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When is it our turn?

vastleft's picture

1992: After twelve years of voodoo economics, the economy is officially stupid. So, Democrats win... with a triangulating strategy based on governing from the so-called "center." Sister Souljah joins "welfare queens" among the Great Straw Women of American Discourse.

1994: Newt Gingrich's Contract on America offers thinly veiled racism and power to the powerful. What's not to like? The GOP wins Congress and spends the next six years staring at the Clenis.

2000: To atone for the cumshot heard round the world, Al Gore dons a hairshirt: sanctimonious scold Joe Lieberman. Based on the journalistic principle of "Clinton Fatigue," the media decides that the country needs a backslapping dolt. Based on the Constitutional principle of "Who's Your Daddy?" the Supreme Court concurs.

2001-2003: Despite VP Cheney's anti-terrorism task force meeting a backbreaking zero times, terrorists still manage to destroy the World Trade Center. On the strength of this leadership, the media and most of the public embrace George W. Bush's Operation Terrorist Recruitment Rapture Crusade.

2004: The media declares Bush's second disputed one-state victory to be a mandate to ram his compassionate conservatism further up the world's ass. (Maybe man date was just a Freudian slip).

2005: Hurricane Katrina hits, and Bush's mama offers brown people all the Astroturf they can eat.

2006: Even though they're not allowed to see the flagged-draped coffins (if more soldiers don't die in vain, the previous ones died in vain), the public smartens the fuck up and votes out a ton of House and Senate Republicans. The new Democratic majority promptly rolls over and plays dead, thanks to a slew of Bush Dogs in donkey's clothing.

2008: Triangulation Man gives way to Triangulation Woman... who's duking it out with an even more acute triangulator of the Next Generation. Somewhere in the distance, John Edwards and Dennis Kucinich sound the call for progressive reform. Whatever.

* * *

When, I ask, is it time for a progressive agenda?

When is it time to run hard left, the way Ronald Reagan — that man of ideas — ran hard right?

The media's answer channels a famous New Yorker cartoon.

* * *

Glenn Greenwald accurately describes what "most Beltway 'liberal' pundits always do and have been doing for the last twenty years — namely, warn Democrats that they will lose elections unless they renounce their beliefs and act as much as possible like Republicans on national security issues."

But you know what, I don't think never is good for us.

How many Americans worth their salt want to stay the course? Aren't we ready for a change (and not just changing the narrative into Shiny Happy Rainbow Pony Time).

Why on earth is it that both sides of every flipped coin say "use Republican framing"?

The country is demonstrably ahead of the media on this. Even though the press and pundits are in no hurry to catch up, remember whose ass got kicked in the 2006 midterms.

So, why are Dems still running scared?

Why do we buy into the idea that today's America is intrinsically rightwing, that we must fear and honor these indefensible frames?

  • Flag=GOP
  • Patriotism=GOP
  • Fiscal prudence=GOP
  • Strong defense=GOP
  • Supporting our troops=GOP
  • Moral values=GOP
  • Old-fashioned values=GOP
  • Faith=GOP
  • Jesus=GOP

Dishonoring them doesn't mean ignoring them. It means smashing them.

Imitating them — the sincerest form of flattery, y'know — is not smashing them.

Turning ourselves into gun-toting NASCAR Jesus isn't changing the frames. It's bronzing them. That covers up the bullshit, and faster than you can say "Rupert Murdoch," those frames will be back on the wall.

We should shine a bright light on these fecal frames, like Maj. Gen. Paul D. Eaton did:

"So many military believe that Republican administrations are good for the military. That is rarely the case. And we have got to get a message through to every soldier, every family member, every friend of soldier, that the Republican Party, the Republican-dominated Congress has absolutely been the worst thing that has happened to the United States Army and the United States Marine Corps."

The Republicans are not the party of ideas. They're the party of hypocrisy, corruption, arrogance, cruelty, and failure. Why would anyone want to sing Kumbaya with them, or think there was glory in it?

* * *

Just where — besides the SCLM, Rightwing radio, and Karl Rove's lying piehole — did we get the idea that this country naturally tilts to the right?

  • In 2000, Al Gore got more votes than Bush
  • In 2004, John Kerry came incredibly close (if not closer, given another round of voting improprieties), despite Bush's 9/11 and "War President" bounces, a massive slime campaign, and possessing the charisma of diet kelp
  • In 2006, the Democrats won handily
  • On a good week (for him), Bush's approval rating barely cracks 1/3

In the primaries, where Democratic voting is wildly outstripping the GOP's, Obama's attempts to leapfrog Hillary to "the center" are seeming to backfire.

So, isn't it time to stop fearing our own shadow? If not now — with the wounded GOP practically holding our quivering boots to their necks — when will it be time?

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chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

the only thing i want to add: and while all our Betters tell us these things, america is dying. poor people without health care, families losing their homes, the constitution in tatters, the middle class evaporating, an emerging pseudofascist 'security' state...don't any of the candidates care about the death of the dream that was "America?"

where is the urgency?

i think that's what disappoints me most. i know why they do it, but c'mon- the crisis is looming, large and Bad, and most of the time they act like it's still 1996. i suppose for them, it is. they aren't poor, they don't hurt, they surround themselves with the rich and pampered. and most of all, they've all seemingly surrendered to the notion that "what people say in the village" is more important than what 99% of us experience as reality.

frankly, i'm surprised as many people are turning out in the primaries as they are. even while i understand the desperate nature of that level of "enthusiasm."

