SITGES, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 07:  The opening of t...
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While Australia is my home of choice, and I love her dearly, I was born in and spent my first half century (was 51 when I came here) in what was the acknowledged Greatest Country in the World. A country, while hated by many for good reason, was still a beacon of Freedom and opportunity, a country that took care of it’s own. My heart is broken, and tears come rushing through knowing that my grandchildren and great grandchildren will never enjoy the most awesome American way of life that I and my parents had. They will never have the opportunity to do as my parents, to build a comfortable fortune, to have a decent job that pays a liveable wage, or even to have access to health care. They no longer have the freedom that I had to backpack the country, working, partying, exploring that I had, the freedom to move from place to place and find work as well as friendly people. There are few friendly people left. They are too afraid of each other to be friendly.

A few months ago I watched the news in horror as a mans house burned to the ground, killing 3 dogs and 2 cats trapped inside, while the fire department looked on, because the man had forgotten to pay his $75 subscription fee. I cried as I listened to the horrible voices of the likes of Glen Beck and Sarah Palin and many of those running for congress as they said the guy deserved it. “Time to weed out the free-loaders”. This in the same state where my grandchildren live.

I am angry that decent and dedicated Patriots who wish to Serve, Protect and Defend their country, men and women willing to die for their country are denied that right because of who they love. I am angry that when the Judicial system ruled that DADT was wrong, and told the military to stop enforcing DADT, the President who I had supported and defended for the past 2 years, who promised to end DADT, allowed his administration to step in and reverse that decision. “Yes we can” became “no we won’t” once again.

I am angered as the flood of money, by the MILLIONS that is being poured into the political system by Billionaires and Global corporations like B.P, and Rupert Murdock, and Koch brothers, who are deliberately fracturing the people and the infrastructure. I am infuriated the the wealthiest corporations wish to funnel more and more American jobs to India and China, whilst denying any hope to the working poor in America.

Schools shut down, police and fire department staff laid off, street lights shut off, roads pulled up and gravelled rather than repaired, bridges closed or collapsed, the entire infrastructure has broken down, is out dated and outmoded. Why? Because the rich don’t pay taxes and the poor are out of work., and congress would rather cut help for the people rather than give up those huge campaign donations from the bastards who caused the freaking mess in the first place.

I am crushed to the soul as I watch more and more violence by Americans against Americans who are of the ‘wrong’ skin colour or religion or gender or political party. I watch in sorrow as I see those people that I grew up with, whose families were my family, vilified because they are Latino. The border states want to pass more and more laws to punish those who still believe in the American Dream, yet those same laws allow American gun dealers on the Mexican border to sell the weapons and ammunition to the drug lords in Mexico that are the reason decent hard working Mexican people are fleeing north in fear of their lives!

And I wonder, with things so bad at home, with the country in such need of relief, or rebuilding, why is it necessary to fund and maintain over 730 military bases around the world, many in countries where the inhabitants don’t want them?

America is no longer the land of the free and the home of the brave. It is no longer the country where the Lady at the gate welcomed with the words:

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

The country of my birth, a country that I love as much as this one, is become a wrenched third world country. A bully country run by bullies.

It’s easy to say “quit watching, there’s nothing you can do about it”. That’s like telling a dying mother’s child not to sit by the bedside because that won’t save her mothers life. I am a child of America. I can not turn away and pretend it doesn’t matter because there is nothing I can do about it. I can do nothing, and that is the most devastating of all. When I try to block it out, I find that I must block out so much that I cease to be able to function with any intelligence. I spent so many years of my life caught up in the politics and controversy that it is part of who I am, part of what makes me “Me”.

There are a lot of crazy people saying a lot of crazy things about the constitution, most of whom have never bothered to read the thing. There’s a lot of crazy people out there who claim to be Christians who have never read the ‘words in red’. Scarier is that these seem to be the same people. They will not be happy until the Mississippi is flowing red with the blood of everyone who is not just like them.

If I could have 5 minutes with President Obama I would like to say the following,

Mr. President,

For 2 years I have defended you, Sir. “Give him time”, I said, it took years to get into this mess, it will take time to make things right. Now I see that yet again this administration has gone against it’s own promises. Time and time again you have broken the promises you swore to keep. Your administration is defending the War Criminals, the liars and thieves who occupied that office for the 8 years before you, by not allowing them to be prosecuted for their crimes, and even denying American Citizens their rights, under the First Amendment to petition the courts for “a redress of grievances”. You have not only continued many of the Bush administrations criminal policies, but in many ways you have made those policies even worse.

You made a promise that those who wished to serve their country would no longer have to lie about who they are to do so. Once again you have not only failed to keep that promise, but when a member of the Judicial Branch of government ordered that DADT no longer be unforced, your administration has stepped in to keep this outrageous act in place. What happened to the Checks and Balances we were taught in school that were so crucial to the democratic system of the USA? In the shredder, obviously.

Your daughter told you that as the first Black President you had to be the best. I am saddened that as she grows up and sees what has happened under your ‘leadership’, she is going to be very, very disappointed. You, Sir, are little better than the man you replaced.

With Respect,

Katherine “Nana Mex”
USA Citizen by Birth
Australian by Choice
Carnarvon, Western Australia

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”. ~ Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963

“Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.” ~ Winston Churchill

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Chernynkaya
Member

NanaMex, I commented when you first published this, so I won’t repeat myself. Besides, there is no shortage of excellent comments here already, so let me just say some things that have been bothering me.

