Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

The Morning Plum

* Framing the fall: The big question: Will even the starkest framing of the elections enable Dems to cut through public anger over the economy, and persuade voters that they face a choice between giving current policies a chance to work and restoring Bush policies that ran the economy into the ground?

Can Dems re-nationalize the elections on their own terms, when the sputtering recovery has already framed the story the GOP's way?

President Obama and DNC chair Tim Kaine are set to give big speeches today -- a double-barreled effort to take back the storyline as we head into the final eight weeks of the midterm elections. Kaine will repeatedly hammer away at the "choice" idea.

"On Election Day, it will be Americans' turn to choose. They can choose Republicans who drove our country into a ditch," Kaine will say. "Or they can choose Democrats who are helping us climb out of that ditch. Who have taken the bold actions necessary to repair the damage caused by nearly a decade of failed Republican leadership."

* And: Obama will bring a personal tone to his speech in Cleveland today, discussing his own family's economic hardships even as he takes a hard shot at Speaker-in-waiting John Boehner.

White House communications chief Dan Pfeiffer previews Obama's attack on Boehner, arguing that the GOP has "no new ideas, just the same philosophy we tried for the last decade and which led to the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression."

* But again, here's the rub: The problem is that there's simply no evidence that voters buy the claim that a vote for today's GOP is a vote to return to Bush. The question is whether this will change, now that Dems are kicking into high gear and voters are focusing harder on the choice before them.

* Drawing a line in the sand: In his speech today, Obama will also insist that we must not flinch from letting the Bush tax cuts for the rich expire -- this year. No "compromises."

So here's the question about this: Are we now going to see eight weeks of aggressive populism from the White House, and will it enable Dems to re-nationalize the elections on their own terms?

* Boehner to White House: Please continue elevating me: You'll be startled to hear that Boehner's office says they're loving the White House strategy of elevating Boehner as the face of the Bad Old GOP, sensing White House "panic."

* "Ground Zero mosque" Imam will reveal financial backers: Feisal Abdul Rauf, not backing down, makes the case for his plan to build the Islamic center, adding: "We will clearly identify all of our financial backers."

That should prove deeply disappointing, er, reassuring, to the right.

* Yes, Dems were right to pursue health care reform: Jonathan Chait skewers the absurd notion that Dems would have been better off politically if they had abandoned a major campaign promise.

* Media greets Gallup poll with crickets: Steve Benen wonders why the Gallup poll showing the GOP up 10 points got so much more attention than yesterday's survey showing a tie.

* DCCC to media: Can we let the voters decide the midterms? DCCC spox Jennifer Crider cites the Gallup poll in an email to reporters: "With eight weeks until Election Day, Republicans and beltway pundits may want to hold off on calling the race for the House before voters cast their ballots."

Oh, come on. If professional Beltway prognosticators refrain from predicting a GOP takeover, they won't get any media attention! Everyone in D.C. knows exactly how this works, and everyone just plays along anyway.

What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  |  September 8, 2010; 8:32 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , House Dems , House GOPers , Morning Plum , Political media , Senate Dems , Senate Republicans  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Happy Hour Roundup
Next: Can Dems use Tea Party against GOP on 17th amendment?

Comments

"Are we now going to see eight weeks of aggressive populism from the White House, and will it enable Dems to re-nationalize the elections on their own terms?"

They better try something, Greg, because Obama and the Dems have totally lost control of the national discussion. And THAT is an understatement. Whether last-minute populism will work is doubtful, frankly, but Obama will still be president after November and it's time to think ahead to what he wants to be.

I question the intent reliance upon the bad economy to explain the Democrats' collapse. I am convinced the American people would have been patient with Obama had he been the transformative and inspirational leader they thought they were electing. But once Obama and the Democrats demonstrated that they were just the same old corporatist insiders AND they that they couldn't even govern effectively voters abandoned them.

I hope Candidate Obama emerges beginning today. Certainly, Obama is severely diminished and it would have been far better had he launched the battle earlier but, hey, better late than never.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

wb said: "Certainly, Obama is severely diminished"

I talk to dozens of people from around the country every day who come into my store and your notion here isn't validated by those conversations (yes, my wife thinks I shouldn't talk politics but she's from Texas and I've learned that it's prudent to do the reverse of what Texans believe).

The overwhelming sentiment I hear has two components: 1) worry about the suffering and uncertainties re economy and 2) that Republicans have gone nuts. I've found all of this (few exceptions) very encouraging.

Greg's and Benen's notes re the more recent Gallup polling really points to the effective manipulation of media and media narrative by conservatives. They do this very well because 1) they play to win, 2) they are very well funded, 3) they have the lion's share of marketing knowledge, and 4) as a consequence of the above, they have built the institutions in and around the media to manipulate narrative.

But you don't have to just suck all this in and succumb to the "reality" that is posited in this narrative-creation enterprise. A fundamental and important aspect of the game here is to not merely galvanize the conservative base but to dispirit the liberal/progressive base - for the obvious electoral consequences.

