Once again, Japan wins the internets:
UPDATE: MARU STRIKES BACK!
That’s the dumbest looking turtle I’ve ever seen.
Cute dog… or the world’s ugliest baby.
I like the way Maru seems to say “fuck you, oaf!” with every wriggle of her tail.
@FlyingChainSaw: He’s a boy, but wev. I wonder if all Scottish Folds have that sort of personality. My cat is half Russian Blue, and she acts like a czarina.
I’ve been doing that all day reading about how Barry’s going to knife the public option in the back.
TJ: Princess Sparkle Pony has decided to quit blogging. I has a sad.
@rptrcub: NO!!!!!!! Oh, I join you in teh sad.
@rptrcub: I saw that – I emailed him the following: “Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?”
@nojo: I think Obama is the most aware president since Clinton, and still, I think he is more of a democrat.
So the conventional wisdom is he is going to announce he is not going to make a public option a sine qua non. Well, has he ever said that he thinks a public option is a sine qua non? No, I don’t think so, and therefore, even if he announces that he is not going to regard it as a sine qua non, does that mean he does not want it, or that he is playing some movements that are occurring in congress, in some subtle way?
From what I have seen, and I may be way off, there is a group of 60 progressive house democrats who have stated that a public option is a sine qua non to their support, and thats enough to kill any bill that does not have a public option.
Somehow, I doubt he would do anything that kills any possibility of a measure of some kind from passing.
I also just cannot beleive he is trying to distance himself from the progressive wing, so he can blame it on his own party if nothing is passed, and thats what would happen if he threw the progressives under the bus.
There is just no way in the world he would deliberately run to the right of his own party.
But he may be attempting to run to the right of the blue dogs and centrists, because, by doing this, he is increasing the focus on them as the real obstacles to reform.
Fact is, if all democrats would support health care reform, they don’t need a single republican. His problem right now is not republicans, its that little group founded by Clinton and Gore, the DLC democrats. By removing his objection to a plan that doesn’t have a public option, he increases the pressure on the DLC democrats, forcing them to confront being blamed for the failure of health care reform.
Thats the best I can come up with, I may be wrong, but this is a complicated thing, politically.
@Promnight: I’ve never thought he was particularly left wing. Indeed, back in the 50s he might have given a pretty good imitation of a moderate Republican. I voted for him anyway because I thought he might get things done.
But I’m worried about this puppy whose head is too big for herim to right herimself. Is this some weird, non-American breed?
To put it more bluntly, its clear that nothing of any worth whatsoever will gain the support of any republican. So, now he is left with the ugly task of trying to build consensus simply among the democrats.
He is not a coward, its the cold hard reality that he cannot act the tyrant, as a republican president with a veto proof majority could do, because the democratic party will not support him doing so, unlike the republicans, who will always march in lockstep with a republican president.
And the reality that is always lost in discussions of national, nationwide, politics, is the electoral politics of the individual members of congress and senators, and the fact that some of them simply have to act like republicans, because they would not get elected, and would be voted out of office, if they didn’t. No amount of “leadership” and go to hell, this is what I want, forcefulness, will force a democrat in a swing state to do something that will make his constituents vote him out of office. The blue dog and DLC dems have to live with the fact that they would never have gotten elected in their fucktarded states and districts if they werent blue dog and/or DLC dems.
@Benedick: Alas, our country has swung so far to the right, in general, that I would far prefer a 50s moderate republican to the most liberal, electable, democrat these days. Remember what Eisenhower said?
“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some fifty miles of concrete pavement. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. This is, I repeat, the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron. … Is there no other way the world may live?”
Eisenhower, a two-term republican president, would qualify as a commie today.
Now I am depressed, I have just convinced myself the situation is hopeless.
@Benedick: Exactly, in some ways he would make Eisenhower look kinky.
@Promnight: Have you played the recordings at the Eisenhower archives? They’re powerful orations but oddly more optimistic sounding in the spoken word.
@FlyingChainSaw: Dude was probably on a high for the rest of his life that he was not ordering kids to walk into machine-gun fire and die. Bad as the cold war was, it was better than a world war.