I was taken aback at your posting this Open Letter. First, you are new here; you published this the day you joined. I don’t know if you had spent any time getting to know this site before you put up your article but it seems unlikely, and to me (priss that I am) it felt a bit presumptuous.

Second, and this is really more important from my POV, you posted and then disappeared. For days. I was left feeling duped– as if you were actually a troll. I was wrong about that, but I felt it was not cool. Again, it at least showed that you posted before familiarizing yourself with the site.

Having gotten that off my chest, I am glad you came back and look forward to your future involvement at PlanetPOV.

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

My open letter to, well, open letters:

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
-William Ernest Henley

Mr. President,

You were my first choice–not my second or third. By far! In your acceptance speech on election night, you were quite clear in telling us all that your election does not automatically “make the change we seek.” “There’s still a lot of work to do,” you said. There would be starts and stops. The climb would be tough. You still need our help. That, if we did not get there in the first month, first year, or first term, you promised to never give up.

And despite the slings and arrows of outrageous chance, your head remains high, while you continue our fight. I wish I had your strength.

Like me, I am sure that most First Choicers did not walk away with any false expectations or false realities that autumn night–you never promised to walk on water. I am equally certain that NONE of us knew “How charged with punishments the scroll” would be. However, I have not lost sight of the absolute fact that scores of important presidential nominations have been held up by republicans. These nominees could be well on their way to delivering on many more of the promises you made. Too little attention is given to this by MSM (and naybobs). Instead, the focus is always on what you have not done. Or, some fake story about a so-called tea-bagging patriot. This is no accident; a fool I am not. They have been complicit in their spin, and their skin. I have yet to figure out what to do about MSM; but, I know what to do about the others. This is why I write.

The obstructionists have not tired in trying to determine your fate and thus, I will not weaken in your defense!

To be continued: November, 2012.

kesmarn
Admin

Well said, FerraKnows.

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

I’m honored, kesmarn!

AdLib
Admin

Co-signed! Well done, FerraKnows!

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

Cool, AdLib!

Redemption Song
Guest
Redemption Song

“…Ferra Knows Best.” ;0)

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

Thanks Redemption ;o)

Chernynkaya
Member

AMEN Ferra!

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

“I love you back!”
~Barack Obama

Truth
Member

FerraKnows, excellent and very much agreed. Here’s some stuff that might interest you:

[img]http://planetpov.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/ncmr2011-block-small.png[/img]

http://conference.freepress.net/

and:

Chernynkaya
Member

Thanks for posting that, Truth. Outstanding.

Redemption Song
Guest
Redemption Song

Hear, hear!

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

Thanks for the link Truth! I’ll keep an eye on the organization, and gladly get behind the option that appears most achievable.

KQµårk 死神
Member

Absolutely. Any president should be judged on what he can get done of course and considering the resistance to change in Washington he’s gotten an amazing amount done. That being said he’s got to do more but the catch 22 is he can’t do more with a right wing lead GOP house.

To me he now needs to focus on two things. First keeping the ACA act in place and executing it efficiently. Unlike Republicans Democrats have to prove themselves to voters to swing the political pendulum. Second is work on foreign policy both in terms of international cooperation and selling America again.

Like always thanks to big oil and the GOP dam that protects them switching to renewable energy technology will be piecemeal at best. C’mon we all know the real reason the GOP is fighting HSR so much is because it will change our perceptions that we should only use motor vehicles and airlines to go intermediate distances.

This president’s legacy will be tied to how our healthcare system looks 10 years from now and if he can end the Iraq War (which is over BTW) and Afghan War in his term(s). Of course other events can always come into play but that’s how it stands now.

escribacat
Member

I’m with you, Ferra. Well said.

FerraKnows
Member
FerraKnows

“In the beginning of a change the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot.”
— Mark Twain

ADONAI
Member

It’s a right leaning country. Particularly on social issues. And when politicians on either side get into it, especially Presidents, everyone gets pissed.

If it were a left leaning country, you would think at least a third of the states would allow same sex marriage. 6 states. And a Native American tribe. That’s not even a fourth. And all this “civil unions” bullshit …I mean, come on. Let these people get married. It’s fucking ridiculous.

What was the point of all that Civil Rights legislation we passed 40 years ago? Was that just for African-Americans? Should we keep calling it that since, obviously, not all citizens are treated equally.

And where is that argument at? Are these people American citizens? Yes. So, give me the Constitutional argument that leads to them having fewer rights than every other citizen. There isn’t one! If a church doesn’t want to marry them and they don’t take federal money, that’s fine. But they should have THE RIGHT to marry somewhere else like every other goddamn American!

There are 12 other states that have recently debated same sex marriage. And we need every one of them and then some. With a majority of states getting over themselves, we can almost completely avoid attempts at federal legislation to ban gay marriage. The numerous court rulings on the way will build a mountain of precedent that could withstand even a Supreme Court challenge in my opinion.

I wanna tie this all together with a witty closing statement but I can’t. So I’ll just end it abruptly.

Khirad
Member

I want to come up with a thoughtful reply, but I can’t. So I’ll just thumbs you up.