Just a reminder.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

ruk,

I'll respond to your last comments if and when I can but have to go now, since Obama hasn't put me completely out of work, yet anyway.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 8, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

I really ought to ad here the perspective that arises if one imagines ANY other individual presently occupying the WH and what he/she might have done or might do in the face of what this President faces in terms of real world situations and in terms of purposeful obstruction of all things all the time. Would another person in the WH face a less utterly cynical opposition? Not a chance.

And then, given that perspective, consider the policy accomplishments that have been achieved even in the face of all this.

This is an exceptional fellow. He does not however (and you ought to be happy as hell about this) move forward on the perfect wings of whispers from God. He's a very smart guy who is working very hard to keep the US from falling into the abyss. Weigh his intentions and his honesty against those of Boehner or Palin or Gingrich.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Bernie:

I agree with everything you wrote except the beginning, if I understand you correctly. Are suggesting that Obama is not severely diminished since the election? If he is, what are the primary reasons? Many Democrats suggest it is simply a near-inevitable result of the lousy economy. I disagree with that assessment. While I acknowledge that in other times the economy was indeed the primary if not decisive determinant, I believe that in this case the American people were disappointed and disillusioned by Obama's poor policies and worse politics. Obama should now govern the way he said he would: rationally, choosing policies based not political expediency but on evidence. The fact is -- at you correctly note-- the GOP is insane so that, by definition means, Conservatives have nothing to offer. So Obama should ignore them or, better yet, attack them mercilessly. Bottom line advice for Obama: Ignore the future mayor of Chicago and:

Go Left, Young Man.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

" Certainly, Obama is severely diminished
"

no kidding, people in my area have removed their obama bumper stickers, refer to him as the "3rd bush".
He's turned out to be just another corporatist ... his ping ponging to populism isn't real, but it is the ony thing that can save the democrats in congress

Posted by: newagent99 | September 8, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

"Greg's and Benen's notes re the more recent Gallup polling really points to the effective manipulation of media and media narrative by conservatives. They do this very well because 1) they play to win, 2) they are very well funded, 3) they have the lion's share of marketing knowledge, and 4) as a consequence of the above, they have built the institutions in and around the media to manipulate narrative."

Totally agree, Bernie. Conservatives have been in power for 40 years. That, coupled with their overwhelming financial advantage has placed them in complete control even though they are technically out of power. Liberals and the Left must get organized. If it were sensible, the Democratic Party would be the organizing platform for Liberalism. As we have seen, however, the Obama White House has so far chosen to go in the opposite direction. I truly hope some lessons have been learned but I have grave doubts about that. I fear that Democrats will either a) write off their losses to the bad economy; or b) agree with their adversaries that Obama has been too Liberal. Under the first alternative, the Dems will learn nothing and chalk up their defeat to bad luck. In the second alternative, the Dems will internalize the wrong lesson. Is there an alternative alternative? Sure, but I've yet to see any real signs that the Dems are considering anything other than these two explanations.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

@Q.B. Thanks for engaging on such a civil and thoughtful level...I'll catch your post when you get around to it.

Have fun at work. Darn..in about ten minutes I'm going to have to get at it as well...and tomorrow is payroll...thank God there's money in the bank to back their checks. :-)

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"Would another person in the WH face a less utterly cynical opposition? Not a chance."

I agree. The GOP signaled its Waterloo Strategy right from the start and would surely have done the same to Hillary, or any other Democrat for that matter. The problem was how the White House responded to the GOP's obstructionism. They attempted to appease when they should have attacked while they were strongest immediately after the election. Hillary might have known that and wouldn't have felt "saddled" by Obama's professed post-partisanship. The Clintons know what they are up against. I'm not even sure Obama realizes it yet. Over the weekend my sister said she thought one of the problems is that Obama is too nice: that he simply cannot believe the GOP can be as cynical and destructive as it is. Obama keeps waiting for Conservatives to become reasonable. Instead, he must make them pay a price for their obstructionism and he has utterly failed. I bet Mitch McConnell can hardly believe the success he's had or the Dems' political incompetence which enabled that success.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne & Bernie...

As usual wbgonne I agree with your post completely. Having said that I hope Bernie's anecdotal evidence is correct.

In my own experience here in Florida I get some of Bernie's anecdotal feedback as well, but alas I do sense a great deal of apathy and a certain sense of fatalism.

Here is a very unoriginal observation but IMHO very very true. This election like most elections will hinge on the GOTV.

The polls reflect this and the reason for some of the misinterpretation of perceived wild swings is because many of the sloppy pundits compare apples to oranges. If you look at the polls of "likely" voters...the R's kick butt...if you examine the polls of "registered" voters the Dems fare quite well. Consequently I fear what wbgonne says might be true...the last thing the Dems can afford right now is apathy...and alas some of we effing retards have become apathetic after getting almost nothing of major consequence on issues we believe in...HCR is a band aid...credit for a start yes...but a solution..not even close..and the war in Afghanistan...I won't even go there.