He presided over a massive de-funding of the military, as much as we all hate nukes, nukes were cheaper than maintaining a conventional force of the size, mobility, and state of readiness thought necessary to meet the perceived threat (note please that I do not accept the validity of the assessment of the threat). But I will say again, an Eisenhower republican would be an improvement over any democrat, these days. He was far more “liberal” than could be accepted on the national stage these days. Roosevelt would be relegated to Kucinich-hood.
Ike shared that skepticism. The U2 program, in part inspired by Ed Land’s innovations in optics and photographic chemistry, was really compelled by Ike needing to push back on the story being peddled by the SAC crazies of his day that the Soviets had fleets of Bear bombers fueled and ready to fly east and nuke the US. The first pictures that came back showed few of the vaunted bombers, allowing Ike to argue decisively against some of the overwhelming defense requests that were being pressed on him.
I hate driving though Arlington these days because I can hear Ike screaming from the grave. True, if Ike showed up today, he’d be shouted down as an airheaded marxist afrosupremist. The guy called in the 101st to open the Little Rock schools. Can you imagine if Obama was stuck with a situation like that today? The non-stop fucking hate fests and rioting among the neonazi, militia, snakehandler crowds?
@Promnight: cheaper than maintaining a conventional force of the size, mobility, and state of readiness thought necessary to meet the perceived threat (note please that I do not accept the validity of the assessment of the threat).
Here is another one, a quote from Ike that would not even gain universal support among prgressive liberals, and would, today, have Cheney calling for his execution:
“I was against it on two counts. First, the Japanese were ready to surrender, and it wasn’t necessary to hit them with that awful thing. Second, I hated to see our country be the first to use such a weapon. ”
On his stated opposition to the use of the atomic bomb against the Japanese
Again, when I see what a respected republican president could say 50 years ago, with no lynch mobs calling for his death, and compare it to the general state of the American zeitgeist today, I am deeply saddened, depressed. Exactly coinciding with my lifetime, from 1961 to today, this country has swung so far, so fucking far, towards savagery and barbarism, there is no other honest way to describe it.
@FlyingChainSaw: Ike needing to push back on the story being peddled by the SAC crazies of his day
I believe JFK walks into the picture around that time.
@blogenfreude: Like I say, pretty pictures of the UO campus in 1977, not much else. But in the background of the ROTC scene is the building where half my clients work.
@nojo: However, I did learn something new from the DVD:
William Boyd, the UO president at the time (one of my earlier pranks was to have him elected our dorm president as well) greenlit filming on campus — including his own horse-installed office — after passing on an earlier opportunity years earlier at another campus he ran.
Had Boyd approved the other production, The Graduate would have looked a lot different.
@rptrcub: NOOOOOOOO! A light goes out in the blogosphere. He will be missed. I’m so glad I have a Maru video to watch repeatedly to keep me from cutting myself. Maru is god. That poor little puppy is so far beneath the genius of Maru it’s not even funny.
R.I.P., Princess! I understand and I feel your pain, but you will be sorely missed.
Also: for me, the doggy always usually wins in cuteness contests. But Maru certainly gives that pup a run for the money.
@Promnight: Somehow, I doubt he would do anything that kills any possibility of a measure of some kind from passing.
Well, a measure of some kind seems to be the only goal at this point, even if it ends up benefiting the insurance and pharmaceutical companies more than the US American people.
I also just cannot believe he is trying to distance himself from the progressive wing, so he can blame it on his own party if nothing is passed, and that’s what would happen if he threw the progressives under the bus.
Obama never presented himself as a real progressive. Since when does simply objecting to an aggressive war of choice, or being against retroactive immunity from law-breaking for powerful corporations (before you were for it) define someone as progressive?
Just because some right-wing think tank rated him among the “most liberal” senators at some point doesn’t mean he was. He’s always been way to the right of, say, Bernie Sanders or Russ Feingold.
He’s been trying to distance himself from the progressive wing (or at least, the Democrats’ version of the “base”, i.e., rabid fringe left-wingers as interpreted by the MSM) ever since he got the nomination.
