Toward the preservation of your government

Well, I was about to head up to bed, taking my working class crafted beer (Sierra Nevada) with me to quench my thirst as I read more of Obama’s 2nd book. But then I saw this comment from danceswithpuma in the Puma Birthday Party over at The Confluence, which led me to this comment at PUMApac. Long story short, I googled and found the article (Why Obama & Dean Fear 4 Million!) cited in that last comment, and it is the only press piece (not written by an actual PUMA) that I have seen that seeks to understand the PUMA movement without denigrating it. That last link is the one you want to go directly to the article. (You don’t have to chase your tail like I did. Heh) And it is really good.

It’s posted on a site called Politically Drunk on Power!, which has as its tagline the following: Politically Drunk On Power is a site dedicated to bringing common sense and historical perspective back to today’s polarized and populist political environment. Sounds pretty good to me. Anyway, the article is great in that it really tries to give PUMAs a fair shake, and pretty accurately describes our grievances and what we’re trying to do here with this movement (granted the author calls it a campaign). I really liked the appeal to Washingtonian citizens, as in Geo. W. himself. It’s true, we are more like the founders than we are like modern political animals.

As interesting as that is, I found something else in that article that helps with what I’m trying to do with this blog. In addition to articulating the narrative of the PUMA movement (along with hundreds of other blogs), I am interested in pushing this movement out into the streets. I want to build the movement, and I see stepping outside of our admittedly fabulous echo chamber to be an important step in doing that. It’s why I make my own postcards and pin them to the corkboard at my local grocer, and hand them out to anyone who will listen.

But Peacocks and Lilies is also about reasoning out the best way to use the leverage we have this year. I want PUMAs, especially PUMAs caught up in the emotional aspect of this movement, to take a real honest look athe the options, and to be given the chance to decide based on changed criteria from previous elections. We’re not getting anywhere following the same old patterns. SO maybe we should consider such options as that McCain is the most effective way to utilize your leverage, because it forces the Obama camp to find two votes to replace yours. To that end, I found this part of the article most intriguing:

The next problem for the Obama campaign is fundraising. The summer months are typically the doldrums of campaign financing with most donations flowing in after the conventions. Obama flipped on his commitment to public funding because of this reason. The Obama campaign expected growth in the fundraising in May, especially in light of the heated primary race. Yet, Obama’s campaign donations dropped by 33% in May, while Clinton’s and especially McCain’s increased. The Obama campaigns understands that he must garner the support of Hillary Clinton and his donors must be willing to help her retire her campaign debt. If they don’t, there will be a backlash from even more Clinton supporters. However, Obama has no intention of pushing for a quick retirement of Clinton’s $20 million debt. He know that the PUMA community is still donating to the Clinton campaign and the sooner that debt is retired, the sooner their donations will flow to John McCain. Obama is banking on the fact that Clinton’s debt will not be retired before the conventions, thus limiting contributions to the McCain campaign by Puma’s and the spending of contributions by McCain who is taking public financing.

The fear that the PUMA community and their silent supporters will realize the power of their fundraising. If just half of those 4 million who do not support Obama were to immediately give $10 to both the McCain campaign and PumaPac, the influx of cash would spread the Puma message like a wildfire through the media while providing the McCain campaign with the extra resources they need to overcome the wealthy who have funded 60% of Obama’s campaign. If the just half of this 4 million were to contribute the media would be forced to question a campaign that they have more often referred to as a “movement”, than as the “political campaign” it is.

I was so intrigued I immediately gave $10 to PUMApac, via the contribution page. I couldn’t quite bring myself to donate a whole $10 to McCain yet, but I did go and immediately gave him $5.44. I will do so again over the summer, because this article is right. As long as our funds are tied up in retiring Hillary’s debt, the less effective we’ll be in combating the Obama campaign, or in building a challenge movement at the Convention. And it’s by design.

I didn’t ask for this fight. I sure didn’t ask to fund it, but fund it I will, even on my meager working class wages. It’s too important. Because, as J. Brown, the author of this article so eloquently put it:

PUMA, whether you agree with their members personal positions or not, embodies the spirit of American Independence and the spirit of our founding fathers that our strength lies in the people, not in political parties.

So, if you are inclined, and have the funds, I encourage you to donate toward the preservation of your government.

You’re own lying eyes

I don’t normally post twice in a morning, but I found something while making the rounds today that absolutely MUST get more attention. H/T Count Us Out via the Confluence. The article is Obama Pays Female Staffers Less Than Males. It’s a reposting from Cybercast News Service, which, admittedly, is a source I know nothing about. I’ll update if I find out more.

