cross-posted at skippy and a veritable cornucopia of other community blogs.
steven d, writing over at booman last week, expressed some sentiments that have been roiling in our minds as of late:
half my spam these days comes from democratic politicians requesting my credit card number, or my check, preferably in an amount larger than $100. true, it does get worse during an election year, but since 2008 is the "big one" with the presidency up for grabs, the calls for cash have started earlier and earlier…we totally agree. and we have already begun to implement this policy.
both mr. and mrs. skippy have donated extensively (at least, for middle class people) to various dem candidates and organizations in the past. they have donated enough to be on several lists of suckers that give money which other organizations use to call and solicit funds.
just yesterday skippy received a call from the "democratic finance committee." once the caller identified whom he was representing, skippy told him in no uncertain terms, "you guys really screwed up on the iraq funding withdrawl vote. i'm not giving you guys another cent until you get that right."
and he hung up.
we strongly urge everyone to do the same. not only stop giving money to dem pols, like so many enablers spotting the drunk on the corner a dollar for "food," but also let the candidates and organizations know exactly why the teat of free currency has dried up.
who's with us?
ps. if you'd like the nifty "no $$ for dems" logo for your own blog, email skippy and he'll send you the code!
Saturday, June 9, 2007
I wish I had some insightful commentary to add here, but work's been getting in the way of my blogging (and my pre-blogging research) again. But I think this is important and should get wider attention... "We can survive only together, we can be free only together, we can be prosperous only together, we can be human only together," said the former Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town to lively applause at a rally during the Kirchentag, the once-every-two-years German Protestant convention, meeting this year in Cologne. The June 7 rally, outside the city's cathedral, took place the day before the heads of six African nations were due to join the leaders of the G8 countries -- Britain, Canada, France, Italy, Japan, German, Russia and the United States -- for the final day of their northern German summit. "I want to say to the leaders of the G8, 'I am an African, I am a man, I am a human being ... I am not an object of pity, I am not an object of charity'," said Tutu. "I am an African, I am your brother." The open-air gathering had a live video link to an anti-poverty concert in Rostock where rock stars were trying to put pressure on the G8 leaders meeting nearby in Heiligendamm, behind a 12-kilometer-long fence topped with razor-wire. "The message of the Kirchentag is clear; we say: Pull down the barriers between those who decide and those who are affected by the decisions," the president of the Protestant convention, Reinhard Höppner, told the Cologne rally. "We say: Do not put your efforts into growth that violates the dignity of people." More here.
"We can survive only together, we can be free only together, we can be prosperous only together, we can be human only together," said the former Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town to lively applause at a rally during the Kirchentag, the once-every-two-years German Protestant convention, meeting this year in Cologne.
The June 7 rally, outside the city's cathedral, took place the day before the heads of six African nations were due to join the leaders of the G8 countries -- Britain, Canada, France, Italy, Japan, German, Russia and the United States -- for the final day of their northern German summit.
"I want to say to the leaders of the G8, 'I am an African, I am a man, I am a human being ... I am not an object of pity, I am not an object of charity'," said Tutu. "I am an African, I am your brother."
The open-air gathering had a live video link to an anti-poverty concert in Rostock where rock stars were trying to put pressure on the G8 leaders meeting nearby in Heiligendamm, behind a 12-kilometer-long fence topped with razor-wire.
"The message of the Kirchentag is clear; we say: Pull down the barriers between those who decide and those who are affected by the decisions," the president of the Protestant convention, Reinhard Höppner, told the Cologne rally. "We say: Do not put your efforts into growth that violates the dignity of people."
What is a hate crime?
Howard Witt, a Chicago Tribune senior correspondent has written another article involving the issue of race and hate crimes. This time he is covering the issue of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom, a young Knoxville couple out on an ordinary Saturday night date, was undeniably brutal. He reports on how the pair were carjacked, kidnapped, raped and finally murdered during an ordeal of unimaginable terror last January. It’s another must read article regarding hate crimes, race, media and crime in America. Here is a link to the story. Photo of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom (below).
Friday, June 8, 2007
I wonder where you managed to find all that food? There has been nothing in the
Unfortunately he has been told there is no more work after next week
I hope things are better for you in Lusaka. We always imagine the capital city will
The Basilwizi, the River People describe now how their shrines are submerged by the waters, "there was no way the shrines and some of the spirits could be carried with us," they say.
Posted by Bob Higgins at 11:36 AM
Crossposted from Left Toon Lane & My Left Wing
click to enlarge
I had the opportunity to have dinner with a living, breathing human who was a product of socialized medicine, otherwise known as the English Bloke.