BTW Before I get ripped by my centrist buddies...AGAIN I personally am not apathetic...while I've lost some of my enthusiasm for O I still fear the R's enough to be very engaged...contributing and volunteering time as well.

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

The NRO takes a stand on the Koran-burning pastor...
http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/245877/burning-koran-nina-shea

And what is the NRO stand on Koran-burning? Well, here's what it is not.

It is not an indictment of this fellow for being a hate-filled religious bigot.

It is not that it will increase the ammunition for radicals who will use it to further encourage hatred towards the US and the West.

It is not that it will put US forces in more danger than is already the case.

It is not that such bigotry, if left unanswered and unopposed as divisive hatred towards the wrong faith might turn tomorrow against any other wrong faith.

For the NRO, the problem here is that the nature of Islam is so barbarous and punitive that their subsequent propaganda activities worldwide, including in the US, will encourage some to consider restrictions on free speech - on the sort of speech that we saw, for example, about Jews in Germany through the first decades of the last century.

And of course this is how the NRO would address this matter.

And of course in the process of arguing this set of priorities/values there is not the slightest hint of awareness at how Abe Foxman and crowd have set about stopping speech critical of not merely Judaism but of Israel government policies.

It is one of the most corrupt-of-mind things I've read in the NRO and that's saying something.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

@Kevin W. You wandered into the long winded debate Q.B. and I were enjoying on the last thread and pointed out that while liberals may be misunderstood and defined incorrectly...so are conservatives. I agree wholeheartedly.

This is why labels are rarely effective..they are too loaded and have many different meanings depending on the person who is using them.

wbgonne and I have even lost our honorary "liberal" "progressive" "Democrat" tags on this very blog. wbgonne we must be what passes today as radical. :-)

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Burning Korans is protected under the First Amendment. And, luckily for the GOP, being stupid and harming America isn't against the law. Since the GOP has decided that Greed is Liberty and Gluttony is Freedom, there is no place for personal responsibility. The nation will reap what Conservatives have sown but, of course, Conservatives will blame Obama when the anti-U.S. riots break out around the world.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

But the NRO does note the Castro bit. Just reported though. Nothing laudatory. One comment so far which posits (well, of course) some negative motivation.

to wb and ru - we are as one in our laborite solidarity

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

The Obama bus is packed with congressional Democrats and is heading for the cliff at 94 mph. The accelerator is stuck and the power steering has locked up. The cliff is about 100 yards away. Sounds like an action, adventure movie, climax scene.

But it's just the schizophrenic Democrats out on another one of their little joy rides........again!

When will America take their keys away, permanently???

Posted by: battleground51 | September 8, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

"wbgonne we must be what passes today as radical. :-)"

ruk: As the country staggers further into the RightWing Wackosphere I am becoming more radical with every passing day. I am PROUD of being a radical in this environment.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Later, All.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

[Rauf: "We will clearly identify all of our financial backers."]

A super-majority (70%) of patriotic Americans already know enough about them to sensibly reject the Cordoba House Islamo-supremacist mosque. Rauf is a key member in the Malaysian-based Perdana Global Peace Organization, the single biggest donor ($366,000 as of June 2010) to the Free Gaza Movement.
http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/individualProfile.asp?indid=2462

Recall, in a 6 to 3 decision this summer, the Supreme Court upheld a federal law that makes it a crime for Americans to provide “material support” of any kind (be it in the form of cash, weaponry, training, personnel, services, or “expert advice or assistance”) to a foreign terrorist organization, even if that support is for ostensibly peaceful purposes.

Financing and propagandizing for Hamas would be one example. Hamas conducts terrorist attacks against Israel with one part of its organization while running charitable endeavors with another. Propagandizing for Hamas to support its outreach programs would allow Hamas to use propaganda money elsewhere, or even if the specific money was applied to the charitable work, it would allow Hamas to not have to dip into the charity funds for its terrorist activities.

So, thanks once again to Imam Rauf (local Islamo-supremacism propagandists) for making it easier for Obama’s NSA to track your activities and Holder’s Justice Department to build a case to prosecute your material support propaganda campaign here. Great job, Hamas-propagandists!

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | September 8, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Just to stretch my earlier point a bit further, however. Here's a headline from a piece at NRO by Hanson (not one of the Hanson brothers from Slapshot).

"Waning Obama Worship"

Once again, I'd have you consider what I said nearly two years ago on the necessary narrative trajectory for Republicans immediately upon Obama winning the election.

- his policies will fail
- his policies are failing
- his policies have failed (even his supporters agree)

It's predictable to about 100%.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

@Bernie...Perhaps because I live in Florida just a couple hours south of this wack job Jones...I am glued to this situation.

You make excellent points about the NRO
position. But this could be expanded to the entire R leadership. What have we heard from Sister Sarah that fine upstanding Christian? Crickets! How about Newt? Crickets! How about McConnell, Boehner, Cantor et al? Crickets!

