Tag Archives | Democrats

Cornel West on Obama and the Democrats

Official_portrait_of_Barack_ObamaCornel West laments the betrayal of the disenfranchised by Obama and the Democrats at large. He advocates for support of third party candidates in order to move our government away from its current state of corruption.

Gaius Publius writes at AMERICAblog:

As you may know, there’s a war going on in the black community, and Barack Obama is at the center of it. We’ve done some reporting on it ourselves. For example:

Cornel West on Obama — “Obama Deception: Why Cornel West Went Ballistic”

Eddie Glaude on Cornel West and “The Obama Deception”

Ed Schultz interviews Cornel West & Melissa Harris-Perry on the criticism of Obama from the black community

Weekend thoughts: Cornel West and Tavis Smiley on Obama 2013

From the outside the gist is this (written in mid-2011):

A number of communities have felt betrayed lately by Obama and the Democrats in general — it’s foolish not to admit that.

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How ‘The Workshop’ Has Corrupted Rational Political Discussion

Hipster med ölThe original version of this article was a response to Rachel Haywire’s post on her own website entitled “What is the Workshop? where she attacks the pressure to conform to a “facade-liberal” cultural norm and the cause of the week political culture that all of us involved in the hipster creative-professional subculture have to publicly subscribe to if people aren’t going to back away from us.

She called the memetic creation machine that produces these norms “The Workshop”. This structure is intended to create artisanal memes and mass-produce them into the various political subcultures.

Her post described what it does, I describe here what it’s for, as in its political objectives. While this post is intended to stand by itself, it’s best understood after reading hers linked to above.

After posting the comment, it occurred to me that the ideas expressed deserved wider circulation.

Political movements are supposed to be about creating good public policy.… Read the rest

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How Can Liberals and Conservatives Communicate?

Picture: "Purple America" by Robert J. Vanderbei, Princeton.edu (CC)

There was a great article a couple weeks ago by Lynn Stuart Parramore, an AlterNet senior editor, titled What if Liberals and Progressives Could Learn to Talk to White Southern Men? in which she reminds us that for Southerners, being polite and reasonable are directly signs of their sense of honor and self-respect. Most of them, despite our political disagreements, don’t want to be seen as rash, close-minded and unreasonable. Lynn Parramore, also Director of AlterNet’s New Economic Dialogue Project, recounts stories of relating to these individuals on certain issues:

What liberals and progressives don’t seem to understand is that you don’t counter a myth with a pile of facts and statistics. You have to counter it with a more powerful story. And that’s what Obama and the Democrats have repeatedly failed to do. White Southern men want a story that makes them feel proud of America and what it can accomplish.

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Why Obama Lost The Debate

Via LBO News, Doug Henwood argues that Obama’s tepid showing in his first debate versus Romney was not due to personal lapse, but his and his party’s fundamental contradiction:

First, I should say that while I am not a Democrat, and never had much hope invested in 2008’s candidate of hope, I do think we’d be marginally better off if Obama won. Most liberals want to write off Obama’s bad performance as a bad night. It’s not just that.

The political problem of the Democrats is that they’re a party of capital that has to pretend for electoral reasons sometimes that it’s not. All the complaints that liberals have about them—their weakness, tendency to compromise, the constantly lamented lack of a spine—emerge from this central contradiction. The Republicans have a coherent philosophy and use it to fire up a rabid base. The Dems are afraid of their base because it might cause them trouble with their funders.

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Ask The Democrats: Can We Trust Romney With Obama’s Kill List?

Were the GOP presidential ticket to triumph, could the American public count on Mitt Romney to properly order hush-hush drone killings of U.S. citizens as we now trust Obama? Last week Gawker's John Cook put this question to Democratic National Convention attendees (including DNC spokespeople, Senators Carl Levin and Chuck Schumer, and Newark mayor Cory Booker), eliciting some jumbled answers to the softball question of why Barack is the best man to choose whom to extrajudicially assassinate:
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A Devilish Marriage Of Church And State

[disinfo ed.’s note: the following is a chapter from the new Jesse Ventura book, DemoCRIPS and ReBLOODlicans: No More Gangs in Government, courtesy of Skyhorse Publishing.]

I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their ‘legislature’ should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between church and state.”

– Thomas Jefferson, 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptists.

Not long after I became governor of Minnesota in 1999, I got in a whole lot of hot water with certain politicians and media types for saying in an interview with Playboy: “Organized religion is a sham and a crutch for weak-minded people who need strength in numbers. It tells people to go out and stick their noses in other people’s business….The religious right wants to tell people how to live.”

Later I clarified my comments.… Read the rest

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Why Can’t Real Life Be More Like Double Dragon?

Double Dragon“People get really tired of having all the tough villains front-loaded against them and resent getting short changed on play time because some fat mouth-breather’s hogging it all with a stack of quarters that could knock out a Clydesdale. If that’s all on offer, can you blame folks for staying home?”

Games are the repositories of our culture’s most primal values. As ostensible objects of complete fancy, they (can) deftly sidestep at will many of the extraneous ambiguities that force us to compromise our deepest values and thus help give clearest expression to our highest ideals.

For starters, game consequences are not so final or existential as they are in real life. You’re typically given at least 3 initial ‘lives’ to perform strategy experiments and become comfortable with play options before you’re fatally croaked. And even then you’re usually offered the option to restart the game. You have an opportunity to weigh options with some level of maturity and develop a play style that suits you personally.… Read the rest

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The New (Conservative) Liberalism

JackassCharles Davis, on liberalism in America, and how it fails to provide systemic solutions to the problems faced in an increasingly conservative world. Via Al Jazeera:

Once upon a time — say, three years ago — your average Democrat appeared to care about issues of war and peace. When the man dropping the bombs spoke with an affected Texas twang, the moral and fiscal costs of empire were the subject of numerous protests and earnest panel discussions, the issue not just a banal matter of policy upon which reasonable people could disagree, but a matter of the nation’s very soul.

Then the guy in the White House changed.

Now, if the Democratic rank and file haven’t necessarily learned to love the bomb – though many certainly have — they have at least learned to stop worrying about it. Barack Obama may have dramatically expanded the war in Afghanistan, launched twice as many drone strikes in Pakistan as his predecessor and dropped women-and-children killing cluster bombs in Yemen, but peruse a liberal magazine or blog and you’re more likely to find a strongly worded denunciation of Rush Limbaugh than the president.

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Political Metastasis

RepublicratJulian Sanchez writes on his blog:

Browsing a conservative news site the other day, I was struck by the sheer oddness of that familiar genre of political commentary that treats liberals and conservatives, not just as groups of people with systematic disagreements on policy questions, but as something like distinct subspecies of humanity. The piece that triggered this was something along the lines of “Five Reasons Liberals Are Awful People,” and it had almost nothing to do with any concrete policy question, or ultimately even the broad-brush contours of liberal political thought: It was a string of assertions about broad types of character flaws purportedly shared by liberals, of which their policy views were only a symptom. The same day, I chanced across a piece by Chris Mooney—based on his new book The Republican Brain—making a similar sort of argument from the other side by drawing on recent social science.

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