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DirkGently

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Orlando
Home country: USA
Current location: Holistically detecting
Member since: Wed Jan 27, 2010, 04:59 PM
Number of posts: 12,151

Journal Archives

Smirking jackass should resign from WaPo's editorial board.

Not only did he roll out the disingenuous hit piece, which had no substance regardless of who was in the particular photo he was bleating about anyway, but he jumped up and down on it, going to town with Chris Matthews on MSNBC and tweeting about it 30+ times.

His "retraction" amounts to more dishonest garbage, pretending there was some great mystery that has only recently been solved, when the fact is he was screeching about nothing to begin with, given there was never any dispute Sanders was at the event in question. Yet he smarmily demanded that people "Stop sending around this photo of 'Bernie Sanders' " which he said was being done to

"imply that he was in the trenches fighting for the rights of African Americans when rival Hillary Clinton was a Republican-supporting “Goldwater Girl.”

Sanders WAS in the trenches fighting when Clinton was a Goldwater Girl. However much it matters, it is the truth. So it was really the truth of THAT Capehart was trying to undermine so smugly and gleefully.

On top of all of that, when he was sputtering about with Chris Matthews, he frantically worked to squeeze in the idea that there is a new "meme" that Sanders doesn't talk about his Jewish heritage enough. More disingenuous slime, trying to make an issue of Sanders' religious background one way or the other.

This is the kind of garbage that made our household's decision to drop Hillary and support Obama in 2008. Then it was the attempt to count the Michigan primary after Clinton pledged not to campaign there, and Ferraro's racist comments to the effect that Obama was only succeeding as he was because of his skin color.

This is smaller issue, but the savagery and dishonesty and win-by-any-means necessary attitude is the same. We may never know if someone in the campaign explicitly asked Capehart and Time to run with it, but it sure smells familiar.

It smells like 2008.

How tasteful of the Republicans

to wait literal minutes after news of the passing of one of their legal heroes to begin lying about history to try to subvert the legal process itself in order to try to snatch an advantage to which they are not entitled.

Grassley's quite a piece of work. I recall him jumping on the "death panels" bandwagon regarding the ACA, actually laughing as he talked about "killing grandma" because he knew what crazed nonsense it was, and also knowing his smirk wouldn't translate into print.

He is also the father of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, a destructive piling on of bureaucracy to the bankruptcy laws widely viewed as a straight-up gift to credit card lenders. Thanks to him, people facing bankruptcy must now go through a farcical "credit counseling" process " then jump through a series of means testing hoops to prove they cannot pay 20% of their unsecured debt before filing for Ch. 7, or else must file a repayment plan bankruptcy under Ch. 13

And he's considered one of the fairly normal, pre-Tea Party Republicans.

Rest in peace, Scalia. You are better off not seeing the circus your greatest admirers have planned at your parting.

Thought so. Policy vs personal allegiance is one of the

issues in this primary, I think. It carries very little weight with me whose official support our candidates have managed to negotiate for (or extort). I don't care if Obama sees Hillary as more of a political ally, or if John Lewis has agreed to be on her side.

What I'd like to hear about is WHY people support on candidate or another. I think we're being asked to substitute the blessings of authority -- whether it's "super delegates" or union leadership or members of Congress -- for any actual substantive arguments in favor of one or the other.

It's a facet of the establishment vs. the populace argument we're having this year. It's nice that a powerful person can go out and get other powerful people to align with them, but unless they're making a cogent argument that they are choosing based on substance rather than personal allegiance or horse-trading, it doesn't count for much.

And it's actually kind of insulting to suggest that any of us need to accept the unexplained say-so of leaders as a substitute for our own judgment. Which I think is a large part of what's going on with the claim that Hillary has Obama's tacit blessing and should get some kind of credit for that.

And Hillary is re-running that 2008 campaign now.

Hillary Clinton is not Obama's logical successor.

Not for progressives, anyway. And frankly it doesn't matter which candidate Obama personally prefers. She ran to Obama's right in 2008, and is to his right today.

