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  #1  
Old 08-16-2010, 04:56 PM
Bloggingheads Bloggingheads is offline
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Default Fighting the Brainfog (Jane Hamsher & Matt Welch)

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  #2  
Old 08-16-2010, 06:26 PM
ImmRefDotCom ImmRefDotCom is offline
 
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Default No "glugg glugg" gesture from Jane Hamsher this time?

1. In a previous dialog with Corsi, Jane Hamsher made a cutesy "glugg glugg" gesture while he wasn't looking; I'm surprised they'd still have someone like that on.

2. Welch is misleading about the difficulty of dealing with immigration. It's actually fairly simple to enforce our laws and it wouldn't be that difficult to reduce the benefits available to illegal aliens and make it difficult for them to find work. Large numbers of illegal aliens would return home over time. We wouldn't need biometrics or any extreme strawmen measures. The problem is that the establishment won't allow it. The establishment constantly monkeywrenches our laws one way or other, whether it's with sanctuary cities, lawsuits, or just turning a blind eye. And, they do that because they're corrupt: they support or enable massive illegal activity in order to gain money or votes. Matt Welch didn't even hint at that.

3. Jane Hamsher didn't tell you that Jorge Ramos is a Mexican citizen. And, despite living and working in the U.S. for years, he won't pursue U.S. citizenship because he might run for office in Mexico one day. Why didn't Jane Hamsher tell you that, but instead presented him as someone whose advice the (U.S.) Democrats should take?

For more on "reform", here are some of the downsides of comprehensive immigration reform that you won't hear from either Hamsher or Welch.

Why waste time with two people who are basically on the same page?
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  #3  
Old 08-16-2010, 07:37 PM
TwinSwords TwinSwords is offline
 
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Default Let me correct your misrepresentation

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImmRefDotCom View Post
1. In a previous dialog with Corsi, Jane Hamsher made a cutesy "glugg glugg" gesture while he wasn't looking; I'm surprised they'd still have someone like that on.
You omit the context in which Hamsher's obviously sarcastic gesture was made. As I explained to another commenter who feigned outrage at the time:

Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinSwords View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvantony
A new, ugly low for Bloggingheads.tv.
I realize you're very senstive, mvantony, but don't omit Jane's context, or her point. This was in the midst of the discussion of Corsi's groundless insinuations that Obama is a coke addict or alcoholic. She was simply showing that two can play at Corsi's game.

Corsi published his insinuations in an NYT best-seller. Hamsher made her insinuation -- obvious sarcasm -- before an audience of a few thousand.

The fact that you condemn her, but not him, tells us everything we need to know about your intellectual honesty and moral character.
Immediately prior to making the gesture, Jane explained that she could make groundless insinuations about Corsi, too:

Quote:
"You seem to be extrapolating an awful lot about Barack Obama's drug and alcohol use based on projection -- based on no facts whatsoever. So if I say that I think you're projecting here, I'm doing the same thing to you that you're doing to Barack Obama." *gesture.*
Jane followed up on her blog.

Last edited by TwinSwords; 08-16-2010 at 07:39 PM..
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  #4  
Old 08-16-2010, 09:14 PM
ImmRefDotCom ImmRefDotCom is offline
 
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Default So, having no class was all for a good cause?

Generally speaking, it's a good idea to avoid engaging in the same type of behavior you're complaining about, whether to make a point or not. And, if you watch the exchange it's clear to me at least that she wasn't trying to make a point so much as smear him because he disagrees with her.
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  #5  
Old 08-16-2010, 09:19 PM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: So, having no class was all for a good cause?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImmRefDotCom View Post
Generally speaking, it's a good idea to avoid engaging in the same type of behavior you're complaining about, whether to make a point or not. And, if you watch the exchange it's clear to me at least that she wasn't trying to make a point so much as smear him because he disagrees with her.
It's only a "smear" if you can't intuit the context - which as Twin pointed out was pretty simply evident. I have my own issues with Jane, these days, but I think your point is mostly over the top.
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  #6  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:02 AM
ImmRefDotCom ImmRefDotCom is offline
 
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Default Why are "good" things always done by "great" people?

