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BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi

GUEST,Re-poster 23 Aug 07 - 08:00 PM
Charley Noble 23 Aug 07 - 08:09 PM
Bobert 23 Aug 07 - 08:11 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Aug 07 - 01:22 AM
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Subject: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 23 Aug 07 - 08:00 PM

Arguing that the American electorate had placed the Democrats in the majority in Congress out of disgust with the Bush administration, Sheehan declared that Congress, "under the speakership of Ms. Pelosi has done nothing but protect the status quo of the corporate elite and, in fact, since she has been the Speaker, the situation in the Middle East has grown far worse."

Sheehan asserted that "the rich are getting richer, the poor are getting poorer and the middle class is rapidly disappearing along with the 'American dream' of home ownership." She went on: "The PATRIOT Act and Military Commissions Act need to be repealed and habeas corpus needs to be restored. These things can only happen with fearless leadership, not fearful capitulation to a lying President."

She explained that she was running out of opposition to the "corporately controlled 'two' party system."

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2007/aug2007/shee-a23.shtml


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Charley Noble
Date: 23 Aug 07 - 08:09 PM

Guest,Re-poster-

If you're really serious about this topic you might consider becoming a Mudcat member.

I'd really like to get more of an idea of who you are before I debate a topic such as this.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 23 Aug 07 - 08:11 PM

Hear, hear!!!

Just what Mrs. P. needs...

Go Cindy...

Keep the bastards half honest...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 01:22 AM

Another spoiler. Great. Why not go after a vulnerable Republican seat, and then work on convincing Pelosi to see her point? Why waste her politcal capital this way?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 12:45 PM

Well, first of al, srs, Cindy doesn't stnad a chance to winning a democratic primary and second, why bother running as a Repub 'cause she wouldn't get a single vote, let alone the necessary signitures to get on the ballot...

Jus MO...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Barry Finn
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 02:15 PM

Pelosi & other dems need to know we didn't put them in office so that they could run & duck for cover when they see a snadbag tossed their way. They need to start fighting for us in a serious way. This, as far as I'm concerned is a good way of showing our intentions. And if she beats Pelosi (I don't believe that she would even come close) that would send a definite message to the rest of the slackers that we want what we voted for & not a bit less. Bush needs to be impeached now, the war needs to end now, the educational, social security & health systems need to be repaired now, the illegal immagration issue, employment issues, economic issues all need to be straightened out & they need to know that it's our asses on the line as well as theirs.

Barry


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Barry Finn
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 02:23 PM

Sorry. That was "sandbag" & was meant to be a play on words

Barry


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 02:45 PM

Uh . . . I don't thing Stilly is suggesting that Cindy run as a Republican, I think she's saying that instead of running against Pelosi and being a spoiler and splitting votes (I'd a lot rather have Pelosi in there than another Republican!), she should run as a Democrat (or possibly an independent or third-party candidate) against a Republican representative, preferably an incumbant. If she wins, great! But even if not, she will undoubtedly have some following and financial support—quite possibly a large following and a lot of support—and the campaign (speeches, news coverage, etc.) would give her an opportunity to speak her piece pretty effectively.

Right, Maggie?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 03:49 PM

*sigh*...Sheehan is another case of 'righteous indignation' gone astray. She has many valid and solid points about Bush & his regimé, but little comprehension of possible practical ways to combat and resolve the problem.
She does, of course, have the right to speak out, file as a candidate and and get publicity...which is probably all she really expects, anyway....but it seems to me she did more good just publicly embarrassing Bush than she can possibly do by harassing Pelosi for not 'agreeing' to something counterproductive.

   I see remarks in that site link above referring to Pelosi as "... a multi-millionaire supporter of American imperialism and militarism, who voted for the Patriot Act and supported Bush's program of warrantless wire-tapping,..." What a crock of distorted nonsense! It is time people learned to separate most 'votes' of Senators and representatives from what the really 'believe' and are actually working for.
   A lot of Senators and Representatives voted FOR things like the Patriot Act and funding the Iraq invasion either because they were flatly misled, or because they felt they couldn't win anyway, and could accrue political capital for future dealings. Sad commentary on how it works, but if you want to do ANY good in that atmosphere, you need to KNOW how it works!

Cindy will run...she'll get interviewed a lot and wave her banners...she'll get defeated....but she MAY do more harm than good by putting unachievable goals in front of the voters and skewing the vote in some awkward way.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 04:40 PM

Yup! Bill's got it right!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi (Sheehan v. Democrats)
From: Genie
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 05:13 PM

Don, you said it well.

First, Barry, "we" who put the dems in the majority in Congress did it for various reasons, not the least of which was to enable Congress to conduct badly needed hearings (which Conyers and Leahy and Wachman (sp?) are doint), to stop the rubber-stamping of all Bush's judicial and other nominees (which is also happening), and to have control over which bills get passed out of committee. (The Rep.- controlled Congress blocked many bipartisan-supported bills from coming to the floor for a vote.)    Any Democrat or "liberal" who thinks it doesn't matter which party a member of Congress belongs to -- even if the person doesn't fall in line with the party on everything -- is very naive about how the Federal government works.

Second, Pelosi -- who is running as an Independent -- very likely will lose but may split the left-of-center vote (or the anti-Iraq-occupation vote) enough to give that seat to a Republican.

Third -- Pelosi has voted the way Kucinich and other liberal Dems have on many, many issues.    Ending the occupation of Iraq, while important, is not the only goal.

Fourth -- and I hope to heaven Sheehan and her supporters realize this --, if Pelosi loses her seat but the Dems retain control of the House, the person the Dems elect as Speaker may not be any more in line with Sheehan's views than Pelosi is.

Cindy, if you're a real patriot as well as having a lick of sense about political strategy, for God's sake, find a vulnerable republican -- or even a "blue dog Democrat" -- and run against him or her!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Slag
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 07:36 PM

I'm moving to SF so I can vote for Cindy!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: kendall
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 07:44 PM

It took the republicans years to screw it up, now we expect the democrats to make it all right in a few months?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: pdq
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 08:15 PM

Nancy Pelosi has no heart and Cindy Sheehan has no brain. If we add Harry Reid as the Cowardly Lion, we can start filming a remake of The Wizard Of Oz.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 09:04 PM

I really haven't hear one argument here that convinces me that Cindy runnin' is a bd thing...

The Dems could have stopped the Iraq war if they had the balls... They don't...

Now if the current crop won't stand up for what we all know is the riright thing to do then it's time for them to either go or figure out that the American people expect more of them...

Go, Cindy...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 09:29 PM

I'm happy having Nancy Pelosi where she is. She's certainly closer to the center than the Bush Regime is, and she has a far better chance of getting something accomplished than a left-wing ideologue would.

On the other hand, Cindy Sheehan has a lot that needs to be said, and she'd be an asset to Congress. I live in a Northern California district with a very corrupt, vulnerable Republican Congressman (John Doolittle). Some well-known Democrat like Cindy Sheehan might do very well in the Congressional election here next year. And if she doesn't win, my Catholic parish needs a youth minister, and I understand Cindy Sheehan has a good deal of experience working as a youth minister in our diocese.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 24 Aug 07 - 10:02 PM

That sounds like a plan, Joe! If it isn't already under way, is there any way you could implement it?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 02:17 AM

Yup, Don, you're right in interpreting what I was saying above. I vote she go to Northern California and lay siege at that Republican congressman's door. Then if she actually has the great good fortune (and a batch in knee-jerk voters?) to take out the incumbent it will mean one less Republican in D.C. She's saying things that need to be said, but she comes across as such a one-note politician that the rest of the job may be completely beyond her. Same as with the pro-life folks who don't seem to have any other issues. It's a waste of an election to send someone to congress who has such a narrow view of the job to be done.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 04:33 AM

Don't the half million Iraqi deaths as a result of this pre- emptive war mean anything to you Americans?   Its still going on remember and its not just Bush's fault.   What about that democracy you're so proud of? We are all implicated.

A big majority loved Bush and his tactics while he appeared to be winning, now they have grudgingly changed sides and their opposition is lukewarm to say the least. Mealy-mouthed hypocricy from most here.

Bobert and Barry are consistent and correct. Given public opinion in America now the Dems could have stopped American involvment...They have not the guts...or the WILL.

You need a beacon to show the world that there is still decency left in America. Sheehan can divide where division is required, and unite the American people who have been sidetracked and confused by Dems and Pubs alike

The agenda of most here is to keep the American political system intact. Wake up to reality, you are being conned by people who are motivated by nothing other than self-interest...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 01:19 PM

There is a learning curve that Sheehan hasn't negotiated yet. I don't dispute what she's arguing against, more power to her. Bush has inflicted an abomination upon the world, there is no excuse for his behavior. But Sheehan is still a lightweight in this battle, even with name recognition.

Until someone bright enough to start talking to Iraq's neighbors gets in and does just that, there isn't a hope in hell than an anti-war activist is going to make a difference.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 01:40 PM

Pelosi leads the Democrats, who were going to end the war, impeach Bush and bring charges. The Democrats voted to SURGE the war, took impeachment off the table, and whatever disipline is being doled out to Republicans is the slap-on-the-wrist kind.

Pelosi needs to be tried for high treason, along with the Republican leaders, and they need to hang together. As in, at the end of a rope.

America has been hijacked by gangsters. Pelosi has signed on for the full abomination. People know this. Sheehan will beat Pelosi like a bongo if the race isn't rigged. I hope the first thing a "Sheehan campaign" does is file injunctions against the use of Diebold voting machines in Pelosi's congressional district. Let the people vote, let the people count the votes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 03:07 PM

"Pelosi needs to be tried for high treason. . . .

Yeah, sure. But if you were to put Port-a-Potties equipped with castors all over Washington, D. C., then heads would really roll!

Reflamin'diculous!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 05:33 PM

Akenetan, your post of 4:33 is wrong on almost all counts.

* Just for starters: We are a Republic. We elect representatives. We do not have a direct vote.
* If you read some of Pelosi's reasoning, you might still not agree with her conclusions but you WOULD be aware that she is a thinking and realistic person.
* There NEVER was "a big majority that loved Bush" so you are also wrong about the "...grudgingly changed sides and their opposition is lukewarm to say the least. Mealy-mouthed hypocricy from most here."
* I get mightily tired of furriners who don't have a clue. Only a mouth.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 05:54 PM

This "furriner" is as culpable as you are, thanks to Your President and our Prime minister.

At least public opinion in the UK forced Blair to leave office.

You appear to have a gang of thugs in power and a cowardly opposition who don't want power.

Don't shoot the messenger Ebbie, open your eyes and see what has happened to America.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 06:04 PM

You think we don't know?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 06:07 PM

You don't appear to know that your opposition is worthless


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 06:07 PM

High Treason???? For not coming into office and immediately start tossing dull axes about? Pelosi has more sense than to start something that cannot practically BE done. Bush and several of his cronies probably deserve impeachment, and if this were 2 years ago, I'd be in favor of it....but we have NO chance of carrying out a double impeachment of Bush AND Cheney and also finding a new president in only 15 months..or do you want Pelosi to BE president?

Impeachment, such as Sheehan was calling for, is not like traffic court...we don't just say, "hey...look what you did! Get outa here!"
It is a VERY complex process, and the process of proving in court what Bush & Cheney are 'guilty' of is not easy, and could tie up the entire Congress for months! We do NOT have 'votes of no confidence' that can change administrations in mid-stream.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 06:15 PM

Bill D PLease read the link on the opening thread....Then try again..Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 06:29 PM

Try again to do what? I have read 'most' of that link. I was primarily replying to sneaky guest 're-poster' who thinks dealing with stupid politicians is as easy as swatting a stupid dog with a newspaper.

YOU say things like "You appear to have a gang of thugs in power and a cowardly opposition who don't want power." as if all we have to do is march into Bush's office and escort him out!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 07:05 PM

"You don't appear to know that your opposition is worthless." Ake

And yours isn't? pttuii!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 07:15 PM

By opposition, I mean your political representatives, who's supposed funtion is to oppose Mr Bush,his administration and the war they have created.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 07:28 PM

Classic standoff: the pot calls the kettle black.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: artbrooks
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 07:49 PM

Under US law, the House impeaches, which is essentially the same as an indictment in criminal court. This requires a simple majority which the Democrats (who are hardly monolithic) could possibly attain. The case then goes to the Senate, where conviction requires a 2/3 majority. Last I noticed, the Democratic majority in the Senate was 51/49, IF the two Independents are included. So, the chance of a conviction on an impeachment charge is exactly nil.

With the Senate this evenly divided, nothing important can be agreed upon unless it has strong bipartisan support. Debate on any issue can go on forever (and "debate", in this context, can include a senator reading the newspaper aloud) unless there is a 60/40 vote to cut it off and vote on a measure...and the Democrats don't have 60 votes.

Sheehan is after Polosi for not pursuing impeachment; clearly Pelosi knows that there is no point in wasting her time going after something (an impeachment charge) that is symbolic at best and would, through its total polarization of Congress, totally eliminate any possibility of them accomplishing anything at all. If Sheehan thinks that this Congress, with everything else that should be on its plate, has time to waste than she doesn't deserve to be elected to anything.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 08:00 PM

There seems to be a rash of this sort of nonsense going on these days, particularly here on Mudcat.

It's awfully easy for some people who don't live in this country to sit back and made snide comments when they don't have to deal with it themselves, especially when they have only the fuzziest idea of how the American political system works (or sometimes doesn't). And it's also easy to sit back and snipe at the very people who are trying to change the government, but have not yet been successful. Or to insist that they do things that they know simply won't work. Doesn't help one bit. Not constructive criticism. But I suppose it lets the armchair critics feel superior.

I'd like to see how well they would fair if they actually had to get involved themselves.

If they have something genuinely constructive to suggest, then I'd like to hear it. But if all they can offer is sarcastic remarks about the very people who are going their best to change things, then I wish they would just shut the hell up!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 08:01 PM

Well, well, well...

Ol' hillbilly caught between a rock and hard place here... Everyone knows that I love Ebbie with all me heart... She done pulled my butt outta many a fire... But...

... I'm real disappointed with the Dems... They have the votes to vote a new resolution every day that says' "This war sucks, Mr. President", even if it does get vetoed, but they haven't done that...

It kinda reminds me of a sports team that loses all its games because it is afraid to lose??? Yeah, the Dems are doing exactly what Bush has been doing for 6 plue years now... They are tryin' to run out the clock before the '08 election...

This is a major risk for them...

Meanwhile, a stupid and senseless war continues on and on and on and....

...the beat goes on as the Dems don't want to p.o. their corporate sponsors, who BTW, are the same folks bankrolling the Repubs...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 09:45 PM

Bobert, you are always disappointed with the Dems. If you weren't, I guess we'd be disappointed in you;-)

At any rate, Sheehan can't do much harm to Pelosi--her district is only 15% Republican. So totally outnumbered that they all walk to the store together for protection;-)

For those who are angry because the Dems haven't yet extricated us from Iraq, remember that one of the many reasons for not going in there was that there would be no be no easy exit--

I anyone has a viable exit strategy (meaning one that would not send the country into genocidal anarchy), I am sure there are any number of people in Washington, from Bush on down, who would love to hear from you--


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 09:55 PM

Beabiemeluv, read Pelosi's website: http://www.house.gov/pelosi/ and I think you'll see that she is working toward clearly defined goals. And I don't think she forgets for a moment that she is the Speaker of the ENTIRE House, not just of the Democrats. In my view she is not only trying to make known her own views but attempting to bring more Republicans on board. It is the ONLY way her goals can be realized.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 10:52 PM

Sure are a lot of folks saying what the Democrats haven't done, but I don't see many concrete ideas about HOW they can do things.
You just want to see people waving their arms in displays of indignation and introducing bills demanding this & that which have no hope of passage?

