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View Diary: Why Aren't We Talking About EXPANDING Social Security and Medicare? (273 comments)

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  •  If only we lived in that country (17+ / 0-)

    and had the opportunity to elect that kind of government...



    Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

    by chuckvw on Sat Dec 08, 2012 at 11:02:39 PM PST

    •  The hell kind of an attitude is that? (19+ / 0-)

      People didn't live in that kind of country in 1929, and they did in 1933.  The ball never left our court.

      In Roviet Union, money spends YOU!

      by Troubadour on Sat Dec 08, 2012 at 11:13:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  It's the attitude of an unemployed 62-year-old (35+ / 0-)

        who's very close to losing his home and everything else.

        We actually had a strong militant progressive left tradition in the 20s and 30s that we simply don't have now. Maybe we will again, but probably long after I'm dead and gone.

        Lesser evilism has poisoned our politics at least into semi-consciousness. Sorry if I am insufficiently buoyant this evening.



        Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

        by chuckvw on Sat Dec 08, 2012 at 11:48:51 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I can sympathize, but you'll have to forgive me (11+ / 0-)

          if your wishing for "progressive militancy" sounds idle given the complacent way you're talking about being on the brink of losing everything.  There are so many radical things a person truly on the edge of despair could choose to do to defy unjust circumstances that I wouldn't even know where to begin listing them, and plenty of them are legal and constructive - but just wishing other people were different isn't one of them.

          The achievements of the past didn't just fall into people's laps - they actually had to work on them for a long time, persistently, and largely on a local level for most of that time, and they chose to define their country by their own values and intentions, not by some abstract perception of what they think other people believe.  So let me reiterate: We do live in that country, and so will you the moment you choose to join it by exemplifying it in even the smallest way - by not asserting otherwise and implicitly handing America's bitter right-wing enemies the power to define it.

          In Roviet Union, money spends YOU!

          by Troubadour on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:36:27 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  When you're in the (12+ / 0-)

            middle of a crisis, which chuckvw appears to be, you simply don't have the energy to do what you're talking about.

            I can't believe you would be so harsh on someone in such a state.

            The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

            by dfarrah on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 07:44:28 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thanks for your kindness (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              melpomene1, Calamity Jean, aufklaerer

              I'm not in crisis yet. Maybe when the trashbags containing my possessions hit the pavement... :-)

              There are millions of people far worse off than I am at this point. Of course, one small medical situation could change that. I still live in hope of finding a job.

              And you're right. My energy and imagination are largely consumed with my economic situation... like most of the many billion folks on the planet.

              I basically agree with troub's point. I'm much more impatient than many folks on the site with the Villagers we've been (re)electing...

              I seem to recall troub being much harsher in the past. He's kind of mellow now...



              Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

              by chuckvw on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:01:52 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  I have been politically engaged and (4+ / 0-)

            to varying degrees militant for over 40 years. I may have even given the speech you are giving here to others over the years. I have nothing but sympathy for your position.

            However, this is a partisan political web site, and increasingly our worst enemies - the ones who potentiate and enable our explicit enemies - are those we purport to be on "our side". That essential bad faith, IMO, makes it very difficult for me to discern an electoral path forward for now.

            I see a future of mounting illegal and destructive resistance because other avenues of resistance are being closed, and the ruling elite - even self-described liberals - are utterly disconnected from reality. This situation is not historically unprecedented. A few enlightened 1%ers pulled us back from the brink 80 years ago. That probably would not have been possible without the pervasive fear among the Villagers of imminent violence and insurrection.

            I agree with the question you pose in the diary. In that this is a political web site... When can we expect an answer from the pols to whom we contribute so much money and effort? Why aren't they talking about this? At least a couple of them? And one of them can even be Bernie Sanders!

            Believe me... no one these days is more aware of my profound lacks and deficiencies than am I. I will keep my pessimism to myself in future, but it's based on much more than passing, reactive emotion.



            Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

            by chuckvw on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 11:52:54 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Politics reflects the people, always. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              chuckvw, lostinamerica

              Even when it does not serve the people, we always get the government we deserve, sooner or later.  This is what we've deserved, so far, because we inherited a lot and forgot how it was made while those who were against it never stopped chipping away.

              In Roviet Union, money spends YOU!

              by Troubadour on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:16:32 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  This isn't the whole story for me (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                aufklaerer

                Government/politics also, maybe predominantly, reflects class and economic realities over which "we" have little control. Capitalist social democracy was designed to somewhat mitigate and mediate the harsher aspects of untrammeled profit reaping.

                Our lords and masters now deem that mitigation and mediation (including social spending and environmental protection) a waste of their vast unearned wealth. How do we confront that? I don't know, but it does bear some thought.

                They aren't chipping. They've been wielding axes since the 80s. Instead of resisting, the Democrats have largely tried to play both ends against the illusory middle.



                Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

                by chuckvw on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 02:41:25 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  this ... (0+ / 0-)
                This is what we've deserved, so far, because we inherited a lot and forgot how it was made while those who were against it never stopped chipping away.
                                applies to so many struggles we seem to be having these days
                ...wish i could rec your comment over and over
        •  It would help if we had (10+ / 0-)

          some plan other than appealing to a government that has ceased to listen to us.

          we've gotten so locked into one way of doing things that we make little or no progress.

          it's always:  get people we like elected, write to them/call them/meet with them/rally in front of their offices/write petitions to them, and then....government will listen to us.

