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(42,992 posts)
Mon Apr 23, 2018, 01:28 PM Apr 2018

Sometimes I feel pragmatism here at DU is on short-supply. (Re: Comey) [View all]

Before I elucidate, let me tell you what pragmatism is and isn't.

Pragmatism isn't about giving up on your heartfelt beliefs, positions and principles for the matter of expediency or avoiding all conflict, including necessary conflict.

Pragmatism is a matter of choosing one's battles and placing priorities of argument after taking into consideration the time and place and the appropriateness that arises therefrom.

Just as an example, over the past year or two, I've seen more than a few posts on DU with the message being (sometimes verbatim) "Fuck the media." And the underlying argument is that the media (which the poster will inevitably group together as a collective, even though in fact it represents thousands of different sources, mediums, personalities, viewpoints, etc.) gave Donald Trump a platform during the Republican primaries which essentially legitimized him as a candidate, where if it had ignored him, he would have been laughed away as the joke candidate he should have been viewed as. And as a result, the "media" has made its bed and now must lie in it in shame, and all further questions or criticisms of Trump by the media should be seen as self-inflicted wounds.

That's all well and good and you can argue that the media--in creating a "trainwreck" style of coverage towards Trump during his campaign where the inherent controversy he brings to the table means better sales and ratings--should not be afforded a pass.

But at this point, what good is that going to do? We already have Donald Trump claiming that the media (spare Fox News and a couple of other fawning outlets) is the "enemy of the people", a purveyor of lies, and shouldn't be trusted. So why in the hell should we have someone here at this Democratic/liberal message board echoing Trump's messaging and soundbites, even if for very different reasons than Trump?

Perhaps the "media" (in the collective sense) bears some degree of responsibility for creating the situation, but good luck trying to get out of the situation without the help of the media and quality journalism.

Now we have James Comey giving interviews regarding his book and the publication of his memos, and inevitably DU was hit with a whole host of "Fuck James Comey and we shouldn't care what he has to say because he totally screwed us earlier" posts. The reason for that sentiment, of course, is his handling/mishandling of the Clinton email investigation during the 2016 campaign.

And I'll fully admit for the record I'm just as miffed and puzzled by some of his decisions as to that regard myself, and perhaps the criticism and scrutiny of those decisions is well-warranted.

However, we don't have a time machine. The actual 2016 election has come and gone. We cannot change what happened in November 2016. The reality is now that we have a madman in the form of Donald Trump in the White House who did collude with Russia and who did act to obstruct the investigation of that collusion.

Considering the huge mess we find ourselves in, battles need to be picked for full impact. Right now, Donald Trump is launching an all out assault on James Comey and what he documented in his memo, his testimony to Congress, and his book. And there is nothing that should lead anyone to believe Comey is lying or acting out of a selfish agenda when it comes to his dealings with Donald Trump as President and his attack on the Trussia investigation. His claims are well-documented and supported by others and they need to be pushed forward, not hidden under the table because of past wounds.

Like him, dislike him, or have a completely indifferent opinion of him, James Comey is probably the very best witness there is as it relates to the Obstruction of Justice angle of the Trussia investigation. Attacking him personally and attempting to minimize his credibility does us absolutely no favors.

Echoing Donald Trump's talking points--albeit for very different reasons--creates needless self-inflicted wounds in which there would be only one winner: Donald Trump.

Don't do that.



Pick only the smartest courses of action for the situation which you find yourself in.

Be sensible.

Be pragmatic.