Once a month, my car club gets together for a dinner and since it is a British car club, well, Brits attend. Usually we sing the glories of boots and bonnets, wings and sills but last night we chatted about socialized medicine.
According to him, anyone can get free medical care. He had a relative that fell off the top of his house and broke his hip. He had a replacement hip that night. Grand total? Nada. But if your hip was wearing out and needing replacing due to wear, it may take three months to get that done. Which was the two months shorter than what my Grandmother got here in the US with damn fine health insurance. Plus she had a huge bill afterward, plus a stroke during surgery (more cash) and some of the physical therapy wasn't covered. Our cost? Close to $10k with a 60 day longer wait.
The other issue that BushCo never brings up about socialized medicine is you can still have insurance. In Britain, most employers offer supplemental private insurance ON TOP of the regular socialized medical care. Think AFLAC.
Bottom line is this - Britain's National Health Service provides regular check-ups, emergency services and in-home care for free. Emergency things like broken bones, pediatric fevers and other issues like cancer that need immediate care gets immediate attention. Things that are not immediate medical threats like joint replacement, male pattern baldness and erectile dysfunction you will need to make an appointment, just like in the US.
Visit the NHS site or line up to watch SiCKO in the upcoming weeks. Either way, take a few minutes to leanr how much you are really being lied to about healthcare.
Thursday, June 7, 2007
Crossposted from Left Toon Lane & My Left Wing
click to enlarge
Years ago in 1993, I was in a car accident that put me out of work for about 5 years (God bless my wife for pulling BOTH of us through that). Above and beyond being angry for being hit by a half-drunk woman running a red light, I also had to contend with the healthcare system - or what passed for one.
I would be in agony and call up for a doc visit and could only get an appointment in 30 days. I would need painkillers and because of my demographic they would only give me NSAIDS (non-narcotic Tylenol and other similar drugs). Nope, nothing powerful for the white boy. The only option I had was self-medication - I grew pot on the back porch camouflaged by sunflowers. Although not a cure, but it helped relieve the muscular pain around my lumbar and neck (my neck still hurts every fucking day, including right this minute - but no where near as bad).
By my fourth year of treatment, my physical therapy consisted of not moving my lumbar (where the muscles detached from the spine) and to strengthen the area around it. So far, this path provided no relief and I am not going into the botched spinal nerve block where I coded on the table - yes friends, dead for a bit. You know it is bad when you wake up and you have 30 people in the room and the first thing out of the doctor's mouth is, "well, we won't try that again."
My exit out of the nightmare was switching hospitals and finding a new doctor. I learned of this doctor through an underground network of other disgruntled patients near my home and it was whispered he was a miracle worker. I can imagine this was analogous to finding an abortion doctor pre Rove V. Wade, but without the criminal aspects and high risk of mortality. So I made an appointment and waited the typical 30 days.
I arrived at the new docs office and he gave my a bucket of hydrocodone and told me to hit the gym EVERY DAY and begin exercising my lumbar area and to INCLUDE the dreaded torsion exercises!
About six months later, while sleeping late at night, I woke up with a start. Something was wrong - different somehow and after a few minutes of trying to untangle the fact that I was astonished at something but didn't know what, it hit me.
My back didn't hurt, but it hadn't hurt for weeks!
I told the physician the good news at the next visit. He scheduled a follow-up for the next month but in effect, the big source of pain had been healed.
The ironic thing, is the physician that fixed my back pain suffered from kyphosis - in layman's terms, he was a humpback.
Polish girl's Holocaust diary unveiled after 60 years
And then Rutka became nothing.
Neo-Nazis, members of the Aryan Brotherhood, anti-Semitic thugs, and other idiots who deny the Holocaust hate stories like this. They hate it when a dead 14-year-old Jewish girl rises from the still-smoldering ashes of the past and spits in their blind eyes.
Martyrs like Rutka Laskier make it hard to stay anonymous.
The Third Reich was a methodical killing machine that followed a simple principle: first it's murder, next it's genocide, and finally it's statistics. There's safety in numbers, after all. Rows and rows of numbers spiraling into infinity dulls the flesh and blood reality of vast, state-sanctioned slaughter. Behind the statistics and between the rows and rows of numbers is blood and the silent agony of mouths frozen in a rigor mortis scream. But curious outsiders who are wondering what the noise is all about can't get past the statistics. Trying to break the code and calculate the number of innocent victims would be as painful as trying to drink the ocean dry. So it's simpler for non-crazy people to pretend that nothing is happening.
