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Dear Dems: Grow a pair (part 973)

With all signs pointing to an epic cave by Dems on whether to hold a vote to extend the middle class tax cuts, it's worth resposting this video message to Democrats that went viral when Dems were debating whether to take the plunge and pass health reform via reconciliation:

In case you didn't catch it the first time, this video urged Dems to "get some balls" -- Balls Beer, that is. It went viral because it seemed to perfectly capture Dems' frustration with their party leadership's chronic tendency to fold in the face of Republican attacks.

This video -- which was produced by a group called the Liam Show/Drama34 production -- came amid weeks and weeks of handwringing among Dems about the GOP's claim that if they passed health reform via reconciliation, armageddon would break loose.

The first time this vid became a sensation, of course, Dems did ultimately summon the courage to pass reform. But now that we're here again, it seems worth reasking the questoin Sam Stein posed last time:

"Which bodega in Washington D.C. sells Balls Beer for leadership to purchase?"

By Greg Sargent  | September 23, 2010; 12:51 PM ET
Categories:  Senate Dems  
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Next: White House acknowledges vote on middle class tax cuts may be dead -- squarely blames GOP

Comments

Small Business™

As Keith Olbermann puts it, the Republicans have turned small business into a brand that has little to do with shoestring entrepreneurs or mom-and-pop operations or even the 500-employee companies that the Small Business Administration sets as the upper limit for "small." For the GOP, it's a handy propaganda phrase that helps to conceal the fact that ultra-wealthy Americans are ducking corporate taxes by filing the take from some phenomenally profitable companies with their personal income taxes.

All perfectly legal. And all part of the decades-long upward transfer of wealth that the GOP and its enablers would like to keep in motion. That's what's ultimately behind their effort to persuade people that failure to extend tax cuts to the very richest Americans will disproportionately hurt small businesses and undermine the economy and eliminate their capacity to create badly needed jobs.

[...]

As the Joint Committee on Taxation has reported, and even House Minority Leader John Boehner has conceded, 97 percent of taxpayers with business income would not be affected if the top two tax rates returned to their pre-2001 level. Among the 3 percent who would be affected are the 400 richest - a few billionaires in that group - and others in the ultra-wealthy elite. They qualify as small business owners under the ridiculously broad definition of the term even though they own highly profitable companies that are anything but small.

[...]

"Small business" owners of KKR, Koch Industries, CoorsTek, the Carlyle Group, Harrah's Entertainment and PriceWaterhouseCoopers are among the other wealthy Americans who would benefit from extending the top-level tax cuts.

Estimated 10-year cost of this grotesque rip-off: $690 billion plus $140 billion in interest payments to cover debt service.

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/9/23/904477/-Small-Business

http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2010/09/13/gop-big-biz/

Seriously now...

BECHTEL. PriceWaterhouseCoopers. HARRAH'S.

Small biz my anus.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Greg. I hadn't seen that video before.

"If we couldn't laugh we just would go insane."

Jimmy Buffet

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

It looks like the Dem House members have given up for Nov and have accepted minority status. While I'd never vote for any member of the GOP, even if it was for a seat on the local Sanitation Board, losing the House may not be such a bad thing for the Dems. The GOP can't screw it up too much in 2 years. With the new crop of GOP wackos coming to DC they will be perfect poster children for the Dems to attack come 2012. The Dems caving today is essentially the start of the 2012 campaign.
It will be 1948 all over again, with Obama running against Congress.

Posted by: filmnoia | September 23, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Dems are wh*res of the status quo.

Posted by: Papagnello | September 23, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

"With the new crop of GOP wackos coming to DC they will be perfect poster children for the Dems to attack come 2012."

And then the Dems regain the majority and fail epically again. Is this what we're condemned to in our national politics? Don't the Democrats even WANT to win? I've never seen anything like this.

I'm just going to watch the Balls Beer video from now on.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Change ain't coming through the Dems.

Posted by: Papagnello | September 23, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

It all goes without saying this is pretty much Obama's fault. :/

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 23, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

"It all goes without saying this is pretty much Obama's fault. :/"

I'm curious. What is the point of that comment?

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

"And then the Dems regain the majority and fail epically again."

