aka: "Shut up, Hamster."
Or, I guess, I had a long sit, as my partner drove. I read Deoliver47's post about 'Ms. Hamsher' and it rather annoyed me. I've lived for most of my life amongst those people who now go by "tea baggers" (their own moniker) and I knew that no matter what happened in politics, I could never accept an alliance with such hate-filled individuals and I couldn't understand a progressive that might advocate such a move. Then I read a diary that said Ms. Hamsher had gone on Faux and Friends to appeal to their audience to 'kill the bill'. It wasn't much of a diary (sorry diarist!), so I checked the Fox site itself and damned if it wasn't true. Not only had she gone on Faux, she'd not even asserted herself to decry what the party of "no" had done to decimate the hcr bill. She talked about how the bill would increase costs to the middle class and would effect your current coverage and "causes it to be worse"; it sounded like right-wing talking points.
So, despite my struggle to remain objective, I was getting a lil subjective. When I logged on tonight, the first diary I saw was about Ms. Hamsher joining forces with Grover Norquist to force Rahm Emmanuel to resign. Grover Norquist? Really? I'm sure readers here know who Norquist is...founder, supported by President Reagan, of American's For Tax Reform; opposition of President Clinton's attempt at health care reform; Contra and North supporter; co-author, with Messr. Gingrich, of the "Contract with America; Abramoff aficionado; supporter and promoter of President G. W. Bush. Need I say more? That sort of perked my ears.
But it wasn't until a poster noted that Ms. Hamsher had tweeted about Senator Bernie Sanders losing his seat unless he killed the bill. Losing his seat. The only self-professed socialist in the political spectrum. Losing his seat because he wasn't progressive enough? Bernie Sanders, promoter of single-payer health care? That guy who passionately argued for, and offered an amendment that would provide health care and dental coverage for every American? I almost couldn't believe it. But I clicked the linky, and sure enough...there it was, in all its glory...
Grover Norquist is a lifelong Right-Wing warrior. Destroying all progressives and any progressive/liberal agenda is his life’s work. He is very good at and has been finding useful idiots to help him divide and conquer progressives for over thirty years.
Norquist started this work with Jack Abramoff at his side. One party rule has always been their goal and Democrats and liberals have always been their blood enemies. Destroying progressives and everything we believe is their life's work. It is what they do.
Grover is deeply connected to Abramoff. Perhaps nobody goes back as far with Jack as Norquist...
...These two created Ralph Reed and inflicted him upon the world and they spawned a host of other lobbyists, activists, media whores, think tankers, staffers and politicians that make up the extreme conservative movement in America. Jack Abramoff’s ability to lobby and be successful as the point of the spear for the K Street Project depended upon Norquist and his weekly gathering of DC conservatives (Jack’s in jail, but these weekly meetings go on—perhaps Ms. Hamsher will be Grover’s featured guest at a future meeting). The sweatshops, sexshops, human trafficking and systematic labor abuse on the Marianas Islands have Grover Norquist to thank for their protection by Republicans just as much as they have Abramoff to thank (and Jack kicked back funds to Grover as part of the circle of "thank yous"). Norquist should be in jail, but he was protected by McCain, Rove, Bush and Congress. Now he is still out on the streets of DC and making fresh "alliances" with gullible and foolish people within the progressive movement. Sadly, Jane Hamsher is one of those foolish people.
...And the heart of her alliance with Norquist is the fact that she is lending her support and credibility to the conservative conspiracy theory that the financial meltdown was caused by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae lending money to poor people through the Community Investment Act and Community Banks. It is an article of faith among conservatives that Rahm Emanuel, Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama forced Freddie and Fannie to engaged in risky loans and that these two mortgage giants forced the big banks to do the same. And then the system crashed. See, in wing-nut world everything bad that happened to the economy was caused by poor people taking advantage of the system. This is a scandal that the wing-nuts want exposed just like they want that whole birth certificate thing exposed, and the ACORN thing exposed, and the death panel thing exposed, and the government’s dirty hands on your Medicare thing exposed, and the socialist takeover of America exposed, and the...
...If you want to fight with Rahm Emanuel, fine. If you want to pretend that he is your chosen personification of evil on this earth, go ahead. Whatever. But, if you decide that your hatred of Rahm is stronger than common sense, if you decide that you must join Jane Hamsher in making common cause with a shitbag like Norquist to attack Democrats, the President and his agenda, well then—and I mean this in the most civil way possible—go to hell. You have let your anger and your desire to piss farther and harder than you think Rahm can piss cloud your judgment.
Honestly? I'm listening to people on the left who are against the hcr bill as it stands now, even though I'm leaning toward the "hold your nose and support it, after making it as good as possible till the very end, because whatever that is is as good as we're going to get." But, joining up with Grover "drown
As for Obama and (some of) the Congresscritters supporting this bill (Lieberman can also be devoured by roving wolverines, yes, that goes without saying):
Listen, if I'm going to be supporting actual moderate-to-conservatives/self-aggrandizing cynical corporate sellouts going under the progressive flag whose "help" in this case not only doesn't much but may (*may*) even make things worse, I'm at least going to stick with the ones who aren't complete fucking boneheaded losers. That would be the ones who got elected into office, have some proven ability to find their ass with both hands, and are at least *trying* to make some kind of useful policy that will *help* *some* actual people be better able to not, you know, die. Hint: P.R. disasters like the Lieberman blackface stunt do not count as "progressive activism." They do count as "boneheaded loser moves."
p.s. how the hell did I get on Hamster's mailing list, anyway? No, I'm not signing your stupid petition. GOE AWAY.
p.p.s. This, dammit.
If anyone thought that Obama's language about bipartisanship and compromise were just a ploy to get elected, and the fierce passionate liberal would then pull away the mask, they were deluded.
To me, Obama's open, bipartisan and cross-ideological tone was never just a pose. It was how he intended to govern, defining a mild, modified liberalism as centrism and putting the opposition on the defensive. A fierce, aggressive liberalism, the counterpart to the high point of conservative exercise of institutional power in the middle of this decade, was not going to succeed. Recall, that such an approach ultimately failed conservatism.
However, Republican senators' refusal to participate in any meaningful way in the health-care conversation, with the small and notable exception of Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe's single, hesitating vote when the bill was before the Finance Committee, is a painful revelation that Obama can't govern the way he campaigned. And that revelation is in itself a kind of cost, a useful illusion now lost. As recently as a few weeks ago, every savvy Hill insider would tell you that health reform might get 58 votes and fail, or it might get 61 or 62 votes. But it wouldn't, couldn't get exactly 60 votes, just because some Democrats -- Ben Nelson, Blanche Lincoln, Mary Landrieu -- would insist on Republican cover. The biggest surprise of the last week is that health reform had to hit that target 60-vote target exactly, and that it did.
Health care's passage shows exactly how small the target is for any future Obama initiative, from cap-and-trade to financial reform. With no room for bipartisan compromise, and also no room to tell Joe Lieberman what everyone surely wants to tell Lieberman, the path forward is hard to see. As long as Republican opposition holds, even with the occasional press-release exception such as Sen. Lindsay Graham on cap-and-trade, there will be no room to the right and even less room to the left..