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Late Night: The Confluence

con·flu·ence (knflns)n.

1.

a. A flowing together of two or more streams.
b. The point of juncture of such streams.
c. The combined stream formed by this juncture.

2. A gathering, flowing, or meeting together at one juncture or point

ThesaurusLegend: Synonyms Related Words Antonyms
Noun 1. confluenceconfluence – a place where things merge or flow together (especially rivers); “Pittsburgh is located at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers”

geographic point, geographical point – a point on the surface of the Earth
river – a large natural stream of water (larger than a creek); “the river was navigable for 50 miles”
2. confluence – a flowing together

blending, blend – the act of blending components together thoroughly
3. confluence – a coming together of people

merging, coming together, meeting – the act of joining together as one; “the merging of the two groups occurred quickly”; “there was no meeting of minds”

You are not alone.

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NO WE WON’T on PUR tonight at 8PM EST

Tonight, Heidi Li Feldman and Marc Rubin from The Denver Group and Democrats for Principle before Party will join me to talk about Greeks, Hubris and Self-Fullfilling Prophecies.  It all start’s tonight at 8:00PM on PUMA United Radio (PURrrr)

Catch up on your Greek mythology by reviewing this lesson from Tom Lehrer:

And people think this is funny?

Barack Obama, call off your dogs before women get hurt.

(H/T Sheri Tag)

Barack Obama: Still Just as Clueless and Condescending as Ever

In Matt Bai’s October 15th article in The New York Times, “Working for the Working Class Vote,” Barack Obama explains how much he regrets the infamous comments he made in early April:

“You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, a lot of them — like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they’ve gone through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, and they cling to guns, or religion, or antipathy toward people who aren’t like them, or anti-immigrant sentiment, or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

Obama made these remarks to a group of San Francisco billionaires, who laughed approvingly at this sociological dissection of the lives of rural, working class Americans.

Now, six months later, Obama tells Matt Bai that these remarks were the worst mistake he has made during the campaign:

“That was my biggest boneheaded move,” Obama told me recently. We were sitting across from each other on his plane, the one with the big red, white and blue “O” on the tail, flying some 35,000 feet above Nebraska. “How it was interpreted in the press was Obama talking to a bunch of wine-sipping San Francisco liberals with an anthropological view toward white working-class voters. And I was actually making the reverse point, clumsily, which is that these voters have a right to be frustrated because they’ve been ignored. And because Democrats haven’t met them halfway on cultural issues, we’ve not been able to communicate to them effectively an economic agenda that would help broaden our coalition.”

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Sunday: You don’t need permission to be angry, ladies

This election season has brought out the worst in both parties.  It has pulled back the veil on the Democratic party, exposing a vicious sexism we used to vaguely sense but made valiant efforts to deny.  We found out just how much contempt the privileged had for the working class.  It’s a sneering, heartless anger that “those people” can’t get their $#%^ together, drive too much, got old and, dammit, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Models with PhDs in Architecture are pissed.

It’s just as bad on the Republican side.  Many of them see a country full of Willie Hortons and welfare cheats and godless, commie heathens with no sense of patriotism and they’re mad as Hell and not going to take it anymore.

But women?  Well, we’re not supposed to be angry about any of this.  We’re supposed to be the better half.  We’re supposed to be content to play a secondary supporting role, to be fulfilled with our unique dignity and mystery or some other condescending treacle that sounds like it came out of a missive from the Pope.  Lanny Davis’ column in the Wall Street Journal on Friday, Hillary Made Obama a Better Candidate, is a perfect example of the “let’s give women a round of applause for being such great sports, helpers and clean-up team mates” genre.

Lanny would have you believe that Hillary Clinton’s primary purpose, her divine purpose and the purpose for which she was uniquely created, was to be Barack Obama’s sparring partner.  Yes, Hillary honed him and made him the candidate we see today.  Forget your lying eyes that told you that Hillary was the better candidate and that adversity actually made her better as time went on.  Forget the notion that maybe Hillary wanted the job as much or even more than Obama did.  Forget that her ambition burned just as brightly.  As Lanny sees it, she was just Obama’s help mate.  I might add that this notion is one that Hillary herself is helping to perpetuate by her slavish devotion to a party that betrayed her.  As much as I admire her, she is not setting a very good example.