Haha, yeah, something like that. The joys of a worthless two party system. Neither party have the balls or the brains to stop the US from achieving third world status in the next 20 years. Getting away from oil and into "green" technology will not matter. China is already ahead in that technology,and India is getting the outsourced tech jobs, so what will we be known for, except as a nation of also rans?

Posted by: filmnoia | September 23, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

You can worship at the Obamalter as much as you want, it's Dems in DC who are congenitally ball-less and spine-less.

Posted by: Papagnello | September 23, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Greg - Speaking of growing a pair, how about you do something about the troll infestation here at the Plum Line?

On the tax cuts, well, sure, I have no problem with holding the vote for political purposes. That kind of gamesmanship is what political parties do. But I think, policy wise, the smart move is to let ALL the tax cuts expire.

You seem to think that the politics on this is all in the Dems favor, and I don't disagree. But even if they did hold the vote, in order for the Dems to capitalize on it they would need to do some great messaging. I have yet to see any evidence that they are capable of "great" or even good messaging.

A big part of the problem is that the media (which is NOT liberal) is so afraid of being labeled as liberal that they consistently roll over and repeat nonsensical rightwing talking points as if they were the truth, even though the media knows the cow plop coming from the rightwing is garbage through and through.

Given the lack of messaging skills and the spineless media I don't think this non-vote is such a big issue.

Posted by: nisleib | September 23, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

filmnoia:

There MUST be an alternative. But I don't know what it is.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Does this video show the election at the end of the block???


Those girls in the bikinis are now going out with Conservatives, by the way.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

If you WATCH the video carefully, the liberals walk away.


AND they LEAVE the girls with the Conservatives.

HOW SMART IS THAT ?


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

"Those girls in the bikinis are now going out with Conservatives, by the way."

Couldn't be, they are all either too busy praying for forgiveness because they: A) Coveted their neighbors wife B) Coveted a hooker C) Coveted their neighbors kid D) Coveted themselves.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 23, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

"44 House Dems Press Pelosi For More Tax Cuts For The Wealthy"

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/09/44-house-dems-press-pelosi-for-more-upper-income-tax-cuts.php

I've said repeatedly that about 1/3 of the Democratic Party is corrupted by corporate influence.

We currently have 253 members in the House. 44 members want to extend the Bush tax cuts on capital gains and dividend taxes.

So that's only about 17% of the party. Less than 1/3, less than 1/4 even. We'll see about the Senate, but I bet it's roughly the same proportion.

Of course, they're insane. And it's nuts that less than 1/4 of the House Dem caucus is holding the country hostage. But, um, oh well or something.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Actually this time it definitely isn't Obama's fault. He has made several speeches, strong, good speeches on this. He stood up in front of a bunch of CEOs and told them we just don't have the money for more tax cuts for them. He got pollsters to show Congressional Dems how popular the middle class tax cuts were and how unpopular the tax cuts for the very wealthy are.

The fault here is almost entirely with the House Blue Dogs and the Senate. The Blue Dogs deserve to lose, they just drag the caucus down. The Senate Dems are just a bunch of ineffectual, out-of-touch old white men and Blanche Lincoln.

I've basically had it with the House and will only support challengers and a few incumbents like Tom Perriello and Mary Jo Kilroy who stand for the middle class. No incumbent Senators but Boxer and Feingold and a couple of others deserve anything but a very relutant vote if you live there.

We are at a very sorry pass in our politics and this heads-in-the-tar-sands bunch is going to destroy the country and likely the planet too through their inaction except when it concerns shovelling more money to the wealthy.

But Obama doesn't deserve ther blame for them folding on tax cuts.

Posted by: Mimikatz | September 23, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Oh, that video is great. I hadn't seen it before.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 23, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Reality Check.

Who did George W. Bush turn to after he finally realized that Donald Rumsfeld had mad a mess out of Iraq and Afghanistan?

Robert Gates and General Petraeus.

Those are the very same people that Obama is still relying on.

Right Wing Hate Mongers will stop at nothing, when it comes to smearing President Obama. He is using the very same Defense Secretary, that President Bush used, to turn things around, and he is using the very same General, that President Bush relied on to turn things around.