   Even John Warner (R/Va) admitted the other day that about the only weapon the Senate has is the budget, and *NO* one wants to be accused of defunding the troops in the field.

All we can try to do is elect a Congress next year with a large enough majority in EACH house to force the issue....and you can bet that every Republican alive is planning how to divert that effort with special interest scare tactics on other issues.
You think you heard a lot about gun control and gay marriage and The 10 Commandments and 'raising your taxes' last time!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 11:01 PM

Pelosi has done nothing to roll back the PATRIOT Act, the Military Commissions Act, the John Warner Defense Authorization Act, etc., and as a result, the Democrats have put a stamp of approval on the death of the U.S. Constitution. Bush has committed a thousand capital crimes, and by endorsing the crimes, Pelosi and the Democratic leadership is now culpable in those crimes. These are arch criminals who are mass-murdering overseas and setting up the same scenario for America. The Democrats have probably been told that they will be allowed oversee the implementation of the purges in America, so they've signed on whole-heartedly to the Bush cabal's treason. Pelosi needs to be jettisoned like yesterday's enchilada. She is supporting the president and the war that killed her next opponent's son.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: pdq
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 11:12 PM

Obviously, she has also done very little to improve the treatment of the mentally ill.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 11:19 PM

John Warner. He forgot to mention that congress could quit voting for things like this:

In October 2006, Bush signed into law the John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007. Quietly slipped into the law at the last minute, at the request of the Bush administration, were sections changing important legal principles, dating back 200 years, which limit the U.S. government's ability to use the military to intervene in domestic affairs. These changes would allow Bush, whenever he thinks it necessary, to institute martial law--under which the military takes direct control over civilian administration....

http://www.inteldaily.com/?c=144&a=1431

Worth reading. You HAVE no rights in America now, and that's how the Democrats want it. The Republicans did the dirty work of setting it up, and the Dems will use it. If we're lucky, Hillary Clinton will only kill 50 million Americans in the purges.

Don't you folks get tired of being played?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Slag
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 11:40 PM

Pelosi, Sheehan, Reid, et al, boring holes in the bottom of the ship of state to let all the bilge out so we don't sink.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 12:22 AM

Perfect "10" on that quip, pdq.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 03:59 AM

I would also agree with pdq's remark, but point the finger at those who believe the current electoral system in the US and the UK can deliver what most here would like to see.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 03:59 AM

Froth, I suspect you don't sleep well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 04:51 AM

Those of you who keep saying "the Democrats" voted for the surge, won't support an impeachment inquiry, etc., are misrepresenting the votes in Congress.   In many cases, the majority of the Dems -- sometimes including Pelosi, Reid, etc. -- have voted against Dubya's agenda, but virtually all the Republicans (plus Lieberman) and a handful of Democrats (often from states where a really liberal Dem would never get elected make up a majority -- or the Republicans filibuster in the Senate).

The Dems ARE conducting hearings that well may lead to some Republicans condemning Bush the way it went down for Nixon after Watergate.   Unless and until hearings uncover enough clear-cut wrongdoing that at least a few in their own party will acknowledge the corruption of Bush and Cheney, passing an impeachment resolution would be spun by the media as strictly partisan and the public would not be behind it.   They need to do the investigations first -- impeach Gonzales too -- then let the hearings take Congress where they will.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: kendall
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 07:35 AM

..."public opinion forced Blair to leave office" And how long did that take?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 08:59 AM

What re-poster says...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 10:41 AM

Kendall...Blair's popularity figures began to fall immediately it became apparent that we had been lied to.
Although Labour won the last General Election,the voting swing against Blair was severe, losing the party many seats in Westminster.

The defeat for Labour in the Scottish Assembly elections, (first time in 50 yrs) meant that Blair had become a liability and had to go.

Blair had been popular with the public and the party, he wanted to serve out a full third term, but his grave mistake in following your man Bush into Iraq has had far reaching consequences for the UK.

The Scottish electorate have become so sickened by Blair and his administration that they are now on the verge of splitting the UK by voting for Scottish Independence.

You see Kendall, there is such a thing as "people power" and it can achieve great things when people are roused from their apathy.
I believe the American people can be roused also.....to make the politicians do THEIR bidding.

Maybe Cindy can be the catalyst to give America back its self-respect...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 01:26 PM

But, Ake, you are still in Iraq. Don't you think you should leave?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 02:09 PM

Sheehan represents true grassroots rebellion. Challenging the status quo.

While in the "other party," the main contenders for Republican leadership are the son of a mafioso who served time in Sing Sing (Giuliani), and Mitt Romney. The media made a big deal of Romney's win in the Iowa straw poll, while ignoring Dr. Ron Paul's winning of 5 (FIVE) straw polls thus far.

Grassroots Republicans want a change, and Democrats who see Pelosi and the other Democratic leaders selling out want a change. I hope Sheehan runs, and I also hope the Republicans, in their attempt to freeze Paul out of the nomination process, move their primaries up and announce their candidate much earlier than they normally do. This would allow a window of opportunity to form a third party. A true third party, not a joke party headed by a Perot or Nader shill.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 02:27 PM

In a democracy, the mills grind very slowly. That is the nature of democracy. Only in a dictatorship do things happen immediately.

I am amazed (no, I lie—because I've been around awhile and I've seen this kind of irrational impatience before, a lot, I'm not amazed at all), at the irrational impatience that some people display, while at the same time revealing their lack of understanding of the way a democracy works.

They want a particular agenda passed, and when the party that promises that agenda actually gains a tiny majority in Congress on a Tuesday (election day), if they haven't delivered the whole package by Wednesday noon, some folks have a purple-faced hissy-fit and want to form a lynch mob.

When there is significant opposition, you have to negotiate, persuade, and wheel and deal. You can't just issue a peremptory order and have it happen.   Caligula could. Constantine could. Napoleon could. Hitler could. Kim Jung Il can.

But Nancy Pelosi can't.

And Cindy Sheehan wouldn't be able to either!

Democracies are often slow and frustrating, but I prefer to be patient and keep the pressure on than to have to live under other systems where I could be imprisoned or shot for speaking my mind.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 04:47 PM

Ebbie..We will be gone by the end of this year.
Even in the UK political survival is paramount.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 05:03 PM

Don ..I agree some democracies can be slow moving, unfortunately yours is moving slowly in the wrong direction.

The Dems voted to fund an escalation of a war which they promised to bring to an end.

"You never count the time" but every day dozens of Iraqi families lose a daughter, son, mother,father,grandparents. Sometimes it happens all at once.

Does an other year matter to the American and British mothers who will lose their sons as your "democracy" grinds slowly on.

There is no choice between Pubs and Dems ....Labour and Conservative.
There is only Capitalism....... Ditch "Hillary the Hawk" and get behind Cindy....ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 05:40 PM

It would 'almost' be worth it to see Cindy flail about helplessly in the bureaucratic morass, trying to change the system that has frustrated cleverer politicians......but not 'quite' worth it.

I would actually prefer a multi-party system here, with enough differences to allow folks to join one they can believe in, but this would require wholesale changes in the electoral laws, campaign procedures, financing system...etc... Maybe someday....


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 05:57 PM

Why would you want to see Mrs Sheehan "flail about helplessly"

What crime has she committed?

Perhaps you think she has not been punished enough by the loss of her son to the war machine.
Do you think the American people incapable of feeling her pain?

Maybe the psuedo-intellectuals who inhabit these pages have become so desensitized that over half a million dead Iraqis and a few American mothers sons are only seen as a necessary a sacrifice to our great "democracy"


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 08:14 PM

She has committed no crime, and if I thought for one moment that she had a chance in Hell of using the political process to actually DO something besides mount emotional protests, I would be sending her contributions! Of course many people feel her loss and admire her guts...even I do...but she is NOT likely to win, and if she did, she has little comprehension of how to use the system.

Why would I want to see her "flail about"? (I did say 'almost' want.. I really don't want to see ANYONE be lost in a high office)....because it might be an object lesson for those who pretend that "tossing out someone you disagree with" accomplishes much....especially when your target has seniority and expertise.

One person who DID seem to come from nowhere and manage to knock off an established Senator was Jim Webb of Virginia, who defeated George Allen last year....but reading his resumé, it is obvious Webb had a lot more than a single issue protest behind him....and he is doing a good job overall in the Senate.

I have 'almost' the same opinion of Dennis Kucinich ...and of Ralph Nader...who are opinionated, but not necessarily qualified...and can serve best by raising issues at rallies, and not by running the country.

....I want results, not histronics...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 08:59 PM

Ake, the Dems did not vote "to fund an escalation of a war which they promised to bring to an end." They were in a bind. Had they simply cut the funding, that would have left the troops in Iraq in a bad situation. If the troops tried to stay, they wouldn't be able to replace equipment needed for their own survival, and if they simply pulled out, that would release the curbs on a hot civil war that would spread through the whole Middle East, last for generations, and ended in the slaughter of millions of people. And eventually lead to Lord only knows what! That civil war is already under way, but at least, with American forces there, it's partially contained.

If the thin Democratic majority in Congress had refuse to authorize funding, this, of course, would have provided the Republicans with a really effective "war cry" for the coming 2008 national election:   "The Democrats betrayed our troops in Iraq by refusing to authorize funding! They lost us the war!" The "war" is lost anyway (many U. S. generals are already saying that this thing is unwinnable), but since the Bush administration precipitated this idiotic and illegal war, it's really Bush's responsibility to clean it up. He won't, of course. He'll be off the hook in January of 2009, leaving this colossal mess to the next administration. Next administrations.

Consider what would happen if the Republicans manage to get re-elected in the 2008 elections:   what's next? Iran? North Korea? God (and probably Dick Cheney) only knows, and He doesn't want any part of this.

The Dems tried their damndest to put a time limit on the funding bill (September—next month), but Bush said he would veto anything with a time limit, and the Dems knew they didn't have enough votes in Congress to override a veto. So they were between a rock (Iraq?) and a hard place. They did the best thing they could do with the options available: fund the troops for the safety of the troops and work in other ways to try to wind this thing down.

Cleaning up the mess that Bush and his bully-boys made is not going to be easy and it's going to take time. It's going to take recruiting international cooperation and assistance, and the Democrats are a helluva lot better at that sort of thing that the Republicans have ever been. So best they keep the pressure on, bide their time, and work for a "change of regime" in 2008.

To think they could just yank the troops out right now is just plain naïve, not to mention bloody irresponsible.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,282RA
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 09:42 PM

The reason the democrats are wrong is because they should have the guts and sense to point out that there is no such thing as a quick exit. An exit from Iraq can only be done one way and it will simply take time. Lots of equipment has to be brought back (much much more will be left there) before we can start removing too many troops.

The point is, we need to start on that now. If we dont get started now, we will have to leave everything over there and we cannot afford to leave everything over there or we may as well hand all that equipment to the insurgents, al-Qaida, militias, etc, becauset ehy will own it after we leave.

WE HAVE TO START EVACUATION NOW! It is our Plan B and we need to get it in place and we have very little time as it is. We're not going to be in Iraq for years because we don't have the money or the people short of raising taxes and starting a draft and neither is going to happen.

The surge is not working--it's throwing water on a grease fire. The gains they claim they are making are piddling and will have no effect whatsoever in the long run. I have no faith in Petraeus. He's a yes-man. Bush doesn't hire anything else. Bush is not going to allow them to recommend a withdrawal in September. So the White House has the press build up this "September Report" bullshit to wind the public up with it. Then when it is released, it is simply going to say, "We're making REAL GAINS! We can't stop now! Victory is just around the corner." And YOU KNOW very well the democrats are going to cave in again and give Bush more funding.

They don't want to stop the war. Listen to Clinton. She wants al-Maliki removed. Why would someone against the war who wants the troops to come home suddenly start bitching about removing al-Maliki? Why would anyone against the war give two shits about him? Only someone who intends to give a long-time commitment to Iraq would bother (and, remember, that's going to entail raising taxes and starting a draft). If Clinton gets the White House DO NOT COUNT ON THIS WAR TO DO ANYTHING BUT ESCALATE. Hillary Clinton is not to be trusted.

Nancy Pelosi is a waste of time. Thoroughly useless. She could stay home everyday and no one would notice the difference. She can't stand up to a failed president so she is of no consequence to anyone--least of all herself. So if Sheehan beats her, it would be no great loss. Sheehan might even get something done which would be a real switch. With friends like Pelosi, I'd rather have enemies--at least they're entertaining.

All they have to do is cut off funding. The way to do it without being able to override a veto is gridlock. Now are you crazy lunatics in here going to tell me Congress doesn't know how to gridlock????? The ONE THING this pack of rejects know how to do quite well and suddenly they can't seem to remember how. So they give into Bush instead. And they will continue to give into Bush until Pelosi is removed. She and Clinton do not want to stop the war--have no intention of it. They think the democrats can take it over and win it and if that doesn't convince all Americans of the necessity to end the war now--what will?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 10:07 PM

"WE HAVE TO START EVACUATION NOW...................All they have to do is cut off funding."

and what will we have then?

Right now we have "a tiger by the tail", and NO ONE knows how to let go... G.W. Bush opened the tiger's cage door, then removed the door... and handed the tiger's tail to the troops and the Congress, with the whole Middle East worrying about what the tiger will do if we let go....

enough metaphor? Got a better one?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,282RA
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 10:26 PM

If the war is still going on by Nov 08, I will vote republican no matter who the candidate is. If the dems aren't serious about ending this war then fuck em. We may as well keep the people in charge who are at least deluded enough to actually believe their own bullshit. The dems know it's bullshit but don't dare do anything to stop it. And we're going to trust a group so weak-willed and timid to deal with ruthless terrorist groups in Iraq????? No! NO WAY!! I'll vote republican before I let that happen.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 10:36 PM

Let's see if I have this right, 282RA, you are against the war Bush started under false pretenses and utter stupidity. The Democrats now have a small majority in Congress and no authority to do anything except de-fund the trops, and the Republicans have voted down every attempt for almost 8 months to change the situation and DARED the Democrats to stop it, even though many Republicans agree it's a pretty awkward mess....so...it's now the Democrats' problem, and if they don't "do something", you will vote for MORE Republicans to keep running it all, who are even LESS likely to get us out.

Sure...seems like a fine plan....wish I'd thought of punishing the Republicans by KEEPING them in charge and making them take the blame....


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,282RA
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 10:47 PM

BOTH sides are going to keep us there until we get run out. Sorry to say, dems are NOT going to get us out any sooner than pubs. It has nothing to do with not enough of a majority--that's their bullshit excuse that only their minions swallow. They DON'T WANT TO GET US OUT! So we may as well keep the people in there who started it and let them mumble out their excuses once we're fleeing from rooftops. The dems would do the same but at least I won't have to listen to that half-assed whining about how they had no choice to let things end that way. Oh, I don't want to hear it I DON'T WANT TO FUCKING HEAR IT!!!! They were NOT put in office to play politics. They were put in office to end the war and if they really wanted to, they would have by now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 10:54 PM

I am sorry that Cindy Sheehan lost her son. That's about as far as I go for her, though--she is not a leader. Her only real qualification for political office is her ability to spout cliches--


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Slag
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 11:06 PM

Hey, lets wrap up WWII first! Get our boys home from Germany, Italy and Japan. Once that's done then we can turn our attention to Bosnia and Iraq. At the current pace that should be, OH, about 2089,... or later.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 11:07 PM

I pretty much agree with 282RA. Both American parties actually are committed to continuing the war and staying in Iraq. That's because they both serve the same larger interests...interests you do not get to vote for or against. It's not much different from Vietnam in that sense. The USA will not pull its forces out of Iraq until the position there becomes, as in Vietnam, simply untenable...both at home and abroad. They will leave when they no longer really have any choice about the matter. They'll make all kinds of excuses about it when they finally do leave, maybe even claim it's a "victory", but it will not be a victory. It will be an utter failure, as was Vietnam.

