Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.


- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Saturday, August 11, 2007

How the Democrats blew it (woof! woof!)

Alexander Cockburn, in a scathing commentary posted to the upcoming Nation Magazine, has summed the Democratic Party's situation as succinctly as anyone to date. The Democrats have blown it... and on an epic scale.

And it only took them 8 months to pluck defeat from the jaws of victory:

Led by Democrats since the start of this year, Congress now has a "confidence" rating of 14 percent, the lowest since Gallup started asking the question in 1973 and five points lower than Republicans scored last year.

The voters put the Democrats in to end the war, and it's escalating. The Democrats voted the money for the surge and the money for the next $459.6 billion military budget. Their latest achievement was to provide enough votes in support of Bush to legalize warrantless wiretapping for "foreign suspects whose communications pass through the United States." Enough Democrats joined Republicans to make this a 227-183 victory for Bush. The Democrats control the House. Speaker Nancy Pelosi could have stopped the bill in its tracks if she'd wanted to. But she didn't. The Democrats' game is to go along with the White House agenda while stirring up dust storms to blind the base to their failure to bring the troops home or restore constitutional government.

The commentary goes on - it is excellent, if wildly depressing.

Thrown to the Dogs

Matt Renner, writing for truthout.org, lays the blame squarely on the Blue Dog coalition; our closet army of Lieber-Bushies hell bent on obstructing any real change or progress in the Democratic party, using their voting bloc to support the Bush agenda, and openly supporting the war in Iraq:


The Blue Dogs pride themselves on being a fiscally conservative group intent on balancing the national budget and paying down the almost $9 trillion national debt. Tim Mahoney, who became the Representative for the 16th district of Florida after disgraced Republican Mark Foley dropped out of the 2006 election, recently became a member of the Blue Dogs. When he joined up, Mahoney described the coalition as a select group with an agenda. "We're hawks on national defense, we're pro-business, especially small business, and we believe in balancing the budget," Mahoney said. According to Mahoney, he faced a thorough vetting process before being accepted into the group. "You have to be interviewed and accepted by the group. You have to be able to demonstrate that you're ideologically supportive of being fiscally conservative. You show them speeches and statements you've made in the past," Mahoney told the Charlotte Sun, a local paper from his district.

The Blue Dogs have apparently informed the Democratic leadership in the House that they support the ongoing occupation of Iraq. According to Mahoney, he met with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and told her "The president should be free to maintain troops in Iraq, if the purpose is to thwart terrorism."

Mahoney's description of the Blue Dog's hawkish stance is not officially part of their platform, according to their spokesperson and their web site. The group does not issue press releases on national defense votes, although they have played an instrumental role in passing controversial bills that have been framed by the Bush administration as legislation intended to prevent terrorism.

The Blue Dogs have provided key votes on controversial bills backed by the Bush administration. In September of 2006, 31 Democratic representatives voted with the Republican majority in the House to pass The Military Commissions Act. The controversial act empowered Bush to designate individuals as "enemy combatants," and deny them certain legal rights. Twenty-three of the Democrats who supported the bill were Blue Dogs. At 10:20 PM on Saturday, August 4, 2007, with the help of 31 Blue Dogs, the House Republicans passed the Protect America Act, a bill that altered the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and weakened safeguards against domestic warrantless wiretapping. The bill, a replica of a proposal by the Bush administration, passed with a 44 vote margin, with 227 Yeas and 183 Nays. Despite comprising 76 percent of the Democratic support for the bill, communications director for the Blue Dogs, Kristen Hawn, said that the Blue Dog Coalition took no official position on the bill.

Despite the fracture among Democrats, Pelosi allowed the Republican bill to come to the floor for a vote. After it passed, she went on record saying that the bill "does violence to the Constitution of the United States."

So there you have it. The Democrats are going down in flames, and the Blue Dogs set the fire.

I wonder, once the Democratic party is dead and buried... will the dawgs trot over to the Republican side of the aisle and join their buddy Joe?

I'm sure Lieberman will be waiting for each of them with an affectionate pat on the head, a chewy bone, and plenty of 'attaboys' for their unflinching loyalty to the president.

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