Of course, homicidal lunatics like Nazis love turning people into statistics: it's easier to subtract.
But the diary of Rutka Laskier survived, and her tragic story tells us a simple but important truth: My friends, my family, my neighborhood, my country, my people, my history, and I died because the rest of the world stood by and did nothing.
And don't delude yourself into thinking it can't happen again. How long will it be before our grandchildren are reading the diary of a murdered 14-year-old African girl from Darfur?
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
"Obviously, there'd be a significant political price to pay," said William P. Barr, who as attorney general to President George H.W. Bush remembers the controversy raised by the post-election pardons for several Iran-contra figures in 1992. "I personally am very sympathetic to Scooter Libby. But it would be a tough call to do it at this stage."
My guess is that the administration is at this very moment pulling out all the stops to gain bail for the poor abused family man and pillar of the community pending his appeal, which, with some luck, will take Cheney/Bush to the end of the term when Bush can issue the pardon just before the oval office door closes behind him.
At the same time, some White House advisers said the president's political troubles are already so deep that a pardon might not be so damaging. Those most upset by the CIA leak case that led to the Libby conviction already oppose Bush, they noted. "You can't hang a man twice for the same crime," a Republican close to the White House said.
The reaction from the White House: Dana Perino told reporters that the president felt sad for Libby's family but would have no further comment about the case, the sentence or the possibility of a pardon at this time.
Just what might justify pardoning Scooter Libby? I mean, if you are George W. Bush, what principles would you rely upon to rationalize the neutering of the judicial process? The jury was clear, the judge was clear, the case was clear...Scooter Libby intentionally and knowingly lied and obstructed an investigation, which is quite clearly a crime. The federal government payed a great deal of money to investigate the Plame Affair and jurors (grand, and otherwise) dedicated months of their lives to ascertaining the facts. The Justice system did its job and concluded that Scooter Libby deserves to do two and a half years in prison for the crimes that he committed. If you are going to wipe that away, you must have some theory about how, ultimately, this sentence is a miscarriage of justice.
No matter how you look at it, there is no way to justify pardoning Scooter Libby without it being an admission of guilt by the President.
I want Bush to pardon Libby.
Posted by Bob Higgins at 4:16 PM
Crossposted from Left Toon Lane & My Left Wing
click to enlarge
After watching the GOP debate last night in New Hampshire, one must be chemically altered to believe anything coming out of the mouths of these people. The front runners would claim, especially Giuliani, they are not George Bush then turn right around and pronounce they love pre-emptive war, keeping troops in Iraq, they all embraced bombing the ever-lovin' crap out of Iran and pledged to cut back what is left of America's infrastructure in order to GROW the defense budget, which eats up more than half of all non-discretionary spending.
Another highlight included McCain advocating the teaching of all "creationist" theories in biology class. I hope that includes the Flying Spaghetti Monster - argh.
Conservatives Who Called For Gonzales’ Resignation Silent On No-Confidence Vote
Remember how tough these senators talked before?
Sen. John Sununu (R-NH): “The president should fire the attorney general and replace him as soon as possible with someone who can provide strong, aggressive leadership.”
Now? In a shameless display of cowardice, they will most likely choose loyalty to the party instead of doing the right thing and demand that Gonzales show accountability and resign.
But no matter how bad it got, Gonzales kept his mouth shut. He stayed loyal to his boss. The other guys couldn't even take a beating. Once they saw Dad's belt waving around, they blubbered like kids being marched to the back of the woodshed. Incredible isn't it? These senators made Alberto Gonzales look good.
Ain't democracy wonderful?
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
One of the letters to the judge who was going to sentence Scooter Libby was sent by Mary Matalin, but also signed by her husband Skeletor. I mean Gollum. Oh, you know the one--the Democratic "pundit" who wanted Howard Dean ousted as chair of the DNC as punishment for the 2006 midterm elections. Anyway, Matalin and her main ghoul wanted the judge to know what a swell guy Scooter is. By way of illustration, she told the touching story of one time when the Scooter saved Halloween for the Cheney grandchildren at an "undisclosed location".
My lifelong view, which has only been validated in adulthood, is that kids are the most honest and true evaluators of people. Watching my children with Scooter, and all children with him, you'd think he hung the moon. He is gentle and caring. He is genuinely interested in others well being and still inspires me to this day. He is a compelling teacher and extraordinary role model for integrity and humility.I was going to comment on that, but at the moment I'm speechless. But I'm sure some of you can think of something to say, so I'll just open up the floor for comment on all of this.