PocketWatch
Member

Kinda got buried below…

My solution, such as it is, is to support and get elected state senators and congress people, judges, district attorneys, and school boards that are liberal, progressive, green, and socialist.

THAT is the pool from which salvation shall arise.

Not very satisfying, but it’s the only way.

Khirad
Member

Start in the city councils, even if they are “non-partisan” they build a name and jump to county and state offices.

Voting Green or Socialist nationally, whatnot, while for some principled, is a complete waste.

Vote Green, Socialist, etc. locally to build an organizational structure. Even if they be the most minor positions.

School boards tend to be seen as unimportant, but conservatives long ago figured out how crucial those are and we only woke up nationally with Texas.

This will need to start in the cities (Seattle, Portland, Berkeley, San Francisco, Cambridge, Madison, Boulder, Austin, etc. I’m looking at you).

funksands
Member

Khirad, I am in complete and total agreement with you. Particular attention should paid to the judiciary. There has been a concerted effort to infect the judiciary with right-wing judges. It has been successful.

Khirad
Member

Oh wow, how could I have not thought of that too? Yes of course!

Chernynkaya
Member

All I can add is: I agree!

Abbyrose86
Member

I tend to agree PW….We need to get the left candidates in a the lower levels before we can tackle getting enough in at the higher levels to REALLY get the change we want.

Chernynkaya
Member

Yes, PW of course. That begs the question, however, I’m afraid.

How do we do that? The midterms were probably an aberration; a kind of mass hissy fit. But even so, this country just elected the most toxic, Right -wing miscreants in my lifetime. That means you can’t merely say, “Let’s elect Progressives.”

So how to we move the country back to, at least, the actual middle, if not the Left?

It strikes me as stupendously inane to claim we do that by allowing the Right to win by staying home and “teaching those Dems a lesson!” So let’s set aside the ridiculous portion of the Left who claim that nonsense. How do we move that great mass of unthinking blob that is the Swing Voter? How do we move the great mass of bored and ADD Voters: The Independents?

Well, if I were Queen, I’d say

1)it starts with basic education.You know–like Civics and Critical Thinking. But then you have to ask: How do we re-vamp our schools? Obama is trying to do just that.

2.) I’d make sure we brought back at least the Fairness Doctrine, so that broadcasters like Fox could not dominate the airwaves, spreading lies to those uneducated I mentioned above. There is not much else the government could do. That’s why Citizen’s Journalism is important. As well as people like Soros– who is the ONLY big money source we have. And you know what else? In times like these, I’d knock on every corporation with any liberal leanings and actually provide a quid pro quo for them to fund Liberal media. This is war.

3.)Somehow, I would take all the people who are so miserable about the strength of the Repubs and the weakness of the Dems and find some way to get them off their asses and off their freaking computers to actually do something to change the dynamic.

There are a variety of Progressive organizations. Every single day is a call to action from some of them. But it’s so much easier to bellyache–and more fun too! The Labor Movement had to change minds too–and they did. They didn’t only bitch and moan.

Speaking of that, here is a crosspost from the Daily Planet thread. I post it because I everyone is pretty quick to complain, but until we behave like the Baggers, it is just hot air. And I also believe that once people get out there, it will build. And that’s how you organize and change minds.

Maybe you can’t send much money. Maybe you already sent a pizza, voted against the cretins in power, canceled your trip to Abu Dubai. Maybe you aren’t exactly prepared to zip on over to Yemen, grab a burning Molotov and march. Hell, maybe you don’t really care about the fat sheiks in Bahrain because what the hell do those billionaire misogynists have to do with the price of a decent dental plan for your kids?

Nevertheless, you know the cause is just. Do not miss this ride. Do not let the opportunity swirl by untapped. Harness this moment like it’s a goddamn wild horse and make changes in your own world, push back against boundaries and regimes, oppressive dogma and deception. Why not? Hold up a sign. Support a local organization. Seek release. Live authentically, love intently, push back again the injustices immediately around you. Sound simple? Sound obvious? Sure it is. I dare you.

After all, each and every one of these stunning global protests is nothing but another verse in the universal struggle for more liberation, more empowerment (or in the case of Wisconsin, less disempowerment), more self-determination, the human animal ever hungry to choose its own fate without so many nefarious bindings and chains, jackals and billionaire trolls eating away the core.
As it is for you, so it is for the collective whole, the universal body. Micro to macro, intimate to communal and right back again. Viva la revolucion, baby. What’s your offering?

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/03/02/notes030211.DTL

Abbyrose86
Member

Indeed Cher! Indeed! I don’t know what else to say!

Chernynkaya
Member

Abby–we are so often on the same page. I respect others differences of opinion–that’s what this is all about– but sometimes it’s just nice to plain agree. Thanks.

Artist50
Member
Artist50

Cher –
We need daily talking points like the right has. You can tell what their “points du jour” are when you hear speaker after speaker say the same thing.

We need local organization.

We need to counter the right by explaining why people vote against their interests year after year.

Why can’t we get a clear message out? Why do people still think Obama spent a fricking day of his childhood in Kenya?

Chernynkaya
Member

Artist– everything you say is spot on. I have read explanations from greater thinkers than I about why the Progressive message is harder to articulate, but I still don’t understand what’s so difficult.

jkkFL
Guest

I can’t figure out who cut the tongues out of every Democrat from the President down.
Where is the DNC? Where are the wealthy liberals? (Are there any besides Soros?) Where is the PR arm of the left??
Where are the slogans, the bumper stickers, the talking points, the media hype from the progressives?
Where are the loudmouths of the left???
Grrrrr!

