The people of Wisconsin are leading a true progressive revolution. WE are the people we've been waiting for, remember?
Communicating the Democratic agenda should not be left solely to President Obama. Where are the other Democratic leaders? Where is the House Minority Leader; the Senate Majority Leader; the Congressmen and Congresswomen--especially from the states who have Republican governors; the DNC leadership, state Democratic Party leaders; Union leaders; ALL the rest of the Democrats? The bully pulpit can't be used to combat every single attack, otherwise it would be rendered ineffective.
The Republicans have a communications machine backed by almost unlimited corporate money. They also have their own propaganda network. It is difficult for the Democrats, who can't even get equal access on other major media, to compete with that, but they must try, and we must encourage and support them.
President Barack Hussein Obama is doing a fantastic job. It is jaw-dropping to realize all he has accomplished in such a short time. The Administration does not 'advertise' all of its policy achievements, perhaps because our major media has little regard for serious policy discussion. This may be for the best, given how facts are often missing from the debate.
President Obama's actual 'base' will help him get re-elected, and we will do it with pride and enthusiasm.”
“Richard Wolfe is correct. People who think Obama promised us a single-payer public option are incorrect.
He said if he was starting from scratch, single-payer would be the optimal approach.
During the negotiations, I think he considered it to be a non-starter. Even though most Americans would have liked a public option, to believe it was possible at the time means, you would have to believe that the Republican Party gives a damn about what most Americans want.”
Marcospinelli on Apr 1, 2011 at 01:49:34
“Obama took single payer off the table BEFORE negotiations ever began. Secretly. Clandestinely. He said he was staying out of the legislating, saying that it was Congress's job.
Then Obama went and made a secret deal with the pharmaceutical, insurance, hospital industries, the AMA, undercutting all of the Congressional committees working on legislation except one -- Baucus's committee (the Senate Finance committee) which Obama disavowed for months.
When word came out about the deal, the White House Iied it.
Yes, we're agreed that Republicans are scvm, but Obama and the DLC-controlled Democratic Party isn't any better.”
See the part where he says he has a plan to "cover everyone'? That's called "universal coverage". Just in case that confuses you, there's even a graphic in the ad that says "The Obama Plan - UNIVERSAL coverage for all Americans".
Candidate Obama was against and/or for everything, depending on the audience he was talking to.
Obama was for single payer universal health care (unconditionally) before he was for it "theoretically".
Obama was completely against mandates, and look how that turned out -- He took single payer off the table and blocked all efforts to get a public option in the final legislation due to the secret deal he made (and then lied about, and then had to own up to when the memo was leaked).
Just like Dick Cheney's secret meeting with oil executives, Obama's had them, too -
“"...The disappoint ment is that he's not trying..."
This is nonsense.
Reality: (Generally speaking) Republicans lie, cheat and steal. They will say anything to get what they want. They never met a man or a woman they couldn't smear. They have no shame and no conscience. They care little for the working people of this country, and even less for the poor and disaffected. For the most part, I think we are different. I know my President certainly is a man of integrity.
If we, as a Party, want to operate with that kind of viciousness, I'm sure we would be more successful, but we would also be contemptible. We cannot become that which we despise.”
“What magical words should the Democrats use to get the Republicans to cooperate?
I don't even know what will be in the final Budget currently being negotiated. Do you?
Whether you like it or not, we have to negotiate. Perhaps if more Democrats had not held on to their grievances to the point of not voting, we might have retained our majority in the House. Next time you slam the Tea Party people for voting against their own best interest, consider your own attitude. By doing nothing, we lost our advantage, which set us back at least 2 years. Don't say shout out progressive ideals, help us do the work necessary to make actual progress.”
Marcospinelli on Apr 1, 2011 at 01:53:11
“Obama never pressured Joe Lieberman (or Blanche Lincoln, or Ben Nelson, or any Blue Dog for that matter). The Democratic leadership could've taken away committee chairs (Blanche Lincoln's, too) of members in their caucus that filibustered a public option for healthcare. They didn't.