This is assuming they don't enlarge it into an even bigger war by attacking Iran or Syria...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 11:17 PM

So you "don't want to fucking hear it!" eh, 282RA? And if they don't do it your way, you're going to vote for the Republicans?

Bloodly great solution, there! (Sounds like a temper tantrum top me.)

What planet are you on, anyway?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 11:21 PM

I'll hold you to that, Ake.

People yelling instructions on what to do NOW and how to do it and why NOW are almost amusing. What you and I and a thousand other people think and insist upon will not make a gnat's difference to those in power and those others who are walking upon hot coals. Thinking otherwise suggests grandiosity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,282RA
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 01:00 AM

>>So you "don't want to fucking hear it!" eh, 282RA? And if they don't do it your way, you're going to vote for the Republicans?<<

That's generally how it works.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 06:15 AM

"What you and I and a thousand other people think and insist upon will not make a gnat's difference to those in power and those others who are walking upon hot coals."

Yeah, Ebbie. That's pretty much what I keep saying in these threads. It's still pretty much like it was in ancient Rome, really. Tell the public whatever will keep them momentarily pacified...or at least at bay...and provide them with bread and circuses...and distant enemies to focus their anger on. It usually worked then. It usually works now.

We just talk because we enjoy expressing ourselves. And why not?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 07:50 AM

Oh yeah, LH, and don't forget to provide them with *credit cards* to charge the "bread and circuses" so by the time they are at retirement age (haha) they, ahhhhh, will still be carrying so much debt to the "bread and circuses" that they'll just have to stay chained to Boss Hog's widget making machine...

As for Iraq, what a joke... People running thru the streets in panic like something outta a 50's horror flick with the thought of genocide in Iraq if and when we leave... Problem is two fold: First, there is genocide now and the Bush/Blair war machine has had its hand in it and second, with Shiites and Sunnis having a blood fued that goes way back they are going to *have at it* whenever we leave be it next week, next year or next century...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 11:00 AM

I don't agree with all that shit!

People can make a difference....Don't be so fuckin' defeatist.

Before the war George Galloway was a lone voice in the wilderness, but it never phased him, he kept going against all odds, even into the Senate and now his words are echoed by almost everyone.
Mrs Sheehan can do the same, rouse the American people against the thugs and cowards in both parties.

America dosen't need another party, it just needs a choice and a voice for those who are preyed upon.
America could be a wonderful example to the world on Real freedom and democracy if the people have the will to fight for it....Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 11:22 AM

'phased'?? fazed? (Is UK spelling really different?)

into the "Senate"?? Galloway is a member of the UK Parliament, isn't he? You can't compare him to Sheehan simply because they are both idealists.

Ms Sheehan may indeed be able to do some good by "rousing the people"...but she has no credentials for doing it as a replacement for an experienced member of Congress.

----------------------------------------------------------------

Little Hawk...re: " Both American parties actually are committed to continuing the war and staying in Iraq. That's because they both serve the same larger interests.."

how to put it delicately, but succinctly..let me think.....




"B.S.!!" ...there, that about covers it. You seem to think that that accusation, repeated regularly, covers about every political situation you don't care for. ALL the Democratic candidates have indicated their intention to wind down this Iraq business as fast as seems 'safe'...and a couple of them have said they'll do it faster than that...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 01:15 PM

Yea "safe" as far as their political careers are concerned.

Galloway appeared before a Senate foreign affairs committee and made them look like schoolboys.

You are correct in taking me to task for my spelling, but as one who left school at 15 and as spent all my life in manual labour, I try my best...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 01:29 PM

btw "Ms Sheehan may indeed be able to do some good by "rousing the people"...but she has no credentials for doing it as a replacement for an experienced member of Congress."

I think you will find, that just like UK, the people no longer trust "experienced members of congress"

Mrs Sheehan does not carry the guilt stains of the Republicans or the Democrats.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 01:43 PM

Cindy Sheehan is a lone voice in the wilderness--unfortunately it is the voice of a loon--


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 01:58 PM

Well do I remember the 1960s. Reasonable people were working within the system for a variety of reforms including civil rights and, in the late 60s, to stop the Vietnam war. They managed to bring both of these things, and a number of others, about. Surely not as quickly as many (including themselves) wanted, but they accomplished their goals nevertheless.

But while this was happening, there were those folks who were convinced that the system was totally corrupt, refused to work with it, and wanted someone to take direct action. These folks were passionate and very big on talk. They would often participate in demonstrations, but they couldn't be bothered to write letters and make phone calls and make their concerns known to elected officials, or work for candidates who reflected most of their views. "To do that," they claimed, "would just support a corrupt system."

I recall one such person (among several, actually—lets call this fellow "J. T."). J. T. hung out in the back booth of the Blue Moon Tavern with a number of like-minded (minded?) individuals, and plotted Revolution. J. T. believed in taking direct action. Now! He somehow came to the conclusion that he could put his message across and Change the World if he bombed a government building.

What government building did J. T. pick? The Federal Court House in downtown Seattle? That would mean having to take a bus downtown. Since he lived in Seattle's University District, the only government building he could think of that was fairly handy to him was the University District Branch Post Office. This was a small (one story) post office building used by lots of university students and local U. District business folks, like the Bed and Bath Shoppe (specialty soaps and lotions), George August Photography, Andy Shiga's Asian Import Shop, a couple of copy shops, several restaurants, and so on.

J. T. constructed his bomb (out of what, I'm not sure), and in the middle of the afternoon, he dashed up the front steps of the U. District post office, set the package down in front of the double doors, and ran like hell. A few seconds later, the bomb went off. It shattered the glass in one of the double doors, left a scorch mark on the concrete in front of the doors, and startled a whole bunch of people. But no other damage. And, thank God, no injuries.

J. T. got about a quarter of a block up University Way and ran smack into Ben Johannson, the local beat cop. Ben grabbed him, wrestled him to the ground, and snapped the cuffs on him.

J. T. spent some time in the slammer, and what happened to him after that, I don't know. In any case, he accomplished nothing except doing less than $100 worth of property damage and endangering a whole lot of innocent people. His name is not to be found in a list of Great Liberators of the World.

I read a lot of the same kind of 2-year-old style temper tantrums here on this thread (and a few other threads) that I used to hear from J. T.

All bile, bowels, balls, and bull shit. No brains detected.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Barry Finn
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 02:25 PM

I had the honor of hearing Cindy speak at last Sept's protest in DC. She's passionate & speaks & thinks from the heart & does it as a mother that lost her child in a worthless cause. She unfortunately does not speak with much of a brain. That is a serious flaw with the protest movement IMHO. There are alot of broken hearted or angry folks trying to lead but not with the intellegance, flare & verbal skills of those we had in the 60' but then we were drawing our leaders from the halls the education. She has good intentions but this movement hasn't come up with one Dr King, Eldridge Cleaver, no Bergan Brothers, no Jane Fondas, no Chicago 7's, sadly not even anyone close. It's not that Cindy's not in the right place, she's just not right for the job, we are sorely lacking people who are & these groups just don't seem to be able to find anyone to wear the shoes. On the other hand who in there right mind would want to take on the spot. At least in the 60's there were enough intellegant & passionate speakers & leaders to go around that there were many voices to be heard (& targeted) where today one would be a lone voice, echoing in the waste & it's no wonder that Cindy's been burnt out, to many look to her as a figurehead & she's not even close to a guiding light. We need more & better besides the many groups are too fractured & splintered. I look back again to the 60's & can't help but think that anyone with intellegance wouldn't want to become a leader. The infighting is a flaw that keeps them behind & untill they came co-exist & back each other then who the hell would want to put themselves out in front.

Barry


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 02:46 PM

Don Firth, you said this so well it bears repeating:

" ... Only in a dictatorship do things happen immediately.

[Some people display irrational impatience] while at the same time revealing their lack of understanding of the way a democracy works.

They want a particular agenda passed, and when the party that promises that agenda actually gains a tiny majority in Congress on a Tuesday (election day), if they haven't delivered the whole package by Wednesday noon, some folks have a purple-faced hissy-fit and want to form a lynch mob.

When there is significant opposition, you have to negotiate, persuade, and wheel and deal. You can't just issue a peremptory order and have it happen.   Caligula could. Constantine could. Napoleon could. Hitler could. Kim Jung Il can.

But Nancy Pelosi can't.

And Cindy Sheehan wouldn't be able to either!

..."
--------------

akenaton , Bill D said it well. Cindy Sheehan is not likely to stop the carnage in Iraq much sooner than the Dems currently in Congress are doing, even if she did get elected.   (And, oh, by the way, why couldn't Cindy work her legislative magic just as well, or even better, if she replaced a Republican?    You still haven't answered why it would be better for Cindy to take down a Democrat than a neocon Republican.)   But she's as likely to bring about the loss of Pelosi's seat to a Republican ( by splitting the liberal/Democratic vote ) as she is to actually get elected.

And you don't have to be a "pseudo-intellectual" to realize that some of the other mischief the Bush-Cheney administration (abetted by the Roberts-Thomas-Scalia-Alito bloc on the SCOTUS and the Republican-heavy Congress) has been up to will result in misery and death for far more people in the not-so-long run if people of good will focus on the Iraq occupation to the exclusion of all other issues.   If the broad powers that this administration has hijacked, in violation of the US Constitution, remain unchallenged, we are headed -- soon -- for a virtual dictatorship or quasi-feudal corporatocracy (fascism) plus the devastation of what makes our planet habitable for humans.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 02:49 PM

I have always stayed far away from violent people like "J.T.", Don. I do not identify with his type at all.

Bill, you clearly have far more faith in the Democratic Party than I do... ;-)

I don't place too much hope in what the candidates say. They all say all kinds of wonderful sounding stuff in order to get votes. It's what they do after they're elected that concerns me, and I think you will find that it's usually not what they said they would do before they were elected....unless they said they would do something really, really stupid! (as in the case of the Republicans)

In that case, yeah, maybe... ;-)

What I am in favor of is not violent acts of revolution by misguided individuals like J.T., but a transformation of political consciousness which lead to the demise of those 2 phony parties, the Democrats and Republicans, which would destroy their stranglehold on the American political scene and result in them being replaced by something far better.

I would prefer a system with NO political parties...none whatsoever...just candidates. All independent candidates. No more damn party politics, because parties sell out to the highest bidder, and the highest bidder is not Joe Public. It has ever been so. Parties are big organization that work for other big organizations...because that's how they get the funding to stay alive and to WIN the next election. It's a matter of practical survival, and that's why they do it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 02:51 PM

BTW, Bill D,
In Dennis Kuchinich's defense, let's remember that he hasn't run as an Independent against incumbent Democrats in Congress (he's already in Congress) or for the Presidency. I would never put him in the same category as Nader for that reason.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 03:06 PM

"I would prefer a system with NO political parties...none whatsoever...just candidates. "...etc...

Hmmm...interesting idea, but you KNOW that if they didn't label themselves, the media would. It's just too much trouble saying "one of those guys who propounds X,Y,Z and Q...but not A,B,C and J.."
...and do you think INDIVIDUALS would not sell out in various ways?

At least with the party system we have them adhering to 'some' sort of identifying platform and set of ideals.

(I knew a college prof. who advocated NO grades...none. When we asked him how he would handle requests from potential employers for recommendations. etc... He said "I'd tell them what I thought!"...I was afraid to ask him how it would be handled if he forgot..or died.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 04:39 PM

If there were no political parties, it wouldn't last long--candidates and politicians would gravitate toward the people who held their same world view--all the dingbats in one corner, all the fascists in another, pretty much what we've got now--


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: artbrooks
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 05:06 PM

Just to add a dose of reality, most estimates say that it will take at least two years to withdraw from Iraq, without retaining any kind of ongoing role in whatever you choose to call the debacle.   Just for example, if all 160,000 troops lined up at the Baghdad Airport, they would fill something like 500 airliners. That would be quite a car bomb target! This does not consider the fact that a very large proportion of the equipment owned by the US military is currently in Iraq and it must be relocated back to the States. It took much longer than that to withdraw from Vietnam, and we dumped much of our equipment into the South China Sea.

Of course, starting sometime soon would be a good idea...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 05:25 PM

Yes, that does sound realistic to me, Art. It's not easy to extricate oneself from a large war, as many occupying forces have found throughout history.

Bill, you said, "do you think INDIVIDUALS would not sell out in various ways?"

Yeah, sure I think so. So what? It would not be as bad as a whole party selling out, it would not be as well organized or as hard to attack, and it would not be as easily covered up, since you could go after any one of those individuals without an entire party machine covering his ass (or cynically sacrificing him, while really changing nothing).

I didn't say it would be perfect, Bill, I said it would be better than the divisive party systems we have now.

I believe the party system is as ridiculous and unnecessary as the absolute monarchies we all once took for granted (not very long ago, historically speaking), and one day it will be seen that way, just as monarchies are seen now as an archaic notion.

Most people are unconscious conformists. They tend to think that what they already have is the best way to go. History tends to prove them wrong as the centuries roll by.

I note that there were no political parties depicted in the advanced society envisioned in the Star Trek shows, but there was a large representative government that functioned rather like ours does, but it was not artificially divided into perpetually warring political groups called "parties". It decided things by discussion and consultation among all seated members in a parliament, followed by a vote. That, in my opinion is the sensible way to do it. I find the whole institution of political parties, frankly, to be detestable. It encourages every form of divisiveness and corruption of the political process. It turns political life into war on a continual and unremitting basis. This is a stupid thing to do.

I regard it the way Patrick Henry regarded the British monarchy in his day. Think about it.

Maybe there's another way to go?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 06:33 PM

I'd prefer a system with half a dozen political parties... And I'd like the makeup of our government to reflect the percentages of each of these parties... At least then everyone would have some voice... What we have now is winner take all... It ain't working because it disenfrachises one heck of a lot of people plus...

...if you had mix of ideologies there would be more ideas thrown into the discussion... More ideas means a greater pool of options... A greater pool of options generally makes for better policy decisions...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 07:16 PM

Half a dozen would definitely be better than 2. It would result in more meaningful dialogue and more cooperation than a 2-party system does. If several parties must work together to pass legislation, they are forced to seek solutions together, and that encourages compromise and a mulitiplicity of viewpoints.

There's only one thing worse in a voting culture than a 2-party system, and that's a one-party system...as in the case of Communist Russia or China....or Nazi Germany. In other words, the more monolithic the party structure, the less democratic the process.

Yes, winner take all is a very bad system upon which to base a society (though not a wolfpack). A healthy society is built on compromise, not domination by the most powerful group over the rest.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Greg B
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 07:37 PM

Ms Sheehan isn't running to win, or to serve, if she runs.

Rather, it will be to throw a monkey wrench into the gears of
the political 'machine' where the opposing party gets elected
and then rolls over to 'expediency.'


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 07:39 PM

It was stated:

>Cindy will run...she'll get interviewed a lot and wave her banners...she'll get defeated....but >she MAY do more harm than good by putting unachievable goals in front of the voters and >skewing the vote in some awkward way.

If this attitude would have prevailed during the Civil Rights Movement under King the Movement would have been dead in the water.

There is an assumption here that voters are stupid. Voters know who Cindy is.

As for skewing the votes, this has already been done by Diebold, E.S.and S and other slipshod voting machines.