Hamsher with her "I think he drinks" smear...

Some punk with the Glenn Beck smear (the one they should have sued at least to get his name so it could be publicized)...

The smear of Kaus...

Why is it that those who support intelligence, thinking, freedom, liberty, and a good time for all are always behind no-class despicable smears? Those smears aren't satire and they aren't in any way instructive, "progressive", or helpful to the U.S. They're just a borderline fascistic attempt to try to fool as many people as possible and to try to silence debate.

Look inward, angels.
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  #7  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:22 AM
Plinthy The Middling Plinthy The Middling is offline
 
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Default Re: Why are "good" things always done by "great" people?

Boy, that was quick: three easy steps from
- taking Hamsher out of context to cast her as a smear merchant when she was clearly demonstrating how unfounded smears are made in order to better combat them, to
- raising fascism.

And by quick and easy, of course, I mean utterly indistinguishable from what would result if it had been done by a practiced hand toward a pre-set goal. Eerie, really.
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  #8  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:25 AM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: Why are "good" things always done by "great" people?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plinthy The Middling View Post
Boy, that was quick: three easy steps from
- taking Hamsher out of context to cast her as a smear merchant when she was clearly demonstrating how unfounded smears are made in order to better combat them, to
- raising fascism.

And by quick and easy, of course, I mean utterly indistinguishable from what would result if it had been done by a practiced hand toward a pre-set goal. Eerie, really.
Otherwise known as "Godwin in Three!" That should be considered a benchmark of some sort, I think.
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  #9  
Old 08-17-2010, 06:21 PM
handle handle is offline
 
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Default Re: Why are "good" things always done by "great" people?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImmRefDotCom View Post
1. In a previous dialog with Corsi, Jane Hamsher made a cutesy "glugg glugg" gesture while he wasn't looking; I'm surprised they'd still have someone like that on.
FEI, everything one diavlogger does is without the other looking, as they cannot see each other.
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  #10  
Old 08-16-2010, 11:58 PM
Unit Unit is offline
 
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Default Re: No "glugg glugg" gesture from Jane Hamsher this time?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImmRefDotCom View Post
2. Welch is misleading about the difficulty of dealing with immigration. It's actually fairly simple to enforce our laws and it wouldn't be that difficult to reduce the benefits available to illegal aliens and make it difficult for them to find work. Large numbers of illegal aliens would return home over time. We wouldn't need biometrics or any extreme strawmen measures. The problem is that the establishment won't allow it. The establishment constantly monkeywrenches our laws one way or other, whether it's with sanctuary cities, lawsuits, or just turning a blind eye. And, they do that because they're corrupt: they support or enable massive illegal activity in order to gain money or votes. Matt Welch didn't even hint at that.
But if you get rid of illegal immigrants, politicians would then be faced with having to repeal Minimum-wage legislation, and no one wants to put his/her face on that bill, believe me.
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  #11  
Old 08-16-2010, 06:34 PM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Fighting the Brainfog (Jane Hamsher & Matt Welch)

If anybody's pressed for time, this clip is a decent substitute for the DV.

More seriously, I don't feel like I can really engage someone like Jane Hamsher without a bit of armchair psychoanalysis. Take this clip, for example. To suggest that the only, or even the primary purpose of the ACA was to tighten the Democratic Party's hold on K Street when you purport to care about the plight of the uninsured in this country is just incomprehensible to me. As far as I can tell, Hamsher isn't paying attention to the substance of issues or how her behavior might actually effect policy; she's just taking whatever steps are necessary to maintain her Outsider Libeal street cred. It's hard to imagine how any elected politicians could pacify someone like her while achieving any policy successes at all. So when she discusses issues where Obama has actually been a huge disappointment, it's still just nails on a chalkboard thanks to her constant, thoughtless need to accuse everyone that agrees with her but wants to secure actual policy accomplishments of selling out.
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  #12  
Old 08-16-2010, 07:30 PM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Fighting the Brainfog (Jane Hamsher & Matt Welch)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
It's hard to imagine how any elected politicians could pacify someone like her while achieving any policy successes at all.
Impossible. I don't think that Jane sees herself in the role of being pacified. She always seems to be looking for shortcomings and flaws. It will never be good enough. She did try to put things in perspective towards the end, but it didn't detract from the bashing. Matt was extremely enthusiastic about that as well. I wish well meaning people were able to criticize without demonizing. I guess it's a difficult thing to do.
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  #13  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:37 AM
Plinthy The Middling Plinthy The Middling is offline
 