Right Wing Hate Mongers always want to have it both ways. When those two men were working for Bush, they were strong on national security, but apparently now, those same two men, must be weak on national security, because they are doing the very same work for President Obama.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 23, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

"I've said repeatedly that about 1/3 of the Democratic Party is corrupted by corporate influence."

I'd guess that's about right, Ethan. The Business Elite took over the GOP totally when Reagan ran. My thought is that since that time, the Oligarchs have focused on the Democratic Party. That's what the Democratic Leadership Council, Blue Dogs and Republicrats are for. Clearly, the Oligarchs have neutered the Democratic Party. ANd since they own the GOP and since we only have 2 parties, that's just about the ballgame, right there. BTW: I'm still looking for recommended reading on the DLC and Big Business' incursion into the Democratic Party because, you see, I'm not depressed enough already.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

mike wrote, very cleverly:

A) Coveted their neighbors wife B) Coveted a hooker C) Coveted their neighbors kid D) Coveted themselves.
-------------------------------
Don't talk COVET. Too close to COVEN.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 23, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

"That's what the Democratic Leadership Council, Blue Dogs and Republicrats are for. Clearly, the Oligarchs have neutered the Democratic Party. ANd since they own the GOP and since we only have 2 parties, that's just about the ballgame, right there"

Agree 100%.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

I think Liberals must organize outside and independent of the Democratic Party. I realize that is anathema to many Dems, but I really don't see any alternative. There must be a Liberal equivalent of the Tea Party. Hey, Greg, do you want to be National Spokesperson?

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

nisleib, I get those arguments. but a vote would be a golden opportunity to pump up the base, and not holding one risks muddying up the overall Dem message about the GOP=Bush.

Re the trolls, how bad has it gotten? Can people give me a sense? seems like there's some ad hominem stuff but generally it's a robust argument...

Posted by: Greg Sargent | September 23, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Greg: I'm not one to complain much about trollery but I have to say that it is very tedious scrolling through tons of nonsense and garbage looking for a cogent comment. It's getting pretty bad.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

"It's time for us as Americans to have an adult conversation with each other about the serious challenges that face our country"

~ John Boehner, 9/23/10

It's nice he came to that realization a good two full years after the on-set of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Maybe, just maybe, we should think about having an "adult conversation" BEFORE the next economic crisis.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

The trolls


The liberals are constantly personally attacking people.


12Bar is trying to start fights almost everyday - often without even commenting on the topic.


I think the Conservatives are trying to remain restrained - and are NOT responding in-king. I hope that is taken into consideration.


Also Greg - 12Bar has been bringing people over from the Fix - in order to start fights on this blog - I hope you are aware this kind of stuff is going on.

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

"Rep. John Adler (D-NJ) has been rounding up signatures on a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, urging her to extend more than just the upper-income Bush tax cuts, passed in 2001. In addition, Adler and his crew want to extend the 15 percent rate on capital gains and dividend taxes, created by the 2003 Bush tax cuts. Other media outlets have since picked up on the story, and now Adler's effort is gaining steam. A source sent over a list of 44 Democrats who have signed on to the letter."

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/09/44-house-dems-press-pelosi-for-more-upper-income-tax-cuts.php?ref=fpb

Stunning.

I want my country back.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Greg, from your morning plum on the Angle video, she says "everything that they want to throw at us is covered under 'autism'" Meaning to imply that autism is some made up condition and not a real disease.

I do believe she is mocking the diagnosis and not just the policy.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 23, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Right on, Greg!

Here's a list of those who really run our country. Might as well admit it.

http://www.forbes.com/wealth/forbes-400/list

Hope folks got their begging bowls ready. It's going to be a long 2 years.

Posted by: Alex3 | September 23, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I'm just busy punching hippies wbgonne. It's my favs.

Seriously, go to Openleft or FDL and read the comment sections. It's as if the Dems in charge just eliminated Social Security, Medicare, put the top tax bracket to 0%, eliminated every social net and outlawed medical marijuana. I can't figure out if they are just hard core Nader fans that now have a voice because of the internets, right wing trolls trying to shift perception or people that are so fed up they post on every thread how they are never voting for a Democrat again.

I don't see how that is constructive and people like Jane Hamsher and those on OpenLeft just feed them with the vindictive attacks at the admin every day.

Just read this stupid post here: http://openleft.com/diary/20265/obama-a-onetrick-pony and read the comments.

