13 Responses

  1. Maybe the reason Brown won is because Obama-care isn't universal health care.

    Obama-care is a huge taxpayer financed subsidy for private insurance companies and big Pharma.

    Add to it the continuing wars and militarism, violations of privacy and human rights, bankster bailouts and pork barrel projects.

    How could progressive voters come out in strength with that sort of motivation?

  2. Republicans just pulled off the greatest hand of three card Monte in history.

    Americans, by a large majority, wanted a public option in the health care reform. The senate Republicans and their Blue Dog Democratic allies made sure that the public option didn't make it into the reform. The same crew worked to weaken and complicate other parts of the reform. Then, in their automaton nature, the Republicans unanimously voted against the bill.

    To the public the reform looks a lot like Rosemary's Baby, which the Republicans so masterfully point out. And the Mass voters were masterfully made to forget that it was the Republicans who inseminated Rosemary.

  3. Professor Drew Westen, Emory University : “What happens if you refuse to lay the blame for the destruction of our economy on anyone ~ particularly the party, leaders, and ideology that were in power for the last 8 years ~ and were responsible for it? What happens if you fail to "brand" what has happened as "the Bush Depression" or "the Republican Depression," or the natural result of the ideology of unregulated greed, the way FDR branded "the Great Depression" as Hoover's Depression and created a Democratic majority for 50 years and a new vision of what effective government can do? What happens when you fail to offer and continually reinforce a narrative about what has happened, who caused it, and how you're going to fix it that Americans understand — that makes them angry, that makes them hopeful, and that makes them committed to you and your policies during the tough times that will inevitably lie ahead? The answer was obvious a year ago, and it is even more obvious today: Voters will come to blame you for not having solved a problem you didn't create — and you will allow the other side to create an alternative narrative for what's happened (e.g., government spending, deficits, big government, socialism, etc.) that will stick.

    It is a truly remarkable feat, in just one year's time, to turn the fear and anger voters felt in 2006 and 2008 at a Republican Party that had destroyed the economy, redistributed massive amounts of wealth from the middle class to the richest of the rich and the biggest of big businesses, and waged a trillion-dollar war in the wrong country, into populist rage at whatever voters can cast their ballot against…. The president has managed to turn a base of new and progressive voters he himself energized like no one else could in 2008 into the likely stay-at-home voters of 2010, souring an entire generation of young people to the political process — it isn't hard for them to see that the winners [corporatists] seem to be the same no matter who the voters select… What's costing the president are three things: a laissez faire style of leadership that appears weak and removed to everyday Americans; a failure to articulate and defend any coherent ideological position on virtually anything; and a widespread perception that he cares more about special interests like [financial, energy, insurance, pharmaceutical and defense] companies than he does about the people they are shafting.

  4. Juan, I doubt you would have used the word 'just' if the numbers were reversed. For a Republican to even come close to winning Ted Kennedy's old seat, let alone actually doing it, is a cataclysmic event. I think the 60 vote rule is good. There should be real roadblocks in the way of Congress doing much of anything. They screw up so much as it is. If they can't get the 60, too bad. As for the election, as James Madison wrote in the Federalist Papers: “[T]he cool and deliberate sense of the community ought, in all governments, and actually will, in all free governments, ultimately prevail over the views of its rulers."

  5. Which is the better democracy?
    The majority rules, or
    The minority is rendered irrelevant.

  6. The 60 vote rule is a Senate rule. There is nothing constitutional about it. It was also predicated on a certain amount of courtesy between the two parties that doesn't exist anymore. Under the circumstances the rule has become obsolete and unless the Senate would like to be as well, they should scrap or suspend it. The ability to govern in any meaningful way is disappearing. Turn about will be fair play. Gridlock will become the name of the game and the Senate will continue to fiddle while Rome burns.

  7. Gee, Scott, I guess that if you take the way the government (I refuse to call it "our government") actually works, and mix in your extract from Madison, you get the maybe inescapable conclusion that "we" do not have a free government. In the meantime, there's no problem getting a simple majority passage of something in the Military-Industrial-Earmark line, now is there?

    Any deep thoughts on how to first tease out and get some mass agreement on what the "cool and deliberative sense of the community is," between teabaggers and all the rest, and how to assist that ultimate prevailing?

  8. Juan-

    Since when does 52% of the Senate support universal health care?

  9. sherm — Your comment is devilishly clever and i LOL every time i think about it (^_^)

  10. "but we can't pass universal health care with 52% of the Senate vote."

    They must not want to pass the bill.

    A) As the Republicans threatened to do, the Democrats could ban the filibuster with a simple majority, so so-called "nuclear option".

    B) If the Republicans actually did filibuster the health care bill, contrary to what I've seen widely reported, the Senate majority leader can ban (at his own discretion) "virtual filibusters" and make them pull a "Mr. Smith" re-enactment. A filibuster can be defeated by the majority party if they leave the debated issue on the agenda indefinitely, without adding anything else. The Republican wouldn't last, they'd be made fools of, and the bill would pass. Strom Thurmond's filibuster was defeated using this tactic and he holds the record for the longest filibuster in U.S. Senate history at 24 hours, 37 minutes – against The Civil Rights Act.

    Of course, I oppose the bill and support single payer. So I'd rather see the bill defeated.

  11. An alleged "welcome to the senate" message from the Dems to Brown contains this statement:

    "It is mathematically impossible for Democrats to pass legislation on our own."

    Is the Dems' mid-term campaign slogan going to be:
    "Maybe we can do something with a 75% majority !!"

    link to tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com

  12. The only "can't" in … but we can't pass universal health care with 52% of the Senate vote. is that most of the Democrats in the Senate are beholden to the profit-driven medical industry lobbyists. They use the "bad boy" Republicans to hide their hidden agenda, which is to deprive us of an ethical medical services sector.

  13. Ah, so. Just as I suspected. The Massachusetts populace is just as stupid as the rest of the U.S.


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