Cindy needs to send a strong message to Pelosi whether she wins or loses.
The message is that some Democrats are compromising our civil liberties, supporting an illegal occupation of a foreign country and are allowing this fraudulent erstwhile "president" to trash the Constitution.

Cindy is waking the people up. That's the banner of true democracy.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 07:51 PM

Ditto, Frank, ditto...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 07:58 PM

I haven't cared for Pelosi from day one, and I am on record with that statement a few times on Mudcat. I am glad that Sheehan is doing what she is. The Democrats have been sleeping with the enemy--in this case the Republicans--and it's time the Dems were led to understand that their dismal support of so many of Bush's activities has not gone unnoticed by everyone. I agree with Frank's statement 100%.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 10:31 PM

Election reform is what is needed, particularly reform in campaign financing. As long as it takes millions of dollars to finance even a local official's campaign for office, and tens of millions of dollars for a candidate for national office, I don't see that there is much hope of getting the big corporate backers out of the system. Other than to pass a bunch of laws. But—

Who is it that has to pass these laws? The legislators who have to depend on this source of money to get elected to office in the first place! Does the word "Catch" and the number "22" come to mind? Even the legislators who want to reform campaign financing—and eliminate the corrupting influence of lobbyists with deep pockets—find that they are dependent on these moneys if they are to get into office in the first place and then have a ghost of a chance of getting re-elected. Monkey on the back.

It ain't gonna happen, not because all that many legislators necessarily want to keep it going, but because the whole system as it currently works depends on it.

I have recommended a particular book a number of times here in these political discussions. From the nature of said discussions (including this one), I know that not all that many people have read it. But with dim hope, I'll recommend it again:

CLICKY #1

Everybody, including some fairly knowledgeable people, think they know what democracy is, but damn few really do. This small book—a mere 12 bucks, and a very easy read—is full of surprises. When you've read it, you will have a much better understanding of it. You will also understand why the United States is not really a democracy. And you will learn what you can do about it. Get the book. Read it. At least read the last chapter, "Are Americans Ready for Democracy?"

If we want to have a real democracy in this country, it will take time and a lot of work. And it will happen only if people demand it. We are still that much of a democracy.

In the meantime, in order to accomplish things in the system as it stands, I can find no better method than one put forth in a article I have also recommended here many times.

I know that, as many times as I have recommended this book and this article, not all that many people here have worked up enough energy to read it. I know this because of the things that people keep saying. Anyway, the article is this:

CLICKY #2.

Will anybody actually read these two items?

Probably not. That's one of the reasons we're in the mess we're in.

"Democracy is a terrible system of organizing a society,. but it's better than any of the others."
                                                                                                                      – Winston Churchill

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 11:09 PM

Yes, Don, that is the essential problem! As you put it (I will paraphrase what you said):

Who is it that has to pass these laws?...(meaning: Election reform laws, particularly reform in campaign financing)....? It is none other than the very legislators who have to depend on this source of money, millions and millions of dollars, to get elected to office in the first place! Does the word "Catch" and the number "22" come to mind?

Yes indeed, the word Catch 22 definitely comes to mind. Immediately. That's why I hold out little, if any hope of the present party-based electoral system reforming itself in any meaningful fashion.

Does this mean I am hopeless? No. It simply means I find many other things in life around which to be inspired by hope, that's all. Life is not solely about the USA's electoral system...thank God! ;-) If it were, I think that virtually all hope would be gone... And I do not jest when I say that. But I smile...because my hopes, as I said, rest elsewhere.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 11:11 PM

Isn't this interesting! We have, on this issue, divisions not usually seen among the Mudcat coterie. Folks who usually agree are disagreeing pretty seriously.

I see very little comparison to "the Civil Rights Movement under King.." (and I was up to my neck in that one!). At that time we were largely fighting what some segments of society were doing to other segments...'partially' aided by neglect in High Places.
   Now we have folks in High Places accused of not doing enough to cure a problem that they agree NEEDS cured. I have seen attempts to curtail this Iraq conflict by Pelosi and other Democrats voted down because there flatly was not enough votes.
   Now there are outcries that if members of Congress can't pass measures to end it, they should a least......well, I'm not sure...stomp about and shout? They tried keeping the Senate up all night to make a point about the Republicans' intransigence ...all it got was sleepy indifference.

I'm sorry, Peace, but I don't see "..dismal support of so many of Bush's activities..." I see member after member condemning the sneaky way Bush is pursuing this mess...I see them struggling to vote ANY sane way on bills with clever amendments designed to make any vote against the war look like contempt for the troops. I see frustration and anger as Senators & Representatives look for a toe-hold in a system which REQUIRES a 60% majority to get the right things done....and I 'think' I see an undercurrent of "...well, if we can't easily vote to MAKE it right, we can at least make it clear who is dragging their feet and hope for a bigger majority in '08."

...but it seems that some of us see that, and some don't. Some are advocating..."DO, something, damn it, even if it's wrong!" I personally think that the biggest mistakes are made when that attitude prevails.
   I hope Pelosi & Harry Reid don't prove me wrong....I'd like to think they ARE really hamstrung and that they aren't stupid enough to pull the 'defunding' gambit and be sorry later...

This IS a no-win situation, and BUSH and his cronies put us there....and they are laughing up their sleeves at Democrats accusing each other of not figuring out how to get out of the mess and in-fighting with each other in the year before the election!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 11:24 PM

Yup, it's a no-win situation all right. You cannot vocally oppose an ongong war effort in the USA (or most other places) without being smeared by the government for being "unpatriotic" and "not supporting the troops".

That's why there's that old saying: "patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings"


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:03 AM

Bill, the Dems did nothing organized to curtail the Iraq War. So far there is no serious and organized impeach Bus/Cheney--at least that I can find. If you feel I have affronted the Democrats, well, I have. But not unjustifiably (I don't think). That they are somewhat 'cleaner' than the Republicans I agree with. Lots cleaner? Nope.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:28 AM

The Democrats are like the Lite Beer version of good old Republican Ale....a bit less percentage of intoxicant...a bit milder flavor...a bit paler and more frothy...the same godawful taste in your mouth the morning after. ;-) And it's all brewed at the same place: Financial Oligarchy Brewers Inc.

It's nice to switch brands now and then, though, just so you can feel like you're having a refreshing change.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 01:51 AM

The Democrats on this thread are almost parroting Rush Limbaugh with the "can't cut and run" rhetoric. Amazing. The Democrats are adopting the parlance of the fascists they claim to hate. The Democrats think they are going to inherit the White House now, so suddenly a bit of murder and mayhem seems to be the right thing. I hate Democrats. At least Republicans are honest about their fascism. "Better a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian." (Moby Dick)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Teribus
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 11:50 AM

"At least public opinion in the UK forced Blair to leave office." – Akenaton.

Dream on my little anarchist.

"the process of proving in court what Bush & Cheney are 'guilty' of is not easy" – Bill D

Exactly right the onus of proof is on those who up until now have relied on half-truths and total misrepresentations upon which to state their case, none of which would stand up to any real examination.

"The defeat for Labour in the Scottish Assembly elections, (first time in 50 yrs) meant that Blair had become a liability and had to go." – Akenaton

So terribly wrong Akenaton – as usual – the results in Scotland had more to do with disaffection for Labour's performance in Scotland, nothing whatsoever to do with Tony Blair.

"The Scottish electorate have become so sickened by Blair and his administration that they are now on the verge of splitting the UK by voting for Scottish Independence." – Akenaton

So sickened in fact that you forgot to mention that two-thirds of those who voted in Scotland voted rather determinedly against splitting the UK – True?

Unfortunately for Scotland and the entire UK for that matter none of the "opposition" parties in Scotland voted for the Nationalists discussion document on Scottish independence, they should have done, they should have pushed for a referendum on it. Had the vote been confined to Scotland it would have been defeated beyond doubt. However, and this is what the majority of the population of Scotland fears most of all, if the referendum on ending the Union with England were nation wide, the English, I believe, would cut Scotland adrift in an instant.

"Maybe the psuedo-intellectuals who inhabit these pages have become so desensitized that over half a million dead Iraqis" – Akenaton

Substantiation please that over half a million Iraqi's have died as a result of the actions of the USA and the UK. If you cannot find any then please stop waving the figure about like a flag.

"Galloway is a member of the UK Parliament, isn't he? You can't compare him to Sheehan simply because they are both idealists." - BillD

A temporarily suspended Member of Parliament for the moment (Or has he completed his 18 days), you can't compare them anyway, Galloway is a bare-faced liar, a poseur, accustomed to the adulation of gullible fools. I believe that Cindy Sheehan is quite sincere, and certainly not a liar. People are ostensively elected to represent the interests of their constituents, and as such are very poorly served by single issue candidates.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 11:55 AM

100!

Enjoy, enjoy.

Here is another place where your passionately stated views can prove once again how right you are, and how wrong, how pathetically wrong and irredeemingly stupid are all those who don't see it your way! ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:05 PM

Thank you for that set of opinions Mr T.

If the public were really behind Blair, why did Labour's popularity rise by 8 percentage points when the Party forced him to "walk the plank"

Your last post is one of the most desperate that you have produced.

Why don't you just admit defeat....Take it like a man.
The stress involved in defending the position that you have adopted must be devastating.

Give yourself a little treat and try to get on the winning side for once....Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:07 PM

In reading this morning's paper I saw former Alaska Senator Mike Gravel's speech that he made in Anchorage yesterday where he said: "There is no solution. The mistake was made the day George Bush invaded Iraq."

I don't often agree with Gravel- he is a bit over the top for me - but that is the view I keep coming back to- for the Democrats, or anybody, to come up with a good plan to leave Iraq is almost impossible. It is what makes the whole thing so tragic.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:07 PM

Sorry Hawk ......cross posted.

Do try to behave yourself....:0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,282RA
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:35 PM

>>The Democrats on this thread are almost parroting Rush Limbaugh with the "can't cut and run" rhetoric. Amazing. The Democrats are adopting the parlance of the fascists they claim to hate. The Democrats think they are going to inherit the White House now, so suddenly a bit of murder and mayhem seems to be the right thing. I hate Democrats. At least Republicans are honest about their fascism. "Better a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian." (Moby Dick)<<

Exactly. They can rant and rail against the war and against Bush like they're really gonna do something if they get a little power. Then they turn around and give Bush all the money he wants to continue his war and allow him to continue warrantless wiretapping after making it sound like the crime of the century before Nov 2006.

I've enough of them. That's why I am unrepentant in saying to the dems: "If you assholes do NOT have us out of this war by Nov. 2008, I will NOT vote for ANYBODY in your party!!" They could end our involvement in this war if they wanted to--don't tell me they couldn't. They just don't want to. When the GOp wanted to make a silk purse from a sow's ear, all we heard was what a stupid, assinine idea that is. Now, all the sudden the dems are saying, "Ya know, this COULD make a nifty silk purse after all."

I've had enough! I don't need or want to hear anymore. No action means they get no vote of mine. I don't want to hear anymore of their words.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Donuel
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:38 PM

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

Eventually Sheehan will understand that multinational corporations have vastly more power than any 6 nations put together including the USA put together.

This is not to say that the people are incapable of negotiating a new contract with corporations. There is real hope in wresting some power away from multinationals as explained by the author of "I was an Economic Hitman" .


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bobert
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:46 PM

Right, 282RA-ster...

The Dems could wipe the "Resolution" that got US in the mess off the books the day they reconvene... They could set a timetable to end the occupation on the day they reconvene... They could have a *no confidence* resolution on Bush's desk the day they reconvene...

All these things could be accomplished... Of course it would require some heavy lifting but they could be done...

How???

Do what the Repubs threatened to do in changing the 60 vote rule to cut off fillibuster...

(But, Bobert... The voters would think that too radical and would put the Dems out forever...)

Bull, the voters would respect them for having the courage to do what they were elected to do...

(But, Bobert... Alot of bad things would happen if the troops left...)

Bull, alot of bad things have allready happened and it doesn't matter if the US stays in Iraq for another 100 years, alot of bad things are going to happen after it leaves... The die was cast when Bush decided to invade Iraq... The rest is out of his hands...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 12:50 PM

To those who are bitching the most about the Democrats, I say this: I posted a couple of links above. I figure reading a whole book (even a fairly small one) is just too much of an effort, but at least click on "CLICKY #2" and read Thom Hartmann's article. It'll take you about ten minutes. He tells you how to work within the system to start accomplishing what you say you want to see accomplished. You won't like a lot of what Hartmann says, but the simple fact is, he's right!

Here. I'll even save you the effort of scrolling up to find the link:

CLICKY #2.

Will any of you actually read the article? Probably not. Maybe a few.

Will any of you gird up your loins and do what Hartmann suggests?

Certainly not! Because around here, it's all mouth, no do! That's how much most of you are really concerned!

Don Firth
(Totally pissed off at the stupid, short-sighted, defeatist attitudes I keep reading on this thread)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: curmudgeon
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 01:26 PM

For a better idea of what Congress can and cannot do, read this piece.

And also, Guest:Re-Poster's comments are strongly reminiscent of a particularly nasty troll who hasn't been blatantly present here since last Fall's election. Anyone else remember?

-- Tom


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 01:49 PM

Thanks for posting that, Tom. Good, informative article. The operational paragraph, and the one so many people here seem unable--or unwilling--to grasp, and, therefore, blame Nancy Pelosi and the rest of the Democrats for not ending the war the day after they gained a razor-thin majority in Congress--but not enough to override a presidential veto--is:

"In short, contrary to many myths, the historical record shows that Congress has broad powers to authorize and limit the use of force, and to restrict operations in Iraq – if it can muster the majorities to enact laws, over the president's veto if necessary."

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 01:58 PM

As you know, Don F, that's an old column of Thom Hartmann's. No one - or hardly anyone - picked up on it then and isn't likely to do so now.

For instance, Alaska had an Instant Runoff proposal on the ballot and it was defeated.

As for the Democrats doing what the Republicans did so successfully, that too is not likely. As they say, I'm not a member of an organized party - I am a Democrat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 02:00 PM

Don, I think Hartmann's points are well founded. This is exactly what Cindy Sheehan is doing. She is taking back America by refusing to kow-tow to spineless Dems. There are different ways to take back America. But dissing her is not one of them.

Thom Hartmann has supported Cindy on his radio show for Air America. I know that he is encouraged by her courage.

What is really misguided here is the idea that the DLC will give up its power willingly to the Democratic base. They will fight tooth and nail to preserve the status quo. It sometimes takes a visionary like MLK or Cindy Sheehan to challenge the prevailing so-called wisdom of the Right and Left factions.

Getting active does not mean acquiescing to the compromised faction of the Democratic Party. It takes a Cindy Sheehan to challenge them.

It's interesting to me how many males are threatened by a powerful woman. You can watch their cajones shrivel and turn into maracas.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 03:17 PM

No, I am definitely not dissing Cindy Sheehan. I'm glad she's there and I'm glad she seems hell-bent on kicking butt. This is exactly what needs to be done. But I hope she leans heavily on the Democratic Party, not get involved with some third party and split the progressive vote once again.

As to what third parties have done lately:   Ross Perot split the conservative vote and cost George H. W. Bush the election. Clinton got in. Then Nader split the progressive vote, costing Gore the election, and George W. Bush got in. Do you seriously think that things would not have been any different if Gore had been elected?

