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January 06, 2005

Comments

Maggie

Yes, Representatives yell. However, I find that is usually shorter and more to the point than the Senate. Usually they get more things done.

I figure that when Senator Byrd retires our national debt will be greatly reduced: we will save a huge amount in transcriber costs and in paper in publishing The Congressional Record.

While some may miss the Senator's knowledge of the Constitution (some might even say he wrote it ala Gore) his verbiosity was an auditory challenge.

Scooter Blue

"If you have access to a television or broadband Internet, go and witness the further dissolution of a once great political party."

Why, because they didn't want to ignore the inconsistencies and problems in voting? As you pointed out (and tried to mock), the purpose was not to say that Bush didn't win, but this was the only avenue to draw wider attention to the well-documented voting problems. I, for one, actually felt a little pride as a liberal, progressive, and registered Democrat today (and then was promptly let down by the Gonzales hearing). Sounds like you want DemocratLite - one fourth the spine of regular Democrats!

Daniel

My, my. Senators and Representative only get this one chance to speak on an issue. So they just wanted to speak? Why then did 31 Democrats vote for the objection if it "wasn't about who won?" Was Ohio the only state where there were irregularities? If the Dems have such lofty principles, why not pick a state that Kerry won by much less votes than Bush won Ohio?

If you felt pride that Boxer, Conyers at al showed themselves to be nothing but whining children, then good for you. Combine this fiasco with all the other tonedeaf move from this party and you have what amounts to the abdication of the responsibilities of a political party.

As for DemocratLite - Nothing of the case. I want my old Democratic party back, the one that fought the right fights, and didn't stoop to cheap tricks. A Democratic party that was muscular and principled and fierce, not this rabble of whining, duplicitous cowards.

Scooter Blue

"Was Ohio the only state where there were irregularities? If the Dems have such lofty principles, why not pick a state that Kerry won by much less votes than Bush won Ohio?"

From what I understand, Ohio was the state with the most flagrant, suspicious irregularities this time out. That's why.

"If you felt pride that Boxer, Conyers at al showed themselves to be nothing but whining children, then good for you."

If you think they were whining, well, that's your opinion. I disagree. I don't know if you consider yourself a conservative, but that's the tactics most conservatives resort to now - if Dems speak up, we're "whining" and should "get over it." Good job of trying to frame the situation, though.

"...you have what amounts to the abdication of the responsibilities of a political party."

I see it as the opposite, an all-too rare example of Dems showing responsibility. I would expect no less from them.

"I want my old Democratic party back, the one that fought the right fights, and didn't stoop to cheap tricks."

What are the right fights, then? I would like to know what your vision of the Democratic party is. More centrist, more cooperative with the Repugs? Sorry, I'll be fighting against that. The only thing I agree with you on is that Dems should be more "muscular and principled and fierce," although I think we have different definitions of these words.


Daniel

It seems to me that the Democrats picked Ohio because that was the state they needed to win. The "moderate" view is that Bush won but the election was illegitimate. The far view (or maybe the mainsteam view for all I know) is that Bush "stole" the election through some vast state-wide conspiracy somehow perpetrated under the noses of over a hundred Democratic elections officials (none of which have or had any objections to the vote).

You fall into the recent leftist argument of saying that anything that is not perfect (as long as it isn't left) is illegitimate.

I don't know if you watched much of the proceedings but the rhetoric didn't seemed so principled to me. I call whining as I see it. Senator Boxer shedding a crocodile tear, Harkin with his cry-baby antics. Come on, Scooter, is this really the party you want?

I obviously don't know you and you don't know me. Maybe, if you can stomach it, you should look around this site. You'll find that I have a life-long (until recently) love affair with the Democratic Party. We have separated and the marriage doesn't look too promising.

You can fight all you want against the Dems being more "centrist" if you want. You will lose.

As most people know, I am not a conservative and in some areas can barely stand the Bush administration. That doesn't mean, though, that I side with the Democrats when they are acting stupid. And, Scooter, the type of grandstanding the country witnessed was grandstanding no matter how wonderful you thought it was.

I want a Democratic Party that fights for civil rights no matter whose rights we're talking about. I want a Democratic Party that fights for the separation of church and state without demonizing religious people. I want a Democratic Party that is strong on defense and doesn't look at the use of American power as evil. I want a Democratic Party that respects my right to own a gun. I want a Democratic Party that doesn't think I'm too stupid to make decisions for myself.

I want a Democratic Party that realizes that the revolution is over, that America is free and fair though far from perfect.

I am harder on the Democrats than the Republicans because I don't expect much from the GOP. What do you expect from the Democrats? Why are you a Democrat, Scooter?