But it contains some interesting information on how Obama practices his belief that women deserve equal pay for equal work, or rather, how it’s another lie. Money quote:

The average pay for the 33 men on Obama’s staff (who earned more than $23,000, the lowest annual salary paid for non-intern employees) was $59,207. The average pay for the 31 women on Obama’s staff who earned more than $23,000 per year was $48,729.91. (The average pay for all 36 male employees on Obama’s staff was $55,962; and the average pay for all 31 female employees was $48,729. The report indicated that Obama had only one paid intern during the period, who was a male.)

McCain, an Arizona senator, employed a total of 69 people during the reporting period ending in the fall of 2007, but 23 of them were interns. Of his non-intern employees, 30 were women and 16 were men. After excluding interns, the average pay for the 30 women on McCain’s staff was $59,104.51. The 16 non-intern males in McCain’s office, by comparison, were paid an average of $56,628.83.

The Obama campaign did not respond to written questions submitted on the matter Thursday by Cybercast News Service .

Bolding their’s. So if you’re a woman looking for a job, you stand a better chance at being treated fairly if you get a job with John McCain than if you get one with Barack Obama. Irony alert! Thank goodness our eyes are open this year. But there’s more. I followed a tiny link at that article to another article from April about how both Clinton and McCain were better at practicing equal pay than Obama, and that one came with some handy-dandy charts. You should definitely check out those charts, as well as the info on Clinton. I’d post ’em for you, but they are PDFs.

Keep this information in mind as you consider your options. Remember it when Obama goes on about being the best choice for women, because the Democratic party is the only party women can count on. Speak up about it when anyone asks you why you won’t support the Messiah. Tell them it comes down to this: Who are you gonna believe, Obama, or you’re own lying eyes?

Update: The wiki on CNS. You can judge for yourself whether you trust this information. They did cite the Secretary of the Senate Report ending April 2007 as their source. I haven’t been able to find that report online, but will continue to pursue the information for follow up posts.

Back to Reality

I don’t yet have a word for the dynamic I’m going to write about today, but maybe in the writing I’ll stumble across one. It has to do with irony and phoniness and where those two things intersect with consequences. It also has to do with everyday people ( as opposed to the political chattering classes that comprise television news, the mainstream print media, & the blogosphere) and their hunger for authenticity. It’s really the Achilles heel of the Democratic Party. Finally, it’s a dynamic best seen in the candidacy of John Kerry.

John Kerry has never been a tough guy. Even in the Navy he wasn’t a tough guy. He was, in fact, likable enough. Chummy, if you will. It’s that quality that, perhaps, made him a good leader for the men he commanded, even if his overall performance lacked a bit. But, he was able to convince the Democratic leadership that his war record would lend him a tough guy aura, which would make him impermeable to Republican attacks about national security. And the Democratic leadership believed him, and did everything they could to help him become the candidate.

But for most Americans, Kerry was an unknown in a field of unknowns. They would learn a lot about his history as the campaign wore on, but only the most devoted political junkies knew anything about his past as the political season opened that January. If you had googled his name at the time you would have been directed to his campaign website, his Senate site, a news article or two from a Massachusetts paper, another two articles from the Washington Post regarding some federal legislation, and a handful of right-wing blog posts about Jane Fonda on the front page. The Swift Boaters didn’t exist yet, so there was very little from his military record to clutter your search.

So John Kerry wasn’t a tough guy, he was just going to play one on our TVs. I think most Americans, even if they aren’t paying that close attention to details, do have an intuitive sense for a lot of things, including phoniness. And Kerry reeked of phoniness. But in his cynical attempt to exploit a part of his own past, and not just something insignificant, but an important part of cultural life, he left himself open to criticisms that reinforced that phoniness.

Of course it appeared as if he threw his medals over the White House fence, but it also looks like he still has them. So he was either lying then or lying now, or so the reasoning goes. Nuance! Cried liberals, myself included, but that’s a meek come back, reinforcing the phoniness of the tough guy image. Had Kerry campaigned on authenticity, instead of on a phony take on his own record, mythologizing it like a 30-year-old does their twenties, the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth would have played out like the bad political theater it was.

