Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
Posted at 8:34 AM ET, 12/16/2010

The Morning Plum

By Greg Sargent

* Next up on don't ask don't tell: With passage in the House now secured, there are more emerging signs DADT repeal has the votes to pass Senate. Steny Hoyer tells Ryan Grim that in an interview that he's obtained private assurances from not just Joe Lieberman, but also Susan Collins, that enough GOP moderates have pledged support to put it over the top.

The question now is whether Harry Reid will agree to hold a vote in the Senate on the stand-alone repeal bill that passed the House yesterday. The latest from his office is that Reid genuinely wants to do this, if Republicans will let him:

"We are very quickly running out of days in this Congress. The time for week-long negotiations on amendments and requests for days of debate is over. Republican senators who favor repealing this discriminatory policy need to join with us now."

What's still unanswered is how hard Obama will push Reid to hold this vote, and how Reid will deal with the last-minute procedural objections GOP moderates will surely come up with as pretexts for opposing the bill. If Reid deems GOP requests unreasonable, he may conclude that he can nix the vote and blame Republicans for it, saying, "Hey, I tried." If Reid does this, he may well be right on the merits, but DADT will still remain in place for a good long time.

All indications are that Reid and Obama genuinely want repeal to happen. But it remains to be seen whether they are willing to take the final step necessary to ensure that it has a chance of actually happening in the real world. No matter what Republicans say or do, Reid needs to pledge to hold a vote.

* Ridiculous non-story of the day: Everyone is going absolutely bonkers over Dem Rep. Peter DeFazio's claim that Obama privately told House Dems that if they don't support the tax deal it could mean the end of his presidency.

But when you dig into what DeFazio actually said, it turns out he didn't even have any conversation with the President. He is basing this claim on what a single other House member told him. And he won't even name that member. Until more evidence emerges, put this one down as complete nonsense.

UPDATE, 10:00 a.m.: White House spokesperson Amy Brundage flatly denies the story, emailing: "The President hasn't said anything remotely close to that and he's never talked with DeFazio about the issue."

* House Dems see writing on the wall on tax cut deal: Today House Dems will vote on the tax deal, and as expected, Dem leaders will allow House liberals to vent their frustration with a vote on an alternate package changing the estate tax provision before passing the deal itself.

* Indeed, Chris Van Hollen openly conceded today that the deal will pass the House even without the estate tax fix desired by many Dems.

* What's really in the tax cut deal: Dan Eggen digs into the tax deal and finds more than $55 billion in giveaways and tax breaks for an array of influential industry groups, a glimpse of how things really work in Washington.

* Democrats heart compromise: One story-line that doesn't get enough attention is that Dem voters want their leaders to compromise with the opposition far more than GOP voters do, and the new NBC/WSJ poll confirms this:

In all, 63% of Democrats polled said they wanted to see Democratic leaders in Washington make compromises to gain consensus on legislation...In contrast, Republicans are evenly split on the question of whether their party's leaders should compromise, with 47% saying they want compromise and 47% saying their leaders should stick to their positions.

* The epic battle over New START: The war over New START will really heat up today, and at bottom it's really a showdown between two veteran Senators of very different types, Dick Lugar and Jon Kyl. It's a Senate battle for the ages.

* The gap between elite liberals and rank-and-file Dems: As I've noted here repeatedly, there's a persistent gap in opinion between high-profile liberal critics and Dem voters, and Steve Kornacki does a nice job rounding up the growing evidence of this phenomenon.

* The "center" is not the midpoint between today's right and left: You can't get anyone to listen to this idea, but E.J. Dionne tries anyway, patiently explaining why the "the American right is much farther from anything that can fairly be described as `the center' than is the left."

What's happened is that the GOP has moved way to the right in recent years, and for some reason, commentators have agreed to shift what we arbitrarily call "the center" over to the right to accomodate this.

* Hyper-sensitive corporate executives complain that Obama hurt their feelings: As Jonathan Chait notes, it really is stunning that Obama feels the need to apologize to business executives in this age of massive corporate profits. The key thing to note, I think, is that no matter what Obama says or does to repair relations with them, it will never be deemed enough by the likes of Karl Rove.

* And Sarah Palin 2012! The founder of a new political fundraising group called "Draft Sarah Palin" claims that "Sarah Palin is the single most effective leader in the Republican Party," a sentiment that many Democrats would whole-heartedly encourage.