The DNC could've taken away reelection funds. They didn't.
Reid could've actually forced Republicans and turncoat Democratic senators to filibuster. He didn't (& doesn't).
The Progressive Caucus could have kept their pledge about not voting for a bill that didn't include a robust public option. They didn't.
Obama DID unleash the attack dogs to go after Howard Dean when Dean said it was a lousy bill. Dean was then forced to get back into line. Obama went after Kucinich, the last remaining holdout on the Progressive Caucus, for threatening to vote no on the healthcare bill, and we all know how that ended.
There is nothing that Lieberman (or Nelson or Lincoln) is doing that Obama hasn't ordered. Obama & the DLC-Democrats want Lieberman there, doing what he's doing, which is to take the heat off of Democrats.
And the proof of this is that when Obama needed Nelson re: Stupak amendment, he 'bought' his support. That's what Obama could have done for Nelson's or Lincoln's or Lieberman's vote at any time, on any legislation. He sure did it when he needed Mary Landrieu's vote.
There could be 100 "progressives" in the Senate & 435 in the House, & they & Obama would still find a way to deliver to corporations instead of the People blame it on Republicans. Because they're DLC, aka Republicans-in-Democrats'-clothing.
Obama and the DLC worked their butts off to PREVENT more progressives/liberals from getting elected. Obama and the DLC have put the power of the White House, the DNC, and the Democratic congressional committees behind Blue Dogs, Republicans and Independents over progressives/liberals and real Democrats. Some, but not all, examples:
Blue Dog Blanche Lincoln over progressive Democrat Lt. Governor Bill Halter.
Republican-turned-Independent Arlen Specter over progressive Democrat Joe Sestak.
Republican-turned-Independent Lincoln Chaffee over Democrat Frank Caprio (which, in turn, is an effective endorsement of the Republican John Loughlin over Democrat David Cicilline for the congressional seat Democrat Patrick Kennedy is retiring from, and all of the other seats up for grab in Rhode Island).
Republican-turned-Independent Charlie Crist over liberal Democrat Kendrick Meek.
Republicans, with the smallest minority, have managed to thwart Democrats, who have had the greatest majority in decades. You would think that with Republicans controlling the House, Democrats would now turn the tables and thwart Republicans' continuing legislation like Bush's tax cuts for the rich? Are Democrats just stoopld? Or is it just you?”
“The Art of the Possible in Washington has always been the Art of the Deal. The whole health insurance reform process was messy and exhausting. But it's worth celebrating. Our Administration and Democratic Congressmen and Congresswomen should be given some praise for sticking with it. The 111th Congress worked harder than any other, and many paid a high price for it. Give them their props.
Wall Street Reform may not contain Glass-Steagall right now, but the future is full of possibilities. If the Consumer Financial Protection Agency was all we got out of the process, I would consider that a victory, but we got much more than that. Once again, we have a platform on which to build. There is no excuse for the treatment of Bradley Manning, but he is in the Military and committed treason. There are consequences for all behavior.
How do you know what investigations have or have not been undertaken by the Dept of Justice? The Bush Administration left our Justice System riddled with corruption. I'm sure there are still people there working against Obama's Administration. I don't think trying to prosecute W. and Dick Cheney would be beneficial for the country at this time. It is more important to find out as much as possible about their activities.
If you want to be angry, it is your choice. It might be healthier to stop, once in a while, and smell the progress.”
“President Obama is a liberal and a pragmatist. He has the same ideals we have. But the ideal is the endgame, not the starting point. He certainly knows more about governing issues than you or I.
Single payer was NOT in his hands. They did not have the votes. An 'all or nothing' strategy is not only unrealistic, it is counter-productive. We have a foundation now. Let's build on it.
