• Tips gratefully accepted here. Thanks!:

  • Recent Comments

    centaur on Angelina Update
    atl on Angelina Update
    bellecat on Angelina Update
    Sweet Sue on Angelina Update
    Niles on Angelina Update
    Ga6thDem on Angelina Update
    Peep9 on Angelina Update
    tamens on Angelina Update
    Na mit on Angelina Update
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Decisions, Decisions.
    riverdaughter on Decisions, Decisions.
    Catscatscats on Decisions, Decisions.
    Niles on Decisions, Decisions.
    centaur on Decisions, Decisions.
    Kathleen A Wynne on Decisions, Decisions.
  • Categories


  • Tags

    abortion Add new tag Afghanistan Al Franken Anglachel Atrios bankers Barack Obama Bernie Sanders big pharma Bill Clinton cocktails Conflucians Say Dailykos Democratic Party Democrats Digby DNC Donald Trump Donna Brazile Economy Elizabeth Warren feminism Florida Fox News General Glenn Beck Glenn Greenwald Goldman Sachs health care Health Care Reform Hillary Clinton Howard Dean John Edwards John McCain Jon Corzine Karl Rove Matt Taibbi Media medicare Michelle Obama Michigan misogyny Mitt Romney Morning Edition Morning News Links Nancy Pelosi New Jersey news NO WE WON'T Obama Obamacare OccupyWallStreet occupy wall street Open thread Paul Krugman Politics Presidential Election 2008 PUMA racism Republicans research Sarah Palin sexism Single Payer snark Social Security Supreme Court Terry Gross Texas Tim Geithner unemployment Wall Street WikiLeaks women
  • Archives

  • History

    December 2010
    S M T W T F S
    « Nov   Jan »
     1234
    567891011
    12131415161718
    19202122232425
    262728293031  
  • RSS Paul Krugman: Conscience of a Liberal

  • The Confluence

    The Confluence

  • RSS Suburban Guerrilla

  • RSS Ian Welsh

    • The Democratic Ethics Of Brexit
      The bottom line here is that there was a referendum, and “leave” won. All my life I have eaten election and referendum results I hated. I have done so because of democratic legitimacy: the people, even if I or anyone else think they are wrong, are the source of legitimate rule. There was a referendum. […]
  • Top Posts

  • Advertisements

Compromise (and we get?)

As Blue Lyon put it:

Obama’s Mad Negotiating Skilz

Okay, so the whole package is going to cost $900 billion over the next two years, but only about $220 billion of that goes to working class people. Do I have this right?

I need someone to do the big math for me, but I fail to see how taking money out of Social Security is a good idea, unless of course you want to see it go und . . . Oh. Wait.

The only way this is a compromise is if Obama got something he wanted out of this. Because it sure left most of US out in the cold.

Advertisements

Monday: The Awakening is Very Rude

I lived with my grandmother for some short stretches of time when I was a kid.  I had a tiny little bedroom tucked under the eaves with a window that overlooked the woods adjacent to the house.  Every night, my gran would turn down my bed and send me comfortably off to sleep.  And then, some eight hours later, there would be a sharp THWAPP!, the shade on that window would fly up and flap, flap, flap and my gran, definitely a morning person, would sing in a loud voice:

“Lazy Mary, will you get up, will you get up, will you get up
Lazy Mary, will you get up, so early in the Morn-ning!”

Irritating?  You betcha.  But very effective.

Last night’s Virtually Speaking featured two bloggers who sounded like they got the Lazy Mary treatment.  After a week of outrages, the left blogosphere is waking up to the very real scenario that they picked the worng guy.  Very wrong.  Marcy Wheeler (aka emptywheel) and Stuart Zechman are finally outraged.  They have reached the stage of outrage and righteous indignation that we felt in 2008 when Obama and the DNC decided that votes for Hillary Clinton from the big states did not count (or if you were living in MI or FL, counted for half a person).  Doesn’t feel so good, does it guys?  And he doesn’t have to listen to you.  Nope.

What’s more disturbing is the number of somewhat reasonable bloggers who started to doubt Obama some time ago who are railing against Hillary now.  It’s like bombing Iraq for something Al Qaeda in Afghanistan did.  Some have even suggested that Hillary is some nefarious anti free speech authoritarian Josephine Stalin, chasing down Julian Assange, disconnecting Wikileaks from the Tubez and personally ending the free internet as we know it.  They overlook the fact that the long awaited State Department cables were released and circulated for days before any action was taken by Amazon to stop hosting Wikileaks.  They forget that Hillary has handled this crisis in a cool, level headed fashion with steely resolve and that this may have a stabilizing effect on diplomacy.  But what really seems to be incensing them is that the rest of the world isn’t incensed with that brazen hussy.  Give it a rest guys.  And I do mean guys.  Your pathology is showing.

