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Cartoon of the Day: Squishy Democrats v the GOP advantage, 2014

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vote  squishy Democrats gotv

If so-called squishy Democrats don't get their act together, then this country will be in a world of trouble. In a previous post, Our country is sick with the cancer of Conservatism. This may be your last warning, liberals, @Marnus3 approprtiately sounds a very timely alarm:

So this may be your last warning, liberals. Our country is sick with the cancer of Conservatism. Much has been lost in the time since 2008, when we felt so good about our health. But like cancer of the body, there is always hope when there is life. It is getting late, but it is not too late. Pay attention, educate yourself on the issues, do the same for your friends and neighbors. Tweet a tweet, warn your Facebook friends, volunteer for a liberal candidate, and most of all, vote this November. Vote like your life depends on it, because at this late stage of the disease, it does.

That's been my mantra, too, for some time now. If we fail to Get Out The Vote (GOTV) in November, the consequences will be dire, and even worse, lasting.

This tweet just showed up in my stream:

My answer: Gerrymandering and passion (not to mention voter suppression). Republicans, especially conservatives, have one talent that squishy Democrats and Progressives might want to adopt: Generating votes by triggering strong emotions (in the case of the GOP, fear) among their often-un/misinformed supporters. But in order to inspire voters, we need a strong, clear message that hits home.

However, and this is a huge "however," younger voters (along with everyone else) need to listen, and hear, that strong, clear message. After having taught teens and twentysomethings for well over a decade, I can assure you that this is a major challenge.

The pattern I noticed most was how driven and enthusiastic students could be when motivated... but that drive and enthusiasm was ephemeral. The second something else got their attention, off they'd go, leaving their good intentions in the dust:

UP squirrel dog animated gif

In this post, I concentrated primarily on the youth vote.

Take a look at David Horsey's excellent L.A. Times cartoon below. Then please go here to read his accompanying article, "Latinos, single women, young voters: a squishy base for Democrats," in which he expands on the topic in more depth:

david horsey cartoon 2014 elections squishy Democrats

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Our country is sick with the cancer of Conservatism. This may be your last warning, liberals.

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conservative, conservatism

Need a compelling tirade on conservatism? Meet our new guest ranter @Marnus3, who is graciously sharing posts from his site "The Poorly Written Political Blog." Marnus3, aka Joe Santorsa, aka one of my regular (and favorite) BLUNT video contributors knows how to sound off with the best of them. He does not write poorly, by the way. He's a hilarious, creative tweeter and BLUNT commentator, he's astute, and he's a really, really nice guy.

Welcome in, Joe! And his rant about conservatism and what we liberals need to do about it begins in 5... 4... 3... 2... 1...

Conservatism is like cancer, and like cancer it comes in many forms and levels of aggression.  Some are more subtle and mask the symptoms until it is too late. Some are more aggressive and have to be treated immediately. They range from the Republican party, to the Tea Party, to hate groups and Rush Limbaugh. But make no mistake, whatever form or no matter how aggressive, these diseases of society must be dealt with or they will kill.

There is a tendency in our society, as in the care of our own health, to ignore things and tell ourselves that everything is all right and bad things only happen to someone else. This is the advantage a cancer like Conservatism has. It hides in the shadows, hoping we don’t notice, and by the time we do, the damage is done. This happened to liberals not too long ago, and we are now struggling to survive and hang on to the life that used to be our great country.

Ironically, it started with the election of Barack Obama. Euphoria spread through our ranks and we felt we had finally slayed the twin dragons of hate and war and were headed toward a better world. We felt good. We felt invincible, so we celebrated, perhaps too long. Then came the first sign of the disease, the Tea Party. At first we ignored it, we laughed at it, we said to ourselves it’s nothing and just ignored it. That was our first mistake. It grew, feeding off the hate, greed and bigotry that was built into its DNA.

The cancer first manifested itself as resistance to helping the victims of the greed of Wall Street, then later spread as opposition to the Affordable Health Care Act. By some miracle, though, we recovered for a while. Some relief was given to the casualties of the Great Bush Recession and a form of health care was passed. So we told ourselves those symptoms were nothing. Everything was all right. Except it wasn’t. The temporary relief of symptoms only meant the disease was regrouping and would come back with a vengeance. That was our second mistake, ignoring the mid-term elections of 2010.

Liberals stayed home in November, 2010 basking in the glow of our new president and his recent legislative achievements. Life was good, the symptoms had abated and we felt safe. So we went on vacation. Conservatives did not. They went to the polls in great numbers and by the time we recognized the disease was back, it was in control. They won the House of Representatives, state houses and legislatures, school boards, and city councils. The disease of Conservatism had metastasized to every level of our government.

Now we were really sick and the manifestations of the disease were many. Women’s rights to health care, the right to marry whom you pleased, even the right to vote was under attack. Aid to the hungry, help for the unemployed all that made us human was waning. Every cell in our body politic was being ravaged by this malignancy. So we went to the doctor, but medical science could only do so much at this stage. We managed to save the presidency, but the disease already had taken its toll.

So this may be your last warning, liberals. Our country is sick with the cancer of Conservatism. Much has been lost in the time since 2008, when we felt so good about our health. But like cancer of the body, there is always hope when there is life. It is getting late, but it is not too late. Pay attention, educate yourself on the issues, do the same for your friends and neighbors. Tweet a tweet, warn your Facebook friends, volunteer for a liberal candidate, and most of all, vote this November. Vote like your life depends on it, because at this late stage of the disease, it does.

whistleblower warning

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Video- Fox Yappers Upset They Know Too Much On Terror Warning

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Can't win if you do, can't win if you don't. Via TP.