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Default Re: Fighting the Brainfog (Jane Hamsher & Matt Welch)

Gosh, thanks for that. I confess that, left on my own, I would have thought Robert Gibbs was bang on where he criticized what he called the professional left for not being satisfied with a capitalist model for universal health care, and that Hamsher was precisely within his sights as being among those pushing for a system that does not treat health as a profit center, because, well, she was. But, thanks to you, now I know its all an act aimed at achieving lefty cred -- which is, as we all know, is such a incredibly valuable tool for achieving vast wealth and permanent membership in the plutocracy.

In my experience when people say things that are unpleasant to hear and think about, but might well be true, those listening will very often bring out the old fingernails-down-the-chalkboard line; and it works all the better when the speaker is female. I expect using this metaphor was entirely accidental.
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  #14  
Old 08-17-2010, 02:14 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Fighting the Brainfog (Jane Hamsher & Matt Welch)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plinthy The Middling View Post
Gosh, thanks for that. I confess that, left on my own, I would have thought Robert Gibbs was bang on where he criticized what he called the professional left for not being satisfied with a capitalist model for universal health care, and that Hamsher was precisely within his sights as being among those pushing for a system that does not treat health as a profit center, because, well, she was. But, thanks to you, now I know its all an act aimed at achieving lefty cred -- which is, as we all know, is such a incredibly valuable tool for achieving vast wealth and permanent membership in the plutocracy.
There aren't a lot of venues where lefty street cred brings home the bacon, but that's the niche Hamsher has carved out for herself. She gets links and pageviews when she's idiotically, impractically farther to the left than people. She gets even more when she uses her absurd tactical radicalism to prove her superior moral fiber.

Oh, and while I'll be the first to agree with you that the rich and powerful, most notably corporate interests, have far too much power in our political system, this "people vs. the plutocracy" frame is a pretty staggeringly reductive way of approaching American politics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plinthy The Middling View Post
In my experience when people say things that are unpleasant to hear and think about, but might well be true, those listening will very often bring out the old fingernails-down-the-chalkboard line; and it works all the better when the speaker is female. I expect using this metaphor was entirely accidental.
...And the accusation of sexism. Bonus points! There's no way for me to respond to this bogus charge without playing into the stereotypes you've already created for me, so I won't go on at length. I'll just say that that is a perfectly innocuous metaphor and that I don't like listening to Jane Hamsher pontificate about her Progressive Purity because I think it's a mark of moral vanity and an inability to take the real-world consequences of these debates seriously, not because she's a woman. It is just as galling when male blowhards suggest that the only way to save Liberalism is to let Obama fail to pass his agenda and get replaced by a Conservative Republican.
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  #15  
Old 08-16-2010, 07:22 PM
JonIrenicus JonIrenicus is offline
 
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Default Most people don't vote that way

It is interesting people are surprised by these things

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/302...7:22&out=17:27


Most people do not vote on specific issues for president, people vote for a person, a team, a side that has some large number of positive perceptions compared to the other side.


Case in point.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5p3OB6roAg
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  #16  
Old 08-16-2010, 07:38 PM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Most people don't vote that way

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonIrenicus View Post
It is interesting people are surprised by these things

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/302...7:22&out=17:27


Most people do not vote on specific issues for president, people vote for a person, a team, a side that has some large number of positive perceptions compared to the other side.