I know perfectly well (as does anyone who takes the time to think about it) that the next president will be either a Democrat or a Republican. My particular view of the direction this country needs to go shares very little with the Republican Party. Historically, and in the (at least) lip-service of many Democratic candidates, the Democrats come closer to my view. And I know several Democratic elected officials from my area of the country whose views are very close to mine. Jim McDermott, the congressional representative from my legislative district, has been very outspoken about progressive values, was highly vocal from the very start in opposing Bush's invasion of Iraq, and has been a consistent pain in the ass to the Bush administration. As has Senator Patty Murray (delivered an impassioned speech in Congress against giving Bush war powers). And the junior Senator from my state, Maria Cantwell, has managed to get her act together, and is a strong voice for environmental issues in particular. So I'm pretty happy with my representation in Congress, and all three of them, along with Jay Inslee, another progressive representative from a nearby district, are Democrats.

So I know very well that this canard about there being no difference between the Democrats and the Republicans is a crock! (Sorry, Little Hawk, but to a large degree, you don't know whereof you speak. Things here are nowhere near as hopeless as you seem to think.)

I am not a member of any political party. I do, however, go to the Democratic caucuses, and I know what I've been able to accomplish there by mouthing off a lot. I find that there are a lot of people who agree with me, but who are all too often intimidated by the number of more "cautious" Dems who think the way to win elections is to keep trying to get the party to lie down in the middle of the road and play "dead skunk." If someone speaks out, many others who feel the same way will find the courage to do so as well.

But if you just sit there at the computer, pissing and moaning on some web forum about the state of the world and how the Democrats are not doing things the way you think they should be done, and do nothing else about it, then nothing much is going to change, at least in any way you'll approve of.

If you're really concerned, get up off you butt and do something!

But inform yourself and do something intelligent. Bomb-throwers only aggravate the problem.

Don Firth

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.    —Margaret Mead


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 03:35 PM

Also keep in mind the following: BEWARE of stupid people in groups.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: pdq
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 04:24 PM

Quite true.

I was close enough to one of the People's Park riots to smell tear gas.

I left.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,282RA
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 04:39 PM

The article has no meaning for me since I am not advocating a third party. I am saying flat out that if the democrats do not extricate us from this war by Nov 2008, I am going to punch a straight republican ticket. There's your two-party system at work. I have no interest in trying to take over the democratic party. I'd be more interested in taking over the republican party. In fact, I don't believe the democratic party can be taken over. Too fragmented and individualistic. The pubs are conformists by nature and so they are prone to takeover. But I'm really not interested in them either. SOMEBODY--I don't care--is going to do my bidding some way, some how. If not, I will vote for the opposition until one of the geniuses gets the message.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 04:46 PM

Don, I read your Thom Hartmann article, and it's brilliant. Absolutely right on....as his writings generally are.

I was particularly struck by this passage:

"When the delegates assembled in Philadelphia in 1787 to craft a constitution, republican democracy had never before been tried anywhere in what was known as "the civilized world." There were also, at that moment, no political parties, and "father of the Constitution" James Madison warned loudly in Federalist #10 against their ever emerging.

In part, Madison issued his warning because he knew that the system they were creating would, in the presence of political parties, rapidly become far less democratic.
In the regional winner-take-all type of elections the Framers wrote into the Constitution, the loser in a two-party race - even if s/he had fully 49.9 percent of the vote - would end up with no voice whatsoever. And the combined losers in a 3- or more-party race could even be the candidates or parties whose overall position was most closely embraced by the majority of the people.

The best solution to this unfairness, in 1787, was to speak out against the formation of political parties ("factions"), as Madison did at length and in several venues. But within a decade of the Constitution's ratification, Jefferson's split with Adams had led to the emergence of two strong political parties, and the problems Madison foresaw began and are with us to this day.



That's what I've been saying for five years or more on this forum, Don. I say that political parties, by their very nature, rapidly become a perversion of democracy, and they destroy democracy. And by golly, James Madison thought so too...at the inception of your nation!!! Awright. It's nice to have the support of James Madison on that point, and I shall in future remind people that the idea of a healthy, functioning democracy with NO political parties is not one that I came up with all by myself... ;-)

Be that as it may, the USA is presently stuck with the 2 huge parties it has, I foresee no possibility of changing that, and I think Thom Hartmann's ideas for revitalizing the Democratic Party are good ones. (sigh) They're the only way to go if the present fascist neocon movement is to be stopped in its tracks.

But, GOD, I wish the world had never even heard of the concept called "a political party". We'd be far better off without it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 05:43 PM

a political party is just like a chess club...when people with the same basic interests need to plan in order to achieve goals, they WILL organize in some way....it it weren't formal, it would be informal. It's not 'having' a party that is the problem, it's the artifical nature of much of the setup and membership and rules.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 07:46 PM

282RA's plans are pretty long-range and not just a bit Quixotic. Hartmann's point is that one should join the party that more nearly reflects one's own views and steer from within. That is one helluva lot more likely to be successful. But if that's the way 282RA wants to do it, then I wish him luck. Firm of jaw, steely of eye. Most admirable. But getting smacked by one of those windmill sails can really smart!

There are two ways I know of to yank the rug out from under the two-party system. Or, at least, deflate the power of the duopoly. Proportional representation or preferential voting.

In Washington State (and in a number of other states), if the state legislators won't bring up a matter that a group of citizens—or, for that matter, a single highly motivated individual—wants them to deal with, then the citizens can get up an initiative measure. You write the law you want to see enacted, you print up a bunch of petitions, and then you go out and get signatures. In this state, if you get somewhat in excess of 200,000 signatures on the initiative petitions, the state elections board has to put it on the next ballot where it can be voted on by the public at large, along with all the other initiatives, propositions, and candidates. And if a particular initiative gets a sufficient number of "Yes" votes, it becomes law, just as if it had been enacted by the state legislature. Now, getting something like 200,000 people to sign a ballot initiative may seem like an insurmountable task, but it happens here all the time. There are usually a couple three or four citizen initiatives on the ballot in ever state election.

AND—I am aware that there are a couple of groups in Washington State who are getting up an initiative for preferential or instant run-off voting.

With preferential or instant run-off voting, you can vote for third party candidates without wasting your vote on a candidate who doesn't stand a ghost of a chance. You rank your preference. For example:   1 – Green Party, 2 – Independent Party, 3 – Democratic Party. If the Greens don't get enough votes, your vote shifts to the Indepencents. And, in turn, if the Independents don't get sufficient votes, your vote shifts to the Democrats. So even though the candidate you really wanted doesn't make it, you're vote will have gone to someone who at least partially represents your values, and you will have done all you can to keep the candidate you really don't want from getting into office.

In practical politics, this will mean that the major parties will have to pay close attention to what the third parties are offering. If the Green Party, say, comes closer to offering potential Democratic voters what they want than the Democratic Party does, then the potential Democratic voters can go ahead and vote for the Greens without fear of wasting their votes. If the Dems don't pay sufficient attention and address the issues, the Greens might just win!

Do you have an citizen's initiative process in your state? If so, get crackin'!!

Don Firth

P. S. And in the meantime, get a copy of First Democracy : The Challenge of an Ancient Idea by Paul Woodruff, and learn what democracy really is and how it works.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 07:49 PM

In another thread I mentioned having watched the documentary 'The AntiAmerians'. Something that struck me is how the French puppeteers see the differences. They said that if Kerry instead of Bush had got in, they would have used Woody Allen as typical of the American public instead of the buffoon they are using now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 08:37 PM

"Quite true.

I was close enough to one of the People's Park riots to smell tear gas.

I left."

I was in the crowd. I didn't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 09:53 PM

wow, Don...I think that's the first I have ever heard of "preferential/instant runoff" voting. I LIKE that idea on first reading....I like it even more IF the totals are all made public, so both the other voters and potential candidates have some idea which way the wind is blowing.

This could be a way for qualified but poor and/or little known candidates to make some waves!

I think I will investigate whether it has any support anywhere near me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 10:45 PM

Ratz! Clicked too soon! Anyway--

Bill, according to what I've read, Ireland and Australian have instant run-off voting. Also, I've heard that a few places in the U. S. also have it. Berkeley, CA is one, and I believe there is a move afoot in Michigan.

Somebody correct me if I'm wrong.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 10:52 PM

Y'ain't wrong at all Don.

"Runoff voting is widely used around the world for the election of legislative bodies and directly elected presidents. For example, it is used in every French election, and also to elect the presidents of Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Finland, France, Ghana, Portugal, Romania, Croatia and for many primary elections in the United States"

from a Wikipedia article.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 28 Aug 07 - 11:13 PM

Instant run-off voting, national health care, all kindsa good stuff!

Maybe "the leader of the world" ought to run like hell to see if it can catch up with everybody else, eh?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 12:47 AM

Preferential instant run-off voting is a great idea. So is proportional representation. Both are encouraging to the concept of having several effective political parties in a nation, not just the Big Two.

Either way is tremendously better than the anti-democratic "winner takes all" nonsense that has crippled North American politics and put a corrupt neocon oligarchy in control of the government of the USA.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 02:19 AM

Little Hawk,
I agree with most of what you said (in the post with the Thom Hartmann quote).   And I basically agree with Madison on the issue of political parties.

You said, " ... political parties, by their very nature, rapidly become a perversion of democracy, and they destroy democracy. And by golly, James Madison thought so too...at the inception of your nation!!! ...

Be that as it may, the USA is presently stuck with the 2 huge parties it has, I foresee no possibility of changing that, and I think Thom Hartmann's ideas for revitalizing the Democratic Party are good ones. (sigh) They're the only way to go if the present fascist neocon movement is to be stopped in its tracks.

But, GOD, I wish the world had never even heard of the concept called "a political party". We'd be far better off without it."

No argument from me.

Cindy Sheehan's 'strategy" for dealing with this problem, I fear, is unlikely to help bring about a 3-party (or other multi-party) system, much less a no-party system. Rather, it runs a big risk of helping to bring about what Karl Rove, Lee Atwater, and other neocon strategists have been working for all these years: government, indefintiely, by SINGLE-party rule.

Say what you like about the foibles and failures of the Demcorats (e.g., Clinton and Gore having supported NAFTA and GATT and the Telecommunications Act of 1996).   Try giving the 2007 version of the Republican party everything they want for the next 4 to 12 years. THEN tell me there was "not an iota of difference" between the Pelosi/Reid Democrats and the Alberto Gonzales/Dubya/Cheney/J Roberts / C Thomas / Alito / Scalia/ Karl Rove kind of Republican.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 10:19 AM

Political parties are inevitable. They are alliances between people with common interests(like chess). They've always existed, and have always been disliked by those who oppose those interests. Which is also inevitable.

Our celebrated "Two Party" system actually includes a lot of other political parties, but we don't call them that. We call them "special interest groups"--the nice thing about the "two party system" is that if your special interest group doesn't get what it wants from one party, it can go to the other.

Political parties are like religions in a lot of ways, not the least of which is that they reflect the weaknesses character flaws of their members. Come to think of it, internet forums are like that, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 10:24 AM

"the nice thing about the "two party system" is that if your special interest group doesn't get what it wants from one party, it can go to the other."

I take it you don't live in Canada.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 12:05 PM

The biggest problem with political parties is short term thinking.

No one wants to solve long term problems, as they are never going to be in power to gain the plaudits. This means that power see-saws back and forth with both parties trying out short term measures.

The most important thing to a politician is not "The National Interest" or any of the other shite they spout, but short term political survival and that includes safeguarding the rotten unfair system.

Make no mistake, it may seem like a cliche, but the system is the problem. The brain dead always pipe up that "its not perfect but all the others are worse".....Fucking wrong!!   We haven't tried any of the alternatives. Every system that we have tried depended on making slaves of the people, and before you start getting smug, there are more slaves today under this capitalist system than at any other time in history.

When you think of slavery, don't think of chains, manacles and loincloths....Think of credit cards, mortgages useless consumables bank charges, insurances... in case someone privatises the air supply.

As Hawk said way back, future generations will think we were fuckin' mad to live like this.


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Subject: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi - instant runoff voting
From: Genie
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 12:25 PM

Instead of running against Nancy P, I wish Cindy and her supporters would campaign hard for IRV.   "Instant Runoff Voting," that is.   

IRV allows people to vote their true values and preferences, without fear of "throwing away their votes."    Other countries outside the US and some states and counties or cities here have used IRV, very successfully.   If you have instant runoff voting, that really does allow both independents and new parties to get a foot in the door, to grow, and to break up the stranglehold the 2 (current) dominant parties have in major elections.

Had we had IRV in 2000, Gore would have been elected by a rather wide margin (even in the electoral college) and Nader and the Greens (plus, probably Pat Buchanan's followers) would have gotten enough votes to "qualify" for inclusion in the major televised debates in later years.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 12:51 PM

M. Ted, may I respond to your last post about the "inevitability of political parties" with a hypothetical post made by, let's say, a European back in, oh, the year 1740:


"Hereditary monarchies are inevitable. They are alliances between people with common interests(like chess). They've always existed, and have always been disliked by those who oppose those interests. Which is also inevitable.

Our celebrated One-Ruler monarchy actually includes a lot of other important players and power brokers, but we don't call them the "King". We call them "interested parties among the clerics and the nobility"--the nice thing about the monarchist system is that if your special interest group doesn't get what it wants from one monarch, it can hope to get it from the next...and may play a significant part in removing a troublesome monarch who proves "difficult" in some way...

Monarchies are like religions in a lot of ways, not the least of which is that they reflect the weaknesses and character flaws of their supporters and founders.

One thing for sure, though...we will ALWAYS have hereditary monarchies. They are the form of government that people have the most confidence in, they have a proven track record, and they have proven better in practice than anything else that's been tried."


(big grin!)

Now that would have been the conventional view in 1740, M.Ted. And only a few radicals would have dared imagine it could be in error.

I swear to you that political parties will vanish ingloriously into the dustbin of history, and their record of achievements will be regarded with horror and disdain by the citizens of some far wiser future society that has done away with them.

But you and I won't live to see it. It's not going to happen that soon.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 05:13 PM

Genie, IRV is a great idea. But it's also very wonkish. Cindy is not a wonk. She is an idealist (ideologue if you like). She needs to do exactly what she is doing.

Leenia, there is no danger that Cindy will create a one-party system. Her reasons for running are clear. She (and I) are opposed to this damnable Occupation. The slow Dems are not talking enough about the fact that many of their wonkish ideas (however laudable) will ever see the light of day as long as taxes are going for Blackwater, invasions and incursion into foreign countries, a missile defense system that not only doesn't work but is a misnomer, sending and exporting weapons through the support of war contractors, nuclear bomb options and the invasion of Iran on the table. Congress has also failed to impeach a criminal administration for trashing the constitution.

Policy decisions are wonkish because they don't always reflect the genuine values of a democratic society.The US was founded on principles of compassion and justice. Democrats need to be talking more about the caring for people in the world. They need to show by example that they are not going to be side-tracked by technically political issues. They need to speak with a unified voice about the common good for all. They need to have Cindy's courage which includes supporting her now.

IRV is important but what Cindy is doing now is essential for our democracy, as we know it today, to continue.

There will always be the wonks but the beacon of light comes from those who have loving principles and are willing to put themselves on the line to show them. The wonks will follow.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 05:58 PM

Whenever one brings up democracy as it existed in ancient Athens (which lasted much longer than our "democracy" has been extant, by the way), some people have an almost knee-jerk reaction and dismiss it without further examination or discussion:   "But the Athenians kept slaves!" and/or "But only men were allowed to participate! Women were excluded!"

This is true. But there were Athenians at the time who protested both of these things, saying that slavery is wrong, especially so in a democracy, and that the exclusion of women from politics and public life is an egregious waste of half of the intellectual power of Athens.

But Paul Woodruff's book, First Democracy, examines a number of surprising characteristics of Athenian democracy: where it was far more successful in many ways than our own version of it, including identifying and dealing with potential problems and possible abuses that could spring up and undercut the benefits of living in a democratic society. Many of these problems are current in our own government, and we would be wise to examine how the Athenians dealt with them.

