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That was us

Obama-aid[5]

Over at Hullaballoo Digby writes:

last night on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart did a nice little rundown on all the cases where the Obama administration’s promises of “transparency” and adherence to constitutional norms have turned out to be shall we say, a bit opaque.

There were those who saw the writing on the wall on these issues through the haze of hopenchange.

Yes Digby, you’re absolutely correct.

That was us who saw the writing on the wall. They call us many things, including PUMAs, “bitter knitters,” and the “last band of paranoid shrieking holdouts.”  We were supporters of Hillary Clinton and now we are Democrats in exile.

We weren’t fooled by the fancy speechifying or the slick packaging and presentation. We said Obama was a conservative wolf in a progressive’s empty suit.  We were right and you were wrong. And WE TOLD YOU SO!

So what was our reward? We were ostracized, shunned, and called traitors. We are still treated with scorn and derision.  We have been banned from the blogrolls of “serious” lefty bloggers.  Why are we still hated?  Because our continued existence causes shame and embarrassment to those who sold their souls for Kool-aid.

If you’re waiting for us to apologize for being right you better sit down and get comfortable. It’s gonna be a cold day in hell before that happens.

Obama is yours.  He belongs to you and the other progressive bloggers who abandoned their principles last year.  We’re willing to forgive, but we won’t forget.  And we’re not gonna let you forget either.


We told you so


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The Hypocrisy of Conservatives

There is a right to Privacy. There is no right to  Hypocrisy.

-Congressman Barney Frank

Everyone has a right to their own privacy. Nobody deserves to have their personal lives, personality, character, and morals judged and analyzed by people who either don’t know them, have never met them, or hardly know them.

Politicians are people. As people, they also deserve that basic right. When choosing to vote for them, most Americans have never met them, and the journalists  who cover their campaigns, policies, and careers have also either never met them or hardly know them.

A majority of Americans do want their leaders to be decent people. An American voter votes for a candidate on faith, because they believe that candidate will do everything within their power to make their lives better. American voters, for the most part, want their leaders to be in Politics as Public Servants who believe in service and social advocacy as a way to help others. It is, in fact, about “Putting People First.”   The same can perhaps be said of police officers, surgeons, and others whose professions affect people’s lives. A surgeon saves lives, and a police officer protects lives. A politician can affect lives in many different ways, depending on what policies they implement, bills they sign into law, legislation they write, or what message they send to the world.

Politicians are supposed to be Public Servants. And a person who serves people helps people. By extension, a person who helps others is generally considered to be a good person.

That being said, people, and most especially good people, can be complicated people with successes and failures. It is unfair to judge them solely on their failures and foolish to judge them only on their successes.  And sometimes, good people can make mistakes and have problems in their personal lives. In case you haven’t noticed, shit happens.

That is why a politician’s personal life should never be aired in public. That is why there should be a basic right to privacy and that right should not be violated.

The examination of Politician’s personal lives started in the late eighties, with the emergence of reactionary right wing “values voters” that picked and chose Bible Verses to advance bigotry against women, gays, racial minorities, joy, laughter, and other blasphemous ungodly characters. They found a home with Movement  Conservatives in the early 1990’s. And, as David Brock writes in his memoir, Blinded By the Right, their morally superior panty drawer snooping consisted of, “…making accusations with no proof, and of using ill-defined issues of ‘judgment’ and ‘character’ to discredit opponents based solely on alleged personal behavior. Sexual McCarthyism had been introduced into modern right-wing politics.”

These “Family Values” nutjobs and their allies in the media have an interesting way of judging elected officials personal lives. As John at LR states:

The bible literalists who spend many a happy hour bashing gays because of a few bible verses are mighty forgiving of Conservative adulterers as Joe Conason points out here. The biblical punishment for adultery is death by stoning. I have yet to see a right winger pitch at stone at Newt, Sanford, Vitter, or Ensign. But lordy, lordy, say “Lewinsky” to one of them and watch them froth. I guess I don’t have the translation of the bible that includes the phrase “Forgive the Republicans but keep on trashing the Democrats with all the invective at your command.”