Chernynkaya
Member

jkk, I can’t figure it out either. But sometimes I think the Dems DO have the message and the media drowns it out by repeating only the REPUB talking points. I don’t get it.

Buddy McCue
Member

There’s also this advantage for the Republicans:

The Republican party is friendlier to the interests of Big Business, and the mainstream media is literally owned by a small handful of giant corporations. That’s got to be a factor.

At least it explains why very industry-friendly Democrats are invariably described as “moderates.”

To my mind, being very industry-friendly and being moderate are not really the same thing.

jkkFL
Guest

Cher,
Some teachers I know see ‘Race to the Top’ as ‘no child left behind’..rebranded.
School are still desperately underfunded, teachers still teach ‘the test’.
Johnny can’t read because all he has to do is be able to read the test.. and now most states are eliminating tenure for raises based on ‘The Test’..
My prediction: in the future, teacher shortages will rival that of nurses..who wants to do either lousy job for more than a few years?
I know more RNs who work for insurance companies than in hospitals.

Chernynkaya
Member

Jkk, Race to the Top does use some elements of No Child but improves upon it and cuts out a lot of what was in it. I think as it gets implemented they might see that.

But absolutely–it’s a crisis and if the President wants to save education, he must find a way to fund schools in ways the states cannot decimate. I am not sure how much the federal govt. can do when these states are cutting. And the other thing–and thank god we are seeing it–is that voters themselves must get involved and protest! We the people have our jobs to do too to make government work.

KQµårk 死神
Member

My solution is even very simple. Get as many people out to vote as possible. If we had a turnout of 70% like Caru said they did in Ireland’s last election in every election including midterms, sooner than we would realize it the true voice of this country would be known. But of course the GOP already knows this and tries to suppress the voting public by any means necessary.

People can vote for a new communist party as far as I’m concerned but the left will never get have a voice if they sit at home.

We are center right mostly because the center right dominates voting patterns more than anything. I think if the real heart of the country spoke it would turn more left than we would imagine. Hell I’ll take center as a first step.

Abbyrose86
Member

Excellent point KQ…we have such low voter turn out and the only ones who consistently vote are the right wing nut cases. NO wonders they keep getting their way…THEY FUCKING actually VOTE!

KillgoreTrout
Member

I have said this, many times before, mostly on, “that other site,” that my main disagreement with Obama is his approach to Islamic extremism. It is really just an extension of the bush administration’s approach.
I firmly believe that we will never defeat or curtail such extremism by conventional military means. We have to be smarter in our approach. We have to stop creating anti-American sentiment in our quest for victory. I don’t believe, in any real sense that victory is obtainable or definable. We are trying to kill ideas with bombs and bullets.
I am in favor of Joe Biden’s suggested approach, which got shelved pretty quickly. That we should be treating al Qaida like an international criminal conspiracy, which is exactly what it is. In Afghanistan, we need to rely more on air power and special forces ops. All we are doing now is turning the Afghan people against us. With every innocent mother or father or child we kill, we create an even greater number of haters of America.
We are in a vicious, senseless cycle of destroying and creating enemies.

Abbyrose86
Member

Kilgore, I agree that our methods of “making friends and influencing people” especially in the ME, is not that effective. I mean, seriously, how does making an enemy, by bombing innocents and waging war, of 3 billion people who practice Islam an effective strategy for getting them to see the American view of things?

It makes no sense, what so ever. IF I was a Muslim in the ME and I was seeing the US engage in such things, I would not like America…kind of seems self evident. WHY do we think that bombing people into submission will work? Has it ever, in the history of man, worked? NO…it’s just creates more hatred and fosters generational resentments. Agreed is is very senseless!

KillgoreTrout
Member

abby, absolutely. Bombing did work in WWII, but that was an entirely different situation. We didn’t kill the idea of National Socialism, or the Japanese Emperor system, but we did finally force Japan and Germany to surrender. (at a horrendous loss of civilian lives)
But in the war against Islamic extremists we face an entirely different type of enemy.
We really need to ditch the old neo-con approach to, “the war on terror.”

Abbyrose86
Member

AMEN! I thought the whole idea was ridiculous from the get go. I was very vocally opposed to the whole ‘war on terror’ from the get go…I even lost a job over it…I was fine with that!

KillgoreTrout
Member

abby, I hate to say this, because it seems a little less than rational, but I truly believe that waging war is now a new industry in the US.
Defense contracts employ millions of people, in many of our states.
I think it is an insurmountable problem, even for the POTUS.

Artist50
Member
Artist50

I think you’re right KT- that’s why no one talks about cutting defense spending. WWII is really what got us out of the depression and Ike warned us of this. Our economy is based on war. It’s why we have bases in all those countries. We’re also supplying them with arms and our friends this decade will use our weapons against us In the coming decades (Saddam).

I was also against the war in Iraq and fought with everyone about it – it as if I was unpatriotic. I just didn’t understand why we would start it- nor did I understand how it would solve the jihad issue.. I’m sure more Muslims hate us and want to do us harm today than they did ten years ago, as you said Abby.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Thanks for your reply Artist. The whole idea of pre-emptive war came from those black hearted folks steeped in Neo-Conservatism. They want total domination in the middle east.
Luckily, calmer, more rational heads are in charge now, but war is still a big business in the US. It bothers me that such things are taking place in the name of the American people.