There were no political parties. There were special interest groups, of course, but things were set up so that none of them could gain enough power to really influence much of anything.

The Athenians valued education very highly, not just for learning a trade, but for intellectual development and the ability to observe and think critically, something our schools don't do very well today. Their educational system was excellent. Along with this, it was regarded as the duty of every Athenian citizen to keep current on what was happening in the world and be fully aware of what was going on in the government. There was a practical personal reason for this that went beyond just being a member of "an informed electorate."

Are you ready for this? The elected officials of the Athenian government were not voted into office. They were chosen from the citizenry at large by lottery. And it was your duty as a citizen of Athens to be fully prepared to participate knowledgeably in deliberations and to make wise decisions for the benefit of the whole city-state. And you would be held responsible for how you performed in office. At the end of your term, you would be judged by a jury of 501 citizens and your performance evaluated. You would be lauded or condemned (even to the extent of being banished from Athens for ten years if you really screwed up) on the basis of how well you did.

501, a group large enough so it would be next to impossible to bribe, and an odd number so there would be no "hung juries."

And in time of threatening war:   If they were attacked from outside (say, by Sparta) they would defend themselves, of course. But if there was any choice about it at all, it was put to a vote of the entire citizenry, not just a single official or a cabal. And the wealthy were not in any position to push a war so they could profiteer on it (think Dick Cheney and Halliburton). In fact, the wealthy might be very reluctant to go to war, because to finance the war, they would be assessed according to their wealth:   "Spiros, you are to provide two triremes for the fleet."

The Assembly—their Congress—consisted of the first 6,000 (that's right—6,000; far too large and fluid a group to bribe or lobby) male citizens to arrive at a designated hillside near the Acropolis. If less than 6,000 showed up, the magistrates would scour the public places and round up enough citizens so business could proceed. The tyranny of majority rule was obviated because they had laws limiting what the Assembly could do, and any law passed by the Assembly was subject to review by special citizen councils. How they managed without a copy of "Roberts' Rules of Order," I have no idea, but they did manage.

It was far from perfect. But in many ways, it was a lot better than what goes on in Washington, D. C.

I've just touched lightly on a couple of salient points. First Democracy is well worth a careful read. You'll find it very surprising and most enlightening.

Don Firth

P. S. When you've finished that one, I've got a couple of other good ones to recommend.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 06:09 PM

Sounds like good reading Don.

My recommendation is for every American citizen to read the U.S. Constitution. It's a brilliant document (flawed in part by the exclusion of slavery and women's rights but made up for somewhat in the Amendments.) We need to know this piece of revolutionary history and its antecedents.

What is happening today in Washington is a blatant violation of this document. John Adams and Woodrow Wilson attempted a suppression of civil rights and like Bush, it can't last. Little by little the public is becoming educated, perhaps at a slower rate than some of us would like, but insanity is the act of doing the same thing over and over to no avail.

There are enough sane people left in this country to see that something isn't working.

How about a book list thread? I would put Howard Zinn's "The People's History of the United States" toward the top.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 06:53 PM

Great idea, Frank!

I've heard Howard Zinn being interviewed on the radio, but I haven't read his book yet. I've just put it on my list.

And I do have a copy of the Constitution and a number of other related documents in a small book (powerful little volume!) that I pull out and read from time to time.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 06:56 PM

Good stuff, Don. And Frank.

It amazes me that people think you can't have a democracy without political parties. Just f*ckin' amazes me that they can leap to such an unfounded conclusion! And it shows how programmed they are to think only within the present box...and how little aware they are of the alternatives that have already been tried in the past and shown to be entirely workable...as in Athens in its days of glory and independent thought.

THAT was a democracy. If it had occurred in our era, there would be no possibility of denying women the vote or permitting slavery...but people should remember that the Athenians, like people of today, were accustomed to taking certain things for granted...

They took it for granted that only men engaged in political activities and war. They took it for granted that people could own slaves. Virtually everyone in the European world took those things for granted back then.

Nevertheless, they had a well functioning democracy that was in many respects greatly superior to what we have now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 07:32 PM

Interesting...the thought occurs to me that if duty to serve in the "Assembly" in Athens was a partially random situation, then it would be 'almost' useless to have formal parties, as no voting for members took place. I would not be surprised, though, to find that groups of like-minded individuals sometimes met to grumble over stuff.....


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: DougR
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 07:51 PM

Ms Sheehan has about as much chance of defeating Pelosi as Bobert would whipping Spaw. However, I do encourage her supporters here on the Mudcat to send her donations for her campaign. Maybe she will give Nancy a run for her money (which she has a lot of).

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: curmudgeon
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 07:58 PM

Idealism aside, can anyone name a modern democracy/republic without political parties?

Thanks - Tom


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST, Eb
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 08:02 PM

"...as likely as Bobert whipping Spaw"? Hmmmmm. I hope all of your political wishes are as unattainable as that judgment, DougR. (No offense, Pat) You seem to be somewhat out of the loop- de Beaubert is wiry and, I would guess, tough as nails.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 08:08 PM

It's already almost useless to have formal parties, Bill... ;-) In fact, it's considerably worse than useless. James Madison agreed with me on that in the founding days of your republic. Look it up.

Like-minded people always get together to discuss issues, and they don't need any political parties in order to do that.

In an assembly NOT divided artificially into competing power blocs called "parties" the members DO get together with those they agree with on any given issue, and they discuss it in their own private time. They then discuss it collectively, publicly amongst the whole assembly. They debate it. Everyone who has something to say about it says it. Pros and cons are presented. Finally, a vote is taken...and when that vote is taken, he or she who votes is NOT under pressure from any party machine to vote in a certain fashion. He or she can vote freely, according to conscience, without fear of party reprisals for not voting "the party line".

I call that good. Very good. It is the essence of true democracy.

Political parties are like a cancerous growth on the body politic.

In 1650, could anyone name a country without a monarch? That changed. We can change our systems too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: curmudgeon
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 08:28 PM

LH - without any recourse to books or google - Switzerland and Iceland - Tom


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 09:16 PM

Excellent. ;-) It's always encouraging to know that there are one or two exceptions to the general rule at any given time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 12:56 AM

LittleHawk--Actually, you make a good point--hereditary monarchy is pretty much inevitable, and in pretty much the same way political parties are--

Keeping in mind that a monarchy is simply a family with a lot of political leaders in it, even in our alleged democracy, where our system was intended to supplant such things, much political power is held by members of certain families--The Bush dynasty, of course--and the Gore family--Mitt Romney's father was also both a CEO and a Governor--The Boggs/Pell/Claiborne/Franklin family has insinuated it self through American political history in a way that would boggle the mind of even an Illuminati conspiracy theorist--etc--

The thing is, when people band together, they become more powerful, and so they do it, and have done, since before the Homo Sapiens beat out the Homo Habilis--No way to stop em, which is why they do it--


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 01:11 AM

That's true, M.Ted. Different forms of "royalty" have arisen to replace the older forms. Ironical, isn't it? One thing you can be sure of...any society's "royalty" will be found among its richest members, because money is power.

But my point was that any generally popular form of government always seems like it will last forever to the people of its own time...yet experience and time have shown that not to be true. There was a time when royal houses ruled over all important nations. No longer. There was a time when the Catholic Church ruled all of Christendom. No longer. There was a time when women had no vote. No longer. There was a time when the Soviet Union seemed like a permanent fact of life. No longer.

But we still live in a time when institutions called "political parties" dominate our affairs. I'm saying that that was not the case through much, in fact through most of our past history...and it will again at some point not be the case. It will become a thing of the past. I'd rather see that point come sooner than later.

I'd rather see elections for independent individuals, not members of this or that party...because parties stifle freedom of thought and encourage obedience and cronyism and gross manipulation of the political process.

A party is a huge organized gang, and it does what all gangs do. It competes for turf with other similar gangs, and it attempts to enlarge itself.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 04:46 AM

Stringsinger, you're right that Cindy is not a wonk.   She's rather like the chihuahua who fearlessly goes for the throat of the great Dane. Very gutsy and single-minded. Seldom terribly effective.

I think there IS a real danger that people like Cindy -- i.e., liberals who form a circular firing squad around the Dems and progressive-minded politicians instead of aiming at the neocons -- will help create Karl Rove's dream of a "permanent Republican majority."


I, too, am "opposed to this damnable Occupation." I agree that too many Dems "are not talking enough about the fact that many of their wonkish ideas (however laudable) will [n]ever see the light of day as long as taxes are going for Blackwater, invasions and incursion into foreign countries, a missile defense system that not only doesn't work but is a misnomer, sending and exporting weapons through the support of war contractors, nuclear bomb options and the invasion of Iran on the table." I especially bemoan the fact that the Democratic-controlled House seems reluctant to impeach a criminal administration for trashing the constitution.   (Some principles are more important than political expediency. Not to mention that, with Republicans filibustering and Bush's veto pen ever poised, it's unlikely Congress will get anything through, this term, that Bush doesn't approve of.)

Yes, as you say, "Democrats need to be talking more about the caring for people in the world. ... They need to speak with a unified voice about the common good for all. They need to have Cindy's courage ... ."

MAYBE "they" SHOULD support Cindy, but "they" are unlikely to do so as a unified group. Pelosi now has enough support from the overlapping groups -- Democrats, progressives, independents, anti-war groups -- to pretty much ensure her retaining her seat in the House.   If Sheehan runs against her as an Independent, it's quite possible the effect will be to split the vote of the aforementioned groups and give the seat to a Republican, who will probably be less acceptable to the liberal/anti-war "idealists" than Pelosi is.

IRV, in non-trivial ways, is as important to democracy as"what Cindy is doing now. It allows voters' true preferences to be registered, without fear of throwing away a vote by voting for someone who's not likely to place first or second in the race this time around.


"There will always be the wonks but the beacon of light comes from those who have loving principles and are willing to put themselves on the line to show them. The wonks will follow."   Hmm. Perhaps. But let's not forget that there are equally zealous moms and dads on the other side of the fence who have also lost beloved sons or daughters in Iraq.   Being passionately devoted to a cause does not automatically make your ideas workable, much less put them into effect in a practical way.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 05:04 AM

DougR,
You said:

"Ms Sheehan has about as much chance of defeating Pelosi as Bobert would whipping Spaw. However, I do encourage her supporters here on the Mudcat to send her donations for her campaign. ..."

Of COURSE you do, my friend.   You'd be delighted if Cindy ended up playing "spoiler" and handing that seat over to a Republican, wouldn't ya?

Genie

§;-x


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 12:55 PM

I DougR's little plan works, Genie, it would, of necessity, hand the seat over to The Only Republican in San Francisco.

Nancy, in the last election, got 80% of the vote--the Republican, one Mike DeNunzio, only got 10.6%. He came in only a bit a head of the Green Party candidate, Krissy Keefer(7.5%), who's chosen political medium is her Dance Brigade which "For the past 20 years... has created, performed, presented and produced issue-oriented dance theater exploring socio-political issues such as violence against women, class injustice, war, racism, breast cancer, sexual abuse and homophobia."

My guess is that all the folks who feel that Nancy could do more to end the war are voting for her--I know I would, but I like dance--


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 01:12 PM

The problem is in how the electoral system is presently set up in the USA (and in Canada, by the way)....winner takes all. Such a system means that in a 3 or more party/candidate race a minority of the public can end up dictating to the majority because the majority's vote got spit between 2 or more candidates.

Such a system makes it impossible to guarantee fair voting results when there are more than 2 candidates in any election.

It's a disaster for democracy, and the Republicans have been taking full advantage of it.

Until the setup is changed, as recommended by Don Firth in his posts referring to Thom Hartmann's book and elsewhere, the only viable thing to do is for persons of a liberal or progressive philosophy to inflitrate the Democratic party (as neocons infiltrated the Republican Party after 1964) and transform it into a genuine alternative TO the neocon-controlled Republican Party. That will take time.

And in the meantime, people should press for a change in the way elections are done. Our countries need either proportional representation of the vote in the halls of power....or an instant run-off system of voting so that no candidate who has LESS than a majority of all the votes counted in a riding can EVER be elected to office. It has already been done in several other places. It can be done here in North America.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Peace
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 01:26 PM

"hereditary monarchy is pretty much inevitable, and in pretty much the same way political parties are"

That explains Nancy Sinatra . . . .


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 01:37 PM

LOL!!!

And Julian Lennon. And Peter Fonda. And....


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 05:44 PM

...but what explains Ricky Nelson?


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 05:49 PM

A monarchy goes farther, Bill D, when the monarch is alive. :)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 07:53 PM

No, Peace, this explains Nancy Sinatra Nancy Sinatra's "Boots" Album Cover


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 08:01 PM

Yeah, that's classic 60's. It ain't folk, but it's classic.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 08:50 PM

Nancy Sinatra. O-o-o-o-o-o-oh, yeah!

(Sings pretty well, too.)

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 05:53 PM

... and Angelina Jolie, Michael Douglas, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jane Fonda, etc., etc., Bill.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 05:54 PM

M Ted, perhaps the reason the Republicans got only 10.6% of the vote in Pelosi's district in 2006 was that Nancy was considered so unbeatable that it would not be cost effective for the Republican party to put forward and support a really strong candidate in that race.    But if polls showed that Pelosi and Sheehan were virtually splitting the Democratic/liberal vote, the picture could change.   If the Republicans picked a rather fiscally conservative (balanced-budget, etc) but socially more moderate or liberal and environmentally concerned candidate -- a la the Governator -- they well might pick up enough independent voters to win the seat.    If Pelosi got 80% last time and there were 10% who voted Libertarian, Green, Independent, etc., maybe a Sheehan v. Pelosi battle would yield the two of them about 43% of the vote apiece -- IF the Republicans had a weak candidate or ineffective campaign.   But an attractive "moderate" Republican with full financial backing of the party (not to mention Karl Rove's dirty tricks like caging, robo-calls, voter challenges at the polls) would have to pull only about 12% from Pelosi and 12% from Sheehan to win with a plurality.

LittleHawk, you're right that we need either IRV or a proportional-representation system for Congress. Since the latter would take a Constitutional amendment, IRV is much more viable option.   And infiltrating the Democratic party is one avenue toward bringing that -- and other liberal policies -- about.
Transforming the Democratic party at the national level will, indeed, take time. But doing it at the local level doesn't have to.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 08:02 PM

Genie, wake up!!! It's San Francisco--there hasn't been a credible Republican candidate there since 1949--When the director of a Lesbian political dance company has almost as much support as the Republican, it should tell you something important about the nature of the electorate.

And, that aside, ask yourself this question--if the speaker of the house of representatives--the third most powerful politician in the whole government, came from your district, would you replace her with a freshman rep who would have nearly no clout? And would you remove the first woman to ever become Speaker of the House? And the woman who had achieved the highest office ever held by a woman in US gov't? Not no way. Not no how.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 08:24 PM

M Ted, I hope you're right about the stronghold the Democrats have in San Francisco (that there's not even 1/3 of the voters who would vote for a "moderate, progressive Republican" if the party dug one up.
(I've heard that progressive talk radio stations still have trouble holding onto their spots in the SF area, though, because the money is still mostly on the other side.)

Would I replace the Democratic Speaker Of the House Of Representatives with a freshman who, as you say, wouldhave nearly no clout?
Hell, no.
But I also wouldn't encourage a low-clout newbie to challenge said Speaker in the general election and make her - and the party - spend their resources on campaigning for the speaker.

I'd also much rather the liberal challengers aim their arrows at those whom they disagree with on 90% of the issues instead of those they disagree with mainly on strategy or on only 40-50% of the issues.