Now that General Petraeus has weighed in and pointed out that it's putting troops literally in more danger, you'd think those defense minded R's would be all over this...remember how the Dems were endangering our boys in Iraq with those stories and pics out of Abu Ghraib?

Perhaps I'm too much of a "liberal" but our country is embarrassing me right now.
Yes this Tennessee mullungin who has invaded Florida is a small crackpot..and perhaps could have been ignored..but the cat's now out of the bag and it's time for EVERYBODY TO TAKE A SIDE...not right or left...but the side against hate! Combine this with the recent Justice Dept reports on the growing violence connected to this wave of Islamophobia and the Pastor of one of the largest churches in Dallas teaching that Islam encourages pedophilia...thank God it was a Baptist church and not Catholic..can you imagine the hypocrisy there?

It's all simply just too sad and so wrong!

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"When will America take their keys away, permanently???"

Methinks the fellow doesn't quite get how totalitarian his fond wish is.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

@Bernie and wbgonne

"to wb and ru - we are as one in our laborite solidarity"

"As the country staggers further into the RightWing Wackosphere I am becoming more radical with every passing day. I am PROUD of being a radical in this environment."

I'm with you guys and wbgonne I share your pride!

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

@Bernie...The Hanson brothers from Slapshot?
Was that a great movie or what? Paul Newman was terrific as well.

I don't know that we have hockey teams like that anymore...perhaps for the best. :-)

In the early 70' while living in Dayton, Ohio I used to attend all of the IHL Dayton Gems guy. They had a guy named Dave Forbes who must have been cousin of the Hansons. In one of his fights the moron he was duking it out with was stupid enough to have a beard...Forbes held his beard in one hand and repeatedly punched him with his other. I know I'm barbaric...
MMA is one of my guilty pleasures..

Sadly as postcript to Dave Forbes...when he finally reached the NHL he broke a stick over I believe Wayne Maki's head..fracturing his skull and ending his career.

I sometimes question why at my now advanced age I am still entertained by violence? My personal growth is still a work in progress. LMAO

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Re First Ammendment...I differ with many of you on this one. Canada now has laws, like many European states, that prohibit hate-speech and I'm in favor of these. The slippery slope argument is obvious but I almost never find absolutist arguments convincing. What they are, most commonly, is simple.

I'm not fully aware of the application and reach of prosecutions for violations so far but while I was there the main target were those who tried to carry forward the classic anti-Semitic memes (holocaust a fabrication, etc).

I'm a fan of JS Mill but, on the other hand, I'm far less a fan of the blind and hate-filled bigotry that was a necessary precursor to the holocaust.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

When Boehner's people say that they love that the White House is focused on the leathery faced one, that really means that they desperately want them to stop. Its just a lame attempt at 2nd grade reverse psychology. Note to White House: Let the rhetorical pummeling continue.

Posted by: latenightwhatnot | September 8, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

The Obama-Pelosi-Reid, axis of incompetence is the miracle drug that has brought the Republicans back from death's doorstep.

More evidence that the only thing WORSE for America than Republicans is.....Democrats!

We need an All-American party that will work for Americans, all the time.

Posted by: battleground51 | September 8, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Nickelback, in the last thread, refers to this as "Obama's economy". I would guess that he thinks that on inauguration day, it was such. But, had things been better by this time, I'm *sure* he would give Obama full credit, yes?

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 8, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

A thought experiment: How long before Salvador Dali’s “blasphemous” caricature of Mohammed burning in hell is expunged from art history classes? How about Auguste Rodin? or Gustave Dore?

Each of these artists caricatured Mohammed’s suffering in Hell— as related in Dante’s trilogy “The Divine Comedy” [Inferno XXVIII, 19-42]. http://zombietime.com/mohammed_image_archive/dantes_inferno/

The same forces that recently plotted to destroy the fresco of Dante’s Inferno in Bologna’s Church of San Petronio remain at work today.
http://www.sky.com/skynews/article/0,,30200-1217873,00.html

And if Western media remain unwilling to fight this battle, what’s to stop the global Taliban from silencing any and every expression Muslims deem “offensive”? Archived depictions of Mohammed serve as a poignant reminder that such imagery has been part of Western AND ISLAMIC culture since the Middle Ages— and serve as a resource for those interested in defending free expression.
http://zombietime.com/mohammed_image_archive/

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | September 8, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne:

"I bet Mitch McConnell can hardly believe the success he's had or the Dems' political incompetence which enabled that success."

Something is terribly wrong when Republicans have succeeded in convincing successful Democrats of "failure."

This President and Congress have been, unequivocally, some of the most productive and successful in the nation's history.

Yet, Democrats consider them "failures"?

Liberals are funny.