Via David Sirota, a freshly minted article in the Financial Times provides still more evidence that what we learn isn't what we earn.
This isn't exactly news, of course. It's just more evidence against the canard that has allowed free trade enthusiasts to put American workers in direct competition with third world employment markets.
As I wrote here, over a year ago, a good education is not a panacea for what ails our weakening job market. As per Harold Meyerson of the Washington Post.
Also dying, if not yet also kaput, is the comforting notion that a good education is the best defense against the ravages of globalization -- or, as Bill Clinton famously put it: What you earn is the result of what you learn. A study last year by economists J. Bradford Jensen of the Institute for International Economics and Lori Kletzer of the University of California at Santa Cruz demonstrates that it's the more highly skilled service-sector workers who are likely to have tradable jobs. And according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the proportion of jobs in the United States that require a college degree will rise by a measly one percentage point -- from 26.9 percent in 2002 to 27.9 percent in 2012 -- during this decade.
So what kinds of jobs will the global marketplace provide for America's college graduates? Again, from Meyerson:
In the new global order, Blinder writes, not just manufacturing jobs but a large number of service jobs will be performed in cheaper climes. Indeed, only hands-on or face-to-face services look safe.
But a few studies by reputable researchers will not stop factually challenged, globalization apologists like Thomas Friedman from trotting out the education myth at every opportunity. It's far too useful as a tool for shutting down debate on outsourcing. And all this bloviating about the importance of education isn't slowing the erosion of an economy that now sees a decline in income for 90% of the populace. It's not doing a whole lot for our educational system either.
My daughter started kindergarten this year. She's lucky. She's in a top-rated school district; not one that has being punitively starved for being malnourished to begin with. I did learn, however, what accounts for a good education these days. It starts with homework for 5 year olds. It's not like the kindergarten of my memory. I colored and made macaroni necklaces. She has a math test every week. Did I mention that she's 5?
So, my husband and I did a little research and learned, to our horror, that 5 is really not an appropriate age for today's kindergarten, and that parents all over the country are pressing their school districts to hold their kids back a year, called "redshirting," so they can keep up with the rigorous demands of the kindergarten classroom.
Children who turn 5 even in June or earlier are sometimes considered not ready for kindergarten these days, as parents harbor an almost Darwinian desire to ensure that their own child is not the runt of the class. Although a spate of literature in the last few years about boys' academic difficulties helped prompt some parents to hold their sons back a year, girls, too, are being held back. Yet research on whether the extra year helps is inconclusive.
While the push to make our kids more "competitive" is resulting in grade school standards that are increasingly out of sync with normal, developmental stages, politician's and the corporations that pull their strings enjoy endless benefits.
The political emphasis on education does even more for corporate America than provide a fig leaf for outsourcing all our jobs to India and China. Long before "No Child Left Behind" started making millions for Neil Bush, pharmaceutical companies learned they could profit by medicating our "disruptive" kids. The problem traces back to a dubious study called "A Nation at Risk," which correlated our educational system with the ebb and flow of the greater economy. One result is an increase in diagnoses of ADD/ADHD and prescriptions for drugs like Ritalin.
Despite the unsoundness of the conceptual underpinnings of A Nation at Risk, the 1983 report led to a substantial rewriting of federal and state laws regarding education. Many states now employ "high stakes" testing, which, by definition, means that state funding is allocated preferentially to school districts showing the greatest improvement in test scores. Principals are hired or fired depending on their school's test score results. Superintendents are promised large bonuses if their school districts' test scores rise; if the scores fall, a superintendent will likely be sacked. School test scores now affect many aspects of a community's self-image, including property values. If your family has to choose between moving to town A or town B, and A's schools get higher test scores than B's, aren't you more likely to move to town A? Other things being equal, the town with higher scores will have higher property values.
My daughter can write her own name, now. Most of the time the letters are well-proportioned and face in the right direction. A few weeks ago, she finally grokked the relevance of "homework." Well, better late than never. At this rate, by the time she graduates from college she should be well prepared to compete for a job against a commensurately educated Vietnamese worker who will work for pennies on the dollar... Or she can always waitress. I think she has a real flair for "flair." She'll probably need it.
America's corporate and political elites now form a regime of their own, they're privatizing democracy. All the benefits, the tax cuts, policies and rewards flow in one direction: up.
