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Seriously.

I am a long-time denizen.

At times I have been very active in posting and commenting.  I think my record is 6 posts in one day.

At others I may seem to disappear - this is only my 7th post in 22 days this month (although I have a few things in the queue which will go up soon enough).

Yet the site is of no less value to me -  in the limited time I may have available I am still able to read and occasionally to comment on threats that I find of value.

There are diaries that do not interest me, just as I am quite well aware that what I post - including this - may be of little interest to others.  I do not have time to even glance at above the fold of every diary and even will skip over things by people I respect because they are on topics that are of no interest to me.

And yet, and any given moment, were I too look at what is on the front page and the 50 most recent diaries, I will find at least a dozen that will be of some value to me should I engage with them.

Were I to have a complaint that important topics are not being covered, then there is a simple solution - I can cover them.  That is in fact how I led a panel at Yearly Kos 2006:  I complained to Gina that there was nothing on education and she told me to organize a panel, which I did.

If you want something additional or different here at Daily Kos, there is a simple solution - do it yourself, and then seen if you can get the support of the community.  The site is open enough.

Of greater importance, it is a supportive community, whether it is of quilts, of affirmation by recommendations and tips, in promoting the good work of newbies, in providing tips on how to make diaries more effective.

It is a very large family, which is apparent at any get-together, whether it be at Netroots or in a local gathering.

It is that because Markos has allowed it to be that, to be sure.

It is also that because people here choose to make it that way.

That is characteristic of liberals.

It is true of most Democrats.

It is what WE make of it.

Just saying.

Peace.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (133+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JamesGG, Jim Riggs, annieli, Youffraita, potatohead, reginahny, HoundDog, serendipityisabitch, JVolvo, virginislandsguy, bookgirl, Mary Mike, Angie in WA State, smartdemmg, Syoho, DaNang65, Ojibwa, CroneWit, Pandora, melvynny, Shockwave, AJayne, pvasileff, jgilhousen, raina, grannycarol, Ian Reifowitz, Sylv, BenderRodriguez, duhban, Ignacio Magaloni, Denise Oliver Velez, Smoh, mikidee, Catte Nappe, mahakali overdrive, Lujane, worldlotus, ItsaMathJoke, political mutt, Doctor Who, basquebob, Bonsai66, jhancock, Al Fondy, VirginiaJeff, Pam from Calif, greengemini, Hammerhand, leeleedee, justsayjoe, jcrit, commonmass, jancw, Larsstephens, kjoftherock, anodnhajo, erratic, technomage, davidincleveland, wilywascal, hwy70scientist, northsylvania, Dave in Northridge, MarkInSanFran, Tool, jbsoul, gloriana, mattc129, slowbutsure, wishingwell, LSmith, ban48, thanatokephaloides, Bongobanger, copymark, fcvaguy, Simplify, BachFan, GoGoGoEverton, flumptytail, checkerspot, kj in missouri, hbk, tmservo433, Matt Z, murrayewv, joedemocrat, Radiowalla, fiercefilms, i saw an old tree today, Lying eyes, Hey338Too, revsue, Alice Venturi, rbird, oceanview, winglion, johanus, TexMex, Superskepticalman, TheMeansAreTheEnd, ladybug53, portorcliff, JamieG from Md, EdSF, bythesea, rebel ga, 207wickedgood, Gardener in PA, Emerson, shesaid, standingup, Texknight, high uintas, camlbacker, texasmom, cville townie, Steveningen, Skyye, Joy of Fishes, Marko the Werelynx, This old man, arabian, fou, onionjim, Ree Zen, Simian, spooks51, begone, mujr, Question Authority, boofdah

    "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

    by teacherken on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 09:44:07 AM PDT

  •  much like the PRAXIS exams aren't about praxis /nt (5+ / 0-)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 09:50:25 AM PDT

  •  But that is real work! (21+ / 0-)

    Great diary.  I've been here a long time too.  Currently not too active, but I read frequently.

    Spot on.  Perhaps some of us will carry those torches we find really important.

    ***Be Excellent To One Another***
    The ACA is all about getting started toward great health care. No turning back. The way forward is through. Every Democrat is married to this law and we all need to work together to make it awesome.

    by potatohead on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 09:50:50 AM PDT

  •  Highly recommended. (38+ / 0-)

    It reminds me of the ethos I learned during my Burning Man days, one of the most important life-lessons I think I've ever taken in.