What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  | December 16, 2010; 8:34 AM ET
Categories:  House Dems, Morning Plum, Senate Dems, Senate Republicans, gay rights, taxes  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Happy Hour Roundup
Next: The Senate GOP's bore on Christmas

Comments

Hioping former boxer Reid still has a bit of fight in him and doesn't cave on this one.

Thanks Greg for identifying the falsehood of Republican procedural objections.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

The Post reports on the leak within FOX and gives this tantalizing bit from Media Matters...

"Media Matters said it is in possession of other internal e-mails from Sammon and other Fox News executives that indicate other efforts to slant news reporting. Those memos will be released in coming weeks, the group said."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/15/AR2010121503181.html?hpid=moreheadlines

Posted by: bernielatham | December 16, 2010 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Assange was just granted bail though may not be released until tomorrow.

And as the Guardian is reporting, it was NOT Sweden who requested that bail be denied. This came from the Brits themselves (and don't you want to see all the communications related to this leaked by someone).

Posted by: bernielatham | December 16, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Fareed's article that I linked to previously complained that the tax cut deal kicked the can down the road again. He wondered what would happen when our creditors lost confidence. That may be happening now.

China and Japan have already been significantly reducing their US Treasury purchases for more than 12 months now. They've openly announced plans to decrease US Treasury investments, as have other countries. They've already been aggressively substituting Natural Resource/Commodity and other Sovereign Bond purchases instead of US Treasuries. China has recently announced agreements with Brazil and Russia to trade all on-going transactions in the currencies of the countries involved rather than the US Dollar. All of this and the accelerating concern about our debt has recently led to US Treasury rates rising aggressively.
Bernanke's $600B money infusion has not stopped that from occurring. Credit Rating companies have warned the US that they may have drop our debt rating changebelow AAA if the US does not address the deficit very soon, especially in the light of this $800B plus package, which as we now read has $55B of payoffs in it.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 16, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Fareed's article that I linked to previously complained that the tax cut deal kicked the can down the road again. He wondered what would happen when our creditors lost confidence. That may be happening now.

China and Japan have already been significantly reducing their US Treasury purchases for more than 12 months now. They've openly announced plans to decrease US Treasury investments, as have other countries. They've already been aggressively substituting Natural Resource/Commodity and other Sovereign Bond purchases instead of US Treasuries. China has recently announced agreements with Brazil and Russia to trade all on-going transactions in the currencies of the countries involved rather than the US Dollar. All of this and the accelerating concern about our debt has recently led to US Treasury rates rising aggressively.
Bernanke's $600B money infusion has not stopped that from occurring. Credit Rating companies have warned the US that they may have to drop our debt rating below AAA if the US does not address the deficit very soon, especially in the light of this $800B plus package, which as we now read has $55B of payoffs in it.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 16, 2010 9:03 AM | Report abuse

I also posted yesterday a serious discussion from a WaPo contributing attorney of the nature of the charges in Sweden against Assange, which are no joke. He is a man who hides, all over the globe, and the definition of a flight risk. A British court, weighing extradition, would never let a proven flight risk free without significant bail and an ankle bracelet and it is silly to think otherwise.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 16, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Thune says tax cuts more important than help for 9/11 responders...

http://thinkprogress.org/2010/12/15/thune-911-responders/

Of course, we know that. There was a fellow who lived on the same block where we had our store on the Upper East Side. Big, strapping man who'd been born in Manhattan and grew up there. Extremely competent with an array of manual skills (carpentry, welding, plumbing, etc) and a very smart fellow, streetwise and otherwise. Got to know him quite well and we became friends. On the day of the attacks, he was down there and helping and that continued for some months. When we last spoke, about four years ago, there was no evidence of debilitation from exposure at the site.

But the thing is that this is the sort of person who did work on site and who might now be suffering.

How many investment bankers do you imagine gave of themselves in such a manner/

Posted by: bernielatham | December 16, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Bob Cesca's latest column is especially thoughtful & thought-provoking:

Are Progressives Losing Touch With Reality?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bob-cesca/are-progressives-losing-t_b_797470.html

Posted by: associate20 | December 16, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

What do you expect from Undertaker Thune? He's a scum-sucking Republican. Reverence for the rich and indifference toward the rest is in his DNA.