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David Gregory, NBC not charged for possession of gun magazine, but blasted by DC Attorney General

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bad decision

See that high-capacity gun magazine that David Gregory was waving under Wayne LaPierre's wingnutty nose on “Meet the Press”? He shouldn't have done that because his possession of such a piece of equipment was illegal. But Gregory's off the hook and will not be prosecuted, says D.C.’s attorney general, because he has no criminal record, so off to court he doesn't go.

Whew! That was a nail-biter! Kidding.

The AG went on to say that “our recognition that the intent of the temporary possession and short display of the magazine was to promote the First Amendment purpose of informing an ongoing public debate about firearms policy in the United States.”

In other words, don't be silly, this was a news show [sic], and Gregory's a dufus a journalist so he gets a pass. This time.

Here are screen grabs and excerpts from the Attorney General's rather unflattering letter:

"Having carefully reviewed all of the facts and circumstances of this matter, as it does in every case involving firearms-related offenses or any other potential violation of D.C. law within our criminal jurisdiction, OAG has determined to exercise its prosecutorial discretion to decline to bring criminal charges against Mr. Gregory, who has no criminal record, or any other NBC employee based on the events associated with the December 23,2012 broadcast. OAG has made this determination, despite the clarity of the violation of this important law, because under all of the circumstances here a prosecution would not promote public safety in the District of Columbia nor serve the best interests of the people of the District to whom this office owes its trust."

 david gregory letter 2david gregory letter 1

"...Ignorance of the law or even confusion about it is no defense. We therefore did not rely in making our judgment on the feeble and unsatisfactory efforts that NBC made to determine whether or not it was lawful to possess, display and broadcast this large capacity magazine as a means of fostering the public policy debate. Although there appears to have been some misinformation provided initially, NBC was clearly and timely advised by an MPD employee that its plans to exhibit on the broadcast a high capacity-magazine would violate D.C. law, and there was no contrary advice from any federal official."

"Repetition by NBC or any employee of any similar or other firearms violation will be prosecuted to the full extent supported by the facts and the law.

"I am confident that you will convey our deep concern and warning to your client."

Two strikes and you're out, David.

idiot warning

H/t: David Shuster, Special thanks to Thomas Soldan

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President Obama warns the left: You won't like the budget.

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It's budget cut time again, and the White House is preparing their allies for the worst. But he's still continuing his well-received populist, jobs jobs jobs message on the campaign trail, so that's something. But, still, once again...

Via The Hill:

In his first three years, Obama had a free hand to suggest spending levels for government programs in his annual budget blueprint. But that is not the case this year because the administration is constrained by the budget deal reached in August to raise the debt limit. 

He must stick to the $1.047 trillion spending cap he agreed to with GOP leaders, which means he will call for less discretionary spending than he did last year.

Senior administration officials fear a backlash from the left and are trying to prepare their allies to expect a disappointing budget, sources say.

A senior White House person said we weren’t going to be happy with the budget, but they’re doing the best they can” given the spending caps set by the 2011 Budget Control Act," said one source.... This year, it appears the administration is giving Democrats a heads-up, which goes a long way in politics.

According to senior administration officials, union leaders can breathe a little easier knowing that the Department of Labor, including the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Mine Safety Health Administration, won't be at the receiving end of the big cuts. The same goes for the National Labor Relations Board.

The Hill's article wasn't specific about the question of smaller cuts, only referring to the "toughest" ones.

There is one thing we can be pretty sure of: GOP obstruction to any decent Democratic plan or suggestion.

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OMB: President Obama is willing to veto spending bills

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Roll Call is reporting about a letter from Office of Management and Budget Director Jacob Lew to leaders of the House and Senate appropriations committees, and here's some of what it says:

"If the president is presented with a bill that undermines critical domestic priorities, or national security through funding levels or language restrictions, contains earmarks, or fails to make tough choices to cut where needed while maintaining what we need to spur long-term job creation and win the future, the president will veto the bill...

“Swift passage of appropriations legislation should not be jeopardized by ideological provisions that have no place in funding legislation... Accordingly, the administration urges the Congress to pass final appropriations without ideological or political provisions.”

One example is the Environmental Protection Agency, which is funded in the Interior and environment appropriations bill.

He also mentioned funding for the "agencies involved in implementing the health care overhaul law and for agencies charged with ramping up initiatives under the financial services overhaul law."

Get that veto pen out, Mr. President.

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House liberals to Obama: Tell GOP, "Hands off Social Security!"

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This topic should be getting more media attention. Did I say that out loud? How naive am I to believe that something as substantive as Social Security would be covered? Silly me. It doesn't contain the words "Palin" or "Bachmann". But seriously, folks...

If President Obama screws with Social Security, he's asking for a huge backlash from his base, and then some. I'd be writing a few letters of my own.

Did I mention we need more like Grijalva and Ellison?

Via Greg Sargent:

In the letter, Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chairs Raul Grijalva and Keith Ellison argue that Obama has a unique opportunity to frame the issue by positioning himself as the keeper of the "promise of Social Security." They ask him to place himself in opposition to "radical" Republicans who are hell-bent on dismantling the program, and request a meeting to discuss how Obama and Dems will handle the issue in the 112th Congress [...]

This call from liberals, of course, carries echoes of the public option debate, where House progressives repeatedly urged Obama to draw a sharp line on the provision, only to ultimately be ignored. [...]  But the letter is a sign that the left is going to kick up a huge amount of noise if Obama flirts with any deal that would cut Social Security, which could set back efforts by the White House to repair the rift with House progressives over the tax deal, as the White House appears to want to do.

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