    Daily Kos, much like Burning Man (and, I think, life in general), is a "do-ocracy"—one decides by doing, and the thing that people spend their time and energy on is the thing that gets done. (Not in the technical sense of the "ocracy" suffix, of course—it's Kos's house and Kos is our benevolent dictator—but in the sense in which you write here.)

    In the do-ocracy, the worst thing one can say is "someone ought to do [XYZ]." If you're passionate about it, if you think it's a great idea, if you think it's something the community needs, then you do it. Persuade other members of the community to come on board if you need talents, resources, or toil that you can't provide.

    That's true on the playa (where Burning Man is held) and it's true on Daily Kos. For those who think that the site should cover this subject or that, they have the opportunity to put the subject in the right-hand column on the front page of a site that has 6.5 million monthly unique viewers, several times a day if they're so inclined.

    If they can persuade the community to take interest, if they're contributing to the community, if they're active and cordial and responsive, if they make valid points and appeal to the community's values, it'll catch. If not—well, it's better to have tried yourself to make the subject a topic of conversation and failed than to grouse about how nobody talks about the subject you're interested in.

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 09:56:33 AM PDT

    •  That's what I have tried to do (4+ / 0-)

      and it worked out pretty well.

      However, I have a life away from the net that makes it impossible for me to cover many of the stories I would like to cover. It's good to see the green diary rescue has so many outstanding posts by so many different contributors.

      “Industry does everything they can and gets away with it almost all the time, whether it’s the coal industry, not the subject of this hearing, or water or whatever. They will cut corners, and they will get away with it. " Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D, WVa

      by FishOutofWater on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 05:14:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We could focus a bit, too. (2+ / 0-)

      Leadership by criticism is rather different from structure.

      For example, there could be some way to reward a first rate book review. Serious ideas matter. Perspective matters.

      "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Paul-Koch Ryan

      by waterstreet2013 on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 05:31:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  that was so good to hear, teacherken, and it's (18+ / 0-)

    spot on. Thanks for the reminder. You put it so well.

  •  what we are (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lujane, slowbutsure

    "What we are" is a weakness in our political system.  We believe everyone has a right to be heard, thus Rush Limbaugh is ridiculed--yet tolerated and protected.  We feel its wrong to send our troops in as Hessians, yet, that makes us look weak to jingoists.  We care about minority rights, which pisses off many in the majority.  Worst of all, we want to play fair, not disrupt when it causes others pain.  Politics is a rough game--fighting --twisting arms--threatening states with government resource allocations--all things we don't do--and we accomplish very little.
    One example--we want a big tent--but such a tent caused health care to become Romneycare instead of single payer.  I believe it was Nelson who refused to be the 60th vote for single payer.  We need Dems to be the liberal only party, otherwise, we compromise and fail.
    Things were better when we had strong unions--but Reagan killed PATCO--and we not only looked away--we renamed the airport for him.  Leo Durocher was sadly right--"nice guys finish last."

    Actions speak louder than petitions.

    by melvynny on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 10:35:40 AM PDT

    •  umm, no (10+ / 0-)

      "and we not only looked away--we renamed the airport for him"

      1.  PATCO endorsed Reagan, so yeah some union members said screw them

      2.  PATCO broke the law - Federal employees are not allowed to strike

      3.  there were strong objections to the Bob Barr led initiative to name something in every state after Reagan.  People pointed out National Airport was on land once owned by George Washington, and that other than PATCO Reagan had nothing to do with aviation and little if anything to do with NoVA -  in fact, National Airport is in Arlington VA which voted for Walter Mondale.

      And by the way, unions were already quite weakened even before PATCO.  

      I can think of many nice guys who did not finish liast

      among Republicans Chuck Mathias and Mark Hatfield

      while I strongly criticize him on some policy grounds Barack Obama got elected twice and he is not exactly the mold envisioned by Durocher, to whom the only compliment I can offer is that he stood up for Jackie Robinson when some of his own players objected to playing with a Black, saying if Robinson could help the Dodgers win that was what mattered.