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

Stop whining about Hillary and Barack and John and vote for the guy who will make real changes in how Washington is run!

Stop buying crap from Walmart; ride your bike; don't watch CNN, ABC, NBC, don't take the kids to Disney parks, send those dollars to a campaign for someone who will make a difference... Dennis!

It will be out turn when it's Dennis' turn in the Oval Office. He will truly regain the respect and dignity the office and position deserves.

Stop saying he's unelectable and elect him, dammit!

What have we got to lose? Everything. If we don't vote for our own interest by voting for Dennis Kucinich!

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

DK because frankly, i don't think he's got The Stuff to be pres. i agree with most of his ideas, but i'm turned off by his mushiness on freedom of choice. also, i have been told by both relatives and activists who live in his district that he spends too much time running for president, and not enough time taking care of his district. DK is a great guy right where he is, and should take a leadership role in the house. most of the time when he's there, he's sponsoring or supporting really good bills. but for many reasons, both those i don't like, as well as those that won't change within my lifetime, i can't bring myself to support him for president.

and you needn't lecture people at *this* blog about shopping atwal-mart or watching teevee. that you do so suggests you're not reading all of this blog, but perhaps only those posts that give you a chance to shout out for your guy. which is fine, but makes your argument look weaker.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

By your own standard, GWB had "the Stuff to be pres"? Are you kidding me?

My point is this: The topic of this discussion was, "When is it our turn?" Well, it's our turn when we vote for someone who thinks differently from the rest of the Beltway Boobs.

Look, our choices are:
Hillary
Barack
John
Dennis

The first three are carbon copies of each other. Their voting records are nearly the same and all have at one time or another received nice little donations from big corporations.

Congressman Dennis Kucinich is the only person who states clearly and definitively what he will do about corporatism in this country. He is not afraid to stand up to big oil, big pharma, big insurance, etc.

We've seen what the Clintons and Kerrys and Edwards have to offer, why not give someone who's a little scrappy a chance? I like scrappy!

I read this blog and many others, but when given a question of "When will it be our turn?" I offered an answer. Stop supporting big business. Are you, ChicagoDyke, the only person who reads this blog? I didn't think so. So if you're already doing what I suggest than my words don't apply to you, but they might apply to someone else here.

All I'm saying is, vote. Everyone needs to vote their own best interest, but if people vote for another middle-of-the-road DINO and this country continues to mire in this cesspool of corruption, my answer will be: Don't blame me, I voted for Dennis!

Peace to you and all.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

I prefer Edwards because:

* Fair or unfair, he has a modicum of visibility, which Kucinich does not. He may gather enough delegates to be a king/queenmaker, while Kucinich is a distant fourth; Edwards could use that leverage to get one of the frontrunners to do the right thing, and he's still -- longshot though he is -- a viable candidate.
* Kucinich, by pledging his Iowa delegates to Obama validated the center-right and signaled that he's not in the race for keeps, no matter how long he officially stays in
* Kucinich, by publicly toying with the idea of running with Ron Paul, showed a disturbing lack of fidelity to his commitment for the public safety net, his excellent voting record notwithstanding

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

Every vote for Kucinich is a vote that could have gone to Edwards. Even if that only gets Edwards to 17 percent instead of 15 (which is all the votes DK ever gets anywhere) it's that much more powerful in one place than split in 2.

And spare me the Purity Police. Yeah DK is stronger anti-war than Edwards was, and was probably either stronger or at least earlier than JE on some other issues. I appreciate that he's been even more abused by the media than John has.

Tough. He also has all the flaws, policy-wise, that VL and CD point out just above. He could be in Washington fighting the FISA battle and doing what he's actually, like, currently employed to do: represent.

I don't want to drop a "N" bomb here but the letters n*d*r are getting harder and harder to avoid. It's long since started looking like an ego trip and not a campaign that's going to accomplish jack shit, except help put HilObama into the White House.

Submitted by lambert on

Agreed. That "good for one time only" endorsement of Obama in Iowa could have taken a clear second away from Edwards. Fuck DK.

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

Because I really think hauling in with Edwards and not Kucinich is the right thing to do, per my and others' comments above.

But I salute the impulse to support the person who most represents your values in the primary.

I just feel that DK has sent too many signals that he doesn't represent me. And the extreme best-possible outcome of this horserace is horse #3, especially with horse #4 failing to see that.

although I do think he writes pretty well for someone who likely sweats bongwater.

P.S. - I'm a licensed, non-practicing (not by choice, exactly) Realtor in Florida. I enjoyed your earlier glimpse into my personal hell.

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

you'll be mocked, your arguments taken apart in little pieces and discarded, and no one will talk to you.

/feel my wrath/

never, ever imply that i have in any way, at any time, supported chimpy. just don't go there. i never said anything about what i thought about W's "stuff" or lackthereof. i was sharing my opinion about DK. there's no implied connection other than one you just made.

i gave you four, concrete reasons why i don't support DK, you ignored them all and lectured me, again, about what should be on MY blog and again showed your ignorance of what else is written here.

your nadaresque/ofb-style habits have officially bored me now...feel free to start your own blog and share your wisdom with others.