates.

I stand by my Floridian voter’s opinion:  

If a bank robber was caught stealing money and at their trial, they made a plea bargain to give most of the money back – it still doesn’t exculpate them from the crime they committed.  The robber should be punished regardless.  PUMA was formed to protest the DNC’s hijack of Democracy.  We want Democracy back in the Democratic Party, and you will not get our support and votes until our Democratic leaders start acting Democratically again. 

In Florida, our votes are used like toilet paper since 2000, and since the DNC’s leadership mostly ignores its voter base, they thought the best way they can win an election is by copying the Rove playbook.   How about counting our votes and LISTENING to your voters for a change?   Everytime they do listen, Democrats win the General election.  Had Ted Kennedy been the 1980 DNC candidate, Reagan would have never won nor started the Neo-Conservative movement.   I still resent that the Democratic leadership did not fight for Al Gore’s votes in 2000, had they fought like their Democratic voter base asked and pleaded them to, we would not have 8 years of the most destructive presidential administration in this country’s history. 

We put our trust in a party that we thought valued and represented Democracy and that would fight for our votes and for clean and transparent elections processes.   But since they won’t fight for Democracy, we will.

What happened on May 31st, 2008 was a crime against Democracy.  4 delegates and 600,000 votes were STOLEN in order to cushion Obama’s popular vote and delegate pile.   Had Obama won fair and square, if he had a popular vote lead (which Hillary does and Obama doesn’t)  and had won his delegates without the caucus fraud and DNC/RBC fiasco on May 31st, we’d be a united party. 

As far as I’m concerned, this changes nothing.  We still have an illegitimate candidate that won through illegitimate means.   And PUMA will continue to be a consciousness that lives in all of us here at this little corner of the blogosphere until Democracy is back in the Democratic Party.

As Carol Diamonds says: PUMA HAKA!

¡Que viva los PUMAs!  (Long live PUMAs!)

PS: Gary & Mawm updates coming soon!  PUMAMobile is somewhere near Kansas.

Scratching Post Saturday Night – Gary & Mawm’s PUMAmobile photos!!

PUMA HAKA!!!

PUMA HAKA!!!

 

Our brave Conflucians are on the road to Denver!  Riverdaughter made it safe to PUMA headquarters with Darragh Murphy, see post below!

Our Infantry Co-Commanders made their first stop in Virginia at Conflucian Commenter Supreme, Miss IndigoGirl, who Conflucian-ly donated time & materials from her graphics workshop to decorate the PUMAmobile!  Let’s give a round of applause and a BIG Conflucian Fuzzybear hug to IndigoGirl for her time, materials & effort, who’s now promoted to Infantry PUMA Colonel for her extraordinary efforts to the PUMA cause!  Three cheers for IndigoGirl!

Satire on a Budget moments made it on the PUMAmobile – plus some new graphics too!  Gary, Mawm and yours truly worked on it last night.  IndigoGirl gave the ok and they made it on the PUMAmobile!  Order your drink with Rico, check in nasty words with Flo and lets celebrate with Gary, Mawm & IndigoGirl and ultra PUMATized PUMAmobile, please check out the photos below!

Entertainment, her Madgesty herself, for all of our PUMAs traveling to Denver who are the “Ray of Light” before “Macaca” Biden and the Obaminator take the DNC’s MTV Downtown Julie Brown stage. (No offense to Downtown Julie Brown, who I think is a fab diva!)

First Pink PUMA on the house to celebrate Hillary’s not the VP!!

More photos here:

Attack of the PUMAs!

Attack of the PUMAs!

Goddess of Democracy!

Goddess of Democracy!

Full size (long blue section is the "Confluence" header!_

Full size (long blue section is the Confluence banner!)

Another "Attack" side look

Another "attack" side look

ConflucianMobile!

ConflucianMobile!

PUMA HAKA, backwards!
PUMA HAKA, for the rear view mirrors!

Fighting for Democracy!

UPDATE:  Images on the side of PUMAmobile for better viewing

 

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