Case in point.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5p3OB6roAg
Chris Hayes wrote a great article on this subject sometime around the 2004 election. It's a pretty constant struggle for me to remember its conclusions when I'm about to suggest that the public agrees with me in any sophisticated way.
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  #17  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:40 AM
Plinthy The Middling Plinthy The Middling is offline
 
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Default Re: Most people don't vote that way

Terrific link. Hayes does this level of work routinely, but we should not take it for granted.
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  #18  
Old 08-16-2010, 08:51 PM
ginger baker ginger baker is offline
 
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Default Re: Fighting the Brainfog (Jane Hamsher & Matt Welch)

Yay Hamsher’s back on bhtv!

What liberals need at this point is a Realism which does not so much temper their activism but instead spurs it. They must let go of infantile wishes for the well-intentioned soul of Barack Obama. He will not save the country, and believing he will only encourages passivity. What Americans have to begin to grasp is the depth and nature of the problems facing them cuz we’re at those rare moments in history when the radical has become pragmatic, and when compromise, concessions, and the whole bi-partisan structure courts disaster. The question is not what can be done but what must be done.

Bring her back soon!
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  #19  
Old 08-16-2010, 09:02 PM
Bloggin' Noggin Bloggin' Noggin is offline
 
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Default Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Maybe Gibbs shouldn't have said what he did, but Jane HAmsher is living proof that what he said was true. Thank god her ludicrous little tantrum over the public option didn't suceed in derailing the healthcare bill!

Last edited by Bloggin' Noggin; 08-16-2010 at 09:04 PM..
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  #20  
Old 08-16-2010, 09:17 PM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloggin' Noggin View Post
Maybe Gibbs shouldn't have said what he did, but Jane HAmsher is living proof that what he said was true. Thank god her ludicrous little tantrum over the public option didn't suceed in derailing the healthcare bill!
BN has it right. I really do want to like Jane, but I think she's done nothing but jeopardize the chances for success the Left might have with any of its goals. Firebaggers and Teabaggers oh my! Both ends against the middle.
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  #21  
Old 08-16-2010, 09:27 PM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by AemJeff View Post
BN has it right. I really do want to like Jane, but I think she's done nothing but jeopardize the chances for success the Left might have with any of its goals. Firebaggers and Teabaggers oh my! Both ends against the middle.
Agree with the above.
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  #22  
Old 08-16-2010, 09:37 PM
Bloggin' Noggin Bloggin' Noggin is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Hi Jeff.
I used to believe the whole story about there being no difference between the two parties --even voted for Nader in 2000 (though not in a state where it mattered). But the 2000 election and 8 years of George W Bush cured me of my left-wing purity. I thought it would cure just about anyone. I guess I was wrong.
Maybe Bob Wright could teach Hamsher that not all games are zero sum. However little I may want to help insurance companies, I'm willing to make them better off if that's the price of making the uninsured better off. I'm not sure Jane recognizes this possibility -- if it's good for the insurance companies then it MUST be bad for everyone else, from her point of view. It's all about having the right enemies, so far as she's concerned. In a zero-sum world, that would be a fine heuristic.
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  #23  
Old 08-16-2010, 10:20 PM
ohreally ohreally is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloggin' Noggin View Post
Maybe Bob Wright could teach Hamsher that not all games are zero sum.
Oh BN, how kind of you. I am sure she'll appreciate the suggestion. But in case she doesn't get the full brilliance of your insight, I'll help her out.

Dear Jane Hamsher: What commenter BN is trying to tell you is that, when a husband beats his wife, we should pay the husband big money just to make him stop: he wins; she wins. That's nonzero sumness for you. Only on BHtv!

And if you object that we should go after the husband instead, BN will say you're just fixated on "having the right enemy." Which, you know, is bad. Perhaps not as bad as having the wrong enemies, but still very very bad.
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  #24  
Old 08-16-2010, 11:25 PM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
Oh BN, how kind of you. I am sure she'll appreciate the suggestion. But in case she doesn't get the full brilliance of your insight, I'll help her out.

Dear Jane Hamsher: What commenter BN is trying to tell you is that, when a husband beats his wife, we should pay the husband big money just to make him stop: he wins; she wins. That's nonzero sumness for you. Only on BHtv!