What it it about Hillary that drives guys straight into crazyland anyway?  Do they secretly regret not voting for her now that she’s shown herself to be the real deal and Obama’s, um, not?  Now they must punish her for being who we always said she was?  Does she make them feel impotent that they can’t validate all of the crazy ass shit they threw at her?  That’s she’s not that bad, seems to know what she’s doing and that the cables haven’t uncovered any smoking guns against her, or at least nothing the general public isn’t perfectly willing to live with?

It’s not our problem if they made a monumentally huge mistake in 2008. They’re the ones who chose to overlook the fact that the party, with Obama’s blessing, trashed the fair reflection of 18,000,000 Democratic primary voters.  Yep, denied them a voice, stole their votes, stole whole states of delegates at the convention and these blogger activists raised nary a peep.  It’s a little ironic now to be accusing Hillary Clinton of authoritarianism after the fraudulent sham primary elections of 2008 where the rest of us were shut out of the democratic process and were told to surrender our votes to the Lightbringer.  You didn’t really think that you were exceptions to the rule and that Obama was going to give you a seat at the table and treat your concerns seriously after you just stabbed half of your party in the back for him?  Did you?

But the constant harping on Hillary, blaming her for everything they don’t like about the Obama administration is starting to verge on self parody.  Get over it, guys.  If you wanted less of a unified executive, less torture and no wars, you shouldn’t have voted for a man who was too greedy for power to wait his turn and too inexperienced a politician to deliver those things for you.  And in case you aren’t aware, acting on the things you care about is not Secretary of State’s job.  She doesn’t get to make those decisions.  Hillary Clinton is not the president.  Remember?  You had a hand in that.  Therefore, you can’t hang the albatrosses of this administration’s failures around her neck.  Obama is the guy who is perpetuating wars and torture.  Obama is screwing over the unemployed.  Obama is the guy who appointed the catfood commission.  Obama is the guy who is negotiating to give away whatever is left in the safe to the uber wealthy.  Obama is the guy who appointed the FCC regulators overseeing the Comcast dispute with Level Three.  Obama is the guy who is blowing you off.

Hillary is only the secretary of state who is diligently doing her job, which is limited to diplomacy.

I think we know how the next couple of days will go.  The Marcys and the Stuarts will continue to fume indignantly about how Obama betrayed them but the CDS trolls will infiltrate their blog comment threads and the trigger words will come out, “NAFTA”, “Welfare Reform”, “triangulation”, will be repeated ad nauseum to the vulnerable to get them back in line.  Nothing is scarier than the prospect of having another Clinton in the White House.  Let’s not even go there.

Well, if that’s what they want.  I guess they’re stuck with Obama then, because the other proposed candidates for primarying Obama are non-starters. They are still living in crazytown if they think that they can appoint the next candidate to run for president and that the other uncouth, dirty working class side of the party is just going to go along with it.  The rest of the party doesn’t much care for their way of getting presidents.  Denying people a real choice is a sure fired way to reduce the size of your party.

So, they can continue to knock themselves unconscious bashing themselves on Hillary Clinton’s image, a lot of pointless sound and fury, signifying nothing.  If they want to complain about Obama and make an impact, beating up on his secretary of state whipping boy is about as ineffective a strategy as they’re going to get.  Direct your ire at the man in charge or continue to be rudely awakened.

For the record, here’s Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on internet freedom, about as close as she’s going to get to influencing domestic policy on the issue:

When Fear Is All Around You

Kevin Drum has a new article up at Mother Jones that is, in my opinion, worth reading. Actually, I’m not 100% sure it’s worth reading because I was too lazy to do anything but skim through it, but I got the general idea. Basically, the National Park Service wants to bring a higher level of security to the Washington Monument and Bruce Schneier thinks we should just shut it down.

Kevin Drum, like me, could really care less what happens to the Washington Monument. I didn’t even know people visited it. Like most Americans, I just see it in movies and I think, “Oh… the Washington Monument.” That sums up my opinion on the whole thing. But Drum sums up my opinion on something else very clearly: the intellectual laziness of Bruce’s attitude.

Maybe we should just shut it down. But that particular issue aside, I think Bruce’s attitude needs some major pushback.