Instead of hailing the feat of overcoming unified opposition (and uncertainty in their own ranks) to enact sweeping legislation that runs the full gamut: from Ledbetter Fair Pay to restrictions on tobacco marketing to minors to the establishment of an independent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to extending benefits and improving care for veterans to greater consumer protection from the gouging of credit card companies to outlawing preexisting conditions discrimination, people are whining about how "successful" the Republicans have been?

It baffles the mind.

And it truly makes me wonder if Democrats are pathologically predisposed to victimhood.

Posted by: associate20 | September 8, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

@ru - perhaps it was my mennonite heritage but I fled hockey as player and fan when it moved from the sly elbow of Howe to the marshal-arts murderousness of that psycopath who played for the Hawks 35 years ago. Haven't watched a game for more than five minutes in all this time. But among my brothers, I am alone in this so perhaps it's not heritage. I also prefer the company of women to that of men and that's not just because they are more user-friendly.

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

The same forces that recently plotted to destroy the fresco of Dante’s Inferno in Bologna’s Church of San Petronio remain at work today.

Linky repair: Italy arrests men over 'church plot'
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/2205263.stm

Police in Italy have arrested five people on suspicion of plotting to attack a church in the northern city of Bologna.
The men - one Italian and four Moroccans - were reportedly held after being seen filming in and around the city's San Petronio basilica.

The arrests follow reports in the Italian media that the al-Qaeda network was planning to bomb the basilica, which contains a fresco considered by some Muslims to be offensive.

The 15th Century work depicts the Prophet Mohammed being devoured by demons in Hell...

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | September 8, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

For anybody interested in more on the Tennessee wack job (sorry Kevin..you and I both love Tennessee but I also love Florida and this guy is embarrassing :-) ) who came to Florida, started a church and is now planning to burn a stack of Qurans Saturday night...here is the local view...

http://www.tampabay.com/news/humaninterest/article1120100.ece

Interestingly..perhaps not surpisingly..these "Christians" are big on their 2nd Amendment rights with targets inside their church.

As one commenter on the Times piece questioned..."I wonder what caliber weapon Jesus would choose?"

Food for thought...Imagine what would be taking place in this country if an Imam exercised his First Amendment rights and decided to burn a stack of Bibles in front of his Mosque on the anniversary date of Saladin's big win over the Christians in the Crusades....seriously..can you even begin to imagine the violence that would be unleashed? That's what's going on right now around the world in countries with a majority Muslim population..from Afghanistan to Indonesia.

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

"And it truly makes me wonder if Democrats are pathologically predisposed to victimhood."

Well, Jesus was. Are you going to suggest he's a bad model?

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

VIDEO: Swedish artist who drew Mohammed as a dog attacked at lecture
http://hotair.com/archives/2010/05/11/video-swedish-artist-who-drew-mohammed-as-a-dog-attacked-at-lecture/

[Note to any WaPo staff that Muslims imagine might "mock" their dead false prophet (piss be upon him): If you haven’t hired full-time bodyguards yet, this is your wake-up call.]

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | September 8, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

@ChuckinDenton - Let's not forget that when Sanford and Ensign were sticking their manhood into some lady not their own wife, it was under Obama's watch!

Posted by: bernielatham | September 8, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

associate20:

I'm not a Democrat. I'm a Liberal. And Republicans convince me of nothing.

"makes me wonder if Democrats are pathologically predisposed to victimhood."

Democrats are pathologically disposed not to victimhood but to self-loathing because they secretly and not-so-secretly think Republicans are right about nearly everything. In a not-unrelated development, the Democratic Party is the most inept and self-destructive in memory: The White House attacking Liberals is the stupidest thing any party has done in decades. While I'm sure Liberals deserved it (somehow), how's that working out for the Democrats? And if you don't think that McConnell is positively gleeful at how he has played Obama and the Dems for chumps both policy-wise and politically then you really aren't paying attention. Half-ass*d policies. Forcing Obama to govern from the Center and then successfully labeling him Socialist is an incredible coup for McConnell. And an epic, monstrous political failure by this White House.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

[rukidding7 sneered: "Imagine what would be taking place in this country if an Imam exercised his First Amendment rights and decided to burn a stack of Bibles"]

You don't have to imagine... happens all the time!

Christians in Gaza Fear for Their Lives as Muslims Burn Bibles
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/285123/christians_in_gaza_fear_for_their_lives.html

Muslim Students Urinate, Spit On Then Burn Bible
http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=f99_1208386409

Just Google "Muslims bible burning" to get all said information about Muslims burning the bible

So, what's your point? Oh, I guess you don't have one.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | September 8, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

The Democrat party used to be an all-American party but that was 50 years ago or more. When it was hijacked by the left-wing it became the party of socialistic mish-mash and has never recovered.

The only alternative to the DemoMarxists were the Republicans who embraced many patriotic and traditional values most Americans love. Since social mores trump purely economic {greed} issues with traditional Americans, more Americans began voting for Republicans.

The ObamaNation is merely a speedbump along this general pathway.