He is not George Bush. He has a different political point of view, a different operational style, different motives and intent. He loves this country and I think you know in your heart he is trying to find a way to do the best for us. Just because something looks the same on the outside doesn't mean it IS the same.
Think about how much you know, then think about how much more you DON'T know about the inside game, and what it takes to move a barely functional legislative branch.”
PCMartin on Mar 31, 2011 at 21:50:15
“I believe LBJ could have wheedled, bribed, bullied and blackmailed even the New Democrat / Blue Dog 111th Congress into passing a progressively implemented Medicare For All. Obama had a stronger, more legitimate popular mandate than LBJ and a more compelling healthcare crisis to boot, but all available evidence suggests that he never even considered *trying.*”
Marcospinelli on Mar 31, 2011 at 19:21:42
“Do you remember when we were all told, "Relaaaaaaax, it's a first step...We'll put a public option in..Real soon"?:
Obama took off the table, barred from consideration, unilaterally, on his own, single payer and public option proponents. Obama did it because if the goal is to get affordable quality medical care for all then everything else pales in comparison.
Obama's a real piece of work -- A Republican-in-Democrats'-clothing. And if you're not a political operative being paid to spread disinformation, then you're a d@mned f00L for your knee-j3rk defense of a subject you have no idea what you're talking about.”
“I think we will get single payer. Why does the progressive left give up so easily? The Republicans are creating a trap for themselves. They will push things so far, that the only solution to the crisis will be single payer system. We have at least 2 years to work toward that solution and get people elected who will legislate for it.
Also, just as with Gay marriage, it might have to be a state by state battle. I live in California. I think our budget problems and the cost of medi-cal will lay the groundwork for some kind of non-profit government health insurance system. I still live in hope.”
PCMartin on Mar 31, 2011 at 21:44:29
“No hostility intended, zlydonna, but I agree with Marcospinelli.
Meaningful healthcare reform failed because the big players in the for-profit health sector suborned the mainstream news media via huge advertising expenditures, bought Congress, and bought or intimidated Obama. PPACA will boost the percentage of GDP the health sector sucks out of our pockets from 17% now to over 20% by 2019. (BTW, Switzerland, which has *universal* coverage, is our runner-up, at 12% of GDP.) As a practical, pragmatic observer of American politics, I'm at a loss to understand how boosting Big Health's financial clout by over 3% of GDP -- and, consequentially, its political, lobbying, and advertising clout -- is going to make additional reforms easier.
So, to take up Marco's question, how is PPACA helping us get to single payer? Please do lay out a plausible strategy in which PPACA realistically contributes to that end.”
Marcospinelli on Mar 31, 2011 at 18:56:26
“States are going broke.
When it comes to MediCal and Medicaid, services are being CUT. States are looking to opt out of Medicaid entirely.
So again, HOW?
The gay marriage battle is an entirely other battle which, when time and space allows, I'll go into. Sufficed to say, gay marriage will wind up in and be decided by the US Supreme Court ultimately.”
“The ideological 'purity' of the Far Left is one reason why the Democrats have often been unable to strategical plan effective ways to further the progressive agenda. Insisting on giant leaps in political thought and action sound ARE great talking points, and these wonderful ideals are a great rallying cry. But as progressives, we must recognize that effective leadership involves persuading others to your point of view. The slowness of that process is frustrating and time-consuming, but it works.
We have a heath care and Insurance reform platform. Instead of continuing the anger over not getting single-payer right away, we should be planning how to strengthen the reform we have. While we are fighting about 'purity', the republicans are trying to dismantle the gains we have already made. Stop beating up President Obama and the rest of the Congressional Democrats. They made great sacrifices to pass reform legislation. Give them the props they deserve and the help and support they require. Why is it so hard to forgive your friends for not being perfect? "Why can't we all just get along?" I mean that in a completely non ironic way.”