Mark, you sound remarkably petty about Assange. From all I've read he was told by Sweden that the charges were insubstantial and he was free to go. It was only after he hurt the feelings of some powerful people that the talk of arrest resumed. I mean, really. The man is a friend of truth and his revelations have probably already saved lives by making the USA incrementally more reluctant to contiunue its ham-handed pursuit of face at the expense of civilian lives in a war with no point.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

-- * The gap between elite liberals and rank-and-file Dems: As I've noted here repeatedly, there's a persistent gap in opinion between high-profile liberal critics and Dem voters --

Gee, I've been called a lot of things before, but as a blue collar worker with a minimal college education making under 50K a year, ELITE has never been among them. But since I don't support the Obama/McConnell tax cut deal, ELITE I must be.

Let's see how many of the non-ELITE liberals support this deal next year when they make the payroll tax cut permanent and begin the suffocation of Social Security in earnest.

Oh, and this ELITE liberal most certainly won't be voting for Obama in 2012. But that's ok, because he can always count on all those non-ELITE liberals. And of course the most important of voters, those precious centrists.

Posted by: unymark | December 16, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

@mark - could you link that prior WP discussion here for me?

Posted by: bernielatham | December 16, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

If Liberal Matters has more emails, why don't they release them? If they are about openess, why are they holding back? Is it because they could care less about what is in those emails and only about getting more press about themselves?
If they are going to be the Fox News hit group, fine. But I wish they'd stop trying to pretend they are anything other than another left wing special interest group. Another attack of a narcissistic looney left organization.

Posted by: Bailers | December 16, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

This is disturbing -- http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/op-eds/2010/12/obamas-see-no-evil-do-nothing-justice-department-ignores-voting-rights

Is this true and, if so, is it another promise broken, triangulation or incompetence/

Posted by: androcles | December 16, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Obama is putting out a new Afghan report summary today - however this summary appears to differ significantly from the news reports of what the invesigations were finding


Is a pattern developing of manipulating the conclusions of reports ?????


This is quickly becoming an Obama nightmare. Every news reports out about this report over the past few weeks indicated that the report would be significantly different.


This report, the oil drilling reports before BP, the oil drilling moritorium report after BP, the Pentagon gay report and now this Afghan report


We just can not trust the Obama people with these reports.


This is NOT transparency - it is outright deceptions.


.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 16, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I believe that due to GOP's haste and greed to get their tax cuts, they gave away a lot of perks to Pres. Obama that have not yet been made public, that will be good for the people!

And, by the way: China's wind-power push --

China has gained dominance in the market for wind turbines by acquiring the latest Western technology, then using its market power to favor Chinese manufacturers who subsequently become low-cost suppliers to the world. Such companies currently account for half of the world's $45 billion market for wind turbines.

http://r.smartbrief.com/resp/A...

(Yet we have become a weak and pathetic nation that cannot get anything really substantial done -- evidenced by Leader John Bohener's capacity to cry over every little thing. America's leaders and people better wake up, everyone else will capture the market and we will still be arguing over tax cuts, don't tell and unemployment benefits, etc.)

Posted by: wdsoulplane | December 16, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

You should see wind power in Korea. From little things the size of table fans powering traffic signals to huge towers marching across the landscape.

And here's the USA, sticking to fossil fuels, because raising consciousness about the alternatives might, you ready, singalong with Cao ... o/~ discourage consumptions o/~ and we mustn't mustn't mustn't have THAT.

Every middle class house here has solar heating, I don't think we use a watt of electricity heating water.

And we, er, you're already being prepared for the next phase of Shareholder Value Maximization with lying phrases like "clean coal." Disgusted yet?

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

This is the most despised Congress in the history of Congress and these desperate, dead duck shenanigans show the reasons why.

The House is full of leftist, home wreckers intent on pushing their most putrid, pet projects into the face of the America that has elected to throw them out.

America's only hope of surviving this last minute, "Animal House", type orgy of legislative, poison pills is that there will not be enough RINOs to enable them.

RINOs are ugly beasts that deserve immediate extinction. They are people with no honor or values. Just like Harry Reid, as a matter of fact.

Posted by: battleground51 | December 16, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

New Wikileaks documentary here...(I've just seen part one, it's very good)

http://scripting.com/stories/2010/12/15/newWikileaksDocumentary.html

h/t Jay Rosen

Posted by: bernielatham | December 16, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

@ caothien9 -

"And here's the USA, sticking to fossil fuels,.."