There’s a certain class of people to whom his prescription sounds great. Refuse to be terrorized! Stop being such babies! I’m a member of that class. I would happily accept a slightly increased risk of terrorist attack in return for a less intrusive security regime. I think we’re way too willing to let fear rule our culture. On a purely personal level, this stuff infuriates me.

But those of us who feel that way really have an obligation to understand just how out of the mainstream we are. I’m willing to bet that most of us are a bit nerdy, sort of hyperanalytical, maybe even slightly Aspergers-ish. We’re comfortable — too comfortable, probably — viewing the ebb and flow of human lives as an accounting exercise. We’re also very sure of ourselves, generally pretty verbal, and we have soapboxes to shout from.

And, at a guess, we represent maybe 10% of the population. At most.

I have a friend who does not represent this 10% of the population. Like most people my age, she pretends to be non conformist and unique… but really isn’t. At least on this particular issue, her non conformism is purely commercial. If I go out in the middle of the night to take a walk or stop by the 24 hour drug store to grab some eggs, I get a tut and a shake of the head from her. “Oh… that’s smart. You’ll get raped and killed.”

Neither of us have spent much of our lives in particularly bad neighborhoods. We have been comfortably safe in suburbia and have never had our lives threatened in any way. But like most Americans we watch the nightly news and stories about murder and general destruction are plastered across the screen. Yes, I do run the risk of danger if I go out at night. I try to let this frighten me or deter me but… it just doesn’t. I don’t care.

Maybe I’m just a reckless young person who believes in her own invincibility. My answer to that is: well, I’ve been reckless for a while now and I’m still here, right? Or maybe I’m just an idiot. Actually, I’m probably just an idiot, but I think I’m losing my point here.

The point is, I have a certain attitude about the things I do, and it’s a simple one: I do what I want. I run the risk of dying when I get in a car to drive. Hell, I could drop dead or be struck down at any moment. My attitude is the exact opposite of reckless belief in my own invincibility. I know the grim reaper could pay a visit at any time, unannounced, and I wouldn’t be able to do a damn thing about it. That’s why I don’t care about death. It’s inevitable. I accept her dark embrace. And I’m not going to sit around and be so worried about death that I forget to live. As far as I’m concerned, she can call me anytime, because frankly I would rather die young knowing I stood up for something than die old and realize I threw my life away.

Our modern society is deathly afraid of death. Go figure. And violence. And since I was a child, terrorism was thrown into the mix. When you can’t even go through a scanner at the airport without having your private business groped, you have to stop and take a look  around you and wonder, “why?”

I am growing up in an age of fear and it is getting old fast.

We’re afraid of Cancer. “Watermelons cause Cancer!” a Woman’s Health article screams at at us when we’re in the Grocery Line. Jesus Christ. EVERYTHING causes Cancer! Who cares??? Eat a god damned watermelon! They’re friggin’ delicious!

We’re afraid of teen pregnancy and sexual activity. Oh my goodness. It’s not that hard. Teenagers want to have sex because they’re HORNY. Just teach them about sex education, give them some condoms and birth control pills and send them on there way. Everyone gets sex and everyone wins. Simple.

But then, what about morals? Our culture of sex and drugs is degrading our preciously valued beliefs and traditions! The sky is falling! No, it’s not. Who cares about morals? Morals are boring. As long as you aren’t hurting anyone else do what you want. I have low moral fiber and I am proud of it.

But… Terrorism kills people! Yeah, it does. But Terrorism isn’t just about violence. It’s about using violence… to make people SCARED. I’m sorry, but groping my hoo ha when I’m at an airport is not the way to fight Terrorism. Closing the Washington Monument would just tell our enemies just how afraid of them we really are. I’d rather we stood up to them.

And most importantly, people are scared for America. Or of America. Which one? I don’t know, probably both. China is gaining influence, the media tells us ominously. And we are declining. Our standard of living is declining, our government is imploding from the inside out. The economy is down and won’t get back up for a while, if ever. What are we going to do? We won’t be the world’s biggest superpower anymore! By 2040 white people will be a minority! WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO?

It’s all mass hysteria and it’s all silly. Stop giving into fear. That’s what you do. Don’t sit there and complain and let it happen. Don’t say, “America is doomed” and then go to Wal Mart to buy cups.  Do something. Vote. Get your shit together and get yourself organized. Protest. Raise Hell. It’s what the Founding Fathers would have wanted. They cared a lot more about that than “Family Values” and “American Security.”

And most importantly, stop being afraid for America. Fight for her if you love her. Don’t just let her go.