And if you object that we should go after the husband instead, BN will say you're just fixated on "having the right enemy." Which, you know, is bad. Perhaps not as bad as having the wrong enemies, but still very very bad.
This is a spectacularly bad analogy. Let me answer it with a quick dialogue illustrating the strategy Jane uses to "advocate" for progressive goals:

Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid et al: We're working on a health care bill. It's not perfect, but it will dramatically improve the status quo if it passes, which it will do if and only if we push hard to make sure every single Democrat votes for it.

Jane Hamsher: But your bill doesn't put the private insurance industry out of business immediately, provide Medicare for all, or include the Public Option, which is made of magical fairy dust and will make American health care even better than France's if it passes. You're just selling us/me out to the insurance industry! I'm going to try to convince people to vote against this bill and hand the next election to the Republicans that just finished opposing providing health insurance to poor children!

BO, NP, HR, et al: We need 60 votes in the Senate to do anything. The public option that passed the House is not that big a deal, and it can't possibly get through the Senate anyway. This whole bill will fail if anyone in the entire Democratic Party defects, so we need people's support.

Hamsher: It's not exactly what I would do if I were dictator, so we should kill it so that when Progressives have a bigger and more liberal majority than we have now, we can enact a perfect bill. Hey, Grover Norquist! My friends and I want to go to your rallies!

BO, NP, HR, et al: I hate it when you're right, Rahm.

Hamsher: Obama's in the pocket of business and has never done anything good for Progressives! Stay home this November to teach Robert Gibbs a lesson! While you're doing that, be sure to look at me and observe how pure I am, how unsullied by the need to actually accomplish things. This is great!

BO, NP, HR, et al: FML.
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  #25  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:27 AM
TwinSwords TwinSwords is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
...
Nice.

I honestly don't get the "give me the whole loaf or none at all" crowd. It's as if you took a homeless person off the streets and set them up in a small two bedroom apartment. After moving in they realize they don't have a jacuzzi, a tennis court, and a swimming pool, so they condemn you for providing inadequate housing, and then in a fit of pique move back to the streets. It takes incredible childishness, selfishness, and moral vanity* to demand you get everything you want within the first months of a new administration, or set about sabotaging the entire enterprise if you don't get it. Especially given the incredibly Congressional obstacles you've described.

Some people just fancy themselves victims and would rather have the country driven into the ground by Republicans than settle for the imperfect yet substantial progress we have already made in <2 years under Obama.



*But really, it's mostly childishness. Only a child believes you can have cake and ice cream for every meal.

Last edited by TwinSwords; 08-17-2010 at 12:31 AM..
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  #26  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:49 AM
uncle ebeneezer uncle ebeneezer is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Jane Hamsher would be a brilliant political strategist in a world where Democrats didn't have to win elections or pass laws that overcome fillibusters.
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  #27  
Old 08-17-2010, 04:12 PM
ohreally ohreally is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
This is a spectacularly bad analogy.
Glad to hear you agree with me that Bloggin' Noggin's game-theoretical metaphor was spectacularly bad. In no way can the situation be modeled as a nonzero sum game since the main player, the uninsured, doesn't even get to play.

As for your "dialogue," go ahead and ridicule Hamsher if you want but, as usual, you'll lose the argument. On the other hand, liberals have lost most of the arguments in the last 30 years, so I assume you're used to it.
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  #28  
Old 08-17-2010, 06:38 PM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
As for your "dialogue," go ahead and ridicule Hamsher if you want but, as usual, you'll lose the argument. On the other hand, liberals have lost most of the arguments in the last 30 years, so I assume you're used to it.
To clarify the conversation, what arguments have liberals lost between 1980 and now and how has Hamsher's position won? Or if that's not the claim, how has her position, whatever it is claimed to be (I would have thought liberal, myself) done better in some way?