Abbyrose86
Member

I hate to admit it, but i think you are on to something there Kilgore. Sad.

KillgoreTrout
Member

A great satire, that is not really far from the truth;

Buddy McCue
Member

Brute force is almost always the worst idea in solving a complex problem.

Imagine an auto mechanic who has a sledge-hammer as his primary tool. I sure wouldn’t trust such a mechanic to work on anything of mine!

funksands
Member

KT, well said. I’m a a believer in treating Al Queda like the Mafia and not a state enemy. Marginalize them and you’ll take away a lot of what attracts foot soldiers to their cause.

KillgoreTrout
Member

funksands, and we would save billions of dollars and thousands of lives.

BigDogMom
Member
BigDogMom

funk – Marginalizing them takes away their power, takes away their message and like you said the attraction to their cause…have you noticed when the world seems to forget OBL and Al Qaeda, they always seem to come out with a new audio tape?

ghsts
Member

Agreed, I would only add this should be a benchmark instead of a pipe dream.

Khirad
Member

Yup, KG, that’s my biggest beef with him too.

funksands
Member

I’m sorry but I’m going to take this back to the “Culture Warrior” article I wrote a few weeks ago.

The left came into its own by fighting for the dream of simple economic fairness. The rise of unions, the rise of tax rates on the wealthy, the regulations imposed on and the walls built between industries to end once and for all the never ending 2000 year cycle of boom / bust / boom /bust.

I share the view of some that once accomplished, the focus of the left began to move to social and societal issues. Environment, racial equality, gender equality, etc.

I think we’ve taken our eye off the ball. I think far too many of our federal elected officials are too young, and by virtue of their wealth, too far removed from the bare-knuckled fight for the economic future of our country.

I think far too big a slice of our federal Democratic party is more than happy to let the current system of economic injustice continue in return for greater social justice. Not because its right, but because its simply the way things work.

Haruko Haruhara
Member

I can understand and respect the frustration with Obama and the Democrats for not standing up more forcefully for the Progressive agenda. I can understand the lack of patience. It is exasperating.

But, I’m bothered by the “I’ll never vote Democratic,” I’ll never support Obama again” rhetoric.

Let’s look at a not-so-outrageous scenario. Say it’s Bachmann and Obama in 2012. Bachmann has made a number of shocking statements about taking away women’s right to choose, taking away gay rights, going after immigrants and Muslims, bringing more Christianity into government, and yet she’s doing shockingly well in the polls. Say she has the entire Deep South Electoral College wrapped up — she has Texas and Florida … she’s got 195 Electoral votes in the bag. All she needs is Ohio, Pennsylvania and maybe another swing state to win. The polls in the swing states are close. I don’t believe this is an outrageous premise. I think it could happen.

Where will “I will never support Obama again” get you then?

That’s why I personally avoid that kind black-and-white rhetoric.

Here’s my take on it. Obama isn’t perfect, and we need to keep battling. We will see some victories; we will see some defeats. We got health care reform, but it didn’t go nearly far enough. Obama did sign the repeal of DADT; he eventually did drop the fight against DOMA, but he took his sweet time about it. Longer than he should have.

But, I actually feel sometimes we are at war … with a party that has gone utterly insane. I certainly feel as if I’m war to maintain control over my own body, from those who will take that control away from me. Maybe war is too strong of a word, but there are people driving the narrative on the other side of the aisle who scare the bejeesus out of me.

I will continue supporting the candidates that provide the buffer against that kind of extremism, warts and all.

Abbyrose86
Member

I like your take on the situation HH.

While the Dems and Obama have been far from perfect, we have so MANY issues and so much that has been allowed for too long to fester unabated.

I think the frustration being expressed are legitimate but at the same time is somewhat misplaced.

I have not been thrilled with how some things were handled but at the same time, I realize that the far right are NOT exactly RATIONAL and many of the plutocrats who are behind those on the right aren’t going to give up without a REAL fight, and sadly THEY have the power and money to be able to outlast everyone, and work things to their benefit. THE plutocrats have the POWER to control the message. They can buy and influence opinion much easier than the average street fighter. THEY have all the resources on their side…most businesses, the MSM and employers are on their side of the fight. SO they have a big advantage.

WHAT the left has and doesn’t use well, is we really do have the benefit of the masses on our side as well as the understanding of what the REAL problems are…but I think unless we work together, we could end up shooting ourselves in the foot.

BigDogMom
Member
BigDogMom

Abby – It’s our message, it’s not getting out there, we are being overrun by the GOP with a bullhorn, while we cup our hands to our mouth and yell.

I assume you saw Rachel’s show last night, boomer posted a link to it this morning, over 70% of the America people agree with every liberal principle that the Dems have…but because it’s labeled “liberal” it’s considered bad. Why? Because we have let the GOP continually blast the airwaves that it’s BAD!!!

We need to start fighting fire with fire, we have the advantage of intelligence on our side…we need to start playing like we are on “SURVIVOR”…Out Wit, Out Play and Out Last!!!!!

Abbyrose86
Member

I couldn’t agree more BDM…our messaging sucks!

