You wanna known why Democrats lose?


The rotten Supreme Court makes yet another decision that harms our freedom, and what does Nancy Pelosi do? SHE READS A GODDAMN POEM.

A poem. You are not a literature professor, Pelosi. I want you to read some LEGISLATION that addresses this crap. That’s what you’re paid to do.

I also don’t want you to be sad. Get MAD. NOW.


Oh god. Biden speaks. His message: you need to elect more Democrats so we can do something. Great. I’d love to vote for someone who represented me, but Democrats are doing a piss-poor job of that.

Tepid as Biden is, he was better than my governor. Tim Walz, within minutes of the announcement of the decision, sent out a letter asking me to donate money to the Democratic party. That’s what this is, a fundraising opportunity.

Comments

  1. birgerjohansson says

    Do what Harry Truman did- propose legislation that would make life better for people and let Republicans vote it down , revealing the nastiness to the voters. It worked!

  2. iiandyiiii says

    Legislation would be nothing more than symbolic at this point. Still worth trying, but doomed to failure with the present makeup of the senate.

    Democrats need to make this the issue of the midterms — and explicitly make the claim that if they can get two more Democratic Senators, they will eliminate the filibuster, codify Roe v Wade into law (which is impossible with the filibuster in place), and possibly even expand SCOTUS and make Washington DC a state (the last two might be better left unsaid, but should absolutely happen if Democrats get enough senators to eliminate the filibuster).

    All that matters is the coming election. There’s pretty much nothing Democrats can do about abortion before then.

  3. kome says

    The leadership of the DNC is pretty okay with repealing abortion. Think of how many anti-abortion Democrats that Pelosi has helped campaign for and put into office over her career. Think of all the times Democratic party leadership decried purity tests – whether about accepting corporate donations or about abortion or about trans rights.

    This is what they want. The emails soliciting campaign donations have already started. Unless and until we start putting more progressives in office, actually challenging the entrenched mainstream Democrats, nothing will change. Pelosi isn’t going to do anything to protect anyone’s rights in this country as long as she can continue to rake in the money while sitting on her ass reading poems. Democratic voters can’t keep supporting “blue no matter who” because Manchin is blue, Sinema is blue, Cuellar is blue. Democratic voters need to support values and policies instead of their team. Because, right now, their team is responsible for letting Republicans do this despite having had countless opportunities to prevent it.

  4. Tethys says

    Sadness is an entirely appropriate response to the reichwing decisions being issued by a court packed with rapists by the GOP. Great job blaming the Dems, rather than the asshats like Mitch McConnell who made it possible.

    We all lose. Putin must be delighted at how well his funding tfg has paid off.

  5. says

    Nobody is blaming the Democrats for the court’s decision. What we’re saying is the Republicans did it, and the Republicans are evil, but the Democrats are weak.

  6. Akira MacKenzie says

    Yup. At a time when armed revolt is called for, all Biden can come up with is “Vote harder.”

  7. Alverant says

    “Nobody is blaming the Democrats for the court’s decision.”
    You should read the previous thread. Lots of people are blaming Democrats for it.

  8. says

    I’m not getting you PZ. What exactly do you want them to do? Do you want Biden to declare martial law, round up the 6 Justices and send them to Gitmo? All they can do at this point is make speeches, ask for donations, and start campaigning for the next election. Maybe Democrats failed in the past but you can’t do anything about that.

  9. kome says

    @8

    Ah yes, because they’ve failed to do anything in the past we shouldn’t ask them to do a goddamned thing now.
    Can’t imagine how we ended up here with such blisteringly finger-on-the-pulse political strategizing like that from liberals.

  10. consciousness razor says

    Since it’s performance art time, I’d like to see Pelosi gagging herself and tying her own hands with a comically large rope, covered in rainbow glitter and/or sequins. Or better yet, all of the Dems in a line dance choreographed to I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do).

    Make it happen.

  11. birgerjohansson says

    I am blaming the Democrats for being weak.
    .

    The Republicans have been waging a low-intensity war against the system för at least 20 years while the leading Democrats have been dreaming of a return to the Good Old Days of the 1990s when the system more or less worked.
    NB: it takes two to get peace but only one to get war.
    The voters stay home because congress is not seen as making life better for them. The Democrats agree to watered-down bipartisan deals instead of calling out the Republicans as saboteurs.
    The Republicans have zero incentive to be less extreme as there are no consequences and they go on holding the nation hostage.
    And since the Democrats have the majority they naturally get blamed for the mess

  12. Rich Woods says

    You have two right-wing parties, one of them venal and callous, the other fractured and incompetent. Until you get rid of the stranglehold of the two-party system, you’re fucked.