The entire thing is a mockery of Obama and everyone in the comments section is talking about running someone against him in 2012.

They are a bunch of idiots and if they consider themselves the professional left then they deserve mockery. They have no intent to support this admin so I could give a damn if I offend them. I find every post they make and their commentators very offensive.

They sound like a bunch of spoiled brats.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 23, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

wbgonne: When Bush was Pres the Left was pretty angry but nothing like the Tea Party blossomed. Then Obama comes in with policies that are better for the average American and we get "populist rage" coalescing into the Tea Party. Why are the Right better at organizing or channelling discontent?

Part of it has to be the weaknes and demonization of the union movement. Also I think the corporate predators like the Kochs and others were willing to get in there and fund the TP and give them "guidance" and resources, and the media kept elevating them above what they did with the, for example, much bigger anti-war marches when Bush was Pres.

It will take much more than going around the Dem Party. Is a takeover even possible with all the moeny going the other way?

Posted by: Mimikatz | September 23, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I have been counting the number of postings

nisleib and Ethan both meet the definitions of spammers and trolls.


12Bar does too - but she is trying to provoke fights here.

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

The GOP has announced today on CNBC that they are pledging Gridlock and if that doesn't work simply shutting down govt. Curious if the GOP had control of Congress on Sept 15 or Dec 28, 2008 when Lehman, AIG, and GM were going under what they think would have happened had they succeeded with their plan of opposition and gridlock. The better question for these ideologues might be w/n they would even care what the economic fallout would be with this totally reckless philosophy of total gridlock and shutting down govt. It might please their Tea Party supporters but would otherwise destroy our economy.

Posted by: leichtman1 | September 23, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Shorter STRF: Oh, Greg, oh Greg, save me from 12Bar. She is bringing more posters over to your blog!

Oh, by the way, you're a liar, Greg. No offense.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 23, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

"Re the trolls, how bad has it gotten? Can people give me a sense?"

I think it's just you-know-who. It really amounts to spamming. There is no conversation at all and it is typically totally irrelevant. Definitely contributes to the deterioration of the conversation.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

The democrats for months have been asking the Republicans to say what they are in favor of.


So the Republicans give them a 22 page document


The democrats - all they have done all day long is COMPLAIN about what is in the document -


and COMPLAIN about what is NOT in the document.


It is too general, too specific, not this, not that - the document IS NOT ON THE RIGHT KIND OF PAPER !!!!!


Just STOP THE SPENDING.

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Don't talk COVET. Too close to COVEN.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 23, 2010 1:32 PM

_________________________________

You should know........

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

"'m just busy punching hippies wbgonne. It's my favs."

What I thought. However, the Stupid And Ungrateful Left doesn't explain how Obama lost Independents, does it? Independents must be stupid and ungrateful too. But keep punching those Hippies, cause it's fun and everybody does it. And don't dare go after the Republicrats who are wrecking Obama's presidency and the Democratic Party. Whose side are you on, anyway?

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

@wbgonne:

"Stunning.

I want my country back."

Agreed. It's sickening.

To make matters worse, these are the same people who have spent much of the last 2 years complaining about the deficit when the focus was on things like unemployment benefits or healthcare.

Posted by: associate20 | September 23, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

All I can say re STRF is people from both sides and the middle are complaining about his posts. I scroll through and don't bother reading, they're pretty much all the same, but the thread devolves pretty quickly sometimes so I just check out. I'm pretty busy right now anyway so it doesn't really matter that much to me one way or another.

Mike, share your link from yesterday with Greg and everyone else again, that pretty much sums it up.

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Mimikatz:

"Why are the Right better at organizing or channelling discontent?"

No accident. Read the book I've been touting all week, Invisible Hands by NYU Prof. Phillips-Fein. As a start read the infamous 1971 Powell Memorandum, which lays out the Oligarchs' propaganda battle plan. So they've been at it a long-time and, as you say, they obviously have the money. What do we have? People who care about the nation and the world. Lots of them, I suspect, but very disorganized and by now very demoralized. Can they (we) get organized? I don't see why not. We have the internet. I think the Left has to start flexing some muscle one way or another.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

"And don't dare go after the Republicrats who are wrecking Obama's presidency and the Democratic Party."

