Democrats and Progressives may have the best platform in a generation.

    I accept the President's jobs compromise deal. The main reason is that it is, with old GOP support, an end run on the Tea Party whose aim is a continuation of the poor economy which spawned it. The package on the other hand gives assurances the economy will grow and gives Democrats a good shot in 2012. Bob Greenstein of CBPP estimated the package would take a full percentage point off unemployment--and without the package the uncertainty of getting any stimulus or unemployment benefits out of the new Congress could tip the economy back into a "double dip". By my calculations, 1% off unemployment is about 1.5 million people.I think of them as particularly vulnerable hostages.

    The big question in my mind is what's next. Much depends on Obama's committment to regulate the financial industry and fend off Republican budget attacks which will be designed to undo every piece of progressive legislation since the New Deal. But leave Obama out of the picture and look at the package as a tutorial. Not in the sense of what Obama might have done right or wrong but in the sense of how the package demonstrates the essential guts of how the system works.

    Decader's picture

    The Rich Already Had Tax Cuts: Who Knew?

    In all the debates over keeping the top run of Bush tax cuts, one pertinent fact kept getting dropped:

    The rich received the same tax cuts up to $250K or $1 million.

    The proposal was simply to rescind the tax breaks for income over that amount.

    But that wasn't enough, apparently - we can freeze federal employee pay because as fearless leader says:

    A look at the anon "hacking" tool ('n stuff).

    Out of the gate, let me just say it pains me to call this hacking. Might as well go out like a total /tard with it ... "Do you want to know how the 3771 haxors took down Visa?" ... barf. However. Damn script kiddies and MSM screwing up the brand aside, this is what they're calling hackers these days so ... you might be wondering what exactly the guys "hacking" Visa/MC/Sarah Palin/Various Swiss/Swedish institutions/etc. are actually doing...

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Dear Barack

    Dear Mr. President:

    I'm a big fan of pragmatism. And I've been a big fan of yours, defending you in the intramural arguments of Left Blogistan. I'm not even especially angry about this particular compromise with the Republicans, which was better than I'd feared it would be. But apparently you're angry. Your press conference yesterday made that very clear. And instead of being angry at the conservatives who've hobbled you, you're angry at the liberals and progressives who've phone banked for you, knocked on doors for you, and written you campaign checks. And that's not okay. So let me break some hard news to you:

    You are not a pragmatist.

    David Seaton's picture

    A fairy tale as grim as Grimm could ever be (a fable for disgruntled Democrats)

    the good fairy

    Once upon a time in a far off and pleasant land, during the reign of King George the Idiot, there lived a young man who dreamed of fame and greatness.


    Obama took office in the midst of an economic crisis. I leave it to others to explain how in two years he might have impacted the high unemployment numbers and poor economy enough to stave off reversal in the midterm election. The fact is he is now facing a recalcitrant HR which will be levered by the Tea Party who want to see the economy fail. Chaos and high unemployment are fertile fields for the Tea Party. It is the purpose of the Tea Party to prevent stimulus and to enact contractionary policies where possible.

    Ramona's picture

    So what do you say, Toopers. Can we get a little help here?

    The tax cut deal rewards Republican obstructionism by giving the wealthy the tax breaks they demanded.  It throws away precious resources needed for investments in jobs and our economy on upper income tax cuts that will do very little to propel economic growth—setting up excuses for the deficit hypocrites to argue for even more cuts to programs serving working families.  It lards the tax cuts for the top 2 percent with an indefensible cut in the estate tax – giving yet another bonus to the super-rich.  Taken togethe
    Donal's picture

    Assange On the Spot + Update

    Someone at Energy Bulletin finds a prefiguration of WikiLeaks in The Shockwave Rider, a 1975 scifi novel by John Brunner.

    we are stardust's picture

    Wikileaks: The Death Knell of the Internet?


    Julian Assange is being held without bail.  He has pissed off some Serious People, and there have been a lot of attempts to prevent Wikileaks from posting what he says is killer information on Bank of America (it’s assumed), Guantanamo Bay (Prison, it’s assumed), and more.

    MrSmith1's picture

    Follow the Drinking Gourd

    "This country was founded on compromise. I couldn't go through the front door of this country's founding. And you know if we were really thinking about ideal positions, we wouldn't have a Union.

    David Seaton's picture

    Where is China headed?

    I heard a talk over a year ago at a meeting of the Madrid Fulbright association: the speaker was professor Fisac, the head of Chinese studies at Madrid University.

    She said that in the course of conversation with an official of the Chinese Communist Party, she had asked him what he considered "socialism".  

    He replied that Western Europe was an example of socialism with its good, free public schools and universities and its good, free public health systems.  

    Some people listening to professor Fisac thought this Tea Partyish formulation was a joke. I didn't.

    Michael Maiello's picture

    Obama's Stimulus Wins

    Ultimately, I'm not as mad about the tax compromise as I thought I'd be because I think Obama won some pretty effective stimulus even though it preserves a tax structure that will continue to encourage wealth to accumulate at the top of the economy.

    Wattree's picture

    A Message to the Black Community


    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Santa Claus: "Giving away toys kills the work ethic of the poor"

    NORTH POLE - Looking trim following lap-band surgery, Santa Claus held a press conference today to announce a fundamental change in his long-time tradition of giving toys to good children.

    Intent on cutting costs as well as teaching ideological lessons, Claus, 43, said that the time was now for Americans to stop looking for handouts.

    we are stardust's picture

    South Korean Trade Agreement: Obama v. Obama

    We’ve been discussing the President a lot lately, making attempts to define him as to style, political ideology, and his place along a liberal-conservative continuum.  We’ve taken various positions partially based on issues we care about and have watched closely since the campaign; we argue about what he supported, what we ‘imagined he supported’.  This is Obama on NATFA  and his opposition to the South Korean Free Trade Agreement on 11/13/07:


    oleeb's picture

    Just Say NO To All The Tax Cuts And Say It NOW!

    Sometimes I wonder how gullible most Democrats really are and since we elected President Obama I've wondered that a whole helluva lot more than usual.  Time after time in recent years the Democrats manage, no matter what, to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, to come back with half a loaf of rotten bread when they had set out with plenty of money to get a whole loaf and each time they do most of the media, average citizens, typical active Democrats, and even bloggers are left scratching their heads as to how it could be that when the task seemed so clear

    Michael Wolraich's picture

    Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Bend Over to Pick Up the Soap

    "If 'don't ask, don't tell' is repealed and you are assigned to bathroom facilities (that have)] an open bay shower that someone you believe to be a gay or lesbian service member also used, which are you most likely to do?"

    -- Question on 2010 Department of Defense Comprehensive Review Survey of Uniformed Active Duty and Reserve Service Members

    It seems that ensuring shower security for American soldiers and Marines is critical to maintaining our global military pre-eminence. If our brave men and women cannot comfortably bathe in environments free from the risk of homosexual lust, how can we expect them to battle armed Taliban insurgents and other enemies?

    In order to assess the gay shower hazard and other threats to military readiness if the "don't ask, don't tell" policy were repealed, the Department of Defense surveyed American troops over the summer.

    Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, found the results reassuring. He told the Senate Armed Services Committee, "Repeal of the law will not prove an unacceptable risk to military readiness. ... I believe our troops and their families are ready for this," although he acknowledged, "some soldiers and Marines may want separate shower facilities."

    Read the full story at CNN.com


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