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The Unity "Shtick"

| 19 Comments

Big Tent Democrat (You know, that pseudonym...'Big Tent'...I do not think it means what you think it means.) on the DLC (and, I guess, people like me) supporting Obama:

This is sad and hilarious because not for one moment can Kagro imagine WHY the DLC and Dan Gerstein might support Barack Obama. He can not imagine that Obama's Unity Schtick is precisely what the DLC and Joe Lieberman have been preaching for decades and that the progressive blogs were supposed to be fighting AGAINST.

Excuse me, but has anyone in the progressive blogs actually been paying attention to what Obama has been saying? Probably not, too busy slamming Hillary Clinton.

I can't add much to that this morning. But give me a day or two...

19 Comments

I find it hard to get by the mental insularity and general sloppiness of these sorts of rants that appear on sites like Talk Left and Daily Kos. Are they speaking to themselves or somebody else.

Is anyone other than the four other people in their cult supposed to understand whatever the hell it is they are supposed to be saying? Talk about chasing one's own tail? These two take the cake.

I don't understand what he means by Obama's Unity Schtick. Unity with whom?

If he means unity with Republicans, he couldn't be farther off the mark. The Democratic enthusiasts don't want such unity; they don't even want unity with Lieberman or the DLC. "Pogrom" would be a much more accurate word. They intend to rule by superior force, like the Clintons attempted to do in 1992-94 until they bungled away the Congress, and they are just crazy enough to think they can do it.

Besides, if Obama's message is some sort of continuation of the DLC, then I note that Clinton is a member of the DLC (Obama isn't) so this notion needs a trifle bit of explanation.

"I can't add much to that this morning. But give me a day or two..."

...to agree I presume.

TOC: MonkeyCage had an entry about the purpose behind Kos and other hard-partisan blogs. Short summary - they're not there to engage in debate with opponents, but to build organization in order to promote their viewpoint (i.e. to win).

Coldtype, if you're intending to continue with the drive-bys, be advised that they are deprecated, and absence of substance is grounds for eventual ban.

Nort

To me this symptomatic of the problem of the Democratic Party.

"So Long White Boy" the article by a Dem strategist saying Dems should adopt overtly anti-white male policies to unite their minority constituencies.

It's electoral suicide. I was originally a Democrat and would like to be again. In a sane Democratic Party.

It's simple math. Whites are about 72% of the population and a higher percentage of voters. [Hispanics are notorious under-voters, poor Blacks nearly as bad.]

"So Long White Boy" means saying so long to the spouses of white men, their children (eventually) and an electoral loser.

Progressive Blogs are about purity and "expelling" people like Lieberman. What did that get them? Senator Ned Lamont? No. They lost white men (and women) in CT. Big time as Cheney would say among working and middle class white voters (they got rich whites of course).

Democrats have become the Whole Foods, or Volvo, or Apple Computer analog in politics. "Trendy/hip" brands for upwardly mobile "creative class" hipsters. And therefore niche brands unappealing to the great mass of people.

Rassmussen has McCain up 46-43 over Obambi and the campaign has yet to begin. Forget "genius" Rove, campaigns are won in the center and I see Dems rushing off to the hard left to alienate the center. In what should be a slam-dunk contest. Where the heck is Obambi's "Sistah Souljah" moment reassuring nervous white voters that culturally he is on the side of middle class values. Picking a fight with say Louis Farrakhan or Al Sharpton or some rapper? Where's the middle class panders -- spending for THEM? Where's the anti-Welfare, pro-Military spending plans? Oops Obambi is too busy saying why he won't say the Pledge of Allegiance or wear a lapel flag pin.

These aren't IMHO unforced errors as I thought before. IMHO it is the result of progressive blogs imposing their views on Obama to win the nomination. Which will cement him as the uber-liberal, hard left, enemy of the middle class. And bring down a lot of Blue Dog dems.

Hey ... maybe the progressive blogs aren't so dumb after all. Better to be kingmaker at Volvo than merely middle management at Toyota.

By no means am I trolling Nortius, A.L indicated that he would have more to say on the subject at a later date. When he expands on his critique I have every intention of responding at length. Since the post he quoted seemed perfectly logical and correct, I honestly cannot fathom what A.L could take issue with.

The Barockstar's positions are hardly progressive on the core issues. He supported Team Bush's "surge" after Democrats were elected to majority positions in both houses of Congress on a wave of anti-war fervor. Every poll of American public opinion, then and now, would have supported Congress had it forced the Bush administration to draw down forces in Iraq. Did the Barockstar lend his voice to what the American public and, most importantly, what the Iraqi people demanded? Hell no.