Ironically, such posturing lead to Kerry’s near defeat, and that he wasn’t, in fact, a tough guy, just really more an agreeable sort of fellow, led him to decide to let Ohio slide unchallenged, which I still think was a big mistake. If he had been an actual tough guy, or if he had played his strengths, and campaigned as the genuine John Kerry, he might have won by a decent margin. There was already a lot of discontent for the war, and Bush’s approval rating was already suffering. There was a way to capture that budding malaise, but it didn’t involve telling Americans what Kerry thought they wanted to hear, but rather who he was and what he would do for them. He did that too late, and it cost him, and us.

Apparently the Democratic Party hasn’t learned this lesson yet.

Because a similar dynamic is already in play with Barack Obama’s campaign. This year, they’re posturing faith, and they run the risk of being similarly ensnarled. In this story (a word I use because I can see it playing out like a film in my head), Obama, who has never been an especially religious person, is posturing a phony religiousness. Like Kerry’s volunteer military service, Obama’s religious history has been a means to an end. Military service and church membership are like badges on a politician’s sash, like a grown-up version of Boy-and-Girl Scouts. They help establish his or her bona fides. And many a person with political aspirations has calculatingly pursued one or the other or both when they thought it would help them.

What is happening in this dynamic, near as I can tell, is that sophisticated political Democrats are identifying groups they think are easily duped, and trying to market their brand to them without telling them the truth about their product. They are trying to make it appear as if they are the same as the competing brand when they are not. They saw that brand flying off the shelves for three solid elections, and they rethought their marketing plan. Trying to emulate it, much like Coca Cola against Pepsi in the 1980s, they lost three more. Yeah, Bill Clinton was complicit in this, with his universally frustrating habit of appeasing Congressional Republicans. I said it, because it’s the truth, but so is the fact that Bill Clinton was the only president in 50 years to routinely balance the budget, which he did for six solid years. I can forgive a little appeasement in the face of such fiscal responsibility.

Those sophisticated Democrats saw Republicans playing fast and loose with the facts about their own reliability on national security issues, and thought, we can do that. Uh, no, you can’t. Because you aren’t paying attention to how it works. Republicans don’t succeed in selling their product on lies by simply lying about their product. They start lying about the competition first, working a really good story up about their failings, surround them with a constellation of data points like a logo around them, and then they show you their product in a whole story about why it is what it is, complete with photoshopped images that leave you feeling all fuzzy. The difference is that Republicans try to emotionally manipulate voters, and Democrats try to intellectual manipulate voters. The former is far more successful. And voters resent the latter in general.

I still don’t have a name for it, other than DPS, Democratic Phoniness Syndrome, but it has to stop. I am one of those everyday people now hungering for authenticity. I used to be able to deal with the game-playing, I used to forgive a lot in the name of respecting the strategy, but not anymore. Not after this primary season. I was so willing to accept Democratic failures and acquiescence because I knew that Democrats were better than Republicans. You could tell by the level of rightwing vitriol. You could tell by what Democrats tried to defend in the face of that vitriol. But now the vitriol is everywhere, including in my own head, and it has been a long time since the Democrats have defended anything.

I’m not a particularly astute person. I hold no advanced degree, just a simple B. A. in English from a Midwestern university. But I do know that Democrats have got to stop playing dress up in the Republicans’ closet. Such dress-up playing is what leads to people like Maureen Dowd pushing the mommy-and-daddy-party memes, and allows pundits to paint Democrats as weak. No self- respecting Republican would be caught dead in the Democratic closet, let alone in a Democratic dress. So why do Democrats do it? And how, oh good golly miss molly, how do we get them to stop?

Sunday Blog Roundup

I got up early this morning in order to slip an olive oil and sea salt slathered Boston butt in the oven for our dinner guests tonight. If you aren’t familiar with the butt, I highly recommend it as the tastiest pork roast evah. But you gotta know how to cook it (thank you Alton Brown!). It doesn’t even need seasoning outside the olive oil and sea salt, but it does require 12 hours in the oven at about 225 degrees. That’s why it’s a great summer roast–low heat and low maintenance.

All that said, I’ll be busy a lot today, so if you’re looking for reading material, I’ve got some for ya.

Huge Hidden Audiences: This post has nothing to do with PUMA, but it offers info PUMAs can use. Troutfish girl discusses a HUGE hidden audience online of reasonably affluent women, roughly age fifty, who use the internet mainly for virtual knitting circles and, you’ll never guess…PODCASTS. HELLO! Resident genius video makers. I have no skills personally, but somebody should totally get on that. Just sayin’.