      As far as things being Romney care instead of single payer  -  absent 60 votes in the Senate it was not going to happen unless Harry Reid had forced the Republicans to actually filibuster, and being willing to live through the several weeks it would have taken to break the filibuster once and for all.  I will note that the one time Reid brought in the mattresses in the first Congress of Obama's Presidency the Republicans folded in a couple of hourse - they knew how bad they would look.  Had Reid - and Obama - been willing to pay the short-term price, we would not have been clobbered in 2010:  Dems and many independents who had helped elect Obama would have had a reason to turn out.

      "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

      by teacherken on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 10:46:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  who is this majority that doesn't (4+ / 0-)

      want minority rights? I mean yes there's a majority of Republicans that probably are scared of different sexual orientations and skin colors but they have never been a majority of America. Hell even in the wake of LBJ conceding the South for at least a generation with the Civil Rights Act the Wallace Party (or whatever those neo nazis called themselves) couldn't even win a majority in the South.

      So please tell me who is this majority against minority rights.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 11:04:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I was just wondering where you were (9+ / 0-)

    and hoping all is well with you and Leaves.

    I agree- this site is what we make of it.

    I come here every morning with my coffee.  Sometimes, I spend almost a half hour reading, sometimes I.m done in less than ten.

    I enjoy great writing- so even if the topic might not interest me- if i know the diarist is passionate on the subject and has valid points, i will read.  Otherwise I move on.  No comment.

    Growing old is inevitable...Growing up is purely optional

    by grannycarol on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 10:52:18 AM PDT

    •  Leaves is pretty much back to normal (11+ / 0-)

      albeit still with less energy.  She is currently on Eastern Shore birding with her father.  She has recently been to a professional conference.  She is pretty much working a full schedule and starting to pick up some of her additional professional endeavors.

      In my case, life has had a series of interruptions, including 9 days of school being closed, which has caused a fair amount of scrambling.  Thursday night last week through Saturday afternoon I was at a professional conference, about which I will be posting shortly.  I have had some followup to do as a result of that.  I have had recommendations to do for students.  And the structure of my teaching assignments for next year are very much up in the air which has required some response on my part.

      After my episode in the emergency room / hospital for 28 hours, and once subsequent event of blurry vision, I have been through having to see a variety of medical practitioners.  No cardio or neuor problems, no tears to my retina, and am finally cleared for full physical activity.

      I continue a vigorous schedule of doing yoga because it is helping me, although the one class I wanted to do today I could not because I needed to spend some time exploring an important opportunity for the future, about which I am not at liberty to further discuss.  It is education related and would not require my leaving the classroom.

      Thanks for the concern/interest.

      Peace.

      "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

      by teacherken on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 11:04:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I started yoga again (4+ / 0-)

        I suffer from lower back pain, and yoga is great for strengthening the abs- and relieves my pain.

        Growing old is inevitable...Growing up is purely optional

        by grannycarol on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 12:59:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Glad to hear you and your spouse are doing better (4+ / 0-)

        healthwise. That is always good news.

        I have been meaning to ask you, how long have you been teaching high school in public schools and has it been continuous.

        I was just curious because time flies. My sister is 55 and she will retiring at the end of this school year after 30 yrs of teaching.  Then in the fall, she is going to be a fulltime sub for a month for her friend's maternity leave. She may also take on some other fulltime sub positions or part time teaching assignments in the future. But this gives her freedom to move if she wishes or do other things,while getting her retirement check so if her health gives her problems again like it did this year, she will have the choice not to work if it comes to that.

        Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at http://keystoneliberalsforum.aimoo.com/

        by wishingwell on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 02:37:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  quick summary (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          spooks51, wishingwell

          began in a middle school in Dec '95.  Stayed there for 2.5 years.

          Then 3 years at high school where I spent most of my career.

          Then 1 year in middle school near where I live.

          Then back to the same high school for ten years, until I retired.

          Then in the following year, went into a middle school just before November '12 as a fill in, but left in February after my wife got sick.

          Started at current HS near Baltimore in August.

          I have MD Pension and Social Security.  District I am in caps my salary at 20K less than I would get by education and experience as part of a negotiated agreement with the union.  I am making a difference, I have for this year a unique position designed specifically for my skill set, I have the respect of my peers, the support of administration both in the building and the central office, and have been able to build some relationships with students that make it all worthwhile.