Or are you claiming that loser liberals would have done better if they'd followed Hamsher's political strategy preferences?
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  #29  
Old 08-17-2010, 08:29 PM
ohreally ohreally is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanie View Post
To clarify the conversation, what arguments have liberals lost between 1980 and now.
Beginning in the Carter years, liberals became neoliberals (a concept lifted from the right's playbook) but never had the courage to acknowledge their metamorphosis. So that the trajectory of the Dems is an endless series of retreats and shifts to the right. The Dems do not compromise as a matter of pragmatism: to compromise is their raison d'etre. And the reason for this is that they no longer have any original idea (vision if you will) for which to fight. In other words, the Dems run an electoral machine to put the right team in power (Kos's stated agenda) and get well-meaning gullible suckers to do the heavy lifting for them. Take Joe Lieberman. He is the typical Dem. Oh the Dems hate him all right because he crossed them. But that's politics, not ideology. When Gore picked him as VP, every Dem loved him. But the man's beliefs never changed.

Again, let me restate this: by any measure Clinton and Obama are to the right of Nixon. If I am correct (and I am), then you have to agree that the Dems have lost all the arguments that differentiate them from the other side. The Dems passed health care against the Repubs? Proof that I am wrong. Not at all. The Repubs only opposed it because of electoral politics. But the plan is Dole/Romney. The Dems passed a Republican bill.

Why liberals are only interested in the next electoral fight (and are thus always willing to compromise on everything in ways the other side rarely does) is because they don't believe in anything substantive. Just vacuous fluff like "vibrant communities, "NB's nonzero sumness" or Hurlburt's "muscular foreign policy," just empty words hiding the fact that the Dems, like the Repubs, believe in corporate government and imperial hegemony and both agree that the lower middle class and the poor can just suck.on.this.

Only the Dems lie about it by pretending to care. (In the case of Obama not even that hard: Geithner, Summers, Rubin kind of give it away.)

Last edited by ohreally; 08-17-2010 at 08:33 PM..
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  #30  
Old 08-17-2010, 09:14 PM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

You cut my question in half and thus failed to answer it, ohreally. If Hamsher is so successful vs. liberals (and again, since she is a liberal that makes no sense), how so?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
Beginning in the Carter years, liberals became neoliberals (a concept lifted from the right's playbook) but never had the courage to acknowledge their metamorphosis.
I disagree that the Dems (which is who you are talking about and a less confusing term than "liberals") haven't acknowledged the movement to the center on a variety of issues. The only people who deny that are those screeching about socialism. (I don't agree that's a wholesale denial of liberalism vs. a realignment, but that's another conversation. Specifically, I think you are way overstating it with your "by any measure" thing, and ignoring how much this country has changed in a variety of ways since the '60s, and to claim it's all to the right seems crazy to me. But I want to focus on the current minor tangent first before going off on that.)

Quote:
The Dems do not compromise as a matter of pragmatism: to compromise is their raison d'etre. And the reason for this is that they no longer have any original idea (vision if you will) for which to fight.
Again, I think the ideas of the party have changed and largely due to realignment, and one can certainly prefer some other combination of ideas, but I don't agree that not having all the ideas that Hamsher wants (or not having the ability to put the ideas into practice -- the problem that apparently can be ignored as unimportant -- makes one without any ideas).

I don't have any interest in Lieberman, but the idea that he was adored by the Dems until '08 or whatever is nonsense.
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  #31  
Old 08-17-2010, 09:48 PM
ohreally ohreally is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

You misread me. I never said Hamsher's position won. It lost because of her minority status as a thinking person within the intellectual desert on the left and the lack of courage of the congenital appeasers who crowd out the Democratic party.

Also, I never said the country is all to the right of what it was in the 60s. I said Clinton and Obama's policies are squarely to the right of Nixon's. Let me rephrase this, many of Nixon's landmark domestic policies are so far left of the mainstream today they'd be considered Kucinich territory.
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  #32  
Old 08-17-2010, 11:08 PM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

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Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
You misread me. I never said Hamsher's position won.
Okay, that's all I was trying to clarify. You seemed to be crowing about how liberals would lose again and Jane's tactics win.