Unfortunately we aren't JUST sticking to fossil fuels, we are spending endless trillions of dollars invading and occupying countries so as to steal those fossil fuel supplies.

At the same time we are handing off our education system to the likes of Rupert Murdoch.

Can you say - Empire In Decline?

...


Posted by: unymark | December 16, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

"RINOs are ugly beasts that deserve immediate extinction. "

And you don't even see the irony of following this murderous wish with

"They are people with no honor or values."

That would be you. I guess a RINO is someone not striving to hasten the Rapture and weak on some of the correct bigotries, huh?

Thanks to Kevin for the troll filter. Welcome to the blacklilst, creep.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Man

Reading this column, one would think that the entire political system, the entire Earth disappeared - and there was nothing left but the liberal agenda and Dont Ask


Do the liberals realize they lost the election???


The American People are sick of this


How many times do the American People have to tell the liberals to knock it off???


People are not going to forget how the liberals have acted these past two months - truly pathetic and shameful sore losers - and to act like this after the way the liberals acted with Obama winning - DISGRACEFUL

.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 16, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Yeah uny and isn't it ironic (or maybe "it isn't ironic") that within two years of taking office former oilman Bush managed to have troops in the vicinity of the world's two richest oil reserves?

When talks with the Taliban in Austin broke down in late summer of 2001 they were told they they had a choice between a carpet of gold and a carpet of bombs, yet, curiously enough, at that time an invasion of Afghanistan was poltically infeasible. And even more curiously a pretext for such an invasion presented itself just in time and that carpet of bombs came right on schedule.

Funny how some things work out. Or maybe it isn't funny.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

The "center" is not the midpoint between today's right and left


____________________________

Oh, yes it is


The center IS the midpoint

.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 16, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

What's the word on the Senate omnibus budget bill versus the House continuing resolution to fund the government? Presumably the Senate Democratic leadership are going to resolve the funding of the Federal Government before bringing up DADT? Does the existing resolution expire tomorrow?

Posted by: jnc4p | December 16, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Ridiculous non-story of the day: Everyone is going absolutely bonkers over Dem Rep. Peter DeFazio's claim that Obama privately told House Dems that if they don't support the tax deal it could mean the end of his presidency.
.......................

Regardless of if the President said it to someone or not; a failure to get the agreement passed, would probably be the end of his Presidency. I said so several days ago, when I wrote that the President had "tossed his cap over the wall", and had no choice but to climb over after it.

Just think what the Republicans would do and say, if he did not get the agreement passed. They would spend the next two years ignoring him, and keep explaining that it was no use dealing with him, since he could not deliver on the first deal they made with him.

It is elementary my Dear Watson. He has to get it passed, or he is toast.

Therefore:

Win One For The Flipper!

Posted by: Liam-still | December 16, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

unymark


Our American empire is not in decline


The only thing wrong is the liberals are spending money that we should not spend.


The Conservatives are going to come back in - set everything right and - MAKE AMERICA STRONG AGAIN -

The only thing wrong with the country is the ENDLESS WHINING FROM THE LEFT - and their insistence that their liberal agenda WEAKEN the country.


Take the gays in the military - will that make our country stronger or weaker ???? Just do whatever it takes to make our military STRONGER AND DO NOT UPSET THINGS


The military is for fighting wars - not for social engineering.


Let's just hope that the damage from Obama and the liberals is not that great.


.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 16, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

@ caothien9 -

"Funny how some things work out. Or maybe it isn't funny"

Careful now, we might have free speech in Amerika, but only as long as that speech lies (or is that "lies"?) between the 40 yard lines.

Coincidences really do happen.

Sometimes.

Really....

Posted by: unymark | December 16, 2010 10:14 AM | Report abuse

associate20:

Thanks for the link to the Cesca article. I agree, it's thoughtful and he also makes some good points. Really, it's quite excellent.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 16, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Spot on re: the Right moving ever more that way. When you have the latest group of candidates with their "second amendment remedies" and science-denying fetishes, how can it be seen as anything else?

I can't think of a Democratic candidate with anything resembling those kinds of extreme "viewpoints".

What is amazing to me is that *the mere suggestion* of taking up arms against the gov't by a major candidate didn't immediately A) make her poll numbers plummet and B) make her a laughingstock amongst average folks.

Other than a few crazies, though, who take that mess seriously, mostly what you get is a bunch of middle-aged white middle class folks who are pretenders and live in a fantasy world.