          "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

          by teacherken on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 06:56:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You are a very dedicated teacher who truly loves (0+ / 0-)

            teaching and you care about your students. In that regard, you are so much like my sister. She is so devoted and she puts in a lot of hours.   She was never sick and probably only took a couple of sick days in 29 years. Well in her last year, she had to take 4 months off. She was very sick and diagnosed with a large pelvic mass. She was told it was cancer by a doctor who was said to be tops in her field. Well she got  a second opinion and she had surgery. The doctor reminds a football size tumor from her left ovary but it was Not Cancer...follow up tests..No cancer.  Had she stayed with the first doctor at Emory U, she would have gone through unncecessary chemo

            Yes that specialist was going to start her on chemo asap first before even doing surgery or a biopsy or removing the tumor.  So this doctor just said Cancer ! and wanted to start chemo based on a MRI and CA 125.  Yikes, my sister did NOT have cancer..can you imagine what she would have endured had she not gotten a second opinion/

            Anyway, how her health and the wrong diagnosis affected her teaching career..she was ready to retire as she was eligible mid year but then the second opinion and surgery showed no cancer so she recovered and she will do the last 8 weeks till retirement. It changed everything.

            Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at http://keystoneliberalsforum.aimoo.com/

            by wishingwell on Sun Mar 23, 2014 at 06:18:46 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  I think we would all improve... (4+ / 0-)

    if we kept the acronym WWTKD at the forefront of our brains before posting anything here.

    Nicely put.

    How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

    by BenderRodriguez on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 10:59:30 AM PDT

  •  This is a really sage diary (10+ / 0-)

    and actually deserves a lot more attention.

    The only thing I would point out is that there were a few NN panels proposed that were denied, and some of these people are really upset still about this. So I would like to express my sympathy toward them. At the same time, I think the advice here is sound, and also, that I would keep pushing for inclusion with your particular panels (again, there were several).

    In terms of conduct on this site, exactly agreed. Most of my (few) diaries are a response to what I see as a need based on an absence of said diary. Thus said, I'm often too busy to be online at all for months at a time. Carry the torch for me, my friends.

    When you run into a diary that isn't supportive, just walk away. I do that a lot, to be honest. My tolerance for nonsense is very low; my time is too valuable.

    Click the ♥ to join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news & views written from a black pov - everyone is welcome.

    by mahakali overdrive on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 11:39:01 AM PDT

  •  Why bother? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    emal, thanatokephaloides, Simplify

    I attended a panel discussion at the Tucson Festival of Books this past weekend entitled "Is Democracy Dead?"  It included John Nichols.  The answer he gave was basically- "Yes, unless we get money out of politics."  Obama has been bought, just like any corporate Rethug.  I won't list all the ways he has disappointed me.  But it makes me want to SCREAM, the way his Race to the Top shenanigans are destroying Public Education .  At least Laura Clawson is reporting on this.  

    •  in fairness on public education (5+ / 0-)

      I respect what Laura does on education, but there has been serious writing here on education long before Laura began to write extensively on that topic.  I may have been the first, but there have been quite a few people who write about various aspects of education.

      There is some diversity of opinion on a number of educational topics, which is good, because it exposes people to a wider range of thinking.

      I have since i joined this site written almost 3300 diaries.  Here from my user page are my most frequent tags:

          Recommended (1317)
          Education (422)
          Teaching (394)
          Barack Obama (298)
          Students (273)
          Politics (173)
          Teachers (167)
          Mitt Romney (167)
          Personal (156)
          Schools (135)

      and yes, there is some overlap among those categories, since a LOT of my personal stuff flows from my being a teacher.

      I have been critical of this administration on education since before Obama was elected - that is, I criticized his educational proposals, I criticized somewhat his choice of Duncan.  My criticism increased as I watched the administration in action on education.  

      And yes -  I am among a number of people including Laura, who have been very critical about what RttT would do and now is doing to public education.

      For what it is worth re Obama and education, perhaps all you need to know is at the organizational meeting of Democrats for Education Reform, the front group for the hedge fund boys, the keynote speaker was a then freshman Senator from IL named Barack Obama.

      "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

      by teacherken on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 01:22:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I respect your work, TK (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        thanatokephaloides

        That is why I always read your diaries.  I'm just cynical and tired.  During Bush II, I, like many liberals, thought facts would win the day.  Silly me.  

