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1 year, 10 months ago
  • This site does harm precisely because it propagates the idea that there are real differences between the two parties. It rejects Republicans but can only be critical of some Democrats some of the time. Yet if we go to the substance, the only differences among the Bush Administration, the Obama Administration or a putative McCain or Romney Administration are atmospheric.

    The Democrats showed that even when they had the Presidency and control of both Houses of Congress, they not only would not fight for progressive goals, they would actively fight against them.

    In a politician’s whole political career, there are only a handful of votes that define who they really are. The healthcare was such a vote, and every pretend progressive in Congress, bar none, voted for the corporatist model of Obamacare, which was itself largely indistinguishable from Romneycare.

    So where are these good Democrats? We all know the dodges of revolving heroes. So where are the good Democrats who have stood up against this most corporatist of neoliberal Presidents, and done so consistently, and not just for their predictable star turns as the hero du jour.

    You are mired in the world of the two legacy parties. You can or will not look beyond them. And much the same can be said about FDL in general. If the site owner fills the site with Democratic voices that is a choice. If this site were truly progressive, then the decision about whether to support Democrats would not be the site owner’s alone. So it seems a bit strange that you would put off the responsibility for that decision on to the site owner but then give a pass to the decision to have posters solidly within the two party framework.

    The question is and remains how long can you and this site can stick with the Democrats or whatever subset of them on any given day in the face of their now years long record of failures and betrayals of you. Sticking with the Democrats must resemble an awful lot be caught inside the movie Groundhog Day. No matter how it plays out it always ends up the same way.

    There are other options, but none as long as you stay with the Democrats.

  • Nice riff on “If you can’t argue the facts, argue the law. If you can’t argue the law, pound the table.”

    Activism without direction doesn’t mean squat. Republicans can be activist too. So what is your point?

    The site can not pretend to be an opinion leader if it is and remains so far behind events.

  • The cognitive dissonance in this post is that it clings to the belief that Obama and the Democrats are somehow better than the Republicans and that they, and especially Obama, can be persuaded to adopt positions and policies that they have actively worked against for the last 3 1/2 years.

    If this post had been addressed to Mitt Romney, everyone would think it was just silly. So how is it any less silly to direct it at Obama who effectively has governed to the right of George Bush, not just embracing Bush’s policies but expanding upon them?

    While I know some here have already done this, my question is, and remains, when will this site abandon not just Obama, but the Democrats, all of them? What will it take, how long will it be, how many betrayals have to occur, before FDL is officially done with them? What credibility can this site (not the community) have that 3 1/2 years into Obama and 6 to 8 years with the Democrats it still maintains the fiction that some Democrats are better than others and that if only the right argument is used the Democrats will see and embrace the light? We are years beyond that point. Yet how can this site have any credibility continuing to act as if we are not?

  • I am “among the suspiciously growing group of those who now claim ‘I told you so’” and have been since July 2008. We warned you about Obama before the election, even before the convention, and we were told that the important thing was to turn the page on Bush by defeating McCain. While FDL went off on in futile pursuit of the mirage of the public option in healthcare, we told you from the outset the fix was in. I personally wrote about the need to start a new progressive party and did so here: Third Party? How About a First Party in July 2009. I and others were told get back to us when you start electing candidates. The vote on healthcare was a defining moment, but not for FDL. Every liberal and so-called progressive member of the House and Senate betrayed the progressive cause. Yet two years on, FDL has still not broken with the Democrats. Yes, there is a lot of criticism of Democrats, and support for Occupy, but everything is still viewed within the two party framework. Netroots Nation is a case in point. It is a false flag operation of the Democratic party. It was founded and is still largely controlled by a Democratic operative Markos Moulitsas. The speakers I heard about were all Democrats or Obamites like Jones. Why were there no speeches from non-Democratic progressive alternatives?

    For those who still believe in lesser evilism, remember this. You are voting for evil, and if the last 4 years should have taught you anything it is that the lesser evil, secure in the knowledge of your support, quickly becomes the greater evil. You are voting for kleptocracy. You are voting for more of the same. Finally, remember that no one owns your vote but you. If a candidate or party can’t give good, substantial, and most importantly positive reasons for your support, if they can only say the other guy is worse, don’t vote for them. They obviously don’t want your vote, so why vote for them?

    And finally to FDL in general, FDL has had no problem rejecting the Republicans and has done so for years. Why then will FDL not equally reject the Democratic party that differs from the Republicans in no substantial way? The Democrats have been shoving the lesson down the throats of progressives for nearly a decade now that you can’t be progressive and Democratic. When will FDL learn the lesson we all have been taught?

  • Hugh commented on the blog post Live Chat – William K. Black: The Foreclosure Settlement

    2012-02-17 15:33:04View | Delete

    I am so sorry to hear about Mary. She was one of the most committed people I knew to Constitutional rights and personal freedoms. I will miss her.

  • Hugh commented on the blog post Live Chat – William K. Black: The Foreclosure Settlement

    2012-02-17 14:51:53View | Delete

    No you haven’t. Re-read my comment at 84. You continually say that politicians must be pressured or voted out of office, but you fail to recognize, despite masses of evidence, that politicians aren’t pressured. Threaten them with loss of office and they will go into the private corporate welfare system of lobbying and think tanks where they will make multiples of their current salaries with far less aggravation. And those who replace them will come from the perennial choice between the corporatist Democrat and the corporatist Republican.

    Failing to understand that kleptocracy is the system means nothing more than advocating solutions to the wrong problems. It means your efforts will be misdirected both in practical and theoretical terms, and as I said, leaves me wondering at what point you become part of the problem, since by willfully and persistently mischaracterizing it you allow it to fester and grow that much more.

    You may think this is terribly unfair, but there are real lines being drawn here, and you and yours can no longer temporize about them. You can not have it both ways. You can not in good faith limit your criticisms to what is comfortable to you and your class. You either complete the analysis and act on it or you stand with those you say you criticize. You may not like this choice but it is the choice we all must make. And as you take a leadership role, you should be among the first and not the last to make it.

  • Hugh commented on the blog post Live Chat – William K. Black: The Foreclosure Settlement

    2012-02-17 12:51:46View | Delete

    You have often referred to a criminogenic environment, but this is an incomplete analysis. The problem is not rampant crime in the economic system. It is the system as criminal enterprise, that is kleptocracy.

    There is a major difference in these two views. According to you and liberal economists in general, the economic/political system is essentially sound. So you advocate putting “pressure” on Obama and the Democrats to “force” them to take measures and adopt policies to curb and punish criminal acts. But of course this never happens. And the reason it doesn’t is because your analysis is wrong. If you look at things from a kleptocratic perspective, it is axiomatic why reform will never work or even be tried, why the guilty will remain not only free and uninvestigated but made both richer and more powerful.

    My question to you is how much longer will be before you and liberal economists take the plunge and address kleptocracy as it is and not in the tentative way you have done so far and most economists have avoided altogether? And if you do not, at what point do you and they become part of the problem?