"And would you remove the first woman to ever become Speaker of the House? And the woman who had achieved the highest office ever held by a woman in US gov't? Not no way. Not no how."

Of course not. But, while Cindy Sheehan must know that beating Pelosi won't make her Speaker Of The House, I'm not so sure a good number of politically uninformed Sheehan supporters realize that. To hear many of them talk, it sounds like they think Sheehan's beating Pelosi would put the Speakership in the hands of someone whose views are more in line with Cindy's than Nancy's are.   And it sounds like that's why they'd vote for Sheehan -- not just to replace one of several hundred Representatives with a more anti-war one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 04:09 PM

Hi Genie,

Fun discussion. I must agree to disagree.

" She's rather like the chihuahua who fearlessly goes for the throat of the great Dane. Very gutsy and single-minded. Seldom terribly effective."

I think that Cindy is terribly effective. She may not get votes but she will influence the politics. This, in the same way that Martin Luther King did, or woman suffragettes, or the abolitionists. If it weren't for Cindy, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Eugene Debs, Robert Ingersoll,
Martin Luther King, Ghandi, Thomas Paine, and so many who operated under principle rather than political expedience, the two-party system would remain useless because no important political idea would be introduced through societal pressure. Politicians are known to follow the lines of least resistance.


"I think there IS a real danger that people like Cindy -- i.e., liberals who form a circular firing squad around the Dems and progressive-minded politicians instead of aiming at the neocons -- will help create Karl Rove's dream of a "permanent Republican majority."

Again, I must disagree. Many Dems are their own firing squad and have shot themselves in the foot by taking reactionary stands rather than innovative and truthful ones. They are too beholden to K Street to have the temerity to stand up to a Karl Rove. Witness the DLC as a case in point. The DLC must share culpability in the support of a Rove by failing to counter and oppose these criminals who run our country.

Cindy and Dennis offer the courage to take on the DLC and the K Street "whores". It looks like Edwards will also close in on the facist corporations.


"I especially bemoan the fact that the Democratic-controlled House seems reluctant to impeach a criminal administration for trashing the constitution.   (Some principles are more important than political expediency. Not to mention that, with Republicans filibustering and Bush's veto pen ever poised, it's unlikely Congress will get anything through, this term, that Bush doesn't approve of.)"

Here I agree with you wholeheartedly.

"MAYBE "they" SHOULD support Cindy, but "they" are unlikely to do so as a unified group."

I recall that Lyndon Johnson was dragged kicking and screaming to the support of Civil Rights. The Kennedys even bugged King's telephone. Eventually they had to answer to the will of the people.

"Pelosi now has enough support from the overlapping groups -- Democrats, progressives, independents, anti-war groups -- to pretty much ensure her retaining her seat in the House.   If Sheehan runs against her as an Independent, it's quite possible the effect will be to split the vote of the aforementioned groups and give the seat to a Republican, who will probably be less acceptable to the liberal/anti-war "idealists" than Pelosi is."

This has been the old bromide from the very inception of the two-party system. That may or may not be true depending on whether these Pelosi Dems can see the light and not give Bush his Surge Money. If they decide to do this and not stand up to the replacement of Gonzo with Chertoff, then they are really no different from the Rethugs. Pelosi has not shown in any demonstrable way that she is an "anti-war idealist". In fact, they have given Bush pretty much everything he wants.


"IRV, in non-trivial ways, is as important to democracy as"what Cindy is doing now. It allows voters' true preferences to be registered, without fear of throwing away a vote by voting for someone who's not likely to place first or second in the race this time around."

IRV is important. The only thing it doesn't do is bring to the fore the princlples that many Democrats of the past have embraced. It is not clear what the Democratic Party stands for any more because they are reluctant to articulate principles in the same way the Rethugs have.

"   Hmm. Perhaps. But let's not forget that there are equally zealous moms and dads on the other side of the fence who have also lost beloved sons or daughters in Iraq.   Being passionately devoted to a cause does not automatically make your ideas workable, much less put them into effect in a practical way."

True but without these idealists and passion, all practical manners of working are useless.
Until the Democratic Party can say with assurance what it stands for, it will remain dormant. Cindy is articulating these principles through her efforts and this is practical because people know where she stands and can respond in whatever way they want.


Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 05:09 PM

Cindy will no doubt have some effect as a gadfly taking on those she sees as misguided or gutless Democrats, but I think she'd have far more effect if she took down a neocon Republican or at least a "blue dog" Democrat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 05:21 PM

Frank, I don't think Cindy's running against Pelosi amounts to taking on the establishment "in the same way that Martin Luther King did, or woman suffragettes, or the abolitionists.

Last time I checked, those people, as well as Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Eugene Debs, Robert Ingersoll, Martin Luther King, Ghandi, Thomas Paine, etc., did not make the inroads they did by running for elective office against people who were basically on the same side of the political spectrum (but either too moderate or too timid to be ideally effective).

And, whatever you may think about the DLC Democrats, they are NOT the same as today's Republicans, if for no other reason than that they don't depend on Karl Rove and his ilk for support.   Many off them, including Pelosi, can and DO vote against a lot of what the Bush administration and the Republican's try to push through.   

Cindy's replacing Nancy -- if it happened -- would be far less of an advance for the Dems than Cindy's replacing a Bush supporter would be.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 05:47 PM

Those are show votes. Pelosi is a neo-con. Neo-cons are Trotskyite Communists. They infiltrated the Republican party and are currently guiding it, while lying to the traditional Republican conseravtive base.

Pelosi has no need to lie about her liberal politics. She is the same as George Bush when it comes to politics. She supports the growth of big federal government, supports the war in Iraq, and she supports the stripping away of civil liberties for Americans.

Google a speech called "Neo-conned". You'll be reading about Republicans, but the same holds true for Pelosi and her ilk. They are preservers of the status quo.

The Democrats inherited responsibility for the war in Iraq when they voted to add an additional 100 billion dollars to the thing. Sheehan should run a simple campaign--just say, "Nancy Pelosi killed my son."


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 07:35 PM

". . . and that was the latest word from Mars. Now, back to our regular broadcast."

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 01:21 PM

President Bush made clear in remarks on Friday that there would be no comprehensive program to aid the millions of American homeowners who have already lost their homes or are at risk of foreclosure due to the collapsing US housing market....

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2007/sep2007/home-s01.shtml

One of the goals of communism is the abolishment of private property. But if that's a leftist, communist goal, why are the right-wing "conservatives" chucking people out of their homes? Answer, both parties have the same goals. The neo-cons are Trotskyite communists. From the speech "Neo-Conned":

More recently, the modern-day neocons have come from the far left, a group historically identified as former Trotskyites. Liberal, Christopher Hitchens, has recently officially joined the neocons, and it has been reported that he has already been to the White House as an ad hoc consultant. Many neocons now in positions of influence in Washington can trace their status back to Professor Leo Strauss of the University of Chicago. One of Strauss' books was Thoughts on Machiavelli. This book was not a condemnation of Machiavelli's philosophy. Paul Wolfowitz actually got his PhD under Strauss. Others closely associated with these views are Richard Perle, Eliot Abrams, Robert Kagan, and William Kristol. All are key players in designing our new strategy of preemptive war. Others include: Michael Ledeen of the American Enterprise Institute; former CIA Director James Woolsey; Bill Bennett of Book of Virtues fame; Frank Gaffney; Dick Cheney; and Donald Rumsfeld. There are just too many to mention who are philosophically or politically connected to the neocon philosophy in some varying degree....

http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2003/cr071003.htm


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 01:31 PM

Genie, again we have to agree to disagree.

If you were around during the time of Martin Luther King, the pundits and Dems were saying exactly the same thing about him as they are saying about Cindy today.

I disagree that those who are amoung the DLC are on the same side as Stanton, Debs, Ingersoll, King, Ghandi,Paine etc. There is a prevailing myth that there is a "centrist" position. This is propaganda by appeasers and enablers to the Right Wing. None of the people I mentioned would have been elected but that's not the point. The point is to do exactly what King did, challenge the prevailing authorities of the Right and Left. Remember that most of the Dems of the Fifties and Sixties were not in favor of Civil Rights. This includes Kennedy and Johnson, the latter, who lead the US into an equally false combat predicated on lies about the Bay of Tonkin.

The DLC Democrats may as well be Republicans because they are enablers for this pre-emptive illegal occupation of a foreign country and they support it by giving money to Bush. They will also confirm Chertoff which is the final straw that will break the Party's back. We need Cindy to counter this sell-out.   

Pelosi's votes to counter the Bush criminal takeover are meaningless as long as she and other Dems continue to support the Occupation and the Surge. This invalidates any of the seemingly good social reforms that they purport to advocate. I also remind you that Pelosi said that her first deed once elected in the first weeks of office was campaign finance reform. How is that working for the American people?

I see the weak-kneed Dems as enabling Karl Rove. The old cliche "actions speak louder than words" applies here.

If Cindy were to replace Pelosi, it would send a message that the Democratic Party had found a legitimate voice for Americans who mostly reject Bush's lies.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 01:36 PM

"Pelosi is a neo-con. Neo-cons are Trotskyite Communists. "

pooh! not only is the definition a silly stretch, Pelosi is not anywhere near it.

"Neo-con" doesn't refer to any party or affiliation...it is a buzz-word invented to be able to slap labels on folks you don't care for...like anyone to the left of Ghengis Khan Reagan.

This "guilt by once being in the same room as..." sure makes it easy to connect a lot of knee-jerk dots!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 03:52 PM

From Washington Post staff writer Philip Kennicott:
Much nonsense has been written on [Leo] Strauss's political thought—often caricatured as crudely anti-democratic, obsessed with secret meanings and in love with white lies told by powerful men to keep the rabble in line. Some have suggested a dark cabal of Straussian intellectuals secretly pull the strings of the Bush administration — which is ridiculous: The mistakes and false suppositions that led us into the Iraq war are all on the record and understanding them requires no supplemental speculation about ulterior motives or conspiracy theories.
Re-poster, who is, of course, Froth yet again, never met a conspiracy theory that he/she/it didn't love and embrace wholeheartedly.

Don Firth

P. S. And trying to peddle this kind of nonsense is not doing Cindy Sheehan any favors. If she becomes associated with this kind of dip-shittery, no one but a small coterie of nut-balls would vote for her, even if she ran, not against Nancy Pelosi, but against a vulnerable Republican, which is what she should do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 04:25 PM

"dip-shittery"

*mumble, mumble*...copying that exquisite turn of phrase for future use...


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: akenaton
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 05:47 PM

Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie - PM
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 01:26 PM

"But, Ake, you are still in Iraq. Don't you think you should leave?"


From: akenaton - PM
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 04:47 PM

"Ebbie..We will be gone by the end of this year.
Even in the UK political survival is paramount"

Listen up Ebbie You heard it here first.......

Dateline 2nd Sept 2007   British troops pull out of Basra City, temporary home ...Basra airbase...next stop Kuwait then home.
Who will fill the vacuum? American soldiers.
How did we swing it? We made it clear to Labour that with blair in office and no change in policy they would be unelectable.

How can you swing it?.....Work it out for yourselves...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Re-poster
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 07:26 PM

The "new conservatives" are Trotskyite communists, as identified in the speech above. The list of names is impressive, and all followers of Leo Strauss. Bush's advisors. Republicans have been had.

And on the "other side," Hillary Clinton is supposed to be more liberal, more "socialist." And she wants to nationalize healthcare. National...socialist. Ring a bell? Nazi? National Socialist? Hillary Clinton? Surely I jest.

The labels are all phony. We have one national party in America, and its goal is tyranny. The Senate voted 100-0 to give you the Real I.D. Act, which will require you to carry internal papers just like the Germans had to do under the Nazis. You won't be able to work, drive, bank or purchase without your Real I.D.

The only way to break this system is with a third party.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: 282RA
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 08:56 PM

The bottom line is, folks:

WE WILL STILL BE IN IRAQ THROUGH NOV 2008 AND WE WILL BE IN IRAQ THROUGH 2009 AND 2010.

After that we will be fleeing from rooftops because we'll be out of troops and too chickenshit to start a draft and too chickenshit to serve if they did start one.

And it does not matter who you vote for as far as that goes. But I do know that the dems do not have what it takes to manage or mismanage this war in such a way that the public will not demand their lynching. Pubs can make the same mistakes and be pardoned--understandable errors.

So there's no point to voting dem in 08 if the war is not over and it will definitely NOT be over. No one trusts them to manage this war and they don't trust themselves. They can howl for a change of course until it is put in their laps and then they decide to just keep going the way we're going even though we're losing.

That's why Hillary is all the sudden saying the surge is working. The dems need to keep the war going. They'd rather do that than be called surrender dogs. But if we flee Iraq with a dem president in charge, that's what's going to happen anyway and, before you know it, the pubs will be put back in charge so you may as well vote pub in 08.

The time to vote them out was 04 not 06. The 06 election was too little too late. We missed our window and now nothing really matters. No matter who is in charge, the worst that can happen is going to happen. I'd rather the ones who started it still be in charge to take the public's wrath.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 11:12 PM

[[Stringsinger:

...
If you were around during the time of Martin Luther King, the pundits and Dems were saying exactly the same thing about him as they are saying about Cindy today.]]

Let's not confuse "liberal," "socially conscious," "progressive," etc., with "Democrat" or "Republican."   A huge segment of the Democratic party before 1970 were the 'Dixiecrats'. (Wasn't Strom Thurmond a Dem. back then?)   The Republican party had such leaders as Everett Dirksen, Nelson Rockefeller, John Lindsay, etc. -- even Richard Nixon -- who were far more progressive, at least on some issues, than even a Democrat like Bill Clinton.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 11:27 PM

Bill D,
You beat me to the punch in borrowing Don Firth's exquisite terminology! *g*


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 11:38 PM

[[282RA:
So there's no point to voting dem in 08 if the war is not over and it will definitely NOT be over. No one trusts them to manage this war and they don't trust themselves.]]

Don't know how to break it to you, but the 'war' is not the only important issue in this upcoming election. While none of the Dems except Edwards and Kucinich are yet proposing the kinds of changes we need to out health care "system," pretty much all the Dems would probably do more to improve it than the Republicans would. And several Democratic candidates would probably do things like fixing (or backing out of) NAFTA and GATT, supporting organized labor, dealing with global warming, stopping the hemorrhaging of American jobs, etc., too -- at least better than Guiliani, Romney, etc.

Probably the single biggest reason we need a non-Republican President in 2008 is that Ginsburg and Stevens will probably resign from SCOTUS (if they don't die first). Possibly Breyer too.    Another Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, John Roberts, or Sam Alito on the court could do irrevocable damage to our nation, our democracy, and the earth as habitable for humans.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Sep 07 - 11:54 PM

Oh, Genie....I agree with you. I almost wish you hadn't said it, 'cause I don't like thinking about it. A court with more Thomases & Scalias would be bad, because they are dangerous....one with more like John Roberts would be devastating....because he is BOTH smart and dangerous.

Hold on Ginzberg and Stevens!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: 282RA
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 12:29 AM

>>Don't know how to break it to you, but the 'war' is not the only important issue in this upcoming election. While none of the Dems except Edwards and Kucinich are yet proposing the kinds of changes we need to out health care "system," pretty much all the Dems would probably do more to improve it than the Republicans would.<<

Oh, come on, for Christ's sake! You must think people are stupid. Of course, the dems aren't going to do anything about it! They've had plenty of their people in the White House and held a majority in Congress for over 40 years and nothing changed. And it's not going to change now. If they're too scared to stop Bush or end the war, I'm supposed to believe they're going to handle health care??? BASED ON WHAT????????