...because I hardly make comments about how idiotic Republican are.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 23, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Republicrats are not Republicans. They are the alleged Democrats p*ssing all over the inside of the Democrats' tent. I'm waiting for you to attack them instead of Jane Hamsher (as if she even matters).

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Wbgonne,

It's painfully obvious that we need more moderate and liberal Democrats representing us.

But the extent that the (grain of salt) fair left ("professional left") has been attacking Obama and his policies has simply been way across the line.

The fight is with Congress and congressional Dems, not Obama. Obama has governed from the center because he has had to mollify the conservadems, and in doing so he has accomplished a great deal. But I believe the left's criticism of Obama is where it has gone off the rails. Just my opinion. Otherwise, we're basically in full agreement.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

STR/37th I came to this site recently. Are you now claiming like you did at The Fix that no one is allowed to post at this site who does not say amen after your posts and those who don 't are troublemakers. Didn't know that you were authorized to make the rules here. Seems like it was that sense of arrogance that got you as 37th moniker expelled from The Fix.

Posted by: leichtman1 | September 23, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Imsinca at 1:58


You say you don't read my comments - so obviously nothing is bothering you and you don't have a complaint.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, you really think the problem lies with Congress? I'd say the Senate is the far greater hurdle to more progressive change.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 23, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Was that ad spot produced by OUR Liam??

Posted by: BGinCHI | September 23, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

I'll be waiting to see a GOP-led House take up any kind of climate/greenhouse gas legislation. I'm going to be waiting a looong time while they start yet more impeachment hearings. Huzzah!

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 23, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

"Ethan, you really think the problem lies with Congress? I'd say the Senate is the far greater hurdle to more progressive change."

Meant:

Congress = House + Senate

:)

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse


A list of 44 democrats are seeking tax cuts for everyone - and wants to extend them to capital gains -

----

Stunning.

I want my country back.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 1:42 PM


_______________________________

Tax Cuts ARE American

No one wants higher taxes. AND Americans do not want to DIVIDE the nation. This is another broken pledge by Obama - who was suppose to UNITE, but now we have taxes being a divisive force.

This is your country - learn to love it.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

wbgonne, Nelson is a pandering idiot. Lincoln is a pandering idiot. Landrieu can be one at times, same with Pryor. They can also be sellouts to every day people pandering to business needs that could detrimentally impact workers in their states but those actions usually get drowned out by the pro-business right wing noise machines.

Unfortunately, they are dealing with electorates that are inundated with right wing propaganda that thinks if millionaires or billionaires get more millions and billions, they will create more jobs even when there's no market, or something. Their electorates also come from generations of Americans that moved out into rugged country because they wanted to be self sufficient and didn't want anyone in their business, this includes any attempt that might be deemed as a hand out or taxes to pay for anything like that.

Do I think that's the case in most circumstances? No.

Do I think they need to pander to get elected? Unfortunately, if you want to maintain majorities in this environment, yes.

Unless some serious campaign financing laws are put into place, pandering and compromise is required.

It's a hard pill to swallow that I don't think those as OpenLeft or FDL are willing to accept. Fine. If that's how they want it, so be it.

But they can't act shocked and surprised when they get push back to attempts to squash what Democrats are trying to accomplish. If they are going to dish out, they should expect to get pushed back at.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 23, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Ethan:

I know you're a trueblue Democrat and I think that we agree almost completely on policy matters. But I disagree with your assessment of Obama's constraints. When elected Obama had the greatest presidential mandate in a very long time, along with near-total control of Congress. Through poor policy decisions and worse politics Obama squandered all that in one year. That's what I think and, unfortunately, many people -- Independents as well as Liberals -- see it the same way. But that's water under the bridge. The question is what now?

As I see it, the Democratic Party can only be saved if it is freed from the pernicious influence of the Republicrats and returns to its Liberal roots. Attacking the Left does the opposite and moves the Democratic Party ever further towards self-destruction. It drives enthusiasm further down and there is simply no excuse for gratuitously alienating supporters. The GOP NEVER does it and they have to live with a wing that is certifiably insane.

I don't know. What do you suggest?

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

"Mike, share your link from yesterday with Greg and everyone else again, that pretty much sums it up."