        •  Oldie but goodie (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          johanus, tardis10, Simian, emal
          History teems with instances of truth put down by persecution. If not suppressed forever, it may be thrown back for centuries. [...] Persecution has always succeeded, save where the heretics were too strong a party to be effectually persecuted. [...] The real advantage which truth has, consists in this, that when an opinion is true, it may be extinguished once, twice, or many times, but in the course of ages there will generally be found persons to rediscover it, until some one of its reappearances falls on a time when from favourable circumstances it escapes persecution until it has made such head as to withstand all subsequent attempts to suppress it.

          - John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

          There are both pessimistic and optimistic lessons to be gleaned from that.

          Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

          by Simplify on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:09:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  respectfully disagree (5+ / 0-)

    This site is what Markos makes of it and what diaries make the front page. I haven't done the math but I'm pretty certain 95% of the front page diaries are bashing Republicans with token efforts to present even mainstream Democratic ideals much less progressive ones. Any deviance is shouted down with occasional shots across the bow from the site owner. This site's main contents devoid of any significant ideas and ideals is the reason for so much infighting lately and is the reason Democrats hopes and morale for November and beyond are very glum.

  •  'Markos has allowed ...' (5+ / 0-)

    That will always cause philosophical tension. We're a progressive site, with many small-d democratic and even communitarian values, that's wholly owned by single individual, who could, if he chose, devote the entire thing to upskirt photos tomorrow.

    Works for me. (I mean the wholly-owned part, not the upskirt part.) But glossing over the tension is kinda 'clap louder.'

    Of course, anyone who is unhappy is free to start an alternate site. Many have. Yet none come without a thousand kilometers of displacing dKos. Maybe just because of the benefit of being the first mover--critical mass and inertia are pretty powerful things. Maybe dKos is doing something very right. Maybe progressives actually prefer a benevolent overlord. Maybe all of the above.

    Daily Kos is what Markos allows US to make of it. I'm cool with that. Some aren't. Fair enough.

    "Gussie, a glutton for punishment, stared at himself in the mirror."

    by GussieFN on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 02:00:50 PM PDT

  •  Sorry, but I don't believe that for a second. (5+ / 0-)
    It is what WE make of it.

    Just saying.

    We can't speak freely here without being banned.  We have to adjust our comments and diaries to meet the rules by the owner.

    Okay, fair enough.  It's owned by one person who makes the rules.  That is pretty clear.

    But to pretend that it's "what WE make of it" is not plausible.

    Dallasdoc: "Snowden is the natural successor to Osama bin Laden as the most consequential person in the world, as his actions have the potential to undo those taken in response to Osama."

    by gooderservice on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 02:04:08 PM PDT

    •  what we make of it (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      teacherken, Simian
      We can't speak freely here without being banned.  We have to adjust our comments and diaries to meet the rules by the owner.

      Okay, fair enough.  It's owned by one person who makes the rules.  That is pretty clear.

      But to pretend that it's "what WE make of it" is not plausible.

      This isn't quite accurate. Being subject to some moderation doesn't negate the fact that this site is, really, what we make of it.

      You see, the power of ownership, the power to make the rules, is a two-edged sword, cutting both ways. It's true, Markos could squelch all expressions of opinion which weren't traditional, middle-of-the-road Democratic party line. (For just one example.) But doing this would have consequences. Consequences Markos is smart enough to NOT want.

      This site is what it is, and holds the power that it does, because all of us are reading it and writing to it. We go away, Daily Kos goes away (or might as well). It's that simple.

      As things now stand. Daily Kos is the single most important blog site serving all American non-conservatives, from the aforementioned traditional, middle-of-the-road Democratic party liners to the progressives and even the levoanarchists and socialists. We deal with all ideas presented in the time-honored Democratic way: we cuss, discuss, collide, dismember, and wrangle these ideas back and forth between us, and then take action on what we find to be worthwhile.

      And that is as should be. Not just Daily Kos, but the entirety of other-than-conservative American politics.

      So this site being what we make of it is not totally incompatible with the relatively mild degree of rule and moderation the site structure imposes. In fact, at least what I have seen of it here, the moderation methods support the site being what we make of it, rather than the hopelessly useless anErisian chaos we usually find on the likes of redstate or Breitbart.

      ========

      teacherken, this is a really well thought-out diary. Thank you for posting it.