I am NOT an Obama-hater (don’t spank me yet again, SFL!). I think he’s basically a good-hearted “centrist” — the center now defined as far to the right of anything we would have recognized even 20 years ago — with a lust for power (anyone who has the cojones to run for POTUS has powerlust), and the will to do what is necessary to maintain that power for his office and his party.
Just look at the people he pals around with. I’m talking to you, Rahm. And Timothy. And…
As far as throwing progressives under the bus, um, really, who would notice? The treadmarks on my back hurt like the Dickens, but I don’t have a coalition lined up around the block to rub soothing salve into my wounds.
My sweet Pedo, you know I’ll rub the salve in your wounds any day, any time. So long as you do the same for me. And if you work in a little neck rub, well, you know I’d be your bitch.
@Pedonator: Meanwhile across the Pond, DLC-inspired New Labour has run out of constituencies to sell out, and may lose to the New Tories next round.
And might as well mention it here: ur-Mommy Ana Marie Cox is hosting Rachel’s show Friday night. Thursday was Teleprompter Practice.
@SanFranLefty: Your neck, my rub, it’s a date! (Just make sure Mr. SFL knows I have the ghey so it’s safe).
@nojo: I tell you, it’s the New World Order Global Elites seizing their chance to consolidate power during the recession, buying up all the foreclosed homes of the unfortunates targeted by predatory lending and the unemployed displaced by capital migration. And I do mean buying the unemployed. Neo-feudalism is the next triumph of free-market* capitalism!
* markets are free to serve those who already benefit from them
@Pedonator: I’m just Pollyana, OK? Don’t shit on me for being unable to accept the ugly truth. I am a full on commie, noone would make me happy, so I am not disappointed by Obama, I am so far to the left of him, I am so far to the left of Kucinich, I have no hope, and no hopes to be dashed.
@Promnight: Dearest Prommie, just because I pick and choose from your eloquent comments doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want to share a victorious fist-bump with you over any given issue.
I do tend to be a Negative Nelly when it comes to politics and the economy. Please don’t hold it ag’in me. I have to believe my heart is in the right place. Otherwise, why bother?
Also, how can you be to the left of Kucinich? That places you outside the boundaries of acceptable speech (according to the MSM). But I’m out there with you, brother.
Really, the whole left-right thing doesn’t mean much. I’m socialist on so many things, libertarian on so many others.
I do believe government, as an expression of collective will, has a mandate to govern certain things that belong in the commons. Like, um, air and water and those elements that are necessary for human life.
Other than that, pretty much, I’m for free-for-all.
@Pedonator: I believe in the purity of communism as a state-free, people driven social compact where all labor is exchanged openly and freely based on need and ability to produce. However, I’ve also learned over the years that people are fundamentally greedy bastids and if you don’t regulate the shit out of their nefarious predilection to fuck over their mothers to make coin they’ll rob you blind.
So I’m a pragmacommiepaultardObamaniac. And as D Boon said “maybe partying will help”.
Another great Japan story:
And they thought Nancy Reagan’s seances were weird…
@The Nabisco Quiver: Oh, partying is the only help. As in that old old phrase from the 70s, “do you party?” “Are you COOL?” Thank god they don’t test lawyers.
Oh, it is so true, people are such greedy fucktards, and they will work with infinite patience and with the inevitable incremental success of ants, to warp and subvert and cheat any system of government you set up.
There is no sane approach but pragmatism, and acceptance that nothing is perfect, and greedy criminal assholes will always be with us, and will always cheat and game any system that there is, anywhere, any time.
I cannot hope for anything but incremental change, slowly swinging pendulums, which bring things one way, then another, and ya can’t spend your time rending your garments over any ideological impurity.
Maybe the best you can do is to try to devise a system that uses the greed and self interest, that was supposedly the idea behind the checks and balances, and dividing the powers of government, so no one person or branch can take over all functions. Seperate legislation from enforcement, seperate the judicial from the executive, divide the legislature into two branches, it does work, badly, but OK, at slowing the pendulum’s swing, like a shock absorber, it takes decades for republican judges to reach a majority, it will take decades for liberal judges to get back in the majority, oh fuck it.
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