Ed O’Reilly Reminder: Just a reminder that Ed O’Reilly is running a Democratic Primary challenge campaign against traditional netroots hero, John Kerry. (we know, he used to be an arch nemesis, but O-bots can’t be expected to display that kind of intellectual consistency, now can they?) If you can afford to, you can donate to his campaign here.

It’s Not About Hillary: Fantastic post by myiq2xu over at Klownhaus. There were so many offensive events during the primary season, it’s sometimes hard to keep them straight. I know I’ve been harping in the rigged aspect of it, but myiq2xu brings up another salient point about race, CDS, and the morality of rewarding anyone for such behavior. This one is definitely worth your time, but read it when you have a good half hour or more, because it is long and thought-provoking.

Obama backs Bush Dog Democrat over Progressive challenger: h/t Black Agenda Report. Sorry for the TPM link. You can read the report at BAR if you’d rather avoid giving TGwKJM hits.

Opposition at thepowerofnarrative: One day in the future, when everyone is as smart as Arthur Silber, we’ll all be talking about Once Upon A Time. I keep stumbling across this blog. It’s sometimes way over my head, and I don’t agree with everything, but I keep coming back because I love the level of discourse and because it challenges me. This is an older post from early May about opposition and the illusion of opposition. I think PUMA has the potential to be real opposition. We just have to figure out how to keep control of our brand, and build the narrative.

Update on Debra Bartoshevich: She’s the Clinton delegate from Wisconsin who said she might vote for McCain over Obama in November.

5 things your cell phone can do: Warning: this website is shockingly, nauseatingly pink. But this is a cool article. I stumbled across it surfing tagsurfer or something. I didn’t know some of this, like how to unlock remote keyless entry locks with them. Thought you might also find it useful.

Hound THIS

From comments at The Confluence (Author is Calypso):

50 yrs. a democrat, a typical white old lady and I am shaking with anger.

“While the PUMA may be more swift and athletic, the HOUND is smarter and more perceptive.”

What arrogance!! Gov. Rendell wouldn’t dare make a comment like that to his wife!!

If he and the party are so damn smart and perceptive why did they annoint Obama, a corrupt, dishonest, inexperienced politician interested only in promoting himself.? BO has a proven record of ME FIRST.

And to say that BO and Hillary support the same policies is total BS.

Obama voted FOR Cheney’s energy bill, his economic advisors are supply side and support privitization of Social Security, BO supports a Free Market, he refuses to honor his pledge to be a Clean Election candidate, his Health Care Plan is NOT universal and is a gift to insurance companies, he voted AGAINST capping credit card interest at 33%, he supports the liquid coal industry one of our largest pollutors and he thinks it OK for telecoms to spy on us.

Where are the similarities between Hillary and BO’s background of working for citizens? There are NONE. Information in the Boston Globe exposure of BO’s participation in corrupt Chicago politics has been available on the Net, some of us actually researched this.

Oh sure Governor, Obama and his democratic
supporters who manipulated the corrupt primary system to ensure THEIR candidate would be the nominee will change a winning game.

Well, guys and gals, young and old WE are receiving the same treatment from what once was OUR party as Hillary did during the campaign.

Could someone put all contacts for Gov. Rendell on as many blogs as possible? How about generating some “swift and athletic” response to the “smarter and perceptive”?

Sure thing. Coming right up:

Governor Edward G. Rendell’s Office
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17120

Phone: (717) 787-2500
Fax: (717) 772-8284
E-mail the Governor’s Office

You know what to do. I’ll be mailing mine off tomorrow. Do make sure you read the post from Riverdaughter in which this comment was posted. It’s about Gov. Ed Rendell’s new HOUND movement, so aptly named after the O-bots’ most characteristic trait for reasons too numerous to list. It’s well worth it. And keep up the pressure. It’s working!

What are you gonna do, vote Republican?

Yes, some of us are. And when we do so, we will be voting in our own bests interest for a variety of reasons. Some of us will make other choices, such as staying home, voting down-ticket Democrats only, or voting for a third party candidate. However you choose to use your leverage come November, it is probably a good idea to be aware of all your options, and to consider them all for their various good reasons. I’ll run down what I’ve considered, but if you have other ideas, post ’em in comments.

Voting for John McCain: There are a number of reasons to vote for John McCain, not the least of which is that, going by naked numbers, it’s the most effective way to use your leverage. This is the only choice that makes the Obama National Committee find two votes to cover the loss of your one. It is a more effective choice still in blue or swing states.