As long as the Democrat party is the party of everything else BUT mainstream America, it will never get a solid foothold in America again.

Remember, Obama is the very first, true, modern liberal to ever set foot in The White House. He's also the biggest disaster for the Democrats.

Go figure!!

Posted by: battleground51 | September 8, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

All, check this out: Interesting development:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/09/can_vulnerable_dems_teabag_gop.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | September 8, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

@bernielatham:

"Well, Jesus was. Are you going to suggest he's a bad model?"

No, Jesus wasn't a victim. He chose to sacrifice Himself. He said,
"No one takes it [his life] from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again." John 10:18 (NIV)

That's a position of strength, not victimhood.

In contrast, Democrats seem to be saying, "Republicans and the media have told us to give up, and things are hard... And gosh darnit, Obama hasn't even undone 8 years (or more) of damage to this nation in less than 2 years! So, even though we've -- by historical standards -- been incredibly successul; even though we've frequently defied the odds (e.g., winning with a black man with a "funny name" at the helm & passing a sweeping healthcare bill after previous generations had failed), we're giving up."

Big difference.

Jesus operated from a postion of strength, even in perceived weakness. Democrats are operating from a perceived position of weakness, even while in a position of strength.

Prime example: Democrats rival or outstrip Republicans in registration in many states, and could easily hold onto the House just by showing up in November. Yet, Democrats are acting like a Republican takeover is a foregone conclusion. They're already sharpening their knives for each other, while whining about what "failures" Obama & Congress are and how they "never win the arguments" in the public arena.

They've already given up. Even though they hold the keys to the outcome, they're refusing to acknowledge that they have that kind of power.

Posted by: associate20 | September 8, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

"Well, Jesus was. Are you going to suggest he's a bad model?"

Touche'

"Forcing Obama to govern from the Center and then successfully labeling him Socialist is an incredible coup for McConnell. And an epic, monstrous political failure by this White House."

Amen again wbgonne. And what makes it said is that Obama morphed into a policy wonk OBSESSED with bi-partisanship..and admirable but totally unattainable goal.

30,000 more troops for Afghanistan...not exactly progressive...Ron Paul could do better than that.

The band aid solution to HCR...a start yes...give it a quick cheer...and please note that I linked a story yesterday...that of the 4,000,000 people eligible for insurance under the new elimination of the "pre existing" condition only 2,000 have applied because the PRIVATE insurance companies have unaffordable rates...and then realize O completely folded on his campaign promise of a P.O....he DIDN'T have to do that.

I voted for Obama the leader...not the wonk. WTF was he when the R's went nuts with death panels and all the talk of rationing. How about some speeches of the quality he gave on race in Philadelphia. That was what was needed..not futile attempts at bi partisanship and all the wonkiness. He could have used a gazillion examples of the the Private insurance companies are ALREADY RATIONING...he could have selected poignant examples of the deaths caused by insurance company rationing...the bankruptices caused by medical costs...he had PLENTY to work with but he went all wonky and bi partisan on us.

I am not a victim...just very disappointed in tepid HCR and 30,000 more troops and God knows how many more billions to keep our empire afloat. Ron Paul is looking better and better everyday. :-) I LOVE Paul's foreign policy thoughts and I don't believe he could actually get away with disabling SS and some of his wackier ideas domestically.

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 8, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "I question the intent reliance upon the bad economy to explain the Democrats' collapse. I am convinced the American people would have been patient with Obama had he been the transformative and inspirational leader they thought they were electing."

I agree, although I think it would have been impossible for almost any politician to match the rhetoric of the campaign. Still, I think Obama hasn't done that bad a job as a president.

I tend to suspect that, for people who casually pay attention to politics, the ongoing stagnation of the economy provokes them to support the other party. For left wing partisans, they party (but particularly Democrats in the house and senate) haven't done enough, if much of anything, to fight the Republicans, or fight for Obama's agenda. For right wing partisans, the fact that the Democrats control everything is anathema, so they are excited about showing up and voting for the first available Republican.

There are multiple factors, but I do think it's a mistake to put to much emphasis on the transformative nature of your inevitable presidency when you're running for the office. Once you get there, lowering the sea levels and bringing about a robust, green economy and world peace turns out to be a lot more challenging than it looked in the brochure.

That being said, I'm becoming increasingly more dubious that there is going to be a Republican landslide. At this point, if the Republicans handily take control of the house but are still a seat or two short of controlling the senate, it will be seen as a Republican defeat, because the expectations of Republican victory this November is beginning to remind me of Obama's campaign rhetoric--so over-the-top that it's likely to end up with a lot of disappointed Republicans and Tea Partiers, come Nov. 5th.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 8, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

@ruk: "For anybody interested in more on the Tennessee wack job (sorry Kevin"

I'm sorry you can say that. Now, I don't mind the colorful characters and oft-lampooned backwoodsiness of some of my fellow Tennesseans, but I kinda draw the line when it comes to burning holy books as a form of protest, be they Bibles, Qurans, Torahs or Tibetan Books of the Dead. Every right to do it, yes. But sometimes we have the right to do entirely wrong, and even bad, thoughtless, selfish, irresponsible things. And then others have the right to call you out as an idiot.

