Rad Geek People's Daily

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And now they bring up you.

Here's a pretty old post from the blog archives of Geekery Today; it was written about 16 years ago, in 2008, on the World Wide Web.

Here’s the opening of a MoveOn fundraising letter that I got just before going out of town last week. I’ve cut it off at the point where I stopped reading:

From: Nita Chaudhary, MoveOn.org Political Action <moveon-help@list.moveon.org>
Subject: 60 votes to win
Date: 3/19/2008 6:46 AM

Dear MoveOn member,

It’s happened again and again this year, on every issue we care about. Iraq. Health care. The climate crisis. Strong bills have sailed through the US House, only to stall in the face of Republican obstruction in the Senate. Republicans are on pace to double the Congressional record for the most filibusters.

Here’s the good news: Republicans are defending 23 Senate seats next year, compared to just 12 for the Democrats. Democrats could gain as many as 60 seats in the Senate, enough to break Republican filibusters and usher in a new era of progressive reform.

We’ve got a plan to take advantage of every seat that’s in play, make even more races competitive, and create a progressive majority that will last for a generation. But it’s going to take sustained support from you to pull it off and there’s no time to waste. Can you contribute $15 per month (you can cancel at any time) from now through Election Day?

Last year, the Senate Republicans obstructed numerous bills including stalling health insurance for the children who need it most and blocking a time-line to bring the troops home from Iraq.

Now look at some of the proposals from the Democratic presidential candidates that will almost certainly take 60 votes in the Senate to pass:

  • No more blank checks in Iraq

. . .

I stopped reading here because this is a lie.

It does not take 60 votes in the Senate to pass No more blank checks in Iraq. It does not take a filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate — any more than it takes a veto-proof majority in the House — to halt blank-check funding for the Iraq War.

It doesn’t take positive legislation of any kind at all to halt funding for the Iraq War; all that it takes is a lack of any more laws to keep on funding it, whether in the form of regular budget line items or in the form of the repeated off-the-ledger infusions of cash which go to fund the Occupation’s perpetual state of emergency. Republican Senators can’t filibuster a non-bill and neither can President George W. Bush — or any President who might succeed him — veto it. It doesn’t take 60 Senators or 290 Representatives to stop bills from passing. All you need is a simple majority, which the Democrats already have, and have had for the last year and a half, and with which they have done worse than nothing over and over again.

The reason that those blank checks keep getting written, with Democrat Harry Reid and Democrat Nacy Pelosi’s signatures right by the X, is because the Democratic leadership, so-called, doesn’t give enough of a damn about ending the war to take on the political costs of blocking funding for it. The only reason that they could possibly think that doing what they want depends on having a larger majority than they already have is if what they want to do is something other than halting war funding.

The Democratic leadership clearly wants a larger majority in Congress, and they are going to keep on giving George Bush every dollar he asks for unless and until they get that larger majority. They don’t need the larger majority to stop sending him the money, so one of two things must be true. Either the Democratic leadership is waiting until they consolidate more political power so that they can pass a plan which will prolong the war rather than ending it, or else they are waiting until they consolidate more political power because they don’t want to end the war until after they’ve fully exploited it as a campaign issue in the upcoming Congressional and Presidential elections. In either case, the strategy is despicable. And in either case, it’s shameful to see a putatively antiwar group repeating their opportunistic lies.

No union with war-mongers, spiritually or politically.

Further reading:

7 replies to And now they bring up you. Use a feed to Follow replies to this article · TrackBack URI

  1. doviende

    haha, i love how they predict “a new era of progressive reform” from a group that is funded by and consists of megacapitalists. since when did the democrats become progressive?

    oh ya, this is the USA, where anything left of fascism is considered progressive :P

  2. Rad Geek

    Well, I’m willing to give MoveOn a pass on that one.

    Not because of any good opinions I may have about the Democratic Party, but rather because of the rotten opinion I have of eras of progressive reform. During the old era of progressive reform, the sort of technocratic managerialism that went on under that name wasn’t even left of fascism in any way that mattered (cf. 1, 2, 3). I wouldn’t at all be surprised to see a new era of progressive reform from a group that is funded by and consists of megacapitalists, because that’s exactly how the old era of progressive reform happened back in the day.

    If that’s what progressivism is, the corporate liberals in the Democratic Party can have it. I’ll stay where I am — the libertarian Left — and keep pushing for a grassroots movement based on people power, not a political party based on statist power plays.

  3. Anon73

    While surfing the net I found the “capitalist” equivalent of AFAQ at http://www.ozarkia.net. His review of Naomi Klein’s latest book here has a really good chart; the horizontal axis is socialism/capitalism, and the vertical axis is freedom/totalitarianism. It would appear Nancy Pelosi and Naomi Klein are in the lower left quadrant, and you are somewhere on the top. Also, it’s kind of amusing that Klein picks Milton Friedman as a representative of corporatism considering the better choices like Baker or Cheney.

· May 2008 ·

  1. Discussed at radgeek.com

    Rad Geek People’s Daily 2008-05-13 – Gosh that’s tough:

    […] GT 2008-03-25: And now they bring up you. […]

— 2009 —

— 2012 —

  1. Discussed at radgeek.com

    Rad Geek People's Daily 2012-10-24 – Change You Can Believe In: Mass Deportation Edition:

    […] DREAM-eligible immigrants, in the last few months before the election, in a particularly cynical And Now They Bring Up You move. But the promise was a lie, and was broken within weeks of when he made it. —Ed.] […]

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