      "It's high time (and then some) that we put an end to the exceptionalistic nonsense floating around in our culture and face the fact that either the economy works for all, or it doesn't work AT all." -- Sean McCullough (DailyKos user thanatokephaloides)

      by thanatokephaloides on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:35:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Huh? (0+ / 0-)
        As things now stand. Daily Kos is the single most important blog site serving all American non-conservatives,

        Dallasdoc: "Snowden is the natural successor to Osama bin Laden as the most consequential person in the world, as his actions have the potential to undo those taken in response to Osama."

        by gooderservice on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 05:06:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  While the (4+ / 0-)

    sentiment is appreciated Teacherken the reality is that YearlyKos is not the same animal as Netroots Nation. Actual issues that progressives want to have an open dialog are sacrificed on the altar of conformity.

    Well, I proposed two sessions a year (36+ / 0-)

    on torture ever year for four years for Netroots Nation, stellar panels with real experts, including Valtin (a psychologist who treats survivors of torture), Dr. Craig Haney (who helped with the Milgram experiments and has spent his career researching and talking about torture in prison), Carter Camp (an AIM leader at Wounded Knee and prison surivor) and Robert Hillary King (the released member of the Angola Three who spent thirty years in solitary confinement). None of my panels were chosen and for three of those years there was no panel that even tangentially touched on torture. Last year, Amnesty proposed a panel which was supposed to tangentially touch on torture. There panel did not have any survivors of torture, and did not have any experts on the effects of torture. That was the panel they chose, in violation of their own guidelines which say that they are supposed to give more weight to grassroots proposals rather than organization proposals. So I have, very sadly, given up on Netroots Nation, which should have been a stellar place to organize and get my voice and Dan's experience heard. Instead, I will be attending another conference in DC, starting next week, which will have some focus on stopping torture and strategizing around that issue.

    Thanks ! (22+ / 0-)

    Literally, it will never happen, because Carter Camp has died.

    Also because I am no longer willing to put my neck out to ask those other experts to participate in a panel, only to have to go back to them months later and tell them that it didn't get chosen, again. If I can find another conference that will allow a similar panel, I will see about proposing it for that conference.

    Ask those in charge of Netroots Nation why they violated their own guidelines. They have never satisfactorily answered that question, in my opinion.

    One of the other panels I proposed was a round-table on getting torture and accountability back on the National Table. I was told that "wouldn't work."

    Truly, those in charge of Netroots Nation don't want to talk about torture, in spite on their high-minded words when I was chosen for a scholarship. The issue is just too dark, and too inconvenient.

              Standing for justice and accountability,
                            For Dan,
                            Heather

    Torture is ALWAYS wrong, no matter who is inflicting it on whom.

    by Chacounne on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:20:15 PM EST

    [ Parent | Reply to This ]

    I should have been able to be effective here. I should have been able to gather like-minded folks and use my voice and Dan's experience to push forward. Instead, I have been told to shut up.

            Standing for justice and accountability,
                          For Dan,
                          Heather

    Torture is ALWAYS wrong, no matter who is inflicting it on whom.

    by Chacounne on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 05:00:55 PM EST

    What you propose is the ideal. This is the reality.

    “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

    by Tool on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 02:05:01 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for the quilting shout out. (4+ / 0-)

    There some really thoughtful people here who are working hard to make a few lives a little bit better.

  •  I must disagree... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    emal

    You don't see the showdown thats afoot between what we want this place to be (progressive) and what Kos wants it to be (Democratic)?

    Things are about to come to a head real soon...

    When the Republicans are in power they get what they want and when the Democrats are in power they still get what they want. At what point do people finally see it is just theater? ~ Me

    by fToRrEeEsSt on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 02:23:21 PM PDT

    •  I'm bothered by the take (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thanatokephaloides, Simian

      That the two are in some way mutually exclusive.   The electoral realities indicate that you are better to vote democratic then say, Republican.  At the same point, the sight, as long as I can remember has advocated for progressive policies.

      The two are not exclusives in the sense that if you chose one you can't have the other.

      There are democrats who I wish were better democrats.   And Kos has used diaries to advocate we work on that.. and been on TV advocating that.   But in the end, we are infinitely better off with a mid-level (D) then we are with an (R) sitting in those seats.