The Barockstar does not support a single-payer health care system in the US as is the norm in the advanced democracies of Western Europe, Canada, and Japan. Americans endure the least efficient health care system in the industrialized world (nearly 50 million uninsured) at a cost of over 100 billion dollars per year. The insurance industry, and Big Pharma are the primary reasons overhead costs for health care in America are a third more than in Europe. Does it come as a suprise that Big Pharma and the insurance industry practically salivate over Obama? They have helped stuffed his campaign coffers to overflowing.

Obama raised not a whisper of protest over the passage of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, the most regressive piece of legislation passed by Congress since the Sedition Act.

Obama, a Constitutional scholar, was unfazed by Team Bush's warrantless wiretapping of American citizens in blatant violation of the FISA act and the 4th Amendment, thus federal law. Furthermore, he supported legislation which provided retro-active immunity to those in the government as well as the telecoms who carried out these crimes.

Obama supports INCREASING military spending in a nation that already outspends the next ten nations COMBINED on "defense" expenditures, and accounts for fully HALF the tally for the next twenty five. Apparently the 800+ military bases we have garrisoning the entire globe are not enough for this "man of hope". Furthermore, according to Obama, the option of a US nuclear strike on Iran should remain "on the table".

Obama fully supports the so-called "free-trade" agreements (in truth investor rights agreements) that have helped devastate the labor movement both here and abroad. NAFTA, more than any other factor, has contributed to the mass immigration of Mexico's poor to this country in order to survive. When was the last time Obama made an issue of that?

Obama has never called for impeachment hearings for the Team Bush war criminals, whose violations outstrip those of Nixion and Clinton by orders of magnitude.

This is a progressive?

"Excuse me, but has anyone in the progressive blogs actually been paying attention to what Obama has been saying?"
-Big Tent Dem

A valid question.

{Sorry, but a dump of slogans (all with exclamation points), particularly from someone who has never posted here before, constitutes a "drive-by". Content deleted. Come around and post something substantive, fine. Do what you just did again, and it's ban time. See the WoC comments policy. --NM}

Well, now you can vote for Ralph Nader, Coldtype; he's entering the race again as an Independent.

"Unity Schtick" is actually an improvement for BTD, who usually uses the arch and rather condescending term, "Kumbaya Schtick" to describe his African-American nemesis in the Presidential race. I believe in real lift, BTD is a well-paid corporate lawyer who no doubt has seen the inside of his fair share of sky boxes.

"Well, now you can vote for Ralph Nader, Coldtype; he's entering the race again as an Independent"
-Alan

The choice, for me at least, is now between Nader and McKinney. True progressives don't seriously consider Clinton or Obama at all for they are both in lock-step with the Republicans on fundimental issues regarding America's destructive and highly interventionist foreign policy as well as our reckless neo-liberal agenda at home.

The Barockstar does not support a single-payer health care system in the US as is the norm in the advanced democracies of Western Europe, Canada, and Japan. Americans endure the least efficient health care system in the industrialized world (nearly 50 million uninsured) at a cost of over 100 billion dollars per year. The insurance industry, and Big Pharma are the primary reasons overhead costs for health care in America are a third more than in Europe.

Not a single thing in the preceding statement was true.

The question becomes which vote is more likely to bring about the kind of changes and policy implementations that you support, Coldtype, and which might set them back even further.

I for one am not of the opinion that my single Presidential vote is the best expression of my desire to change the system and society for the better, as I define it. There are many many far more effective means of doing this, although they do not provide the same level of immediate personal gratification as casting that protest vote, I suppose.

True progressives don't seriously consider Clinton or Obama at all...

Speak for yourself, Coldtype, and please, try not to categorize other people's views, especially if you can't possibly (as in this case) hold the kind of comprehensive knowledge necessary to make such a sweeping statement, or worse yet, assume everyone has yours.

Perhaps you meant to say "Self-Righteous" or "Self-Destructive" instead of "True"...

"The choice, for me at least, is now between Nader and McKinney." ... how is it that I'm not shocked...

A.L.

The choice, for me at least, is now between Nader and McKinney.

Aren't you grateful that we kicked McKinney out of Congress so that your Green Party could have a choice? Otherwise, you'd have to choose between Ralph Nader and a bowl of avocado dip.

People like me are devoted to keeping Ms. McKinney free of any public obligations, so look forward to seeing her cheerful face at Green-fests everywhere for the next 50 years.

You're welcome.

