Archive for September 20th, 2007

Senators Betray Us

The Senate’s appalling 72-25 vote to condemn MoveOn for its “General Betray Us” ad is yet another reminder that not only do the Democrats have the narrowest of majorities in the Senate, but that progressives (or reasonable facsimiles thereof) have the narrowest of majorities in the Democratic caucus. Only 25 Democrats voted against the MoveOn condemnation, with two or three abstaining or absent.

Although individual members have varied, the totals have been very similar on other key votes where the Democrats have totally folded, such as the authorization to attack Iraq (77-23), the bankruptcy bill (74-25), the Roberts confirmation (78-22), the Alito cloture vote (72-25), and now this. (The Military Commissions Act was almost as bad, at 65-34.) There’s a reliable pool of 10-25 Democrats who are willing to side with Republicans for even the most heinous and unpopular of causes, but never more than a handful of Republicans willing to cross the aisle for votes to end the war, or restore habeas corpus, or support our troops by giving them fair leave time.

Republicans will vote against popular opinion to please their base; Democrats will do it to defy them.

And this anti-MoveOn vote is even worse than all those previous votes, because it explicitly repudiates the base. They didn’t just ignore the wishes of the netroots like they usually do; they actually condemned us. I don’t think this vote discredits MoveOn – hell, I can barely even find any mention of it on the NYT, WaPo, or CNN homepages – but it does discredit the Democrats. If they wanted a “Sistah Souljah moment” where they could demonstrate their independence from the crazy liberal hippies, they should have picked an issue where the overwhelming majority of the population doesn’t agree with us. They should remember that just because that Republicans are shouting and wringing their hands at the incivility of it all, that doesn’t mean anyone else is.

Even more stupidly, by condemning MoveOn, the Democrats not only make it very hard for the progressive netroots to support them, but they also make it very problematic to accept that support if offered. Now that they’ve called us a bunch of irresponsible mudslinging outlaws, they have to keep their distance.

If the Democrats have a strategy, it must be so refined and subtle that only dogs can hear it.

(Please join MoveOn’s I Will Not Be Quiet petition – at least let the Democrats know that we won’t sit down and shut up.)

5 comments September 20th, 2007 at 09:42pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Iraq,Politics,Wankers,War

My Brilliant Genius Idea

So, I was noticing that the Sci-Fi Channel is airing Highlander: The Source in Who Wants To Be A Superhero‘s old time slot, and the thought occurred to me:

Wouldn’t Highlander be the perfect reality show? Isn’t “There Can Be Only One” the very essence of most reality shows? And really, the setup (immortals vying for ultimate power!) and the action (lots of swordfights that end in beheadings) would leave shows like Survivor and Amazing Race in the dust.

Better yet, given TV’s penchant for imitation, the idea could spread to other reality shows as well – just think how much more enjoyable American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance would be if the contestants were all the time beheading each other, and maybe even some of the judges as well.

September 20th, 2007 at 08:11pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: TV

Final Airplane Photoblogging

The last of the airplane pics, although I still have a little bit of Air & Space weirdness in reserve.

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A Japanese Zero, or possibly its successor, the Oscar.

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In color!

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The underside of some sort of carrier-based Navy fighter plane.

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Um, a prop engine.

3 comments September 20th, 2007 at 11:54am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Photoblogging,Washington DC

Thought Experiment

Read this David Broder love letter to Newt Gingrich, then try to imagine him writing the same kind of oh-how-I-wish-this-passionate-intellectual-giant-of-a-man-would-run column about Al Gore, or any Democrat as progressive as Newt is conservative (are there any?).

I sure can’t, at least not without a whole lot of pharmaceutical assistance.

September 20th, 2007 at 11:30am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Media,Politics,Republicans,Wankers

Great Moments In Journalism, John Solomon Edition

Another day, another John Solomon hit piece. He goes into loving detail on Hsu and other dodgy bundlers for the Clinton and Edwards campaigns, as well as tying Hsu to Biden and Obama, but spends just a single paragraph on Romney and his dodgy fundraiser, Alan Fabian. No other Republicans are even mentioned.

Solomon’s dodge is that “[m]ost other candidates have not yet released lists of bundlers,” but he uses Democrat Robert Torricelli as an example of a politician who took tainted money in the past. Surely he could have found a Republican – he just didn’t want to.

September 20th, 2007 at 11:17am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Media,Politics,Wankers

Must-Read Of The Day

Sidney Blumenthal mines the Robert Draper biography of Dubya, and comes up with a very creepy portrait of an insecure and borderline deranged president, easily manipulated, in thrall to his father’s enemies and his own insecurity and grandiose ego.

It is a telling statement on just how unmoored from reality he is, that he was willing to voluntarily tell an interviewer all of this stuff, apparently thinking that it cast him in a positive light, as if boasting about his own decisiveness and how History would vindicate him somehow makes those delusions real.

1 comment September 20th, 2007 at 07:17am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Bush,Cheney

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