I still think your taunt presumes two things (at least) that are not in evidence. First, that the people being taunted believe in the items you think they've sold out. Contrary to that, I think that on at least some of the items on which the Dems have moved right (free trade, for example, and a lot of the new Dem economic policies) they aren't compromising for power, they believe in them. Second, that in the absence of the move right the party would have done better (not lost). That I see no evidence of. A taunt that basically is "liberal ideas can't win" hardly seems very satisfying, yet that was the spirit in which is appeared to be offered.

Quote:
It lost because of her minority status as a thinking person within the intellectual desert on the left...
You have a much higher opinion of her intelligence than I do. I thought she embarassed herself in a number of diavlogs, including those in which I agreed with her basic position, well before the current one (or her whining about people thinking she's disloyal). In fact, the claim that this is about loyalty is hilarious from her, given that she's a charter member of the netroots "it's about loyalty" nonsense, who got upset with other bloggers and pols for not conforming to the party line. (There's even a bloggingheads between Bob and Mickey that touched on that issue in which she's put up as an example of that "don't talk bad about the netroots" view.)

Quote:
Also, I never said the country is all to the right of what it was in the 60s. I said Clinton and Obama's policies are squarely to the right of Nixon's. Let me rephrase this, many of Nixon's landmark domestic policies are so far left of the mainstream today they'd be considered Kucinich territory.
Hardly. I suspect you are over-focusing on health care, and even with that you are ignoring crucial differences between the circumstances then and now. (And the Kucinich comparison is nonsense.) But to think that Obama/Clinton would be Republicans in the '60s or Nixon a Dem today is wrong. Different issues had resonance in the environment for a variety of reasons.

It would be great if those on the left could make something like single payer popular. I'm all for it. (I would far prefer it to our current system.) But focusing on Obama not trying hard enough to pass something impossible at the expense of something achieveable and then being mad at him and calling him no better than Bush because he doesn't (the Hamsher approach) isn't about ideas. It's spitefulness, as others have pointed out more eloquently than I. More important, it decreases the chance of incremental reform without at all increasing the popularity of leftwing ideas. And that's the problem. The left-liberal infighting either helps liberals by making them look moderate (teaching them that's the way to go) or it hurts both. I wish the left could be even as successful as wingnuts on the right. Go for it. As it is, the idea of left as Obama hurts liberals and left leaning centrists, so I'd like for leftwing ideas (even the ones I don't agree with) to have more credibility. I just think the current approach leftwing critics have been adopting doesn't work for whatever reason. (And the Nixon won in a landslide so that shows his clone Kucinich would too if only the Dems would be smart enough to nominate him argument is a non-starter. Yes, I know you didn't actually say that.)

Last edited by stephanie; 08-17-2010 at 11:12 PM..
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  #33  
Old 08-17-2010, 11:21 PM
uncle ebeneezer uncle ebeneezer is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
It would be great if those on the left could make something like single payer popular. I'm all for it. (I would far prefer it to our current system.) But focusing on Obama not trying hard enough to pass something impossible at the expense of something achieveable and then being mad at him and calling him no better than Bush because he doesn't (the Hamsher approach) isn't about ideas. It's spitefulness, as others have pointed out more eloquently than I. More important, it decreases the chance of incremental reform without at all increasing the popularity of leftwing ideas. And that's the problem.
Extremely well said, Stephanie. That pretty much sums up the feelings of many us who don't think that Obama=Bush!!1!
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:24 PM
TwinSwords TwinSwords is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

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Originally Posted by uncle ebeneezer View Post
Extremely well said, Stephanie. That pretty much sums up the feelings of many us who don't think that Obama=Bush!!1!
Second that. And extend the observation to Stephanie's other posts -- all of which have been extremely illuminating and well reasoned.
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:52 PM
uncle ebeneezer uncle ebeneezer is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Yes I meant to add that as well. Stephanie's posts on this and other threads have been stellar presentations of the arguments for what I consider to be the realistic liberal perspective. Given that she is far less uniformly liberal across the spectrum of issues, than you or I, only makes her effort even more impressive.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:10 AM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Thanks, though I feel I don't deserve it in this thread. I've been basically agreeing with what others have said more eloquently.