72 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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If nothing else, he may be the epitome of "the enemy of your enemy" NOT being a friend, but... moriah Apr 2018 #1
I think it's because pragmatism is not really needed or even used in US politics ck4829 Apr 2018 #2
?? You're overlooking the one right in front of your face RandomAccess Apr 2018 #7
Because that's it. That's the drop of pragmatism in a sea of anti-pragmatism. ck4829 Apr 2018 #9
EGG-F***ING-ZACTLY ... mr_lebowski Apr 2018 #3
Purist activism only adds to the problem on both sides lunatica Apr 2018 #4
Using that logic, we should not complain about right-wing judicial activism because Trump StevieM Apr 2018 #5
Thank YOU! smirkymonkey Apr 2018 #6
Yup--pragmatism also must mean looking to the future and not into the rear view mirror. panader0 Apr 2018 #8
I'll take your word that they exist, but I haven't seen the posts that say, Squinch Apr 2018 #10
I fully understand the bitterness towards Comey while believing him on the obstruction issue. Tommy_Carcetti Apr 2018 #14
Do you think people venting about it will reduce the likelihood that his testimony about the Squinch Apr 2018 #18
You got it EXACTLY right. We must keep our eye on the prize... impeaching tRump. InAbLuEsTaTe Apr 2018 #33
I think the pragmatic concern IS not damaging Comey so much he's no longer credible on obstruction. moriah Apr 2018 #38
AGREE 100% orangecrush Apr 2018 #11
YES. THANK YOU. We play into their hands if we're attacking Comey now. n/t pnwmom Apr 2018 #12
THIS FreepFryer Apr 2018 #60
Cogratulations on Your Well Thought Out Analysis, Tommy DDySiegs Apr 2018 #13
I just wonder why you keep hitting this topic and theme. Hortensis Apr 2018 #15
I Wonder Too Me. Apr 2018 #27
No doubt about it mtnsnake Apr 2018 #16
There ARE Republicans who want to put Cheeto in jail - Comey is one of them FakeNoose Apr 2018 #17
I'm reading his book, Denis 11 Apr 2018 #19
A VP for Democrats? Uh.. no. Squinch Apr 2018 #20
So lose again on the electoral college states. Denis 11 Apr 2018 #25
So the only way we can win is to have as VP candidate the Republican who trashed the Squinch Apr 2018 #26
The Republican party left Comey. Denis 11 Apr 2018 #31
Okie dokie then. You start that movement to put republicans onto the Democratic ticket. Squinch Apr 2018 #35
I remember we flirted with the idea of McCain as VP in 2004. Demit Apr 2018 #36
Is it me or is it really, really weird around here these days? Squinch Apr 2018 #37
Yes it's weird Denis 11 Apr 2018 #39
You were not "force fed" Hillary for president. You had a vote in the primary, if you used it. Demit Apr 2018 #40
If you were "force fed" Hillary for President, you may be in the wrong place. Squinch Apr 2018 #42
May be in the wrong country. Not everyone is emotionally Hortensis Apr 2018 #45
Hillary won the nomination receiving 4 million more votes than Sanders lunamagica Apr 2018 #44
She was a better candidate in theory than in practice. Denis 11 Apr 2018 #48
You were the one who said that Hillary was "force fed" to us lunamagica Apr 2018 #50
I was tossed off the Hillary board on DU, Denis 11 Apr 2018 #56
So you think we should have been force fed Sandes even though he was the loser (by millions) lunamagica Apr 2018 #65
Both of them didn't have the horsepower to win the race. Denis 11 Apr 2018 #66
People need a hero, and they don't want to see his feet of clay. Demit Apr 2018 #41
Why VP? Why not president? lunamagica Apr 2018 #21
I like Elizabeth Warren, Denis 11 Apr 2018 #24
Where Is This Coming From Me. Apr 2018 #30
It's why we lose. Adrahil Apr 2018 #22
+1000 n/t mtnsnake Apr 2018 #23
Yes. Thank you. GoCubsGo Apr 2018 #28
Pragmatism is more valuable in the real world. Orsino Apr 2018 #29
I fail to see how criticizing Comey for the crap he pulled last year is "echoing Trump's talking Demit Apr 2018 #32
And One Has To Wonder Me. Apr 2018 #34
Nowhere did I say that Comey is beyond criticism. Tommy_Carcetti Apr 2018 #46
WHAT course of action? What are you talking about? What "action" do you think people are taking Demit Apr 2018 #47
Pragmatism ONLY works when all sides are pragmatic. If one side is not, pragmatists lose every time TheBlackAdder Apr 2018 #43
True Denis 11 Apr 2018 #49
+1. I will side with Comey vs. Drumpf. However, should he have the misfortune to rzemanfl Apr 2018 #51
Recommended. guillaumeb Apr 2018 #52
Pragmatism and sockpuppet control are both in short supply. FreepFryer Apr 2018 #53
I'm on the DU longer than you. Denis 11 Apr 2018 #58
I was responding to your post, not characterizing you. Do you not agree DU has a sock problem? FreepFryer Apr 2018 #59
I just hope you we're not trying to tell me to stifle. Denis 11 Apr 2018 #62
I wasnt even replying to a post of yours. I was replying to the OP. FreepFryer Apr 2018 #63
THANKS! Yes, elleng Apr 2018 #54
Thank you. greatauntoftriplets Apr 2018 #55
Ive been wanting to say that for a long time Clarity2 Apr 2018 #57
I am sometimes stunned by the political and even life lack of awareness of some. Blue_true Apr 2018 #61
Comey has firmly said he would do the same thing all over again. But you think he "secretly" lunamagica Apr 2018 #67
Wrong. Blue_true Apr 2018 #68
Link? because what I found is this lunamagica Apr 2018 #69
The interview that he did with the GMA host. He said what I pointed out. nt Blue_true Apr 2018 #70
Did you read what I posted? lunamagica Apr 2018 #72
KnR Hekate Apr 2018 #64
WORD. Be pragmatic and sensible. People lead with emotions all too often. nt Kirk Lover Apr 2018 #71
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