SaveTheRainforest on any given day....

http://www.chiefsplanet.com/BB/attachment.php?s=aa5ab7a923d4dde7bb073562c40a1691&attachmentid=55242&stc=1&d=1142920093

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 23, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

leichtman1 at 2:08 PM

__________________________________

What statement did I make that you are referring to ?


I am not seeking you to agree with me.

Obama is the one with the arrogance problem - not me.


I have defined the troublemakers very clearly - those who are attacking other posters, those who have been harassing other poster - and those who are making hostile statements aimed at starting fights.


In addition, 12Bar has been encouraging people to come over here - in order to start fights.


Also, 12Bar has been encouraging other posters to make hostile comments toward other posters.


I have been pretty specific.

If you want to say AMEN after every post, please feel free.

Thank you.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

"Meant:

Congress = House + Senate

:)

Posted by: Ethan2010"

Ah, ok. Yup, I agree.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 23, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

"If they are going to dish out, they should expect to get pushed back at."

One question: Who benefits when you -- and the Obama Administration -- attack The Left?

"Unfortunately, if you want to maintain majorities in this environment, yes."

And that is the Republicrat Enabling Act. Better to lose temporarily than win and lose everything in the end. Properly-defined, the vast majority of Americans are Liberals. Democrats should spend all their time -- and even suffer temporary setbacks -- to restore their commitment to Liberalism. It is a pyrrhic victory to win a majority but sacrifice what you stand for. I think that is exactly what we are witnessing today. Sadly, I expect the Dems to learn the precisely wrong lesson and move further away from Liberalism which, I predict, will cause even greater erosion of support. Dems can't succeed by out-GOPing the GOP.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

"Rep. John Adler (D-NJ) has been rounding up signatures on a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, urging her to extend more than just the upper-income Bush tax cuts, passed in 2001. In addition, Adler and his crew want to extend the 15 percent rate on capital gains and dividend taxes, created by the 2003 Bush tax cuts. Other media outlets have since picked up on the story, and now Adler's effort is gaining steam. A source sent over a list of 44 Democrats who have signed on to the letter."


____________________________________--

Sounds like this is the situation with calling the vote


Obama and Pelosi DON'T have the votes for a $700 Billion Tax Increase.

So is this Obama's Economic Policy: let all the tax cuts expire - and thereby RAISE all the taxes and HURT THE ECONOMY ?

This is a thicket.


Obama has no economic plan - it is such a disaster. HOW is this nation going to pull itself out of the GREAT OBAMA STAGNATION??

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

To me the biggest hurdle for the American people to overcome is the amount of money filtering through Washington and how it affects the outcome of legislation.

I happened to catch a little bit of Liz Warren on Morning Joe this AM. She gave an example of a complaint the big credit card companies were making about some of the new consumer safeguards.

The big brass were saying something to the effect that the legislation lost them $650b in the past year. Her comment was okay, but it saved consumers $650b.

Every time these guys lobby against consumers they're lining their pockets with big payouts in the form of CEO bonuses. The disparity between what workers earn and pay in hidden costs and what the top echelon of the business world earn is completely out of whack. IMO

I'm as pro business as the next guy but some of the numbers are pretty staggering and really stifling small businesses who depend on consumers having a little discretionary money in their pockets.

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

37th tells us all Americans only care about cutting taxes for billionaires and don't care that Obama had $350 billion in tax cuts in the stimulus and is now proposing $3 trillion in NEW tax cuts for 97 per cent of Americans. I doubt that most Americans stay up late at night worrying whether Paris Hilton or Hedge Fund mgrs will get another hundred grand to buy a new Rolex. All polls show just the opposite.

Posted by: leichtman1 | September 23, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Something that gets lost: Democratic politicians want votes. Everything they do that deters potential supporters is wrong UNLESS it is outweighed by more voters coming from someplace else. And that isn't happening because Independents are abandoning the Democrats. It makes no sense for Democrats to attack Liberals. None at all.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Ethan2010 AT 2:15 PM


You say the problem is with Congress


But the democrats are in control of both Houses.

So the solution is to vote them out - and get the Republicans in there who will get something done - like stop the runaway spending, right ?

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | September 23, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Here's a quote to highlight my point.