          That's the formula, and it's ceased to work b/c government has figured out that if they control the options we have in elections, and make sure that almost nobody who actually represents us gets through, they don't have to listen to us.

          What do we do when they stop listening to us? We haven't figured that out, and mostly the reason for that is that we don't want to admit we've been betrayed by people we trusted.

          There are some things that are unforgivable. Your willingness to play political games while people suffer and die is one of them--Onomastic

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 08:39:49 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Seems like (3+ / 0-)

            Occupy is working on that problem, and having some success.

            •  Occupy stopped working on that problem (0+ / 0-)

              well before the encampments were busted up.  

              In Roviet Union, money spends YOU!

              by Troubadour on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:17:32 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  that's a big generalization (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                chuckvw

                There are some things that are unforgivable. Your willingness to play political games while people suffer and die is one of them--Onomastic

                by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:28:35 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  It's all a big generalization. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  fisheye

                  "We've been betrayed," "Democrats don't care about us," etc. etc.  We can at least be honest that we have a lot more control over a movement like Occupy than national politics, and Occupy's unforced errors and screwed up priorities have been every bit as egregious as Washington's, being so afraid of becoming mainstream - as if that would be a bad thing - that it obsessed on counterculture irrelevancies rather than tangible political change.

                  In Roviet Union, money spends YOU!

                  by Troubadour on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 01:02:26 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Occupy related efforts (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    aufklaerer, SouthernLiberalinMD

                    addressing debt, foreclosure, hunger, worker solidarity, and disaster relief have been quite impressive. Occupy is more of a movement than a party, diffuse, decentralized, multi-faceted. They only get attention from the msm when pepper spray and smashed starbuck's windows are in the mix.

                    As far as I know they haven't double tapped a wedding party in Afghanistan yet, or blown billions on weaponry to fight a non-existent enemy and tax cuts for the undeserving rich, or acceded to corporate-idolatrous "reforms" of various kinds. If for no other reason, they simply don't have the resources to screw up as badly as the Village.



                    Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

                    by chuckvw on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 02:45:29 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Once they start putting people in office (0+ / 0-)

                      and I mean directly - not just claiming retroactive credit whenever progressives win elections - then we'll see how the people they put in compare to the status quo.  Until then, they haven't even gotten to that point, so it's silly to compare - especially to venerate them for tangible achievements that are miniscule fractions of the people helped by the Obama administration while treating the latter like some kind of mess of dubious people.

                      In Roviet Union, money spends YOU!

                      by Troubadour on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 04:16:29 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  And just upthreads ago, (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        chuckvw

                        you were knocking a poster for not being involved enough.......

                        The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

                        by dfarrah on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 08:37:08 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  that's just it (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        chuckvw

                        we can't fix things by putting people into office unless we have some idea how to break the control the ultra-wealthy have over Congress.

                        I'm not saying I have the answer in my back pocket, but I know that just getting people elected over and over again ain't gonna do it. If that were going to work, it would have worked in 2006!

                        There are some things that are unforgivable. Your willingness to play political games while people suffer and die is one of them--Onomastic

                        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 09:15:44 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                  •  Can you give them (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    SouthernLiberalinMD

                    some credit for helping to change the conversation?

                    The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

                    by dfarrah on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 08:38:26 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I think Troubadour's mad at them (0+ / 0-)

                      and I can sure understand being frustrated, as someone who worked with occupy. but it's also crucial to be careful when you generalize. a dispersed, decentralized movement like this is very different in different places. It has a few things in common everywhere, but you can't just make blanket statements like "Occupy stopped working on the problem of the breakdown of democracy before the encampments came down." as a statement of feeling: bitterness, anger, frustration, disappointment--I get that statement; as a statement of fact, it's not accurate.

                      There are some things that are unforgivable. Your willingness to play political games while people suffer and die is one of them--Onomastic

                      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 09:18:52 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

              •  not saying you're wrong in all cases though (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                chuckvw

                There are some things that are unforgivable. Your willingness to play political games while people suffer and die is one of them--Onomastic

                by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:29:36 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  Well said (0+ / 0-)



            Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

            by chuckvw on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:02:47 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  thanks. I wish I had the answer in my back pocket! (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              chuckvw

              maybe some of us should get together and work on that.

              There are some things that are unforgivable. Your willingness to play political games while people suffer and die is one of them--Onomastic

              by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:30:26 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Maybe so (0+ / 0-)



                Those who do not move, do not notice their chains. Rosa Luxemburg

                by chuckvw on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 12:35:30 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  more people speaking out (3+ / 0-)

                about Dems would be good.  When was the last time MOT was on the Ed Show?  Why is Maddow not taking on the Dems?  We should be pressuring her to do so.

                Even Sen Sanders is not saying what we want (although he is often better than others).

                As long as Democrats feel they are not in the firing line, they will drift towards Republicans.

                We have a corrupt system and we need more than Jon Stewart highlighting this.

                Blake: I am an enemy of the Federation but it is corrupt and oppressive. I will destroy it if I can

                by GideonAB on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 01:42:00 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

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