Democrats do not wait, do not falter, this day, this very day begin to cleanse your ranks of the filth, of the rot, of all those unworthy to serve the public trust. You know them well, you have ignored and protected and excused them far too long, and they have held us back like a great sea anchor, made from the mainsail of our Ship of State and torn from it's proud and proper place flying high and boldly before the winds of history.
When corporate lobbyists raise campaign cash or help lawmakers get lucrative lobbying jobs after leaving office, the democratic system is corrupted. It's also expensive. Lobbyists throw their financial weight around Congress to get tax breaks, contracts, loan guarantees, subsidies and regulatory cutbacks for their corporate clients. Meanwhile, those of us with legitimate concerns about drug safety, global warming and high gas prices have trouble being heard at all.
Posted by Bob Higgins at 11:00 AM
Crossposted from Left Toon Lane & My Left Wing
click to enlarge
Lycanthropy as defined my Wikipedia:
In folklore, lycanthropy is the ability or power of a human being to undergo transformation into a wolf.
There is no better definition for our conservative democrats than that of lycanthropy. You never know when they will explode into a ball of fur, claws and dimwitted logic in the halls of Congress. They are extremely undependable and definitely against the progressive agenda.
It was also obvious that he full moon was out when the war funding bill passed recently and we also discovered a lot more of the dogs were blue than we previously expected.
Do we do as Harry Potter does, embrace the inner good of the werewolf and help them overcome their issues or should we follow the path of the "all-out" Van Helsing and relegate the blue dogs back to the unemployment line?
The doctor was a line of machines with a conveyor belt running through them. When the organlegger's body temperature reached a certain point, the belt started.
"The Jigsaw Man", by Larry Niven
I'm glad this turned out to be a joke, because when I first read it, I wasn't sure:
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands (Reuters) -- A Dutch reality television show in which a supposedly dying woman had to pick one of three contestants to whom she would donate a kidney was revealed as an elaborate hoax on Friday.
As P.T. Barnum famously remarked, "There's a sucker born every minute", and I got fooled this time. I believed this bizarre stunt because, horrifying as it sounded, it also seemed disturbingly plausible. When it comes to wallowing in tasteless vulgarity, these programs have no moral checks and balances. There is no bottom. Remember Who's Your Daddy? The producers of this garbage don't ask themselves "Is this wrong?", but "Is this legal?"
But there was another reason why I believed this hoax. I was afraid that the world had finally caught up to Larry Niven.
In Dangerous Visions, Harlan Ellison's controversial science-fiction anthology, Larry Niven wrote "The Jigsaw Man". In his story, criminals convicted of capital offenses are forced to donate all of their organs to medicine, so that their body parts can be used to save lives and thus repay society for their crimes. Disposing of a convicted felon's body after death was found to be too wasteful. However, the ever-increasing demand for organs has compelled lawmakers to lower the bar for execution. Before, murder or kidnapping would put a criminal on the wrong end on the scapel. Now? A parking ticket.
And living in a era where, for example, the War on Drugs exists only to enrich the penal industry, who's to say Niven's premise is wrong? As Niven wrote in his afterword, "Someone has to start thinking about this. We haven't much time. It's only an accident of history that Red Cross blood banks aren't supplied by the death house. Think of the advantages--and worry."
Monday, June 4, 2007
Also posted at My Left Wing and Booman Tribune
I never consented to gates.So I really take issue with the whole set-up where few are on the inside and many are on the outside. Similarly, one of the main drawbacks to being a "kingmaker" is that somebody is being made king.
I know these are metaphors, but there's something I think we forget too often... When we elect a president, we're not choosing someone to be our boss. We're hiring an employee. So we are the ones who tell them what the job entails, and what characteristics and values we consider most important.
I remember when Jim Wallis came to Columbus last spring, he said something about Martin Luther King that really stuck with me. King never endorsed a candidate for political office, but was able to get candidates to endorse his agenda.
Hell, yeah! That's what we need to be doing, brothers and sisters! We need to take the lead, and anyone who wants to get elected will need to get on board.
"The differences among us are minor, the differences between us and the Republicans are major. And I don't want anybody in America to be confused."
"That's all it is, all it's ever been -- was intended to do was for George Bush to use it to justify everything he does: the ongoing war in Iraq, Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, spying on Americans, torture," Edwards said. "None of those things are okay. They are not the United States of America."