"I wonder what caliber weapon Jesus would choose?"

.22 WMR. Lightweight, efficient, simple, non-ostentatious. Never overkill.

"Food for thought...Imagine what would be taking place in this country if an Imam exercised his First Amendment rights and decided to burn a stack of Bibles in front of his Mosque on the anniversary date of Saladin's big win over the Christians in the Crusades....seriously..can you even begin to imagine the violence that would be unleashed"

Well, it certainly wouldn't go over very well, and understandably so, although of course radical Muslims burn Bibles all the time. Just not in America, so much, where it's likely to be unhealthy to do so. And some of the violence would be in defense of the Muslims, so . . . that's America. Big melting pot.

That being said, this would be a non-issue on all fronts if the press wasn't covering it and giving these folks attention. Why isn't anyone pleading with the press to stop endangering our troops and encouraging terrorist recruitment with their persistent coverage of the story?

"And what makes it said is that Obama morphed into a policy wonk OBSESSED with bi-partisanship..and admirable but totally unattainable goal."

See, that's what I like about Obama. And, frankly, most of my fellow right wingers just don't see him that way--they see him as an ideologue that has lurched radically to the left. So I guess that's why the strategy is doomed to failure, but, still, I respect him for it, and it certainly makes me like him more than I might otherwise would have.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 8, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "Democrats are pathologically disposed not to victimhood but to self-loathing"

That's interesting, as I've mostly found Democrats pathologically disposed to self-liking and excessive patting of their own backs. For them, losing is inherently noble, because they are too good to win, if it means having rednecks and rubes sully their victory with their backwoods, hayseed votes. /snark

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 8, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne:

"The White House attacking Liberals is the stupidest thing any party has done in decades. While I'm sure Liberals deserved it (somehow), how's that working out for the Democrats?"

One could similarly assert that Liberals attacking a popular President is the "stupidest thing any party has done in decades."

And your question is a good one. Perhaps, it was simply a human response to the incessant attacks the White House has received from the left -- a manifestation of the frustration of passing laws that accomplish 80-90% of Liberal/Progressive aims, only to see them vilified and treated as an affront to Liberal/Progressive ideology, because "compromise" in a system that necessitates it is deemed shameful by quite-vocal ideologues.

"And if you don't think that McConnell is positively gleeful at how he has played Obama and the Dems for chumps both policy-wise and politically then you really aren't paying attention. Half-ass*d policies. Forcing Obama to govern from the Center and then successfully labeling him Socialist is an incredible coup for McConnell."

I think any glee that McConnell experiences is from the unexpected pleasure of the President's own party rejecting his leadership, disregarding his accomplishments, and attacking him, even as he racks up historic and impactful legislative victories.

No politico, regardless of how much (largely undeserved) savvy you ascribe to him (or her), could have foreseen that.

Posted by: associate20 | September 8, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Barack H. Obama is the greatest marketing success since HOOLA HOOPS.

But just like those cheap, rings of plastic, the craze has died after about a year of popularity.

Obama is destined to be the HOOLA HOOP of the '00s. An apt decade, indeed.

Posted by: battleground51 | September 8, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

associate20:

Yup, that's the White House's spin: Blame the ungrateful Liberals. Only I don't buy it and neither does the rest of the country. Feel free, however, to bury your head in the sand.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

it is important to read Mr Sargent's words carefully. Doing so will expose the big lie liberal narrative.

Here's a perfect example. In his false dilemma statement about framing for this fall's elections he makes this statement:
"restoring Bush policies that ran the economy into the ground"

Really? Isn't that something you'll have to you know, like PROVE to the American people? Or is the plan to do the good old propaganda approach and repeat the lie endlessly?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | September 8, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne:

Suggesting that my head is buried in the sand because I have the audacity to insist that liberals are not blameless is certainly an unconventional retort, and a tidy way of evading the question about the wisdom of incessant liberal assaults and denigration of accomplishments that would undoubtedly classify as some of the most Progressive/Liberal in this nation's history.


Posted by: associate20 | September 8, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

America has the biggest case of buyer's remorse the world has ever witnessed.

Barack H. Obama turned out to be a molded, plastic shell filled with excelsior.

A very, very, very expensive, impulse buy.

Oh, if we could just get our money back.

Posted by: battleground51 | September 8, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

There's a strange phenomena going around out here in the homeland.

OBAMA-BIDEN bumper stickers are mysteriously disappearing. It's as if some phantom hand has reached down and ripped them all off the bumpers.

There's actually more KERRY-EDWARDS bumper stickers now than OBAMA-BIDEN stickers.

Weird!!

