Being Uncomfortable with Power

I have been thinking about writing this diary for a while now. Since Obama's swearing in I have noticed that the rift between right and left has been growing significantly, but much more disturbingly I have noticed a growing rift within our own ranks. I am not speaking of the same rift that existed during the primary, which was certainly a bitter rift from which the wounds have not completely healed, but something different that has happened in recent months.

I have watched and listened as much of the progressive movement, or the left fringe of the party, or whatever term is applied to it by the person speaking, has become increasingly distrustful of, and angry towards, President Obama. I worked for SEIU during the campaign, working seven days a week for months on end, to see Obama win; and I will be the first to admit that my perception is colored by that.

Lately, I have been increasingly angered myself about the attitudes of some on the left whose bitterness seems extreme to me; also, I have become concerned by those who do not show much bitterness but seem to be increasingly cynical that any of the changes we have hoped for and worked so hard for will come to fruition. I myself have some concerns about the way the administration has handled certain aspects of their agenda but I am even more concerned about the direction we, as a party and a movement, may be heading.

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A Lot of Sorry But(t)s

Joe Wilson may have catcalled the President, but he wasn't alone, and America has become engulfed with the shock waves of intolerance and uncivil behavior.

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There must be Sanction, Wilson must be Censured.

We've a national religion, a national cult in this country. It's Constitutional Government. We have holy books: The Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence. We have a defining holy symbol, the Flag. We have hymns: The Star Spangled Banner, America the Beautiful. We have public temples, sacred groves: The Capitol, The Vietnam Memorial, Arlington, The Lincoln Memorial. We have sacraments, we have rites: The Presidential Inaugural, the Opening of Session, Joint Sessions of Congress.

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We want Republican votes. Be the grown-up.

That's it, I'm calling you out.  Yes, you.

I know the Republican Party has marginalized all of you and has used sleazy tactics to turn people against minorities, gays, and liberals.  

Thing is, the Republican Party is not the sum and total of Republicans.  We need Joe and Jane Republican on the street to like and vote for Obama, because Obama needs a mandate to truly fix the country the way we all know he can.  

Bush-brand neocons, as currently championed by John Sydney McCain III are the ones we despise, not all Republicans.  Swallow your pride and let's talk about this.

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Let's Take Obama's Message Seriously - Don't Demonize McCain

Howdy gang.  I think I've found a theme here at  I've tried to be a voice for civility by default (though I have a sharp tongue when stupidity abounds).  I'd like to continue in that vein.

Primary messages often morph into something else once the general election begins.  The territory a primary candidate stakes is often selected because it's the only possible approach against other Democrats.  That narrative doesn't usually survive unscathed in the general election.

One aspect of Barack Obama's message needs to prosper.  We, his supporters, need to dial it back a notch in how we speak and write about John McCain.  I do not mean we should hold our fire in criticizing the man.  I will be doing it, I can assure you.  However, for a variety of reasons I will lay out below the fold, we should moderate how we do it.

Read on...

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