But, yeah, I'm all over the board depending on the issue.
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Old 08-17-2010, 08:53 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

Quote:
Or are you claiming that loser liberals would have done better if they'd followed Hamsher's political strategy preferences?
Never mind follow. I'll settle for listen to.

The problem for libertarians and leftists is that the mainstream media and the two-party pols frame issues in ways that leave them without a voice and without representation in government. The points they want to make are "not on the table." They can't be followed because for purposes of political discourse they barely exist.

This is exactly what Jane was talking about in the marijuana/drug wars/immigration part of the dialogue. President Obama thinks marijuana legalization is a kind of joke, while much of the rest of the world takes drug legalization rather seriously and considers the US War on Drugs policy to be an abject and horrifying failure. The conservative Catholic right-wing president of Mexico, who wants to discuss drug legalization, is not a hippie and not a member of "the professional left;" in fact, he's a member of the professional right with a very bloody war on his hands -- a war fought over drug demand in the US and with weapons exported to cartels from the US.

If you find the war in Mexico too trivial to be concerned with, look elsewhere in foreign policy. Obama apparently thinks that if one questions US adventures in Afghanistan, Yemen and Pakistan; or if one questions death warrants for US citizens; or if one questions unconditional US support for Israel in blatant contradiction of nearly unanimous UN member state opinion, all that is tantamount to wanting to abolish the Pentagon. But these critical views are mainstream all around the world; they're just not taken seriously inside the Dem-Repub. hegemonic bubble.

Single payer health care -- a cause Jane was willing to take a stand on -- is not a crazy hippie hallucination. It's how things operate to provide arguably superior and certainly fairer health care in several advanced democracies around the globe.

And so it goes. None of this is new in the two-party system. What's new is that left-wing intellectuals seem very reluctant to criticize the center and very eager to give the administration the benefit of every doubt. Whereas I used to look to people on the left to tell the truth about foreign policy, I now need to read Eli Lake.
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  #38  
Old 08-17-2010, 09:07 PM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

What's the contribution of marijuana to the drug war? I would imagine that cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine are the big items. Neither cocaine nor methamphetamine should be legalized due to the serious health risks. So you would be left mostly with cannabis and heroin as possible candidates for legalization. Do you have any good sources for this kind of data?
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Old 08-17-2010, 09:18 PM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

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Originally Posted by Ocean View Post
What's the contribution of marijuana to the drug war?
That's what I was thinking/wondering about during the discussion. I'm all for the legalization of marijuana, since I just don't see any reason not to, but I don't expect it would make much difference to the bad aspects of the drug war. So the discussion seemed completely to bypass the tough issues (which wouldn't have happened had either of them faced someone on the other side or even someone a little more committed to talking about policy).
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Old 08-17-2010, 09:37 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Re: Jane Hamsher -- Gibbs's exhibit A

According to most sources Mexico is the world's #2 producer of marijuana. Number 1 is the USA. A lot of the US marijuana crop is indirectly or directly controlled by Mexican cartels.

According to the Wall Street Journal, quoting both Mexican and US government officials: "Marijuana accounts for anywhere between 50% to 65% of Mexican cartel revenues. While cocaine has higher profit margins, marijuana is a steady source of income that allows cartels to meet payroll and fund other activities."

If weed were legalized here, the US would be self-sufficient in marijuana, needing to import zero from Mexico.

You're right to mention that meth, heroin and coke also fit in the equation. Legalization of marijuana is not a panacea to end the drug trade worldwide or cure all of Mexico's crime and corruption problems. However, it should be part of any sane national discussion of the issues, not a joke line for the president.

Quote:
Neither cocaine nor methamphetamine should be legalized due to the serious health risks.
Yes, there are health risks to many substances. Tobacco and alcohol also present serious health risks, yet they are legal. Possession of cocaine, heroin and meth is already legal in several advanced democracies. Spain is one example. Prohibition is not working.
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