Neither Sanders or Clinton is Obama, or will govern like Obama. Sanders would be a move to Obama's left; Hillary to the right.

I get that Hillary would like to frame the discussion so that the things Obama has done that progressives like should accrue to her, but that doesn't hold together logically. She ran in 2008 the same way she's running now -- accusing the more progressive candidate of being a naive pipe dreamer who couldn't "get things done."

The reason is that polls show most Dems would like a President either more progressive than Obama, or about the same. I think it was 13% who wanted a more conservative Dem in the White House. But that is what Hillary represents.

So this is her core problem. She's once again the more conservative choice, which once again is not what Dems say they want. And she's once again arguing that her more conservative approach is more practical -- which in itself is not a terrible argument.

But she is also again arguing that the more progressive approach is hopelessly naive pipe dreaming, like her "magic wand" speech directed at Obama in 2008.

And on top of that, she would like to argue she represents the best continuation of Obama's most progressive policies?

It's an odd way to go about things, and highly questionable given how it worked out last time.

Hillary is not Obama's logical successor.

Here's what I see

1. To the extent the argument is that Hillary has been more civil and respectful toward Obama, that is untrue. The 2008 campaign is relevant because

a) Hillary took an extremely sharp line against Obama, which many found distasteful, and

b) She made the same arguments against a left-of-her opponent she is now making against Sanders, which calls into question both the accuracy of the "doers vs. dreamers" dichotomy her campaign is pushing, and whether she can win with such a tactic. Last time around neither turned out to be true.

2. To the extent Hillary is arguing to those who most support Obama now that she is the natural choice to replace him and carry on his policies, the fact is she has neither been the "nicest" to him of the two candidates on a personal level, nor is she necessarily closer to Obama politically. She is more conservative than Obama, who is more conservative than Sanders. The candidates are effectively on either side of Obama politically.

Sanders and Clinton represent two directions the Democratic Party can go after Obama. More conservative with Clinton, or more progressive with Sanders.

It's not that Hillary is like Obama and Sanders is not. They are alike and different in different ways. Sanders and Obama agree on Iraq, for example, where Hillary is more hawkish. Sanders and Obama both thought a single-payer or public option healthcare system would be best, but Hillary seems to be saying the ACA is as far as we need to go for now.

And there is this: We picked a left-of-Hillary candidate last time. So the question now is, given the option of Hillary Clinton again, and another left-of-Hillary candidate, which way we go now. Even more to the left than the last time we chose someone else over Clinton, or with her?



Why not have an honest discussion of differences in policy?


That was where Sanders led, and Clinton seemed to be following. The fact is she is tepid on the idea of Wall Street reform, and doesn't think either single-payer healthcare or universal college tuition are feasible. She is hawkish on the Middle East, and supports the idea of American combat troops going in to clean up ... the results of the last time American combat troops went in. Sanders thinks Social Security should expand, while Clinton thinks it may require "reform" to remain in place.

There are people who agree or disagree either way.

Let's talk about whether we want to stand for Clinton's more conservative, more hawkish, more corporate-friendly take on things, or not. There are people who agree with those positions, and people who do not.

But trying to smash and discredit Sanders as feckless, or to undercut his civil rights record, or claim he is an enemy to the things Obama accomplished that progressives actually liked is fraud.

It makes me think she doesn't want to run on who she is, but rather on who Sanders is or is not. That is no way to convince people of anything.

She should argue truthfully that she's to Obama's right. Some people

clearly would support her in that. What galls is the theme that Clinton would build on Obama's accomplishments, while Sanders would tear them down.

The reality is that they bookend Obama on both the left / right spectrums, and the breadth of the Democratic Party. Sanders is one of the most progressive Dems; Hillary is one of the more conservative ones.

But she's probably read the polling that shows only something like 13% of Dems want to see a President more conservative than Obama, while most either want a more progressive candidate, or to stay right about where Obama has been.

So the question is not which of them would govern differently, or represent a different place on the spectrum than Obama. They both would.

It's a matter of in which direction. Sanders is calling for more economic reform and less war. Hillary stands for the opposite.