I’ve been saying that for awhile, we need better PR and marketing!

The right has got THAT down pat!

Haruko Haruhara
Member

It’s because they mostly appeal to people’s fear and hate.

And that’s easy.

Our side has the harder job. We have to play to people’s hopes.

Abbyrose86
Member

HH, that is good point too!

Khirad
Member

Very good point HH.

You just in two words defined the Conservative/Liberal psychological dichotomy.

Buddy McCue
Member

It’s true.

Anger and fear translate directly into support for Rightwing candidates. It’s a very easy button for them to push.

How can we convince people to keep from feeling such anger? I try to tell conservatives I know that Obama really isn’t trying to destroy the country; there’s no need to hate him for it. There’s no “creeping Sharia law” in this country, and there’s no need to be afraid of that.

But I find that I can’t be as persuasive as the whole giant rightwing messaging machine. I’m only one guy.

KillgoreTrout
Member

abby, there is no real dissent among the right wingers. Marching in lock step is one of the requirements among the right. They don’t question anything told to them by right wing news and right wing politicians. This is why they are so difficult to engage in intelligent, informed and reasoned debate.
Liberals, do question authority, as we should. We have differing opinions and ideas. We don’t think as a single entity. True progress is dependent on a free association of ideas and a watchful eye on those in power.
The right dominates the media, for the most part. There are pockets of reason spread about, but the noise made by the right wing media, and the willful ignorance of their audience, makes for a powerful opposition.

Abbyrose86
Member

Very true Kilgore. And SADLY all those factors and more is WHY the right often wins. {sigh}

Artist50
Member
Artist50

They have always been better with that – partly because they have no problem playing dirty and they don’t bad mouth each other (a Reagan commandment).

I also think as a 60’s liberal that label is still haunting us from that violent time. You would think with all the young people it would be a distant memory, but it’s the old people vote and they still remember. They come in cars and pick the old people up at assisted living facilities (my 90 year old aunt couldn’t balance her checkbook or live alone but she remembered to vote Republican).

funksands
Member

Abby do you think too many of us are satisfied by looking at current Democratic policies on a COMPARATIVE basis?

My suspicion is that too many view many of these policies with grudging acceptance because they are comparatively better than the previous administration. But are they enough when viewed objectively?

I can’t shake the feeling of how the meal,silverware, dessert, garnish, cocktail, and appetizer are all better than they were before, but really not that great.

Is that enough for now? It’s enough to get me to vote Democratic on every federal level. But is it enough?

Abbyrose86
Member

Good question. On the one hand I think so. The previous admin was BAD, VERY BAD, and I think there are some factions that don’t want a return to THAT.

On the other hand though, I think some are not being practical.

Using your metaphor….I will elaborate.

While the current service and meal are BETTER than what they were for the 8 years previous, THEY would be WORSE IF the previous caterer was given the job back.

While this isn’t the best meal, part of that is because because some of the crops were bad due to environmental damage, so some of the main ingredients were not as good as they were before.

In addition,the previous caterer had BROKEN all the good China and sold the silver, and the NEW chef can’t afford new ones, so he is using the everyday dishes.

The Chef also has some leftover staff (his servers and kitchen staff) from along time ago, who won’t go away and are holding information the Chef needs for ransom, as they like their jobs and don’t want to change jobs.

So the Chef has a tough job, and doesn’t have the SAME ingredients the previous chef had…he only has the same kitchen, but with much broken equipment and many of the same staff. Unless he can get the equipment fixed, replace the China and Silver AND get a totally new staff that has allegiance to him AND is able to get the same ingredients…the meal won’t be as good.

(I like the meal metaphor….it worked well!)

Sadly the dinners don’t realize the problems the Chef has encountered and think the meal should be as GOOD if not better than it was before.

funksands
Member

Abby, I’ll have to digest your post for a bit. 🙂

Abbyrose86
Member

Nicely done funk! 🙂

Abbyrose86
Member

BTW Funk….my SO is a Chef…so the whole metaphor was easy for me to use,, as I have actually SEEN it happen just like that in many restaurants!

KQµårk 死神
Member

HH that’s what too few people understand.

ghsts
Member

HH- You say it better than me, I tend to feel lumped in with the never again folks though honestly I would NEVER vote gop. To me that black-and-white stuff sounds just like most campaign rhetoric, should we treat it as such and understand most wont vote bachmann out of spite? My fear is that for some the ‘woman’s right to choose’ is just another issue and open to compromise. This is where my panic comes from, knowing which issues are sacred.

Khirad
Member

It’s as if you crawled inside my head and wrote what I was thinking but was too lazy to, HH.

Artist50
Member
Artist50

I agree with you HH. For me at a place with like minded people, you can voice your frustration, but it’s a little criticizing your child – it’s ok for me (or us) to do it, but not anyone else – because I know deep down I’m not going to vote for anyone else.

ADONAI
Member

We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.

Caru
Member

There is a problem among liberals/progressives or whatever it’s called now.

This problem is people who support the President accentuating the positives of his administration and those who have lost hope in him accentuating the negatives of his administration.