But there are moral reasons to vote McCain. He has a record, for instance, a long one, and that record, while spotty, is pretty consistently against the power elite. You really can’t say that about Obama, now can you? There are other reasons that will depend on your political leanings, and how strongly you feel about certain issues. You will need to determine your own comfort level with regard to voting for McCain.

There are some drawbacks to voting for McCain as well. Many PUMAs are considering this choice without thinking about the effect McCain’s tenure in the Senate may mean to his presidency. I’ve heard many people say that the judiciary is not a factor, because Democrats will hold the line on radical judges. Don’t kid yourself. They haven’t, and they won’t. And McCain has a lot of friends at the Senate, people he’s known a long time and who may be vulnerable to his persuasion as a result. However, I don’t personally believe McCain will nominate many truly radical judges, certainly not to the SCOTUS, despite his promises to the religious right (which he has traditionally despised, ftr). And remember, he was one of the gang of 14 who worked to preserve the filibuster option for preventing a vote on judicial candidates.

Staying home: This is a legitimate option. Especially in light of the Do Nothing Democrats. They really haven’t earned a vote, have they? On anything, when you think about it. And since a lot of Republicans are, and have been for years, batshit crazy, they don’t deserve it either. And don’t buy the traditional worn old line about not having a right to bitch. You have every right to bitch that the only two parties with a shot at winning are absolutely corrupt, and are offering insufferable candidates. I like to think of this as the Brangelina Philosophy of Voting, based on their marriage pact, by which they agreed that until everyone could marry whom they loved in this country, they would not marry as a show of solidarity. Be aware that this leveraging option will force the ONC to find one vote to replace yours.

Voting Present: Voting Present is my chosen strategy so far. By voting present, I intend to vote for down-ticket Dems on the ballot only, leaving the choice for president blank. This way the Democrats will know I’m still “here,” but thinking about leaving. It’s a way to put them on notice. And it will wreak havoc in polling data if enough of us do it. I do find a perverse joy in that. Also, this still forces them to find one vote to replace mine.

That said, you will want to find out the voting rules in your state. I have heard, but don’t have any proof, that in some states, if you vote for all one party, but leave the presidential vote blank, they will automatically give your vote for President to that party too. Not sure if this is true, but worth checking out. You don’t want to find your attempt to employ your leverage negated by sloppy research. If you want to be safe without checking, you can always throw a Republican or third party vote in there just to be sure.

Voting third party: This is the option that I believe will be ranked second in terms of choices when all is said and done. Voting third part is home for many Democrats. Ross Perot, Ralph Nader, Ron Paul (in his 1988 Libertarian incarnation), etc, anyone? And you have a lot of choices this year, including Cynthia McKinney of the Green Party. You may recall Ms. McKinney from her snafu with House security. Personally, I would be willing to consider a vote for her based on that incident alone. Anyone who’s willing to take on security at the capital will certainly take on hostile and criminal Republicans. Major drawback of voting this way? They can’t win. But, you are still forcing the ONC to find a vote to replace yours. And it still makes for fun with polling data.

All that said, the only way to win this is NOT to vote for Obama. Everything you’ve found offensive about this primary season will remain in the Democratic Party if Obama wins. His defeat is the only way we can take our party back. We will, unlike this new leadership and their new coalition, be happy to make room for them, but we will not give over our party to people who do not sound or act like Democrats without a fight. That is the new bottom line.

Democrats don’t care about your threats, or your principles, or even your opinion on the issues. They only care if they can get your vote, and they will do anything now to get it. They know they could have gotten it quite easily had they just done the right thing and let the primary play out, unencumbered by such poor choices as excluding votes from MI & FL, and trying to push the best candidate out of the race. But they also think it’s too late for that now, even though it isn’t. It ain’t over until August, and you shouldn’t let them forget it. So consider your options, and let them know that you will exercise one of them come November if they continue this undemocratic charade.

You can even print out this handy dandy guide, highlight your choice with a blue highlighter, and mail it off to Howie and Barry at:

Obama for America
P.O. Box 8102
Chicago, IL 60680

Don’t forget to tell ’em I sent ya.

It’s about choice, stupid

Ggggggrrrrrrrrr! Don’t get me wrong, I love the fact that the PUMA movement is getting so big and effective that we’re being reported on in the mainstream media. And I’ve been paying attention long enough to know that the mainstream media is comprised of a pack of lying dogs. But good lord, the attempts at emotional manipulation and the arrogance!