"According to the Economic Policy Institute report, in 1965, U.S. CEOs in major companies earned 24 times more than a typical worker; by 2007, they made 275 times more. U.S. CEOs also make far more than CEOs in other advanced countries, the report said."

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

I'll check in later.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 23, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "I don't know. What do you suggest?"

Suggest ruminating on this: "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference."

And I suggest to you that our system of government is designed to prevent rapid change and provide for moderate change over long periods of time. I'd suggest taking a more active role in local politics/community service where you can see more concrete results in less time.

Posted by: sbj3 | September 23, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

BG,

If you are out there, you misrepresented my comments on the previous thread. And I responded. If you are going to chastise someone for knee-jerk dishonesty, you should at least not misrepresent what they said.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 23, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

ALL,

Please write Harry Reid and tell him to schedule a vote for the Obama Middle Class Tax Cuts, or else.

I sent mine.

Here's the link to email "Leader" Reid:

http://reid.senate.gov/contact/index.cfm

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Ethan2010 and Wbgonne -

I guess the three of us see things the same re the fate of the Democratic Party.
I don't see a viable Left equivalent of the Tea Party. For decades Left protest always has come from various grassroots groups coming together- organically. The Tea Party is nothing of the sort. They were totally created and are owned by major corporate interests.
There will never be a US equivalent of the Brit Labor party here. Thanks to Reagan and the people who followed him to DC, the American labor movement has dwindled in influence. They would be the ones to be the consistent foot soldiers of the progressive movement. Unfortunately, the Right has done a nice job of using the bigotry and anti-intellectualism (reverse snobism) of some of the working class to suit their own ends.
I've just decided to follow Voltaire's advice "cultivate your own garden." Take care of yourself and your loved ones as best you can, as everything else falls down around us. I've come to realize that we are on a backward path that is historically irreversible.

Posted by: filmnoia | September 23, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

qb, I'll check it out and get back on. Busy day coming and going.

Posted by: BGinCHI | September 23, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Good advice SBJ.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

As corporatized as the Dems are, check THIS out!

The Republican Party's 21-page blueprint, "Pledge to America," was put together with oversight by a House staffer who, up till April 2010, served as a lobbyist for some of the nation's most powerful oil, pharmaceutical, and insurance companies.

In a draft version of The Pledge that was being passed around to reporters before the official release, the document properties list "Wild, Brian" as the "Author." A GOP source said that Wild -- who is on House Minority Leader John Boehner's payroll -- did help author the governing platform....

Until early this year, Wild was a fairly active lobbyist on behalf of the firm the Nickles Group, the lobbying shop set up by the former Republican Senator from Oklahoma, Don Nickles. During his five years at the firm, Wild, among others, was paid $740,000 in lobbying contracts from AIG, the former insurance company at the heart of the financial collapse; $800,000 from energy giant Andarko Petroleum; more than $1.1 million from Comcast, more than $1.3 million from Exxon Mobil; and $625,000 from the pharmaceutical company Pfizer Inc.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/22/pledge-for-america-brian-wild-lobbyist_n_735911.html

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/9/23/904610/-GOP-ignored-America-because-they-listened-to-AIG,-Exxon,-Pfizer,-Chamber

Good God, America is in deep deep trouble.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

BG, yeah, me too, actually. Back to work.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 23, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, just sent off a note to Reid. I keep plugging away at this stuff and try not to get too lost in the weeds of Congress.

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

The GOP has no platform *other* than tax cuts, deregulation and whatever their nutjobs on the Right can get them to do. They are a wholly-owned subsidiary of Wall Street. The Dems, less so.

We have a sclerotic legislative system that is barely capable of keeping up with the mundane and is woefully inept/incapable of dealing with real crisis like global warming. I keep harping on it but the Party Of No is not exaclty known for their progressivism when it comes to environmental issues. At best they begrudgingly admit to "concern" (but will do jack squat about it) and at worst is too influenced by a Right wing that either doesn't belive it is happening or prays at the altar of the free market.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 23, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

I was curious about what the Nickles Group had to say about itself.