I’m not saying that there’s a perfect medium, but the repeal of DADT does not mean that Obama is the best president and the failure of bank reform does not mean that he is the worst. If you get my meaning.

whatsthatsound
Member

I agree with that. It’s not so much the accentuating per se as how that interferes with clear communication between Obamabots and Obamanots. It’s like they look at the same tree and one says it’s brown and the other says it’s green and they’re both right, but they fight about it.

Caru
Member

Precisely. Great simile.

whatsthatsound
Member

Thx!

Abbyrose86
Member

Great metaphor!

Khirad
Member

Agreed with both.

I see a little more Manichaeism from the Obamanots, but by god there are some obnoxiously cheery Obamabots on HP that don’t help at all.

PocketWatch
Member

I’ve been reading the back-and-forth on this for an hour or so, and have something to say.

First of all, as a Socialist (when it comes to societal issues), I have been disappointed with our national government for over 30 years, and that disappointment is still extant. One would have thought by now we would have had some form of national health care, gotten the message that nation building and planetary policing is not our job, understood that infrastructure is the magic bullet to prosperity, figured out that laws apply to ALL citizens, not just those who are like us (whoever THAT is…), that campaign election laws really need to be fixed, and that for-profit enterprises should not be allowed anywhere near strategic elements of our internal systems. But nooooo….!

As a pragmatist, I understand that no one can be “blamed.” Each element of our government operates very differently. A President is as captured by the system as is a Congressman or Senator. The first rule of politics is, and always will be, to govern you must get elected first.

Has President Obama done his best? I have no idea, since I have no notion of what goes on behind closed doors or what has to be attended to we will never know about. For example, the man has surrounded himself with Wall Streeters to advise him on the financial mess. OK… I think about this… who else would have any notion about what has happened and what might be needed to fix it? Even if he were able to find academics to fill that role, the President has no power to run the country by fiat (notwithstanding the efforts of his predecessor). Congress needs to act, and so on and so on.

But let’s suppose that our President did all that we dream we wanted and Congress passed the necessary legislation. Even to prosecuting certain people for treason.

I leave it to others to imagine the backlash and upheavals that these actions would cause. With a corporate press and activists willing to bring firearms to Presidential events with no accountability… well, treading lightly and incrementalism sounds wise to me.

The Left has always been somewhat scattered and disorganized because it contains so many of differing opinions and ideas. I like it like that. To become a monobloc of thought is one way to really lose this fight, and it IS a fight.

KQµårk 死神
Member

Very well said. I agree with most of what you said.

Haruko Haruhara
Member

I just want to ask some people, “when did ANY politician EVER give you EVERYTHING you wanted as quickly as you wanted it?”

When?

That isn’t how it works.

Abbyrose86
Member

Great question!

I was actually thinking along those lines myself!

Khirad
Member

Somehow they thought this time would be different?

Chernynkaya
Member

PW. I could not have said that better.

Khirad
Member

Hallelujah.

AlphaBitch
Member
AlphaBitch

Well thought out and reasoned arguments, PW. You made me proud to be a Texan again (for a minute anyway -Pocket Watch giveth and Rick Perry taketh away).

PocketWatch
Member

AB, I’m not a native Texan, but as they say, I got here as soon as I could!

AlphaBitch
Member
AlphaBitch

And the Woodlands is a lovely venue for music and so much more!

jkkFL
Guest

PW- That was a MasterPost.
Amen 🙂

PocketWatch
Member

jkk – I got one right? LOL

jkkFL
Guest

Would have written the same thing myself- had I been capable of it!

chazmania
Guest

I think the time for a bold leader (and i do not mean a crack pot word salad maker) is very much NOW….We face PROFOUND problems environmental financial and social and yet its dinner parties in the white house some snappy lines and flowery speeches…its like they are having a nice little time wile the world goes to shit…whats next Obama on the roof of the white house with a fucking fiddle??

PocketWatch
Member

chaz, as always, people are welcome to their opinion. I simply would not characterize things to be anything like that.

chazmania
Guest

Am a passionate smart ass…..what can i say?

I did like your post by the way….
Im just way fed up….

PocketWatch
Member

chaz, at least 2 things we have in common, then.

And I DO understand ‘fed up.’ Imagine being a real, living breathing Socialist and having to endure the Bushiacs for 8 years!

Abbyrose86
Member

I can relate PW….I CAN REALLY RELATE! 🙂

Khirad
Member

What would you suggest?

Like, a five point plan.

ghsts
Member

PW- Wonderful post, you said what I cannot without evoking the ire of the loyalists. However, I will never give him a pass for turning to the architects of the collapse for military and economic advise. There are plenty of valid professional and academics from all sides that could institute a more liberal slant to his policies.

I neither blame nor give credit to any POTUS for legislation passed by congress, good or bad. The President only controls the attitudes, expectations and direction in the people he chooses to implement his policy. I am proud and hearted by his stance on ‘defense of marriage acts’ and only ask that he use that power in all areas of administration to effect change. As you, not to put words in your mouth, I believe that WE have responsibility beyond the voting booth, to continue the fight and guide our politicians after election day.

PocketWatch
Member

ghsts, I cannot disagree with your comment above. I still think that no matter WHO he has around him, the economics of the situation, and the Congressional realities he has as well, pretty much dictate what can and cannot be accomplished.

Do I wish for more? Hell yes!

Do I think he could do a better job at communicating to his base and the middle? Maybe. I know that he gives an address every week. It’s never covered or commented on in the media. Anything he says gets twisted and tortured until the President himself probably cannot recognize it.