I will say this, Kevin Merida at least got part of it right, which is more than you can say for anyone who isn’t a PUMA but is writing about them in the press. Here’s what he got right, though it is an impartial truth if you ask me:

Defining the Just Say No Deal coalition is not simple. The clearest and strongest sentiments seem to be that party leaders tried to force Clinton out of the race prematurely, allowed sexism and misogyny to go unchecked in the media, and made decisions about the Florida and Michigan contests that were designed to favor Obama.

We are mad about all of those things, and we are coalescing around those issues, but the number one reason is only hinted at, not stated: The primary was rigged. If it wasn’t rigged, it was gerrymandered as it went along. It certainly wasn’t fair by any stretch, and demonstrated a complete abandonment of core Democratic principles on the part of leadership Democrats as well as many average party loyalists. The sexism and the double standards just served to make it impossible for us to ignore those facts, to “play nice” as it were. And expectations of women are outdated, which is why Diane Mantouvalos is right when she says:

This is not the usual reaction to an election loss,” Mantouvalos said. “I know that is the way it is being spun, but it’s not prototypical. Anyone who doesn’t take time to analyze it will do so at their own peril.

And when she says:

Mantouvalos… believes party leaders are underestimating the seriousness of the opposition movement.

Part of the reason for their hubris in assuming that PUMAs will come back is because they assume the vast majority of PUMAs are women, which is not the case. Because they assume that the PUMA movement is a movement of women, they assume that the beliefs they hold about women will hold true. You, whether you are a woman or not, will be familiar with these outdated beliefs. That women are self-sacrificing, that they will do anything for the greater good, even if it hurts them, that they aren’t calculating, that they don’t care about and aren’t good with money (read: leverage), that they don’t seek power, they are responsive to emotional appeals. etc. And in many ways, those beliefs may perfectly characterize many women in other times, but it doesn’t even begin to encapsulate modern American women, and many of those misconceptions are just no longer true.

Because they believe these things, they still believe that abortion is the magic key. The article is riddled with the evidence for it, for instance, this, from Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz:

The Obama-McCain comparison is what Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) has been trying to emphasize. A prominent Clinton supporter, Wasserman Schultz said for women who care about reproductive rights, the economy and a range other issues, the only choice is Obama.

Or this:

Given that she [PUMA Robin Murray] is a supporter of abortion rights and holds other beliefs that are at odds with McCain’s, Murray was asked why she would consider voting against her own interests. “Whether it’s appropriate or whether it will work doesn’t matter at this time,” she said. “The vote is a protest vote — be it if I vote for McCain, if I don’t show up, or if I write in Hillary’s name.” Added Murray: “I view it in a holistic way. It says, we will not be controlled and manipulated by these singular issues in order to cast a vote that we feel is deceitful, negative, there is just no pretty way to say it — they cheated.”

What she’s trying, rather inartfully, to say, I believe is, that it’s not about abortion, it’s about choice. It’s about making the choice that you are not some textbook example of the proto-typical female, you are not subject to emotional manipulation over your reproductive capacity, and that you do, in fact, care about power and leverage. And that it’s perfectly okay to do something that may not be for the greater good, because self-preservation is a better idea at this time.

Obama talks all the time about the new politics, even as he demonstrates every day that that isn’t actually what he wants. What he wants is a new coalition to give him means to the same old power, which he will deploy in the same old way. All he wants is a new path to the White House, not a new way of governing once in it. If we, as Democrats, both male and female, allow ourselves to be persuaded by such cheap and manipulative ploys as hope, change, and abortion, then we will get the government we deserve. If we fail to see the dangers, once again, nothing will change. But if we take a risk, and choose a new politics anyway, where it is perfectly okay to challenge old assumptions and voting patterns, then maybe things will change. If we show whoever is listening that we can’t be taken for granted, we will come out with more power to affect that change.

Don’t give up your leverage, whatever you decide to do in November. The only way you do is if you accept the New Democratic Strategy of Complete and Total Acquiescence, and vote for Obama. We’ll discuss more tomorrow about the variety of choices for November, and how best to strategize for your principles and your state.

Insomniatic Update: Okay, what’s keeping me awake and will until I get it off my chest is the notion that Democrats who vote for McCain are voting against their own self interest. They aren’t. If they are choosing to vote for McCain because they find themselves with unexpected leverage this year and want to use it, that is voting in their self interests. If they chose to vote for McCain because they can not bring themselves to reward Democrats for their corruption and inaction, that is voting in their best interests. Voting in your best interests can take a number of different routes, and is different for different people. Anybody telling you differently is lying to promote what they perceive their best interests to be.