"The question becomes which vote is more likely to bring about the kind of changes and policy implementations that you support, Coldtype, and which might set them back even further"
-Alan

The kind of policy implementations that I support Alan are not supported by Clinton/Obama. So a vote for either of these candidates would no doubt be a vote AGAINST the policies that I support. I might add that I do not stand alone in this regard. Polls of American public opinion consistently confirm that ALL of the mainstream candidates of both parties are to the right of the public on a host of issues. A few examples:

(1) the majority of the American public supports a single-payer health care system in this country even if it requires an increase in taxes to pay for it;

(2) a drastic reduction in "defense" spending so that neglected domestic needs such as public infrastructure and social services can be addressed;

(3) the public supports by wide margins a draw-down of American forces from illegally occupied Iraq (not just combat forces, but all forces in the region);

(4) the public does not support NAFTA or the other investor rights agreements which have been mis-labled "free-trade" agreements [note how the issue has become a hot potato for Clinton/Obama recently].

I challenge you to check the public statements and voting records of the leading candidates and demonstrate where they are in accord with public opinion on these critical issues.

"Speak for yourself, Coldtype, and please, try not to categorize other people's views, especially if you can't possibly (as in this case) hold the kind of comprehensive knowledge necessary to make such a sweeping statement, or worse yet, assume everyone has yours"
-Alan

On the contrary Alan, I speak for millions of other Americans whose wishes are not reflected in American foreign and domestic policy. The apathy of most Americans regarding our political process is a direct result of the vast "democracy deficit" in this country insofar as public policy and public opinion do not cohere. If you still harbor doubts about where most Americans stand on the very issues the leading candidates oppose, I invite you to check the polls yourself.

"Polls of American public opinion consistently confirm that ALL of the mainstream candidates of both parties are to the right of the public on a host of issues."

Completely depends on which polls you listen to and how they are worded.

"the majority of the American public supports a single-payer health care system in this country even if it requires an increase in taxes to pay for it;"

Not true

"Less than one in three, however, say the government would do a better job than private insurance companies at actually providing medical coverage. Forty-four percent said the government would be worse as a health care provider than private companies"

The public is in favor of government intervention into healthcare in theory, but once specifics are mentioned... particulary government takeover, support drops like a rock. There seems to be solid support for government mandating universal insurance, but certainly not single payer healthcare.

This is a pretty excellent illustration of the netroot problem being discussed here- misinterpretting the data to agree with preconceived notions. Not a good way to strategize politically.

In other words- you could easily conduct a poll showing massive American support for everyone getting Christmas presents. But that doesnt translate into a mandate for government takeover of the north pole. Yet that is likely how the true believers in christmas elf workers rights would interpret the poll.

This is a very real and unhealthy disconnect with reality, and i believe it is one of the major causes of the distrust, paranoia, and outright hatred displayed in the far left corners of the net. IE- they really believe most Americans support far leftist/socialist schemes... and yet Republicans keep winning elections somehow. The most likely solution if you believe both those things to be true is that Republicans are somehow either cheating or fooling the nation, or both. This explains a lot of rancor. It obviously hasnt occured to the netroots that they need to reevaluate their assumptions, and that the nation really isnt supportive of socialist policies.

Very reminiscent of the pro-life movement in the 80s and 90s. They were so sure most Americans were deep down in favor of overturning RoeVWade that they spent little time trying to convince pro-choicers why they were right and more time demonizing them. You dont win over voters to your programs by assuming they already find them superior and just need to be 'freed' to support them somehow.

Mark B.,

I couldn't agree more. I have long been frustrated by many of my fellow liberals and fellow progressives for their inexplicable failure to acknowledge that our point-of-view -- however valid, however objectively and verifiably correct -- is, for all that, a minority point-of-view. And that the reason for that is not because the great bulk of middle America has been deceived by or hoodwinked by the right, or the system, or the establishment, but simply because they do not agree. If they do not read the right books, or watch the right programs, or listen to the right stations, it is not because they are manipulated away, but because they don't want to.

I think the reason for this failure on the part of many liberals/leftists/progressives to acknowledge this is that we don't want to admit to being a part of an elite, as that seems to run counter to the underlying foundations of our belief system. But, the fact is that we DO think we know what's best for people and most people simply don't agree with our prescriptions. For my part, it isn't that I don't agree with Nader, it's that I don't agree that he will ever have wide-spread or popular support. My vote for Clinton or Obama shouldn't be seen, however, as a rejection of Nader but as an acknowledgment that Nader cannot win -- because his ideas are unpopular -- and that it's better to have Obama than McCain. To that extent I think that some of the arguments being made against ColdType's case here are only half to the point. There is more support for progressive candidates than elections reveal because many of us chose to vote more realistically. That said, I don't live under the illusion that there are more than a few million of us all told. I take some comfort in the fact that most progressive ideas eventually, slowly, move beyond their initial elite status and become mainstream. Much of what is now accepted by the American right and mainstream was once as resisted by conservatives and middle America as contemporary progressive ideas are today.

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