We live in a time where ‘yellow journalism’ is the norm, and that, too, shall pass, but not, I fear, in my lifetime.

My solution, such as it is, is to support and get elected state senators and congress people, judges, district attorneys, and school boards that are liberal, progressive, green, and socialist.

THAT is the pool from which salvation shall arise.

ghsts
Member

After years of hanging out in certain crowds I can testify that it matters who you surround yourself with and who you trust, perhaps that’s anecdotal. I don’t expect the economy to change over night or jobs to return instantly but the messaging has been a response to the right and thus comes across to many that market driven stabilization with few new jobs is a success. I’m not sure people feel successful, but we have 18 months maybe that will change.

Abbyrose86
Member

With all due respect to those who feel the Dems and Obama specifically, haven’t done enough for ideals espoused by the far left…I seriously think perhaps you have all forgotten or just don’t realize just how polarized the nation really is…and how difficult REAL change is to accomplish.

First of all, the first BLACK president of the United States, has an EXTREMELY difficult job, whether we like to admit it or not, there are STILL very large pockets of extreme racism in this nation.

WHAT do you all really think all that Birther nonsense is REALLY about?

Second of all, REAL change takes time…it does. Paradigms do NOT change overnight.

Third the country is NOT united, there are MANY divergent opinions. People in NY City are very different in mindset and in what they find important, than are those in Buffalo, NY….and those two cities are in the SAME state! Multiply that concept and apply it to people throughout the US….from Houston, Tx; Cleveland, Oh; Tampa, FL; Boise Id, to Sacramento, CA, Las Vegas, NV, Green Bay, Wi, Detroit, MI…etc, etc., etc.

THE only area that really should have some common ground is economic…(the haves vs the have nots) and even that has created much division, over all the other issues. AS that REALLY is the only issue that should be at the top of the list and all the others CAN be addressed AFTER that one is fixed. The wealth inequality in this nation is SEVERE and at extremely dangerous levels…and the plutocrats have a BANG up job at having the hoi polloi focus on ALL other issues but THAT one…thus allowing for the status quo to continue.

UNITED we stand, divided we fall.

There is a reason that a ‘divide and conquer’ strategy has been employed…it works. AND the GOP has done a fabulous job of throwing shit against the wall to see what issue will stick at dividing the Dem’s and the left. THEY are doing a great job of keeping the debate on issues THEY want to be addressed. The left needs to stick together more…otherwise the left will fail in the end.

Chernynkaya
Member

Well, said Abby!

2ndClassCitizenPundit
Member

Abby, I don’t think we can afford to ignore or withhold criticism of our own on the left.

That would lead to the Dems becoming the “center-right version of the GOP”.

Every time we are forced to make concessions to the GOP, they pull us more to the right, and we get practically nothing on our side.

My criticism is mainly that the leadership is not getting enough back to justify what we are forced to give up. To put it in Bush terms, we are spending too much “political capital” for empty promises and a stab in the back.

Abbyrose86
Member

I don’t think we should NOT offer constructive criticism…but we also need to be realistic in our assessments as well.

He with the gold, makes the rules. That is as true an adage today as it has always been.

The economic problems we have as a nation, SHOULD be our primary concern first and foremost. The left REALIZES that the wealth inequality is dangerous to our society as a whole. AS such that should be our first and foremost issue we deal with…ALL the other issues can be addressed AFTER the BIG one is alleviated.

My issue is that the economic issue is being lost in the fray over all the other issues.

IF we, on the left, don’t stick to our guns on the economic and force THOSE issues we are not really make any REAL progress on any of the other social issues we want addressed.

In my mind, the economic fact that we have two VERY different economies in this nation, is the NUMBER 1 issue and all the other issues are being used to take focus OFF of that primary issue.

WE, on the left, need to stay FOCUSED and tackle one major issue at time…we are too fragmented and too all over the place.

THAT isn’t helping. YES all the issues are important BUT without money none of the others matter.

Khirad
Member

Yes, but on another token, I get a little annoyed when others (not you) say other issues are distractions and red herrings.

There’s a difference between a liberal march which has signs for every cause imaginable rather than a straightforward coherent message — and a multitasking administration.

Again, I know that’s not what you were saying, or at least I hope I got what you were.

Abbyrose86
Member

Some issues ARE very important and are not red herrings….Not in the least.

I’m just saying we have to be more focused and tackle the issues in order of importance. Which is not to say that gay rights isn’t a MAJOR issue that needs to be at the top of the list, but what bothers me, is we get so mired in the OTHER issues that the primary ones get a back seat. I’m suggesting we need to employ strategy here…and then go BACK to the issues that aren’t as pressing. AFTER the most pressing issues are addressed and taken care of for the benefit of most people.

Right now the class war and the agenda of the plutocrats should be our primary focus and THEN after we win that battle I think we can win all the others.

chazmania
Guest

I do see your point Abby..when we are so scattered and at each others throats NO progress AT ALL is made..
And that i think was your real point…And i think it came from a place that wants to see us cooperate as a whole to get things done..the far right is kinda lost to us but at least some rationality can come from more thoughtful people on the left..
I still see the R vs D facade as nothing more then a way to keep us from all coming together as a real force for change but the left being further divided most assuredly renders us useless.

Abbyrose86