Bloomberg targets Warren

    Email I received today, from a group, Bold Progressives:

    Billionaire New York mayor Mike Bloomberg calls himself "independent." But he shows no independence from Wall Street bankers.

    Last year, he cracked down on Occupy Wall Street. Yesterday, he endorsed Republican Senator Scott Brown against Wall Street's biggest foe -- consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren. He's even pulling together other rich donors to raise money for Brown.

    Can you help us raise $50,000 for Elizabeth Warren by August 15 -- the day of Bloomberg's fundraiser for Brown? Click here to donate $3 today.

    Bloomberg has higher political aspirations. It would greatly benefit him to bury the political career of an inspiring truth teller like Elizabeth Warren -- someone known as the "Sheriff of Wall Street" who could hold him accountable for years to come. 

    We can't let Wall Street billionaires conspire to defeat Elizabeth Warren. 

    Please help fight back. Click here to donate $3 to Elizabeth Warren's campaign today

    Thanks for being a bold progressive.

    --Adam Green and Stephanie Taylor, PCCC co-founders

    I like this group.  

    Elizabeth Warren, if elected, will have an opportunity, against long odds, to bring along enough fellow US senators in support of policies and actions she supports to rein in the big banks who retain such a dominant, outsized, and unhealthy role in our politics and economy.  

    Bloomberg and the many other monied interests seeking to defeat her must be very afraid of her to be working so hard to defeat her.  I guess one US senator willing to seriously challenge the big bank lobby is one too many for them to tolerate.  

    In supporting Warren's candidacy by no means do I equate that with agreeing with everything she believes and might try to do.  But the present lineup in the Senate is grossly imbalanced, in favor of an absurd and corrupt timidity when it comes to scrutinizing the conduct and role of the big banks in this economy, and in their willingness to seriously consider measures that may be necessary to avoid a repeat down the road, such as limiting their size and potential reach over the wider economy.

    If and where Elizabeth Warren (if she wins) is off base, in my estimation she will stand little or no chance of prevailing on particular proposals or initiatives she pursues in the US Senate.  Even where she is on target and right she will face very, very tough uphill sledding if she is to prevail.  If elected, her factual claims will be scrutinized to the nth degree and she will be called on the carpet wherever she is shown to be incorrect.  I think there are plenty of checks and balances in place to ensure that she doesn't become a one-person czarina in the US Congress on policies affecting the financial sector.  The problem we face is quite the opposite of that.


    Voices in the wilderness are always needed and Bernie Sanders is not getting any younger. ;-}


    I really get a kick out of the left in this country. Since the days of JFK the left has been of the opinion that "if only we could this this or that person in office, things would be hunky dory" "if only we could get this or that legislation passed, things would be hunky dory." "if only we could get this or that policy part of the the agenda, things would be hunky dory."


    I have a question then. Hows that working for ya ?

    If your question was rhetorical, really a comment about the left, I disagree.  I don't think the left in the US has been optimistic, numerous, confident, or myopic enough to think anything like what you attribute to them for decades now. 


    Ok cmaukonen - I'll answer your question.  Trying to elect liberals and pass liberal legislation has worked in some cases and not others.  Large democratic majorities in both houses of Congress and a populist president in the mid-60s passed civil rights legislation and there have been various other "wins" for America since then but at least when it comes to economic policy, America has lurched dangerously to the right. 

    Now I have a question for you, what strategy or strategies do you think would be more successful when it comes to defeating the extremists on the right who are deliberately tearing America down?

    Maybe try and figure out what it is that the right is doing "right" and the left is doing "wrong".

    Reading Hal's reply (thank you, Hal, for jumping in), I interpreted your comment/question, mauk, differently.  I took it as most likely a rhetorical question because you set up a strawman caricature of the people you were commenting on.  I don't know, nor have I read, anyone, who might self-identify as on "the left" who believes there are any single all-encompassing policy changes that would come close to making everything in our society hunky dory.

    When you refer to the "left" in the US, I think of folks like Noam Chomsky or his close friend, the late Howard Zinn.  Those folks tend to articulate much more extensive critiques of American society and have known that only the development of powerful social movements could create enough pressure on our political system to make much significant headway in the directions they favor. As between those two, Chomsky definitely has seemed more the glass mostly empty of the critics while Zinn managed to remain more publicly upbeat over the years about the possibilities for progressive changes in this society.  I read Chomsky's pamphlet Occupy yesterday and that's about as upbeat as I've seen him.  He clearly sees Occupy as a highly promising development, one he participated in from early on. 

    Based on what I have read of your writings, Mauk, I took you to be poo-poohing citizen investment of time or energy or hope in our badly disfunctional electoral political scene, favoring instead more emphasis on direct action and social movement building.  Is that an accurate read on my part, or did I get that wrong?  

    Although my belief in the necessity of direct action and social movement building as essential to bring about many key progressive changes in our society--on economic, environmental and political reform policies in particular--has only been strengthened by what I have observed in our politics over the past 3 years in particular, I don't view it as an either/or choice citizens face between these types of activities on the one hand, "versus" involvement in electoral politics on the other hand.  

    I feel that supporting promising new candidates for public office, such as Elizabeth Warren, as well as vulnerable incumbents with strong records including demonstrated willingness to take on tough fights and interests, is also a valuable way to support progressive change in our country.  There may be folks around these parts who disagree with that.  Maybe you are one of them.

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