And, of the dems, the ONLY one I trust is Kucinich and, needless to say, he has no chance of winning his party's nomination. A vote for Hillary Clinton is a vote for George W. Bush. It'll be like he never left office. You mark my words! You hear me? YOU MARK MY WORDS!!!!

>>And several Democratic candidates would probably do things like fixing (or backing out of) NAFTA and GATT, supporting organized labor, dealing with global warming, stopping the hemorrhaging of American jobs, etc., too -- at least better than Guiliani, Romney, etc.<<

As I recall, it was the democrats who gave us NAFTA. No, they're not going to change it.

>>Probably the single biggest reason we need a non-Republican President in 2008 is that Ginsburg and Stevens will probably resign from SCOTUS (if they don't die first). Possibly Breyer too.    Another Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, John Roberts, or Sam Alito on the court could do irrevocable damage to our nation, our democracy, and the earth as habitable for humans.<<

Things were falling apart long before those clowns were ever sworn in. And things will continue to fall apart whether they are there or liberals are there. The only real change they can make is to abortion laws and I don't care about abortion one way or another.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:17 AM

282RA, NOBODY could be as bad a Dubya (except maybe Cheney).    I doubt that many in the Republican party would have pulled the stuff he and Cheney (with Rove pulling the strings) have done -- e.g., warrantless wiretaps, trying to rescind habeas corpus, and essentially naming himself dictator (with the corporate foxes guarding all the cabinet-level henhouses and the dept of justic being filled with political operatives).   Yes, I'm frustrated that not enough Democrats have tried hard enough to block Bush's power-grab, but I really don't see a new Republican President doing much of anything to roll back those over-reaches. Bill Clinton, for all his corporatist leanings, did put Bruce Babbitt in as Sec. of Interior and some other honorable and sensible people in some other cabinet positions. He also nominated Ruth B. Ginsburg.

Oh, and I really do expect John Edwards to move forward with some important changes in health care (e.g., making Medicare available to all, thus giving the private insurers some stiff competition), if he's elected.

Sorry, but the fact that the Democratic party's stand on a lot of matters has been too weak, too disorganized, etc., does not mean the country would be just as bad off under them as under yet another neocon Republican regime.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:23 AM

Oh, and it was Bill Clinton, with a Republican-dominated Congress, who gave us NAFTA.   One of the worst policies Clinton ever pursued.

That doesn't mean the Dems on the whole support NAFTA, CAFTA, and GATT -- especially now that we're seeing so plainly and painfully what those poorly-regulated treaties have wrought.

25 years ago the people of the US weren't screaming so much about the horrible state of our health care "system," about how the middle class is getting screwed by the corporatocracy, etc.   

The perfect is the enemy of the good.   Throw all the Dems under the bus just because they're far from perfect, and I fear we're heading for disaster.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Genie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:32 AM

[[Things were falling apart long before those clowns [Roberts, Scalia, Alito, Thomas] were ever sworn in. And things will continue to fall apart whether they are there or liberals are there. The only real change they can make is to abortion laws and I don't care about abortion one way or another.]]

Guess again, my friend.

The neocon/corporatist bloc on the SCOTUS -- I won't even call them "conservative," because in many decisions they show contempt for the Constitution, at least the Bill Of Rights -- not only can take away a lot more of our liberties, but they've already gone pretty far in that direction. Talking about our rights to peacefully assemble to petition the gov't for redress of grievances; protection against unreasonable search and seizure; due process of law; the federal gov't stepping in to overrule state gov't decisions such as medical majijuana, Dr-assisted suicide; protection of our environment; etc.

The very fact that the Rehnquist court allowed Bush v. Gore to be heard, instead of sending it back to the state court where it belonged, shows how out of bounds some of these justices can be.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Greg F.
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 09:30 AM

NOBODY could be as bad a Dubya (except maybe Cheney).

Ya wanna bet? I'll cover it.

You need to have more faith in the Republican Party.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: 282RA
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 11:45 AM

>>NOBODY could be as bad a Dubya (except maybe Cheney).<<

Including all the current GOP runners, so it will be no problem for me to vote for one of them next year. I'm goddamn serious, the dems cannot manage this war--it's out of control. Why they'd rather inherit it than end it is telling me these people are not very smart and are only playing politics and dead and maimed Americans can all go to hell.

>>Oh, and I really do expect John Edwards to move forward with some important changes in health care (e.g., making Medicare available to all, thus giving the private insurers some stiff competition), if he's elected.<<

Elected to what?? President?? He has no chance. Hillary Clinton is going to get the nomination. I think I'd rather see a republican as president than her.

>>Sorry, but the fact that the Democratic party's stand on a lot of matters has been too weak, too disorganized, etc., does not mean the country would be just as bad off under them as under yet another neocon Republican regime.<<

And stop trying to scare people with this neocon shit. Nobody runing right now for the 08 race is a neocon--it's a failed strategy and no pub in his right mind would dare attempt to align himself with it.

>>Oh, and it was Bill Clinton, with a Republican-dominated Congress, who gave us NAFTA.   One of the worst policies Clinton ever pursued.<<

And president Hillary is going to roll back her husband's policies? Those are not going to be touched by either party.

>>Throw all the Dems under the bus just because they're far from perfect, and I fear we're heading for disaster.<<

Is that supposed to be a logical argument??? Hell, let's just forgive Bush and Cheney for their imperfect management of the war then, for shit's sake!

>>Talking about our rights to peacefully assemble to petition the gov't for redress of grievances; protection against unreasonable search and seizure; due process of law; the federal gov't stepping in to overrule state gov't decisions such as medical majijuana, Dr-assisted suicide; protection of our environment; etc.<<

Right. And none of these were at issue until Bush came to power.

>>The very fact that the Rehnquist court allowed Bush v. Gore to be heard, instead of sending it back to the state court where it belonged, shows how out of bounds some of these justices can be.<<

I didn't know Rehnquist was a Bush appointee.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 12:11 PM

282RA, your frustrations may be valid but I doubt that your 'solution' will attract many followers. So go ahead and vote for a Republican- it won't make a bit of difference in the wash.

It was, of course, not Bush but Nixon who appointed Rehnquist. And we all know of Nixon's slavish devotion to the US Constitution.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: 282RA
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 02:09 PM

>>So go ahead and vote for a Republican- it won't make a bit of difference in the wash.<<

Exactly. Let the people who started it finish it and let them take the heat they so richly deserve. Dems are idiots for wanting to inherit this war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 02:22 PM

Yeah, 282, but remember....they are playing the game they have been taught to play all their lives. They're trying to win the World Series, for gosh sakes! Try telling a baseball team to throw the game and lose the Series...

That's exactly what it's like. It's a game. Both parties are trained to do everything possible to win it when the playoffs come around. That is their reason for being.

I agree that the Democrats would be fools to want to inherit this stupid war...but has that EVER stopped either one of those parties from trying to win the next election? No. And it never will. If they were inheriting the end of the world and the complete and utter destruction of all they hold dear, they'd still be out there trying like hell to win the election.   They don't know what else to do. The game is bigger than they are.

When this war is finally, irrevocably lost...I too would rather see the Republicans take the blame for it. You bet I would.

Still, I don't think I could stomach voting for them.

Hell of a quandary. But I can't vote for them anyway, because I'm Canadian, so it's a decision I'll never have to make.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Ebbie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 02:53 PM

If it were only the war at issue here I too might say, A Republican started it, let the Republicans figure out how to get out of it.

However, there are many other issues, issues that will affect our country and our world for decades if not longer. Even our status in the world is an issue. But there are many others, as given above by Genie and others.

T'row de bums out!


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:43 PM

I can certainly understand the frustration of a number of folks here about the ineffectuality of the Democratic Party within recent years, and I share it, which is one of the reasons I favor Dennis Kucinich. But I am not so naïve as to think he has much of a chance. There are, however, a couple of other good candidates.

Anyone who has any delusions about a third party having a ghost of a chance in the coming national election is living in a dream world, and as attractive as a idea of a progressive third party moving in, shouldering the Democrats out of the way, and winning over the Republicans is, it just isn't going to happen. Get over it!

And the idea that it will make no difference whether the Democrats or Republicans get elected in 2008 is just bloody ignorant! How much of a difference is what is at issue.

I know that my two Senators and my Congressional Representative (all three Democrats) are working like beavers to end the Bush administration's idiotic junket in the Middle East in as rational a manner as possible (and there is no general agreement between anyone on how best to do this). And I know that Jim McDermott was opposed to this war well before it started and has been a passionate advocate for both election reform and an all-inclusive national health care system for years and is not about to give up. So I am sure as hell going to work to see that they get re-elected.

Since your only real choice is between the Democrats and the Republicans. If you really do want to see this war brought to an end in as short a time as is decently possible, and see such things as national health care brought into existence, it sure as hell isn't going to happen if you vote for the Republicans. That would simply be a "people's mandate" to just keep doing what they've been doing. Whether it actually is or not, it will certainly be interpreted that way. And if you decide that you're just not going to bother to vote at all, then sit down and shut up!.

Okay! How to get the Democrats to do what you want them to do.

I've already answered that. Or rather, someone else has explained how to do it, and I have already posted a link to that explanation. Some people either have not bothered to read it or simply dismissed it because it means that instead of just sitting around and bitching, they have to get up off their butts and actually do something! That's more that a lot of people—often those who bitch the loudest—care to exert themselves to do.

I will even go so far as to same them the trouble of scrolling up to find the link. I'll re-post it for the convenience of everyone:

CLICKY.

Now! Read it! Heed it! Then stop whining and GET TO WORK!!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:45 PM

If only there was a way to throw both lots of bums out. That I would like to see.

What I would do if I was an American is, I'd simply vote for the individuals in my area that I had the most confidence in...assuming I had confidence in any of them.

And for President? Well, we'll have to wait and see who runs. What worries me in the case of Hillary running is that she might get elected, in which case I would probably have an even harder time arranging that dinner date with her that I've been trying to set up for the last few years. And if I did arrange it, I'd have to put up with secret service men watching us. That would sort of spoil the mood.

(I've already talked to Bill, by the way. He's okay about it...) ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Stringsinger
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 11:34 AM

Don, I think you don't understand Cindy. She is not expecting to win really but she is sending an important message to the "do-nothing" Dems in Congress. If it were Newt Gingrich, he would be walking out with the Rethugs to shut down Congress. Pelosi has managed to get bills to the floor that should never have been there. The fact that the Dems are not walking out or raising hell about what is going on gives them little credibility. They are playing Party politics.

Three points the Dems have to do to be credible.

1. End the Occupation in Iraq.
2. Demand campaign finance reform.
3. Curb K-Street and do a Teddy Roosevelt and bust the fascist corporations.

Then the other important issues can be addressed and their solutions will have teeth.

If the Dems confirm either Lieberman or Chertoff as AG in place of Gonzo, it's all over for them. You have to get that.

Frank


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 01:14 PM

Maybe my memory is failing me, but it seems like some of the folks in this very discussion thread used to say things like, "There is no real difference between Bush and Gore--".


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: GUEST,Don Firth
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 01:50 PM

Yes, indeed, M. Ted.   I think those who kept repeating that like a mantra back in 2000 would never admit it now. But they do insist on saying that it makes no difference whether the Democrats or the Republicans are in office. Those who won't learn from history will continue to babble incoherently.

And true, most of the campaign financing for both Democratic and Republican candidates comes from the big corporations, and that's where election reform comes in. But you will note that while the corporations try to cover their bets by contributing to both sides, they much prefer the Republicans. So they think it makes a difference.

No, Frank, I definitely do understand what Cindy Sheehan is up to. And I agree with your three points. I've been thinking for some time now that I would like to see Teddy Roosevelt reincarnated and in office.

Don Firth


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Subject: Dems v. Republicans and the US Supreme Court
From: Genie
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 02:33 PM

If you don't think there's a difference between Democrats -- even DLC Dems like the Clintons -- and the neocon Republicans, consider this:

The 5 justices on the Rehnquist court who made the outrageous decision in Bush v. Gore (even the decision to hear that case, which should have been thown back to Florida) were all appointed by Republicans.

Rehnquist appointed by Nixon
Justice John Stevens appointed by Ford
Scalia appointed by Reagan
O'Connor appointed by Reagan
Kennedy appointed by Reagan
Thomas appointed by Bush 41
David Souter appointed by Bush 41
Breyer appointed by Clinton
Ginsburg appointed by Clinton

True, sometimes (as in the case of Souter) the appointee surprises and disappoints the President who nominated him/her. (Souter came very close to resigning from SCOTUS over the Bush v. Gore decision because he considered it such a slap in the face to the Constitution.)   But the ones who can just about always be counted on to make decisions that favor big corporations, the rich, the religious right, and the Republican party -- regardless of the Constitutional justification -- have all been appointed by Republicans.

There's a huge chasm between Breyer and Ginsburg (Clinton appointees) and Stevens (appointed by rather moderate Republican Ford), on the one hand, and Scalia, Thomas (Reagan and Bush 41 appointees), at the other extreme.

Now that Rehnquist has been replaced (by Bush 43) by the even more extreme Roberts and
Sam Alito (Bush 43) has replaced the more moderate O'Connor, even the appointment of another justice like Kennedy or O'Connor could be a disaster if that appointment was to replace any of the justices who seem to value the Bill Of Rights and the rights of ordinary individuals over those of big business (Stevens, Breyer, Ginsburg, and Souter).

It's very likely that one or more of those four so-called "liberals" on the court -- so-called only because the others are so far to the extreme right -- will leave the court in the next 4 to 8 years.   Quite possibly all of them could, because of their age and the state of their health.   

We cannot afford another Clarence "never-justify-or-explain-your-decisions,-just-vote-in-favor-of-the-neocons" Thomas, John Roberts, or Samuel Alito on the court. (Even Scalia occasionally honors his own sense of allegiance to the Constitution and breaks with the outrageous policies of the Dubya administration. And Kennedy seems to be less of an idealogue than even Scalia.)   

I realize that it's the Senate that confirms justices, not the House Of Representatives matters too.   But when I hear (alleged) liberals saying there's not a whit of difference between Democrats like Clinton (either one) and most of today's Republicans, I beg to differ,   There have been some HUGE policy differences between Bill Clinton and Republicans like Regan, Bush 41, and Bush 43.   And there have been some huge differences in legislation passed by Democratic-controlled and Republican-controlled Congresses.   

Let's not forget that one reason the Dems haven't accomplished a lot, legislatively, since Jan., 2005, is that the Republicans in the Senate keep filibustering and Bush keeps vetoing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 05:52 PM

People who don't think there is a difference between Republicans and Democrats are alienated from the political system. And, for them, it is true, because neither serves their interests.

The mistake is to believe that some "independent" or "maverick" or "outsider" will clean house and give them what they want. For one thing, everyone who makes it to the ballot under a party banner got there from the inside. For another, once you join the party, you have to make nice with the permanent guests.

Corporations, unions, polical action committees, business associations, religious groups and special interest groups aren't going to leave town because Cindy Sheehan
(or anybody else) gets elected to anything.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Little Hawk
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 06:18 PM

I think the problem is not that there is no difference between them, but that there is not enough difference...specially when it comes to backing certain primary areas of both foreign and domestic policy. They may talk differently, but their actions speak louder than their words.

I have in any case indicated that I would vote Democratic if I were faced with the choice of picking between them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: Bill D
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 06:29 PM

since the discussion has moved into general comments...

Conduct of the media-part 1

part 2


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Subject: RE: BS: Sheehan vs. Pelosi
From: M.Ted
Date: 05 Sep 07 - 01:08 AM

Here's a specific comment--Cindy Sheehan's comments on Israel have earned her endorsement and support from a surprising, and likely unwelcome quarter--American Nazi Idol


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