      So, the two just isn't exclusive ground ;)

      Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

      by Chris Reeves on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:37:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think you do not give Markos enough credit (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Simian

      he makes a distinction between say a district that is solidly Democratic where we absolutely should push for a truly progressive choice and a district which only a centrist or even conservaDem might be the only one who can hold, because we need those districts in order to have a majority and thus enact legislation.

      Look, my friends on the Hill,elected and staff, range from the very progressive - say Raul Grijalva and his staff - to the more centrist - Rep. Carolyn McCarthy - to some who are more conservative than am I because of who they work for - Hayden Rogers, who was Chief of Staff to Heath Shuler and is now Chief of Staff to Joe Manchin.  

      I also look at who can be most effective, even if not the most progressive, providing they are progressive enough.  Thus I personally know most of those running in the primary to replace Jim Moran.  I am supporting Don Beyer because I think he can get the most done immediately as a freshman, because of his long relationships with both Senators and his close enough relationship with the President - he had Obama at his house for an event well before Obama became the rock star.  Yet Don is the one who got me involved with the Dean campaign - he got to know Howard when both were Lt. Govs.

      I don't think more and better Democrats is contrary to wanting a more progressive party and agenda.  

      "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

      by teacherken on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 07:05:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Honestly... I once did, but some months ago... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        emal

        in a 'ask me anything' I posed to him a question where he would have to make a tough choice between progressive and Democratic views and he was both very adamant and harsh in his response that it wasn't a tough choice at all and if I don't like it gtfo (paraphrased but very much the message).

        Since then I have viewed him very differently.

        When the Republicans are in power they get what they want and when the Democrats are in power they still get what they want. At what point do people finally see it is just theater? ~ Me

        by fToRrEeEsSt on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 10:05:21 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The concept of "we" (5+ / 0-)

    has distinct limitations here. What I see rather often is humans often have no clue about things they don't experience, or which are outside of their field of vision. Thus, if your experience here makes you feel included in the "we" as Markos defines it, then certainly, your comment makes sense to you.

    There are points of view that while valid, often encounter ridicule here. Markos sets the tone in this respect.

    Life isn't what "we" make it. It is what owners, and others of similar authority, make it. It is only "we" if you don't find the limits uncomfortable.

    And yes, I understand that the common answer is "go find a place where you do feel comfortable".

    Okay, that's certainly an answer. But these two points of view aren't compatible. It is only "we" if certain individuals get out of here rather than express dissent.

    "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

    by ZhenRen on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 02:47:01 PM PDT

    •  To put this another way (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thanatokephaloides

      "We" = (Markos) + (staff) + (the rest of us minus banned or censured views), wherein Markos has a value which exceeds the "rest of us".

      See how that works? We've all been socially acculturated to accept this unequal relationship in our hierarchical society as "we".

      It's only we when there is more equality, and direct democracy.

      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

      by ZhenRen on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:28:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No one made you... (0+ / 0-)

        ...Come to DK; no one is making you stay here either if you find it so objectionable... But the fact that Markos and the front pagers are not on a pedestal that places them in an unassailable pantheon and that criticism...often pointed; occasionally extreme... Is allowed  says things are not nearly how you are representing them

        Fear doesn't just breed incomprehension. It also breeds a spiteful, resentful hate of anyone and everyone who is in any way different from you.

        by awesumtenor on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 05:45:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I never claimed anyone (0+ / 0-)

          "made me" come here. I'm simply stating a sociological reality about the nature of we as conceived in a hierarchical, capitalist society.

          "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

          by ZhenRen on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 07:45:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Have to respectfully disagree (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Simplify, tardis10, blueoasis

    Although in theory I see what you are saying, in practice it's not necessarily the case.

    You see, when it comes to this site...Unlike those who often disagree with me, I don't feel they should be banned or told to stfu and / or leave and go find another site...just for having a difference of opinion regarding what the Democratic Party should do when it comes to candidates, party strategy, party loyalty..and so on...as long as it is respectful and follows certain site guidelines

    When it comes to democrats like myself that have  faithfully voted democratic since eligible....well no, I don't look to point the finger of divisive blame at those fellow democratic commenters here who vote for and may even swoon over democratic politicians and every word they utter as being good and praiseworthy, when I may feel that the same politician has failed to live up to their campaign words, or has enacted policies that are not good for the people they represent or the party brand.