I'd have loved to see them do a Whiskey Rebellion, though. Great fun to see a few of them hanged for treason. What a joke.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | December 16, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Liam: "Regardless of if the President said it to someone or not"

If POTUS didn't say it, then DeFazio is lying, and there really is no reason to try to justify that.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 16, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

~"But it remains to be seen whether [Reid and Obama] are willing to take the final step necessary to ensure that it has a chance of actually happening in the real world."~
---------------------------------------------

You've got it backwards as usual, Greg. The "final steps" required to make something happen in the senate (if whatever that may be is even possible) take place behind the scenes, long before a vote is ever held. With only 100 members to keep track of, there's virtually never any ambiguity in senate whip counts and "debate" certainly doesn't change anyone's mind -- that's just for posing and reading prepared statements into the public record.

When the senate holds a vote it's either to formalize something that's already been decided or to make a symbolic statement on something they know they can't pass, just to impress the rubes. But the value of the latter is pretty dubious in practice. It's not like the general public is paying enough attention to notice most of the time and it's sure as heck not going to stop the professional left from calling them "spineless" (or worse). And Reid doesn't go in much for toothless kabuki theater for its own sake as a rule.

He'll make the occasional exception of course and this may well be one of them, but whether or not there's a vote has no real bearing on the actual outcome. That's a function of the horse trading and arm twisting that is no doubt already furiously underway.

Posted by: CalD | December 16, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

We have already seen the end of his Presidency, so to learn the tax capitulation had to pass or we would see the end of his Presidency is sadly funny.

Whether you keep on bowing and scraping Mr. Obama, they'll hate you anyway. Just don't forget to blame the left, you know, the people who got you elected, or do you think the Clintons just bowed out once they realized your great gift to the nation?

Posted by: shrink2 | December 16, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

And Sarah Palin 2012! The founder of a new political fundraising group called "Draft Sarah Palin" claims that "Sarah Palin is the single most effective leader in the Republican Party," a sentiment that many Democrats would whole-heartedly encourage.
........................

Since Rush Limbaugh worked hard to have his listeners help out in the 2008 Democratic Party primaries, and caucuses, it would be rude of Democrats not to repay the courtesy.

Democrats; start to pitch in during The Republican Primaries, in order to help them nominate The Great Governor Palin, as their standard bearer in 2012.

One good turn deserves another, so be sure to thank Rush, by voting for Sarah Palin in the Republican Primaries.

Volunteer to help her campaign out. You owe it to Rush.

Posted by: Liam-still | December 16, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

@ RainForestRising -

"Oh, yes it is
The center IS the midpoint"

In geometry, yes. But you might want to google "Overton". As in window. Just sayin...

"Our American empire is not in decline
The only thing wrong is the liberals are spending money that we should not spend."

Yes, because it was liberals that set us on the course of endless war and spending 98% on guns and 2% on butter.

I highly suggest turning Fox off and cracking a couple books. Again, just sayin...

Posted by: unymark | December 16, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Please stop feeding The Uber Troll, who caused software to be written, to mask it's stench.

Posted by: Liam-still | December 16, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

The right can't turn off Fox, not anymore.

Meanwhile, I wonder what Ayn Rand would have said about "free" trade, competing in a "free" market with state capitalism, international monetary policy and so on. Looking over some of the posts from the right on the nature of capitalism, it all seems so, quaint, as if Kruschev had just said the commies would bury us.

Posted by: shrink2 | December 16, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

New post by Adam Serwer on the GOP's politicization of Christmas:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/12/the_senate_gops_bore_on_christ.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | December 16, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

"What is amazing to me is that the mere suggestion of taking up arms against the gov't by a major candidate didn't immediately A) make her poll numbers plummet and B) make her a laughingstock amongst average folks"

Even more amazing, she still gets to fly on planes.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

I am not sure what to make of this Assange character.

I am not crazy about the actions of his activist online followers, who have been come known as Hacktivists.

They strike me as being more nihilistic, than anything else. Why punish a lot of innocent people by disrupting their holiday ordering on Amazon?

As for Assange; is the USA the only major nation that he has leaked secrets about? I do not see anything coming from him, out of the secret files of China, Russia, etc.

I also wonder; why he does not want the Swedish police to interview him, if he has done nothing wrong. After all, since two women filed complaints about being sexually assaulted, the Swedish police are just doing what they are required to do.

I also wonder; since Sweden and England are both in the EU, if it might not be possible to strike a deal, where the Swedish police send a team to England, to question Assange there.

Still; in my eyes, Assange being willing to get locked up in an English Prison, rather than let Swedish police interview him, does not make him look very upstanding.

Posted by: Liam-still | December 16, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

If Liberal Matters has more emails, why don't they release them? But I wish they'd stop trying to pretend they are anything other than another left wing special interest group. Another attack of a narcissistic looney left organization.
---------------------------------------

I'm not sure Media Matters pretends to be anything than it is. But I think we can come to some sort of agreement here. Media Matters will announce it's status a a left wing special interest group when Fox News admits it is a right wing special interest group and changes it's slogan from "Fair and Balanced" to something more appropriate. I'll even open the floor to poster here to make suggestions for the new slogan. Deal?

Posted by: ashotinthedark | December 16, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

FOX slogan:

Unbalanced News for Unbalanced Viewers

Posted by: caothien9 | December 16, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

"You can't get anyone to listen to this idea, but E.J. Dionne tries anyway, patiently explaining why the "the American right is much farther from anything that can fairly be described as `the center' than is the left." "

This is satire, right? How funny that it comes below yet another post beating the drum for DADT repeal by he Lamedems.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 16, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Fox News Slogan:

We Distort; You Imbibe.

Posted by: Liam-still | December 16, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

~"One story-line that doesn't get enough attention is that Dem voters want their leaders to compromise with the opposition far more than GOP voters do..."~
-------------------------------------------

That's likely because there are only enough hard-core liberals/progressives in the country -- about 10% of the total electorate on average -- to account for maybe 25-35% of all Democrats, whereas hard-core "conservatives" and balls-out right-wing crazies (and/or otherwise reasonable people so ill-informed that they might as well be) make up around 25-30% of the total electorate and well over half of today's Republican party.

Posted by: CalD | December 16, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

This is satire, right? How funny that it comes below yet another post beating the drum for DADT repeal by he Lamedems.


Posted by: quarterback1 |
-------------------------------------------
Which is something that the overwhelming majority of Americans support have have supported for a number of years.

What this means is the Democratic position is the Center position. Yet you and other conservative posters here paint it is a far left liberal position as you attempt to distort where the Center actually is. So the DADT debate reinforces Greg's position.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | December 16, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

"Which is something that the overwhelming majority of Americans support have have supported for a number of years."

For a number of years, huh? Let's just set aside either the relevance or the truth of that claim and take it at face value.

It means conservatives haven't moved. But now Bill Clinton and all the other Dems who enacted DADT would be considered right-wing extremists.

Liberals just aren't very good at logic, but thanks for confirming my point.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 16, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Here's a poll that shows the results going back to May of 1993 about people feel about homosexual serving openly:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/polls/postpoll_12132010.html

Feel free to post a poll of your own showing repeal has not been supported for several years. I won't hold my breath.

People appeared to shift in their opinion between 1993 and 2001. So when Clinton signed the bill he was with most Americans in the Center. I'm pretty sure Clinton is in favor of repeal. The Center has shifted on the topic.

So no, Clinton isn't a radical right winger and I certainly didn't prove your point.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | December 16, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

You really don't get it do you? You just proved my point again. Greg said:

"What's happened is that the GOP has moved way to the right in recent years, and for some reason, commentators have agreed to shift what we arbitrarily call "the center" over to the right to accomodate this."

No, you say:

"People appeared to shift in their opinion between 1993 and 2001. So when Clinton signed the bill he was with most Americans in the Center. I'm pretty sure Clinton is in favor of repeal. The Center has shifted on the topic."

The right didn't move right. The left moved left. You just keep confirming that.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 16, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Bernie, Zakaria's column was found at

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/12/AR2010121202760.html


The column about the charges against Assange was found at

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/10/AR2010121002571.html

I do not know which column you wanted to see linked.

As to the assertions in the Assange article about the nature of American states' rape laws, I somewhat disagreed and published the link to the APRI distillation of American states' rape laws. I pointed out that DE and DC had very different standards for using "force" and "consent" as metrics.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 16, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Well it appears that the WaPo big lie machinery is now working overtime.

The big lie this time is "tax cuts cost the treasury".

What an absolute crock. Leaving deductions that are currently embedded in the tax code alone isn't a tax cut. And it doesn't cost the treasury a dime.

If money indeed flows from the treasury to firms or individuals, that's a "cost". But the simple fact is that letting people use deductions tomorrow that they are using today doesn't result in cash flowing out of the treasury. Yes, it limits the amount flowing into the treasury but no business would consider that an expense.

the lies are tiresome, but what can one expect from a publication that used "macaca" as a weapon to influence an election and that also hosted the founder of Journ-o-list. Certainly no one should expect objectivity or much less truth.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | December 16, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

"The right didn't move right. The left moved left. You just keep confirming that."

Fair enough, the Right feels the same way as they did 17 years ago so they haven't moved at all. Therefore, with respect to DADT, Greg is wrong.
So actually, the Center moved to the left, since as the polls show most people want DADT repealed. The point is that claims that repealing DADT is some far left movement are an attempt by the Right to move the Center Right.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | December 16, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

This Just In! People who pay close attention to something have different opinions about it from people who don't.

It's a shocker, I tell ya.

Posted by: tatere | December 16, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

QB - The CENTER moved left on this particular issue. People who at one time opposed homosexuals serving in the military now do not oppose it (or, an older generation dying out and being replaced by a more tolerant younger generation).

How exactly would the left have moved further to the left on this issue? I haven't heard a call for military housing for domestic partners, for example. A good 20-30% of the right has held firm.

Ah nuts. A shot just beat me to it.

By the way, did you ever get around to figuring out why the dependent care tax credit is unconstitutional?

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | December 16, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

"How exactly would the left have moved further to the left on this issue?"

If you want to quibble about who or what critical mass represents the left, I suppose it depends. But 15 years ago DADT was fine with most of the left. Now it isn't.

You want to look at a slightly broader context? 20 years ago the idea of gays openly in the military would have been beyond the pale, let alone "gay marriage." Back then, "tolerance" was the basic position of the left. Now, the goalposts have moved just a tad.

We've been over this type of argument with Bernie, who always makes these claims that the GOP has moved "radically right" since Goldwater and WFB and even Reagan. But you can go right down a list of any issues, and it is obviously the Dems who have moved radically left, while the GOP has not moved right at all -- or only if you want to count Nixon and Rockefeller and Ford as the touchstones.

So you folks on the left are engaged in pure sophistry. You move farther and farther left, and with greater or less success pull portions of the "center" with you, then claim the right has moved right. I guess it is the liberals' Law of Special Relativity.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 16, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

"By the way, did you ever get around to figuring out why the dependent care tax credit is unconstitutional?"

No, I didn't try to do that and am not sure it is. But I did explain why I think your comparison fails.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 16, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

"We've been over this type of argument with Bernie, who always makes these claims that the GOP has moved "radically right" since Goldwater and WFB and even Reagan. But you can go right down a list of any issues, and it is obviously the Dems who have moved radically left, while the GOP has not moved right at all -- or only if you want to count Nixon and Rockefeller and Ford as the touchstones."

In the sense that the Right represented the mainstream view on DADT 17 years ago and they have failed to change with the times, they have moved to the right. Where once they were with the maintstream, they are now to the Right.

So the more accurate phrasing would be that the right has failed to move along with the rest of the country on DADT. But however you phrase it, you are to the Right of most americans on DADT.

I don't know whether that is true on other issues, but I would guess it is probably true on social issues, but not financial ones.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | December 16, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

@mark - thanks. It was the Valenti piece I wanted.

As to Britain's concern that Assange might run away, we'll note that Sweden did not ask or apply to have Assange's bail refused. Britain is trying to get this done for reasons not related to Sweden's legal system but to - undoubtedly - pressure from America and perhaps elsewhere. I won't bother going into the massive injustices surrounding all this because many others have.

As to the allegations, there's far too much opacity in them presently to have a good sense of what might have happened in reality. But the timing is far too convenient, the Swedish government's role far too conflicted, and the prior record of Pentagon/intel dirty tricks propaganda too broad and consistent to not presume the probability that the allegations are with no or little merit.

Posted by: bernielatham | December 16, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

"If you want to quibble about who or what critical mass represents the left, I suppose it depends. But 15 years ago DADT was fine with most of the left. Now it isn't."

As usual, an unsupported claim. DADT was never fine with most of the "left". It was simply less odious than what preceded it. The two recent wars prove that our troops can handle serving with gays just fine--they're doing it right now.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | December 16, 2010 4:10 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