It's perfectly fine for all of us to disagree on which is better, but Clinton's framing that somehow she stands for everything Obama got right, and Sanders would tear it all down is facially invalid.

HRC's "I am a better friend to Obama" argument tonight was in really bad faith.

Tonight's debate made me angry. Hillary Clinton is the candidate who ran the "3 AM phone call" ad against Obama, and consistently argued he was too naive and inexperienced to lead. She gave him the exact same treatment as a wide-eyed, naive dreamer that she is now directing at Sanders, and she was at times extremely unpleasant about it.

I do not care for any of the personal nastiness going on in the primary, and I do not think Hillary Clinton is a terrible person or the worst Democrat in the world or any such thing. I will vote for her without hesitation to try to beat whatever nightmare the Republicans foist on us if she is the nominee. I have said, and continue to think, that she has qualities that could make her a worthwhile President.

But her increasingly feral attacks are disingenuous and unethical -- ugly appeals to substance-free identity politics and some truly wacky attempts to distort facts and history.

Her surrogates were racing around MSNBC tonight with the "meme" that Sanders "doesn't talk about being Jewish enough," for Pete's sake. As if we can't see the grotesque calculation that if they can goad him into emphasizing his religious background more, it will hurt him with bigots. This is below the bottom of the barrel.

She's a better friend to Obama? She and her campaign overtly savaged Obama in '08, complete with racist dogwhistles, like her gleeful claims to owning "the white vote," and her finance chair Ferraro opining that Obama was only succeeding because America was "caught up" in the color of his skin.

Then she tried to beat him by participating in the Michigan primary after pledging not to and arguing those delegates should count in her favor.

Our household stopped supporting her in favor of Obama specifically over the ugly nature of her attacks then. She apparently learned nothing from the failure of that strategy, and is racing down the same road now. And I'm finding I like her less now than I have since '08.

Her people think she should be able to score points by claiming some kind of higher ground regarding the guy who would have been dismissed as a hopeless greenhorn back in 2008 if she'd had her way? By implying her criticisms are substantive and civilized, when her central strategy appears to have become inventing new reasons to hate Sanders, someone running maybe the least offensive campaign any of us has ever seen?

Is she serious?



“I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on,” she said in the interview, citing an article by The Associated Press.

It “found how Senator Obama’s support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me.”

“There’s a pattern emerging here,” she said.


http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/05/08/clinton-touts-white-support/?_r=0

Ms. Ferraro, the former congresswoman and vice-presidential candidate who backs Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, told The Daily Breeze, a newspaper in Torrance, Calif.: “If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman of any color, he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/12/us/politics/12campaign.html

We all pay, for all of it.

And Matthews knows it.There's no free stuff for anyone.

The question has always been how much and for what. We all pay for the wars and the corporate tax subsidies hedge fund loopholes and the no-bid contracts and everything else. We could, if we chose, feed, clothe and educate our people, build our roads; replace our prisons with health and mental health facilities. Take care of the environment.

Our cup runneth over, here in the richest nation on Earth. It's just currently being guzzled by a few people who have grabbed it with both hands and would prefer not to share.

Matthews makes me laugh. He tries to sound scholarly and statesmanlike, but he lapses back into partisan bloviating and comes off silly when he does it.

Was Republican bigotry a reason not to support Obama?

First, Dems don't pick our candidates based on the possible trash the worst people in America might come up with against our candidates.

Secondly, no Dem anywhere will be attacked as savagely as Hillary Clinton will. I don't find that a reason not to support her, but there is literally no one Republicans hate more than Hillary.

And lastly, I'm going to assume the thought here was not to use concern trolling and the "heckler's veto" argument as an excuse to simply say vile things about Bernie Sanders, although that is exactly how David Brock used this tactic to call Bernie Sanders a laundry list of despicable names the other day. His desire to simply say filthy things about Sanders could not have been more transparent or flatly evil.

But this wasn't an acceptable argument when Hillary ran against Obama for the nomination, and it is no more acceptable now.
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