    But apparently, I am not welcome (and sure to be held personally responsible/blamed should the party fail come election time) to respectfully criticize the Democratic Party, it's leadership, and certainly not its party faithful that post here and are more than happy to tell me to stfu and leave.

    So no the site isn't what we make of it, due to self censorship....because I can't say what I really think without getting a warning, name called ..potentially banned.

    Government of, for, and by the wealthy corporate political ruling class elites. Elizabeth Warren Progressive Wing of political spectrum.

    by emal on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:02:53 PM PDT

    •  It's a fine line between tolerance of differences (0+ / 0-)

      and letting anyone spout any old BS.

      For every person we ought to tell to buzz off for disrupting, there's another three who unfairly get told to buzz off just because they're not adhering to one side or the other of the pie fight.

      The only solution I can see to that is to just call BS when I see it. But no, I'm not going to be so juvenile as to work the refs or go tattling to teacher.

      People want to spout BS here, I'm not the one to tell them they're not welcome. But I will voice my opinion on their offerings. Because that's the very point of making posts on a public site with comments. One tests one's ideas here, and if you can't handle a flunking grade then don't take the test.

      Non futuis apud Boston

      by kenlac on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 06:17:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  And couldn't we say the same for the Dem Party? (2+ / 0-)

    The party is what we make it.

    While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

    by GoGoGoEverton on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:09:53 PM PDT

    •  Actually (4+ / 0-)

      It isn't under the existing structure what we make it. Make it bottom up as far as authority goes, and you would be correct. If you look at who "we" elect, they're really mostly the wealthy class, which has far more influence over the party than most seem to realize, much less care about.

      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

      by ZhenRen on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 03:19:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  For example........... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ZhenRen

        We like fliers.

        Spend $2 and print out 100 of your favorite political fliers.

        Hand them out face to face. Believe in your own "Hello." Supply at truth. Do good work.

        It's amazing how close elections can be. One ripple can do it.
         

        "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Paul-Koch Ryan

        by waterstreet2013 on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 06:34:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Ah, so that's what all the fighting is about: (0+ / 0-)

    we can't agree what shape the horse camel should be.

    Non futuis apud Boston

    by kenlac on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 06:11:35 PM PDT

  •  The world is made... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mettle fatigue

    …by the people who show up for the job.

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Sat Mar 22, 2014 at 06:43:48 PM PDT

    •  Am grateful i still can & there's lots to do here. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      teacherken, xaxnar

      Because of my disabilities, dk is the only arena where i can volunteer.  

      from a certain viewpoint, maybe i should be glad i see a lot of work needing to be done here, or what could i contribute to it?  

      so i assembled the WhereTheKogs index/directory because it was work i saw needed doing that i happen to have the professional skills to recognize and do.   i'm currently working on a directory of the health/medical&related groups, at KosAbility.

      tootin' my horn? no.  these two directories will be kept 'live' and current as i receive more data from other kogs and as i find it on my own, but they'll only help make DK be more than it has been if kogs hotlist these directories and other useful tools as "reference" and share the links around DK, so finding our way to what we need from DK becomes a little less of a confusing struggle and empowers us to return the favor by putting our own shoulders to the wheel wherever we see it needed.

      I was born, raised, & lived my life on the organized left, the 'old left', until disabilities put an end to that in the real world.  one of the first skills i was taught as a kid was to look around, see what needs doing,  and join in doing it, or do it alone if no one else is doing it, and then share it with everyone else.  DK isn't really very left, but there's still plenty of work worth doing that we can recognize on our own initiative and use DK to do in the real world, with DK as a means to get it organized.

      Connect Unite Act is one of the groups doing that very specifically (I'm not involved with them, but they're a good group doing a valuable job) to turn America blueish. The amazing folks at the New Diarists and Cranky Users groups and Welcome New Users are teaching newcomers how to use DK to good effect.  A willingness to look around, learn, and put what you learn to good use ...to do the jobs that need doing in here and 'out there'... is, as xaxnar says, what makes the world.

  •  I believe I have expressed the same sentiment (0+ / 0-)

    here before, but I'm very glad you've put it into a diary.

    Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing
    There is a field
    I will meet you there
    —13th century Persian (Afghanistan) Sufi Sunni Islamic poet Rumi
    Mawlānā Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Balkhī—aka—
    Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Rūmī—or—Rumi
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