This is what they do:

Our Services

* Legislative Consulting
* Political Navigation
* Coalition Building
* Policy Development

A Brief Sample of our Clients

WHO WE REPRESENT

• American Dental Association
• American Society of
Anesthesiologists
• Bristol-Myers Squibb
• CIGNA Corporation
• Comcast
• Copyright Alliance
• Eli Lilly and Company
• Exxon Mobil
• Medtronic, Inc.
• Monsanto
• Orbitz
• Pause Parent Play
• Southern Company

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 23, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Chuck, do you actually think there are any new big ideas on either side? Really, higher taxes, lower taxes, steeper taxes, flatter taxes, more regulations, less regulations.

Except in the details, I just don't get why people on either side argue about who has "new" ideas or "old" ideas. Obama is always trashing the "same old ideas" when all he has are the "same old [Democrat] ideas." There are new applications of the same ideas, but there aren't any new big ideas I've ever seen.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 23, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Why does it matter who wrote the Pledge for America? Lobbyists write all legislation for both sides in anything that doesn't involve the naming of post offices or national pickle day. How can we get bogged down in such unimportant stuff?

Posted by: 54465446 | September 23, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

I think the point is exactly what you wrote: lobbyists write all the legislation.

Lobbyists also write the GOP's pledge to America. So, whose pledge is it? While corporations hold the hand that holds the pen, who are we to believe?

Why have parties at all? Why not just vote for corporations? Cut out the middleman.

Actually when you think about it, why vote. Just let corporations vote. Cut out the middleman.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 23, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

WB,

I just realized that I totally mised your great post at 2:17 PM.

To answer your question, "What do you suggest?"

Frankly, I have no idea.

These issues are so intractable that if/when the GOP takes back the House and/or Senate, it's back to issues advocacy for me.

I'm sick of playing (Blue) Dog Catcher. Partly because of the broken Senate and partly because of piss poor leadership by Harry Reid (assuming he is still the Leader in 2011). Nancy is fine, imho, Reid has been a huge disappointment to me.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 3:15 PM | Report abuse

"I don't know. What do you suggest?"

"My advice to you is to start drinking heavily."

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 23, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

"Just let corporations vote. Cut out the middleman. "

Totally. They have protected free speech, so why can't they vote.

Shoot, why can't they run for office?

If Clinton was the "First African-American President" George W. Bush was the "First ExxonMobil President".

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

"My advice to you is to start drinking heavily."

Start?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

"My advice to you is to start drinking heavily."

Here in CA we'll probably just start smokin' more weed. LOL

There's still work to be done everyone. The election's not over yet.

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

best. comment. evarrr.

lmsinca 4 prez

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

lmsinca 4 prez

HAAAAAHAAAAAAAAHAAAAAAAA

Although I did get tao to donate to Feingold's campaign, with a lot of help from SCat.

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

:-)

Got my vote!

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"Although I did get tao to donate to Feingold's campaign, with a lot of help from SCat."

????&^%$#@!#$%*!


"Shoot, why can't they run for office?"

Why should then when according to you they already run everything?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 23, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

????&^%$#@!#$%*!

qb, we're just that good.

Posted by: lmsinca | September 23, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

"Why should then when according to you they already run everything?"

Ah right. I forgot.

They have no interest in public service nor the greater good.

Just like you QB!

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 23, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

qb-

I agree there are old ideas on both sides. But, I'm surprised that you can't see or won't admit that there are important issues concerning energy and the environment, to start with, and that your party has woeful record on those fronts. Thse demand progressive action-"letting the market decide" means we will continue to pollute, unless *new* ideas about consumption, alternative fuels, etc are adopted and yes, perhaps, "forced" on the public in extreme cases. Or we can just say the hell with it.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 23, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Funny video. Every new generation has to learn the same lesson anew.

"Dems ain't got no balls."

Posted by: illogicbuster | September 23, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

My point, chuck, aside from the merits or demerits of your energy argument, is that these aren't "new" ideas. You might say they are new or particular applications, but they are still the same old ideas. The idea that the government needs to determine what energy sources we use and "force" us to do it isn't new at all. It's just the same old central planning, statism, command and control, whatever you want to call it. The idea that "the free market doesn't work" isn't new.

At the end of the day, I suppose, it is all just political rhetoric and not consequential. I just find it annoyingly dumb.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 23, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Imsinca so did I. Feingold is a national treasure we need to support. I urge all Ds to join us.

Posted by: leichtman1 | September 24, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

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