Thursday, July 10, 2008

It’s the Leadership Dammit

I am angry but it is not materializing in that way...there is this very numb kind of surrender that makes me want to go back to bed and pull the covers over my head.

I am sure that this will return to some kind of outrage that begets action in a couple of days, but right now I am wondering what the point is.

I am not as disappointed in Obama as I am in all of the Dems - most specifically the leadership who did not need to bring this bill to the floor.

I have no idea why they would do this and why they would put the other Dems in the position of having to vote for this stupid piece of shit legislation knowing that many of them need to be re-elected in red districts.

Why would they do this?

As for Obama, and yes I am making excuses, I get why he voted like he did. The vote was 69-28 - voting "Nay" would have made all of us happy but it would have not have changed the final result and would have offered the McCain campaign endless material for "Obama being weak on fighting the terrists."

Right now the only question in the polls where Obama is losing to McCain is in “fighting terrorism.” Obama had to vote for this.

It was posited, by David Bender on AAR the other day, if we could choose for Obama to win the election or to vote “No” on this FISA bill, wouldn’t the choice be clear? I think that this was our choice; it is absolutely possible that voting No on the FISA bill might have killed his campaign. Probably not, but I am not willing to take that chance.

Yes, I am a Progressive and I live in a very Progressive area of the country. Obama does not need to try to win my vote. He does have to try to win the vote of the people in the middle of the country and the people who do not follow legislation closely – the ones who are genuinely afraid of the terrorists and the ones who are swayed by sound-bites.

Even though I wish that he would have stood on his principles – I still believe that he has these principles. I cannot say the same for McCain.

Feingold lays out all of the reasons why this bill is so dangerous and his statement proves why he is, and always will be, my first choice for President. Feingold still believes in Obama and stated, when asked by Rachel Maddow last night, “what is the difference between the Democrats and the Republicans?” that our last, best hope is to elect Obama because “he believes in the Constitution.”

McCain only throws out the word “Constitution” when it sounds good but he prefers to actually throw out the Constitution in practice.

So, when I stop feeling powerless and begin to channel my anger back into action the ACLU is going to court and Strange Bedfellows are also taking action. There is Feingold and he is hiring. Then there’s Bob Wexler. There’s Progressives for Obama who continue to push him.

And, there is always, Obama himself, who invites discussion and dissent and, who I believe, is teachable.

The Leadership of the Congress – the Democratic leadership – brought this piece of shit legislation up. They are the cesspool Id, I get it, but I do not think that we can fault Obama fully for this – what choice did he have? He has to win to make the changes we need. If this vote was the way to winning then I can forgive that. And, fer gawd’s sake, this is not a re-hash of the Obama vs. Hillary fight.


Carl Davidson said...

Thanks, L&L, for the reference. We're on the same page.

But I stress expanding the progressive pole by registering and mobilizing more and more new young voters, and place that over reaching further into the center-right, although I'm for that, too, just not at the expense of the former, which is critical, at least here in Western PA where I am.

So yes, Obama is what he is. We're not fresh out of the pumpkin patch here, and we'll keep pushing, where appropriate, and find broader unity, too.

It's called politics.

Anjha said...

Carl, thanks for stopping by.

I do believe that Obama will be completely receptive to the people, most specifically the values that are portrayed as "Left" but are truly American values, once he is in office.

But we have to get him there first.

Keep up the great work.

Seven of Six said...

Obama has to move to the center. He has the left's vote. The country would not go for electing a leftist such as Feingold for President. That's why we have Obama as the Democratic candidate.

I agree with Feingold, Obama will make it right. I have confidence in him. Have you read his book, "Audacity of Hope"? He will not let the people down.

I predict he makes Edwards his V/P. Ease the left's minds.

I'm disappointed as hell. Took my name off his website in protest. I will not donate any money until the convention (or until his V/P pick). He has to know he has pissed of plenty of people.

Anjha, Id and Milo, thanks for bringing up the slack for us political pie fight burnouts.

Of course my right arm is killing me, and I'm a righty of course. Can't even pick up a cup of coffee without straining. At least I can drink beer left handed. You would be amazed at how much you do with your dominate hand, (he, he... ahh!).

idiosynchronic said...

Actually, I think the cesspool is the discussion on the Internet. The left political blogosphere the past two days has been a filthy emotional sewer. But Anjha has a good point, that the Congressional leadership of both houses could have sat on or otherwise buried this honeycart of legislation if they wanted to. Which they didn't.

And it all happened without the Republicans having to pick up one shit-stained finger...

Carl Davidson said...

Actually, he doesn't have the left's vote.

A part of it will go to Nader and the Greens--which is unrecoverable, in my opinion. I simply tell them don't vote alone, but take scads of new young voters with you, whether they vote Green or not.

Which leads to the main point. Large numbers of left and progressive potential voters, registered and unregistered, rarely voted in the past. They were the least represented of all age groups. That is changing this time around, but it's far from in the bag, even though this is where some very deep numbers can be found.

That's also why it's critical not to demoralize or demobilize all those young organizers who will bring them out.

Worry about this first, and put concerns about dwindling number of center-right undecideds second.

Seven of Six said...

I think the left is scarred enough from the last 8 years that we know (at least I know) we have to start with a Democrat for real change to take place.