Friday, August 03, 2007


Sam Smith
Bill O'Reilly may be closer to the truth than usual in describing the DailyKos crowd as a hate group. After all, the mundane middle of the Democratic Party defines itself to an extraordinary degree by what it dislikes far more than what policies it supports. There is a mythology among liberals that if we just get rid of Bush, Cheney, Scooter Libby, and Bill O'Reilly everything will be fine. In fact, when you follow their advice and vote as they suggest, you find yourself stuck with Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi.
If you spend a lot of time talking with liberals, you find their rhetoric full of anger at certain individuals. You won't hear much talk of aingle payer healthcare or pension return or credit card usury. Putting Scooter Libby in jail is far more important.
Liberals didn't used to be like this. There was a time when - instead of just hating Dewey, Taft and Nixon - they actually accomplished things like these:
- Regulation of banks and stock brokerage firms cheating their customers
- Protection of your bank account
- Social Security
- A minimum wage
- Legal alcohol
- Right of labor to bargain with employers
- Soil Conservation Service and other early environmental programs
- National parks and monuments such as Death Valley, Blue Ridge, Everglades, Boulder Dam, Bull Run, Chesapeake and Ohio Canal, Mount Rushmore, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton, Cape Cod, Fire Island, and San Juan Islands just to name a few.
- Tennessee Valley Authority
- Rural electrification
- College educations for innumerable veterans
- Housing loans for innumerable veterans
- FHA housing loans
- The bulk of hospital beds in the country
- Unemployment insurance
- Small Business Administration
- National Endowment for the Arts
- Medicare
- Peace Corps
Part of the problem is that liberals have become more of a demographic than a movement, and a pretty upscale one at that. Thus the groups that Democrats used to worry about have been left on their own or to be victimized by conservatives who offer them salvation in lieu of a decent job.
It isn't that the non-elite is more religious these days, it's just that liberals used to have something to profide in the here and now to compete with the vagaries of the conservative hereafter.
The DailyKos crowd is having their annual meeting and getting fond attention from a media that clearly likes their willingness not to rock the boat and to treat politics as a semiotic rather than substantive enterprise.
For the record, however, it should be noted that many of those celebrated at this event:
- Voted for the Iraq war
- Supported the egregious No Child Left Behind law
- Have backed to the hilt the cruel and unconstitutional war on drugs, forerunner of the cruel and unconstitutional war on terror.
- Supported the Clintons who dismantled social democracy and turned the Democrats into GOP Lite.
- Backed NAFTA, the WTO and other assaults on the domestic economy.
- Have refused to support single payer healthcare.
- Have been remarkably complacent as Bush dismantled the Constitution.
In short, it's the sorriest bunch of liberals in over 70 years, which is why the corporate media is so tolerant and the conservatives can continue merrily on their way, often with the help of Democratic votes
Opposing Bush and his capos is a necessity but it is not a policy. Until liberals are willing to support something more than a minimum wage that doesn't even bring us back to where we were in 1956, they're really just one more thing standing in the way of change.


At 4:21 PM, Blogger ajit said...

This is an excellent post. The Kos gang is a mirror copy of Republican Hate Mills like Little Green Footballs and Townhall etc.
For those who say it is more decent Just wait until Hillary becomes President and starts bombing other countries. Those who oppose her will get the same treatment by this Crowd which Little Green Footballs are giving to Bush Opponents.
There is also this childish personality cult around Markos Moulitsas. I really find it so ridiculous. Anyone who criticizes leading Dems are thrown out of that community.
Sam, I really admire the work you do. You are probably one of the smartest guys around. Anyone who is not an automaton, a mindless servant of any organization always deserves the respect. But look at the tragedy, Americans have to inflict on their mind everyday the juvenile propaganda produced by contemptible frauds like Thomas Friedman, O'Hanlon and a host of others. And most of Americans haven't even heard your Name.

I am reminded of that Biblican quote "A prophet is not without honour, except in his own country".

PS That doesn't mean I agree everything you say (like those idiot kosniks with their Dear Leader). I didn't agree with your decision to use Prison Planet article on Tillman Case. They are simply insane,paranoid and not trustworthy. For example, In that story it says Wesley Clark says Neocons ordered Tillman Assassination. It is not. They deliberately misquoted him. He only said the coverup decision might have come from Whitehouse or something on those lines.


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Your editor has been a musician for many decades. He started the first band his Quaker school ever had and played drums with bands up until 1980 when he switched to stride piano. He had his own band until the mid-1990s and has played with the New Sunshine Jazz Band, Hill City Jazz Band, Not So Modern Jazz Band and the Phoenix Jazz Band.


Here are a few tracks:





APEX BLUES   Sam playing with the Phoenix Jazz Band at the Central Ohio Jazz festival in 1990. Joining the band is George James on sax. James, then 84, had been a member of the Louis Armstrong and Fats Waller orchestras and hadappeared on some 60 records. More notes on James

WISER MAN  Sam piano & vocal

OH MAMA  Sam piano & vocal