Posted by: battleground51 | September 8, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

"* But again, here's the rub: The problem is that there's simply no evidence that voters buy the claim that a vote for today's GOP is a vote to return to Bush. The question is whether this will change, now that Dems are kicking into high gear and voters are focusing harder on the choice before them."

The Democrats could start by pointing out that the bush tax cuts which the GOP is passionate about extending are Bush policies that they want to continue. I don't see why it would be so hard to make that connection???

Posted by: soapm | September 8, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Nate Silver said a few days ago that the electorate is volatile and the numbers fungible. The Democrats are simply all about process, and are flailing to find the magic button or soft spot to apply their extortions which they call "contributions" to the close Dems, the rest can go fend for themselves, especially Blue Dog centrists. The Pelosi/Frank/Waxman and CBC are painting themselves into a very tight corner.

The Ponzi politics that the $50 billion Dear Leader talked about in Milwaukee is transparently a bribe to unions---no non-union projects will receive any monies whatsoever. Pay off the thugs and the rest will wallow.

This half-baked tyro is turning out to be all smoke and mirrors. DL Obama has no substance and the Dem congress is going to evaporate like the committee hearings that were never held for the trillion-dollar [and counting] health care fiasco. And the monster Obamacare is so full of unconstitutional absurdities---buy health insurance or go to jail---that in the future he'll be known as a biyotch POTUS. The Democrats are simply all about process, and are flailing to find the magic button or soft spot to apply their extortions which they call "contributions" to the close Dems, the rest can go fend for themselves, especially Blue Dog centrists. The Pelosi/Frank/Waxman and CBC are painting themselves into a very tight corner.

Posted by: djman1141 | September 8, 2010 12:13 PM | Report abuse

wow, Tim Kaine is going to speak about choices to be made in the election.
I will mark my calendar. Nothing moves the excitement and involvement needle like..Tim Kaine.
(crickets)

Posted by: FloridaChick | September 8, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

"Will even the starkest framing of the elections enable Dems to cut through public anger over the economy, and persuade voters that they face a choice between giving current policies a chance to work and restoring Bush policies that ran the economy into the ground?"
-------------------------------------------

Well again, there's this (from latest the ABC/WP Poll).

Question #24:

How much blame do you think [ITEM] deserves for the country's economic situation - a great deal, a good amount, only some or hardly any?

a. The Bush administration, for inadequate regulation of the financial industry
b. The Obama administration, for not doing enough to turn the economy around

a. Bush
... Great deal/Good amount: 60%
... Some/Hardly any/None: 40%

b. Obama
... Great deal/Good amount: 42%
... Some/Hardly any/None: 57%

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/polls/postpoll_09072010.html

I'm actually a little dismayed that the percentage who think the people that got us into this mess deserve little or none of the blame runs as high as 40%, but at least they're still a clear minority.

Posted by: CalD | September 8, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

"liberals are not blameless" "incessant liberal assaults"

Who could have imagined that the White House's strategy of insulting, betraying, and lying to Liberals would backfire? I mean, really, who doesn't like getting lied to, betrayed and insulted? What, exactly, did Realpolitik Rahm think was going to happen when he crafted lousy policies and denigrated Obama's most impassioned proponents? Did he expect them to be thrilled when Yes We Can became No We Can't But We Still Aren't As Bad As the Republicans So Vote For Us Anyway? The White House repeatedly undershoots the target and rains bombs on its advance troops, then complains when the advance troops get demoralized.

The White House blaming their ineptitude on Liberals is like saying the football team s*cks because the cheerleaders aren't loud enough. The DLC controls the Democratic Party and they own this clusterf*ck 100%.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 8, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

"Oh, come on. If professional Beltway prognosticators refrain from predicting a GOP takeover, they won't get any media attention! Everyone in D.C. knows exactly how this works, and everyone just plays along anyway."
---------------------------------------------

And even after '98, when it was pretty universally expected right until election day that Republicans were set to pick up enough seats for a super-majority in the House and take control of the Senate, people still listen to them. Admittedly though, the news media as an institution have lost a lot of credibility since then. Do you suppose these two things might be related?

http://www.cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/time/1998/11/09/election.html

Posted by: CalD | September 8, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I was just going through the latest ABC/WP poll and it strikes me as cautiously good news for Democrats. Questions #7, #11, #12 and #17 suggest that while people are very grumpy with Democrats, Republicans still a ways off from closing the sale on their being a credible alternative. There are also two questions (#4 and #5a) that have coincided with which party gained or lost seats in congress every time they've been asked, going back as far as 1994, that Democrats still hold a slight edge on at least among all adults.

Republicans seem to have pulled into a slight lead on the question of the economy among registered voters though and that I think cannot stand. Democrats need to beat them back aggressively on that or Charlie Cook could actually turn out to be right for a change. But at this point, it really looks like that should be doable if they go at it hard and heavy enough. I'd recommend that everybody grab your check book or credit card and send a little something to the DNC, DSCC and DCCC if you can. It will take money.

Posted by: CalD | September 8, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company