Let's talk about this. I am a liberal but not a leftist. I believe in liberty and believe that America is the best hope for human liberty on the planet. What do you believe?

Scooter Blue

Interesting, thoughtful response. I appreciate your different but well-considered view. I'm a little too tired right now to answer all of your questions (long, extended work week), but I will soon. I look forward to a meaningful dialogue!

Scooter Blue

Still a little short on time to properly respond, but it seems we probably agree more than we disagree. I wonder if maybe you've accepted the conservative framing of issues too much (although as you said, we don't realy know each other very well). I am a registered Democrat, and voted for Kerry (reluctantly), but above all of that I am a liberal and a progressive.

"I want a Democratic Party that fights for civil rights no matter whose rights we're talking about." - Sure, me too, although I'm curious as to what people you think Dems are not fighting for.
"I want a Democratic Party that fights for the separation of church and state without demonizing religious people." - Again, I agree, but what do you mean by Dems demonizing religious people? Examples?
"I want a Democratic Party that is strong on defense and doesn't look at the use of American power as evil."
I believe in defense, in the truest meaning of the word, not "the best defense is a good offense." For example, pre-emptive war is a big no-no for me. American power, I feel, is in its influence and imperfect but still proud heritage, not at the barrel of a gun (unless absolutely necessary).
"I want a Democratic Party that respects my right to own a gun." - Maybe I'm wrong, but are very many Democrats calling for banning hunting rifles and handguns? I see no problem with owning either or both, but I also see no problem with some sensible regulations, either.
"I want a Democratic Party that doesn't think I'm too stupid to make decisions for myself." - Not sure what you mean about this. Taxes? Social Security? We'd have to discuss that further.
"I want a Democratic Party that realizes that the revolution is over, that America is free and fair though far from perfect." - Well, America is free, although try silently holding a negative sign at a Bush rally and see what happens. Fair? Basically, although there are ways this could be improved, like equalizing school funding - why should public schools in rich neighborhoods be better funded than those in poor ones? Far from perfect? Absolutely. It has been said that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance. I don't think of the "revolution" as being over; instead I see it as always underway - not racing to a destination, but having to be constantly maintained. Sometimes that might ruffle a few feathers, I guess. Again, something that would have to be clarified and discussed further.

Believe me, I am not happy with the Democratic party either, possibly for different reasons than yours. For one example of my criticism, check out the following post:

http://scooterblue.blogspot.com/2005/01/slippery-gonzales-spineless-dems.html

More to come!

Daniel

Lots of good questions. I'll try to answer, though I give no guarantees.

Democrats tend to view civil rights as something meted out by the state to particular constituencies. Democrats generally don't believe in individual rights. For instance, leftist groups generally dislike free speech when the speaker happens to be outside of traditional democratic "protected" groups. Wwithess David Brock going after Sinclair. Somehow Air America is a lone bastion of truth, Sinclair is propaganda. For the record, I find talk radio on both sides to be mostly a waste of time and at worst an odious use of free speech. But hey, I don't have to listen.

Most democrats I know (Ihave been one)believe that anybody who has religious objections to, say, abortion are either stupid, or want to keep women subserviant.

I used to be against preemptive war until Spetember 11, 2001. We live in a new era. Time to adjust. That's a liberal viewpoint, by the way. I mean being able to adjust your thinking. What you espouse is leftism, not liberal thought.

We have about enough gun laws. I neliev you when you say you're for gun rights, but most Democrats think that guns should e banned outright. I'm not talking about the hunter who's a liflong Dem. I'm talking about those Democrats (again, I know what I'm talking about) who see gun owners as Neaderthals.

Democrats feel that you and I are too stupid to make decisions on how to spend, invest and make our money. THat's one area. Democrats believe that the state is paramount. I belive in individual liberty and repsonsiblilty.

Take a look at some post I have here, if you get the time. "The Silence of the Left" would tell you a lot of how I think. So would "Princesses, protests."

I tossed this off quickly; I will be happy to elaborate on any point.

Best,

Daniel

Daniel

I notice that I failed to answer one point in the body of your reply. It is our shame that some schools have state-of-the-art swimming pools, for example when other can't afford books. Children should not be ghettoized. But throwing money at failing schools may not be the answer. Again, it's how you and look at things differently. I believe if you give students the right to go to any school - and make some provision for equity - then failing schools will either reform or die. Why not give vouchers a test? Because teachers - another Democratic constituency - fear that their postion will be compromised. My daughter went to school in Homewood (a not-so-garden spot neighbeorhood in Pittsburgh) her entire school career. The students, parents , teachers and adminstrators did what we needed to do to make the schools successful. Individually and collectively. My advice to Democrats, stop looking for solutions upstream. All the power comes from individual citizens.

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