mecormany on Mar 31, 2011 at 07:41:38
“Listen zlydonna, nothing personal, but one if us is living in a dreamland and I think it might be you. Obama made deals with Insurance and Pharma early last summer and then disappeared without telling any of us. He tanked!! A mandate to buy insurance without a public option is NOT reform. A Wall Street bill that doesn't contain Glass-Steagall as a minimum is NOT reform. He's a total Bush 3 on Civil Liberties, has conducted warfare in six countries in 26 months in office, told the DOJ to lay off the past administration and the CIA goon cases, but spend 24/7 trying to find some reason to get Assange over here so he can torture him like he is Manning. He wants more surveillance for the FBI. It's not about expecting purity- it's about expecting him to TRY. How do we know we couldn't have gotten single payer, or a public option. He blew a whole summer waiting for Baucus' committee - months wasted trying to get Olympia Snowe's vote on HCR. It's a joke and the R's still hate it is so what was the point? He got the bill he wanted like he always does. Sacrifices, props, it works. When are you people going to wake up and quit blaming the "Bolsheviks"? Obama has NO interest in a progressive agenda. He's beholden to Wall Street and Big Business and everything he does shows it. He is not on your side.”
LazarusRises on Mar 30, 2011 at 21:37:25
“With the price paid for Obamacare, do you think the Democrats are going to revisit the issue within the next 5 or 6 centuries? O. had it in his hand & blew it because he was NEVER a Liberal. He is as Liberal as W. His Supreme Court appointments are slightly better & he reversed W. on stem cell research. Otherwise, he has essentially continued & embraced all of W.'s policies.
Friends can be forgiven. Traitors cannot.”
Marcospinelli on Mar 30, 2011 at 16:37:12
“Instead of continuing the anger over not getting single-payer right away, we should be planning how to strengthen the reform we have.
“President Obama is as he has always portrayed himself—an intelligent, thoughtful pragmatist, who has a long-term vision for this country, and respects the input and opinions of others. He recognizes that strategic planning is a vital part of making any vision a reality. Given the economic distress and the cultural miasma in our country when he began his Presidency, it is beyond my understanding how intelligent people could expect him to resolve the damage immediately. It is ludicrous to hold him responsible for the continuing partisanship in Washington, just because he said he wants to bring change. Change, especially in long-standing attitudes will be a continuing slog, which could take years--you don't just give up trying because people don't want to cooperate with you.
For 8 years, I listened to liberals outline the dismantling of our government institutions by the Bush Administration. They spoke passionately about the deep hole from which the next president would have to start digging our way out. Apparently, Obama should have fixed it all by now. These people acknowledge the intelligence of our President, but do not trust him to make intelligently based decisions. Even when they acknowledge his accomplishments, they are stingy with their praise. They are so focused on their immediate gratification; they fail to comprehend the depth and breath of those accomplishments. In 2 years, President Obama has done more than most other presidents in their entire presidency---and he will likely be our President for another 6 years.”
rflctammt on Mar 27, 2011 at 23:35:53
“Very well put. Thank you.”
LazarusRises on Mar 27, 2011 at 22:19:55
“After reading what you wrote, it is painfullly obvious why "it is beyond my understanding".”
amtheone on Mar 27, 2011 at 20:53:40
“Very Good zlydonna, F&F”
salty000333 on Mar 27, 2011 at 20:09:14
“Hear Hear! Beautifully put Zlydonna!
You are so right, even his supporters are stingy in their praise. I predict that Obama will not be fully appreciated until he has been out of office for some time (though I do think he will win the 2012 election despite furious efforts from the right). It seems like it is a national characteristic to be unable to delay gratification, we want everything NOW, no matter how complex the problems are.”
“I am a Black Woman. I find that I am not really angry at Michael Richards--disgusted is more applicable. What he said is indefensible. I have enjoyed watching Seinfeld from time to time. His comments do not affect how I feel about the cast of the show. Richards' character was my favorite. Honestly, I had no plans to buy the Seinfeld DVD Series. I will never watch the show again.”