"Reduced to the status of a Greek chorus, the five Democratic also-rans had a difficult time breaking through the clutter. Joe Biden did have a strong moment when he challenged the growing panic over the threat of Iran producing nuclear weapons. The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said bluntly, "Understand how weak Iran is. They are not a year away or two years away. They are a decade away from being able to ... put a nuclear weapon on top of a missile that can strike. They are far away from that." But Biden also blustered in the same answer when he said defiantly, "At the end of the day, if they posed a missile, stuck it on a pad, I'd take it out."
Posted by Bob Higgins at 9:06 AM
Crossposted from Left Toon Lane & My Left Wing
click to enlarge
For me, Edwards really stepped up and out at the debate last night and it was mostly due to the fact he took responsibility for his war vote. Obama got off one zinger but zingers only zing ONCE. Edwards has kept a steady pace of "I was wrong on the war" meme and I think that will pay off more in the long run than Obama will get for his "4 and half years is too late to show leadership" sound bite.
Here's why. Bush never apologizes for jack shit. Even when it came to Katrina, it was never his fault directly. He always danced around the issue of personal responsibility and muddied the water of an apology better than anyone else I have ever seen. But a politician, especially a PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE that comes clean and admits he was wrong and repeats it at every appropriate opportunity, will seem more the polar opposite of Bush than the rest of the crowd.
Biden's rant on Dafur was good and probably his best moment, but alas, it is about 4 and half years too late.
Sunday, June 3, 2007
The topic below was originally posted on my blog, the Intrepid Liberal Journal and crossposted at The Peace Tree.
“As Congress left town for its Memorial Day recess, the euphoria cast by the 2006 election victories was gone. Disappointed by the Democrats' inability to force a withdrawal timeline into the war-funding bill, angered by a trade deal hatched in secret, dismayed at backsliding on cleaning up Capitol Hill, progressives were faced with the unpleasant reality of the new Congress, warts and all.I largely agree with that assessment about the Democratic majority’s corporatist leanings and sympathy for the K-Street industry. As for the war, even before Democrats assumed control, I advocated for either invoking the War Powers Act or cutting off funding. Timid and feckless, the Democrats were more concerned with implementing a political strategy of bleed and win. While the ongoing war continued to bleed Bush and the GOP, the Democrats were content to pass bills that scored political points and accomplished very little. The so-called benchmarks the Bush Administration agreed to is window dressing.
Ultimately, the plug will be pulled on this war by the GOP in September. Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has said his party doesn’t want another election campaign about Iraq. All that remains is for some more soldiers to “die for a mistake” as the young John Kerry once put it, while the Iraqis continue to kill each other. Bush had hoped to hand off the war to his successor so defeat would not happen on his watch. How ironic that Bush's fellow Republicans who enabled him to pursue this immoral and diastrous war of choice, will have their fingerprints on our withdrawal.
But the overall problem of combating radical Islam with a foreign policy based on international cooperation and strategic logic remains. We're losing Afghanistan and getting little value from our support of Musharaff in Pakistan. Democrats deliver platitudes about sending more troops to Afghanistan after we leave Iraq. Yet they don't explain why an escalation in Afghanistan would be any more successful than the current surge in Iraq.
Meanwhile, an economic policy guided by corporatism at the expense of working people struggling to keep up with the cost of living is not being reversed. Why don’t they pass a bill overturning the hideous Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 passed by the Republican majority? Or make a push for reforming healthcare?
Granted, President Bush remains an obstacle to enacting a progressive program and more can be accomplished if the right person is elected to the White House next year. But that is no excuse for not maximizing their majority platform today to build public support and educate the citizenry. Congressional Democrats have wasted five months. Precious time that could’ve been used to aggressively advocate for replacing this insipid era of deranged privatization and cronyism, with bold initiatives designed to lift the working poor, nurture a vibrant middle class and yes provide healthcare for all.
However, the elections of 2006 were simply a first step in a long journey. Expecting a progressive reformation after one midterm election cycle was never realistic. Progressive activists, bloggers and citizens nationwide need to put their cynicism aside and remain engaged. The Nation put it best in their editorial’s closing paragraph:
“Democratic majorities have provided us with relatively progressive leaders in both houses of Congress and several aggressive committee chairs who are beginning to unearth the hidden horrors of this rogue Administration. But we still don't have the progressive strength in Congress or the leadership in the White House that can change this country's course. The serial disappointments of recent weeks are but a reminder that we've got work to do.”We’ve only begun to fight for what is right.
I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,
What sphinx of cement and aluminum bashed open their skulls and ate up their brains and imagi- nation?
Posted by Bob Higgins at 10:33 AM