And maybe I am just being immature and completely juvenile about this (okay, I am) but the Big Dawg just got a couple of bl*wj*bs (granted, the Big Dawg’s sex scandal was a lot more fun, because there were characters like Linda Tripp and Lucciane Goldberg and Kenn Starr and other weirdos involved. Like a soap opera!). Sanford has recently been caught in a five-year affair with a chick from Argentina, and after lying about it to his wife, she caught him, and he actually asked her permission to go see his mistress. Newt Gingrich, the coolest Conservative evah who will totally run for President and beat Palin in the Primaries! gave his wife divorce papers while she was on her death bed, then cheated on his second wife while he was calling Liberals “decadent” and “sick” and routinely sniffing through the Clintons’ private lives. Vitter, another Clinton Condemner, was caught with prostitutes. Larry Craig voted for the Federal Marriage Amendment, and he tried to boink a guy in a bathroom stall. The list goes on. In fact, I have a list!

Since 1998 there has been an average of two sex scandals a year. There are twenty four in my list. Fourteen involve Republicans and ten involve Democrats. And, as Joe Conason says

Even after confessing to the most flagrant and colorful fornication, the worst that a conservative must anticipate is a stern scolding, followed by warm assurances of God’s forgiveness and a swift return to business as usual.

The hilarious thing is that Right Wingers don’t even notice the double standard or the blatant hypocrisy. Just spend a few minutes reading the comments at Hillbuzz, which has pretty much been taken over by Reactionary Republicans, and you would come away believing that all Democrats are the most lewd, immoral, promiscuous cretins in the Universe. But mention Vitter, Sanford, or Ewing and you will get nothing but crickets.

Failbot Pretzel Logic

koolaid

(This started in the comments of Dakinikat’s morning post but I think it deserves front page attention.)

If you want to see some EPIC FAIL check out this post by John Cole. Responding to a WaPo report that Obama is considering issuing an executive order that would “reassert presidential authority to incarcerate terrorism suspects indefinitely” Cole says:

Not only will this infuriate a certain portion of Obama’s base, but using an executive order for this also completely undercuts any defense regarding his inaction on DADT. I’m not sure what will be funnier- the hysterics of the PUMA crowd or the idiots on the right wing who will crow that Bush has been vindicated, completely missing that the executive order will be issued in order to help Obama repudiate Bush’s handling of Gitmo.

Yeah John, he’s gonna repudiate Bush by copying him, and somehow it’s all our fault.

I should point out that John Cole is a poster boy for Clinton Derangement Syndrome and was a hardcore Bushbot Republican.  He left the GOP and became a Democrat about six months before he started supporting Obama.

IOW – Cole has been a Kool-aid junkie for many years, but about a year and one-half ago he switched flavors.  At least he finally admits that PUMA is on the opposite side of the political spectrum from the wingnuts.

For a thorough discussion of Obama’s tentative proposal for the arbitrary power to lock people up indefinitely without trial read Glenn Greenwald:

There has now emerged a very clear — and very disturbing — pattern whereby Obama is willing to use legal mechanisms and recognize the authority of other branches only if he’s assured that he’ll get the outcome he wants. If he can’t get what he wants from those processes, he’ll just assert Bush-like unilateral powers to bypass those processes and do what he wants anyway.  In other words, what distinguishes Obama from the first-term Bush is that Obama is willing to indulge the charade that Congress, the courts and the rule of law have some role to play in political outcomes as long as they give him the power he wants.  But where those processes impede Obama’s will, he’ll just bypass them and assert the unilateral power to do what he wants anyway (by contrast, the first-term Bush was unwilling to go to Congress to get expanded powers even where Congress was eager to give them to him; the second-term Bush, like Obama, was willing to allow Congress to endorse his radical proposals:  hence, the Military Commissions Act, the Protect America Act, the FISA Amendments Act, etc.).

This paragraph is also noteworthy:

Those journalistic practices produce egregious sentences like this:  “‘Civil liberties groups have encouraged the administration, that if a prolonged detention system were to be sought, to do it through executive order’, the official said.”  I’d love to know which so-called “civil liberties groups” are pushing the White House for an Executive Order establishing the power of indefinite detention.  It’s certainly not the ACLU or Center for Constitutional Rights, both of which issued statements vehemently condemning the proposal (ACLU’s Anthony Romero:  “If President Obama issues an executive order authorizing indefinite detention, he’ll be repeating the same mistakes of George Bush”).

Here’s the money quote from WaPo:

Concerns are growing among Obama’s advisers that Congress may try to assert too much control over the process. This week Obama signed an appropriations bill that forces the administration to report to Congress before moving any detainee out of Guantanamo and prevents the White House from using available funds to move detainees onto U.S. soil.

“Legislation could kill Obama’s plans,” said one government official involved. The official said an executive order could be the best option for the president at this juncture.


The Congress shall have the power . . . to make all laws


Where did I see that before?


Rachel Maddow briefly reverts back to her pre-Kool-aid self: