Archive for the ‘democrats’ Category

With the track record this administration has, what person in their right mind would trust them to tell the truth without the threat of consequences, namely perjury. Here’s Glenn:

The reason Democrats ought to compel Rove to testify under oath is not because it will benefit Democrats politically. The reason that’s necessary is because there are (as Cox herself has ably argued) extremely serious accusations of wrongdoing here that go to the heart of how our government functions, and Rove clearly played a role in those events. Moreover, the administration in this very case has demonstrated a propensity to lie about what occurred. And the administration is generally untrustworthy. After all, just last month, Dick Cheney’s top aide was convicted of four felony counts of perjury, false statements, and obstruction of justice.

Under the circumstances, and given the stakes of this scandal, it would be a total abdication of the duty of Congressional oversight not to compel Rove’s testimony in a public forum and under rules where it is more difficult for him to lie. And that’s true regardless of whether it’s politically beneficial.

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While I do miss the old Al Franken show since he announced his run for the Senate, I couldn’t be more excited about the prospect of someone I fully respect and trust gaining access to that body. And not to diss Al, but I’m totally in love with the guy who replaced him, Tom Hartmann. Here’s Al explaining what progressive politics means to him on a personal level.

I couldn’t agree more with Al’s point that in order to have a society filled with ‘rugged individuals’ who ‘pull themselves up by their own bootstraps’, we need to first give them the boots, so to speak. I find it somewhat disturbing though, that we live in a time where people like Al actually have to defend programs like Social Security, Pell grants and other programs that enable the middle class to even exist. It speaks to the hideous efficacy of the right-wing noise machine that’s succeded in convincing people that government wants to take away your hard earned paycheck and give it to undeserving homeless people, when what it’s actually doing is taking away your hard earned paycheck and giving it to billionaires, arms manufacturers and oil companies. I don’t see how that’s the more appealing option over helping out people who are genuinely struggling to survive and alleviating the difficulties that accompany growing old or the death of a parent/spouse (in case anyone is unaware, that’s what Social Security does).

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Amen, Glenn

Far more than legislative solutions right now (which have no chance of succeeding), what we urgently need are compelled, subpoena-driven, aggressive hearings designed for maximum revelation and drama. Hearings are able, in a dramatic and television-news-friendly environment, to shed light on how extreme and radical this administration really has been in all of these areas. More than trying to repeal the worst legislative abuses of the last Congress, hearings — real and dramatic and probing — were the real promise of electing Democrats to take over the Congress. It is time — and it is beginning to be past the time — for that to start in earnest.

You can’t convince Americans of the need to stop abuses until you demonstrate to them in a dramatic and undeniable way that those absues are being perpetrated and that they are harmful and dangerous. Just as one example, FISA itself was enacted only after the Church Committee conducted a probing and aggressive investigation and exposed the decades of eavesdropping abuses on the part of the Executive branch, whereby all the heinous transgressions from J. Edgar Hoover’s blackmail-motivated eavesdropping on Martin Luther King to the array of Nixonian surveillance excesses came to light in all of their unvarnished and ugly reality. Americans were not moved by abstract notions of privacy or checks and balances but by the real life anecdotes of abuses and the evidence demonstrating how widespread they were.

That is we need now. But we do not have it because the administration even in the wake of its defeat in the November elections — one could even say especially after the election — continues to aggressively exploit and manipulate the terrorism threat as a tool to conceal their own conduct and protect themselves from accountability and consequences. Until that ends, no progress on any of these issues is possible.

If I could recommend just one blogger for every Dem in Congress to start reading, Glenn Greewald wins hands down.

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate began debating legislation to bolster America’s security on Wednesday with the White House threatening a veto because one part would extend union protection to 45,000 airport workers.

President George W. Bush’s administration charged that the Democratic-backed provision to provide workers limited collective bargaining rights would curb needed flexibility at the U.S. Transportation Security Administration and diminish traveler safety.

But White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said if the labor provision remains in the legislation, “the president’s senior advisers would recommend he veto the bill.”

Thirty-six Republican senators sent a letter to Bush on Tuesday saying they would provide the needed votes to sustain a veto in the 100-member Senate.

It’s a very simple equation. Work for a living? Not a millionaire? I think I’ll let Patton Oswalt make my point for me:

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As someone who has worked in the interactive industry for nearly a decade, I can say without a doubt that abolishing protections that keep the Internet free from corporate interference in the flow of information would be a major step backwards and diminish the United States’ in the global technology market. I’m writing on the concept of Network Neutrality. If you haven’t heard of it, check out http://www.savetheinternet.com. You don’t have to look to far into this issue before you realize that this is an issue which could fundamentally alter the future of the Internet, and not in a good way.

Here’s how things work now, with net neutrality intact. Let’s say that I wanna start producing hilarious cartoons or videos and build a website around them. I pay a hosting fee that is determined by how much storage space my website requires and how much traffic I expect to receive. But no matter how small or large my hosting package is, my site will be delivered to anyone who views it just as fast as Amazons, Comedy Central, ESPN, etc. If my cartoons are really popular, I have to buy a larger hosting package to accommodate my traffic, but that is my decision as the content provider.

Now let’s take away net neutrality from this scenario. Now my website can be moved into a ‘slow lane’. For an additional fee on top of my hosting costs, I have to pay in order to get my site to go as fast as Amazon, Comedy Central, ESPN, etc. All who have way more money to outspend the average person, and thereby diminishing the quality of the internet for anyone who might not prefer to use the services of sites that can afford the ‘fast lane’.

The growth of YouTube and other broadband-intensive services is opening up vast new markets both in terms of economic expansion and personal expression. To abolish net neutrality would cease to give the consumers control of which services are successful, and place it in the hands of a few telecom companies that may not always have the consumers needs and interest ahead of short-term profits or stifling competition.

My entire career has been predicated on the technologies and trends that the openness of the Internet has fostered. The more control we give to private corporations over which trends and technologies will succeed, the less people like myself will be able to contribute to the market, ultimately stifling progress and possibly putting my economic stability at risk.

‘Nuff said, go sign the petition.

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Today’s must read from Daily Kos for any of you progressives getting disheartened with the Dems already for not answering every situation exactly how you’d like it or as fast as you demand it. That’s the overall point, people. This shit takes TIME. It’s a democracy, lots of people for us to go out there and TALK to.

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Why is Debra Dickerson running around saying this crap?

“Now, I’m willing to adopt him,” Debra J. Dickerson continued [in a Salon essay]. “He married black. He acts black. But there’s a lot of distance between black Africans and African-Americans.”

and this shit:

“Black,” in our political and social reality, means those descended from West African slaves. Voluntary immigrants of African descent (even those descended from West Indian slaves) are just that, voluntary immigrants of African descent with markedly different outlooks on the role of race in their lives and in politics.

Who is this woman and why is she going out of her way to make the world believe he isn’t black? What’s the goddamned point of this? Obama is all about unity and bringing us together, but she wants to waste time on the Colbert Report trying to say he’s… what? I don’t get this shit, but it’s annoying the piss out of me. I’m starting to wonder who the fuck this woman is.

Sounds like she’s a crackpot pundit who needs to stop being taken seriously.

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On Movement Politics

I’m with Chris. I fell hard for the Dean campaign in 03-04, and while the man did stir me up personally, what kept my attention and my money coming in was the fact that there were so many other ordinary people doing the same. It’s the same reason now that I have no problem being a partisan Democrat. In my early 20s (before I paid attention to all this political shit), I never understood why one was better than the other. In those days it was certainly not hard to casually glance at the political landscape and think all of the politicians in Washington were equally dirty bastards.

Of course, that was an easy thing to suppose before I started reading the damn news online, getting the bigger picture and going in close for the details when necessary. It doesn’t take long for the view to crystallize that THE PEOPLE are well and truly screwed if they don’t start taking the initiative to pay attention for themselves. I’m anxious to see which darkhorse candidate captures the public’s imagination with our without the Old Media’s (we need a good derogatory nickname for them) blessing.

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Just watch this simple act of ASKING LEGITIMATE QUESTIONS to a witness, in full view of the public.

Basically, this is what Bremer is asked:

Did you hire an accounting firm to keep money in Iraq?

BREMER: Duh… of course we hired an accounting firm to keep track of money.

Did the accounting firm you hired have any accountants on staff?

BREMER: Umm, I think so… I read something on their website.

Well, Northstar, the company you hired doesn’t have ANY accountants on staff. Just so you know, asshole. Oh, and by the way, you paid them how much???

BREMER: I dunno, like $1.4 million? I’m not an accountant!

Nice, nice. Oh, and did you know that Northstar is actualy a small company based out of some guy’s house in San Diego?

BREMER: Nooo! Well, not until I read in 2005. That’s crazy!

Watch the clip to find out the squirmy non-answers

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