But there is one section of Lanny’s letter to to the ladies that is more irritating than the rest:

The second claim often repeated late in the primaries is that the Clintons wouldn’t really have their hearts in campaigning for Mr. Obama and that “Hillary Democrats” would become “Reagan Democrats” who would support Mr. McCain. There always was a danger that certain working-class/rural voters who strongly supported Mrs. Clinton in such state primaries as Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia would not easily transfer their support to Mr. Obama. The same worry was often repeated about Democratic women who were angry or simply grieving about Mrs. Clinton not being picked as the nominee.

Ladies, how many times have you heard a guy tell you that you have no reason to be angry or that your anger was cute or childish and that you’ll feel better later?  I don’t know how many people I read on the blogs yesterday who singled out the above passage and quickly distanced themselves from the anger.  I’ve even been guilty of doing it myself.  That is not to say that cold-blooded pragmatism is not necessary for clearing our heads and thinking logically.  But let us acknowledge the emotion that drives us to this point.  We’re bloody pissed off.  We’re full of righteous indignation.  We’re angry.

We just sat through eight of the most reactionary years in our nation’s history.  George Bush has dragged science back into the stone age.  He’s eroded whatever safety net this stingy ass country gives women.  There we were, thrilled with the prospect that one of OUR gender, who was the absolute best candidate hands down, was going to take over the White House and start putting it all back together again.  And she was done in by her own fricking party.  Hillary Clinton could survive the media attacks.  She rose above it.  She could withstand the attacks from the Republicans.  She eventually earned their grudging respect.  But she could not survive the backstabbing manipulations and betrayal of her own party in the service of a man who wasn’t even qualified to serve as her apprentice.

Damn straight we’re angry.  It is now being reported that white boomer women are the voting bloc to get this year.  Gee, now why would THAT be?  Anyone want to take some guesses?  Well, my resident expert, myself, having been born at the tail end of the baby boom generation, thinks that it’s because we don’t buy into Lanny Davis type messages.  We don’t see ourselves as “helpers” with a “unique dignity”.  We see ourselves as human beings with hopes and dreams of our own.  We put our gifts, talents and hardwork into our careers and family and succeeded.  And we don’t like being sidelined, perhaps for the remainder of our lifetimes, for some unprepared male who got a boost up because he has a penis and for no other discernable reason that anyone has been able to observe or explain.  I am challenging a superdelegate to come here and explain it to us.  Tell us WHY it had to be Obama and not Hillary.  Come and tell us what the F%^& were you thinking??!

If the Democrats lose this thing, it may very well be due to the anger of women.  Obama made over $100 million in September.  His ads are flooding every available slot.  He is in our faces.  The media is shoving him in our every orifice while it hammers on Sarah Palin’s inexperience.  He has every possible advantage *including* Hillary Clinton campaigning for him better than anyone else in the country.  She works harder for the candidate than he does for himself and he still has less than a 10 point lead in the polls.  He can’t close the deal because boomer women are on the fence.  They’ve been told they aren’t allowed to get angry with the fact that neither of the candidates are at all even the least little bit concerned with their interests.  They’re not supposed to fume at losing their chance to make a historic change and vote for their own lives instead of the petty power plays of a bunch of disconnected Washington white middle aged insider men.

Ladies, you don’t have to feel guilty about being angry.  Anger is a healthy response to being threatened.  It’s part of your survival tool kit.  It helps you fight back, defend yourself and take what is rightfully yours.  You wouldn’t be normal if you *weren’t* angry about being given no choice and treated like your whole political motivation has to do with the status of your uterus.  You have every reason to be angry that in the midst of the firestorm when you are being called a c*nt, the country is forgetting that you will be hit harder than your male counterparts in the upcoming recession and that neither candidate has addressed this reality.  You are justified in being angry that if Obama is elected, your dignity as a human being will be eroded by the unchecked misogynism and anger of his supporters directed at you, Sarah Palin and Hillary.

Our means of getting even may not be vocal or visible.  It may take cool logic and precision.  But if anyone wants to tell me that I have no right to be angry they shouldn’t be surprised if they get one right to the kisser.

Get used to it, Lanny.

NOTE:  I am serious about that offer to superdelegates.  I want to hear what your reasoning was for “picking” Obama over Clinton.  We know it wasn’t experience or qualifications.  We know it wasn’t seniority, unless we’re counting penis years.  So, come and tell us why you chose him over her.  Don’t tell us why we should vote for him over McCain.  We’re not voting for Obama.  We told you this back in May.  We aren’t changing our minds.  But we need to do a retrospective analysis so this NEVER happens again and your testimonial would be very helpful to determining where the party went completely off the rails.  You can reach us at theconfluence08 at yahoo dot com.  Don’t wait until after the election is over.  We want to know NOW.