  13. Rich Woods says

    Bugger. I hit Post instead of Enter. I meant to end with:

    It’s an illusion of choice masking a lack of democracy.

  14. Captain Kendrick says

    That’s it! I’m voting for Jill Stein next time! That will teach those weak, ineffective Democrats that this crooked two-party system must be dismantled!

  15. wzrd1 says

    First, there are three justices who lied under oath before Congress to get selected for the SCOTUS.
    Impeach and convict for perjury.
    Second, the SCOTUS in the past two days has nullified half of the second amendment, as states literally no longer may regulate their militia. They also have nullified stare decisis, so flood them with old decisions and fill their docket for the next century. Finally, the chant “It isn’t in the Constitution, so it’s not a right” perfects a repeal of the ninth amendment.
    Frankly, I think that way back in 1844, the Nativists shouldn’t have been stopped in Philly, they should’ve been helped, as their predictions have come true today.
    So, with a full combat load and a box of mark 318 mod 1 rounds, I’ll stand back and stand by for torches and pitchforks time. I’ll just ask for a minor detour to pop by the Russian Federation embassy to express our thanks…
    BTW, security forces for SCOTUS justices isn’t in the Constitution either, so why are we violating it by wasting taxpayer dollars with security forces for those justices?

  16. Captain Kendrick says

    @17
    “Impeach and convict for perjury.”

    Yeah, let me phone that it to Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, I’m sure they’ll get right on that.

  17. says

    How have you not noticed what the Republicans do? They picket (offensively) women’s health clinics, they conspire to prop up villainously stupid representatives, they lie to get assholes on the court, they have think tanks dedicated to siphoning money from billionaires into the hands of far right militants, they threaten the lives of abortion doctors and sometimes succeed in killing them. On our side, we read poetry, and if someone calls out one of these Republican thugs at a restaurant, we wring our hands and whine about civility.
    What can we do? I wouldn’t propose that we fight as dirty as a Republican, but it is time for civility and courtesy to end. We have Supreme Court justices who lied in order to get a seat — we should rub that in their dishonest faces, and let them know they’ve brought shame on the courts. We’ve got a bunch of insurrectionists in congress — burn ’em down and cast them out. “Vote harder” has got us here.

  18. Tethys says

    Ukraine is also weak. If tfg had not been protected by a corrupt member of SCOTUS back when the Dems were impeaching their fascist enabler, we would not have the current SCOTUS.

    But sure, those weaklings who followed the laws are to blame for putting liars and rapists into the highest offices of power.

  19. brucej says

    Oh fer fucks sake.

    Nancy Pelosi is not a Green Lantern. She cannot force laws onto the books by sheer force of her will.
    President Biden is not a Green Lantern He cannot force laws onto the books by sheer force of his will.

    You know what will force laws onto the books?

    ELECTING MORE DAMNED DEMOCRATS

    Up and down the ballot.

  20. kome says

    @16

    You do realize that a Democrat is in the White House and the Democrats have a majority in both branches of Congress, right? So… how has voting for people like Clinton and Biden worked out for us? Because it’s hard to argue that those Democrats would do differently if they were in charge because, and I know this may come as a shock to you, they are the ones currently in charge. This happened after we voted for them. What good are they if, when they hold all the cards, they simply let this happen?

  21. iiandyiiii says

    If we had 60 Joe Bidens in the Senate, we’d have a higher minimum wage, codified abortion rights by law, and much more in terms of progressive priorities. Joe Biden, and his allies, are not the problem. The system is the problem, and the voters are the problem. Nearly half the country wanted Trump, hatred, corruption, etc. There’s not a whole lot Democrats can do when that’s what almost half the voters want. The best they can do is narrow victories, which is what we got in 2020. Maybe this can motivate just a few more voters — enough to get a few more Senate seats, to get rid of the filibuster, codify Roe v Wade into law, etc. There are lots of tactics that might work, including PZ’s suggestions, but it’s all about the same (and only) solution — vote more Democrats, and fewer Republicans, into office.

  22. outis says

    Hm, as a non-USian I am strongly perplexed… and the dance is just starting.
    Short term: say goodbye to same-sex marriage certainly, contraception probably, interrace marriage possibly.
    Long term: really, allowing secession should be considered, Texas has just shown the way. If two contiguous land maps can be devised, let the US split in two: the United States of A, and the United Shits of same. Do a bit of Cuius Regio, Eius Religio and shift populations as needed, and then let the idiots fester and die in their plague-filled cesspools. I’d give it a couple generations, tops… then recolonize the land after having given it a good scrubbing.
    Ridicolous? Why yes, but not much more than current news…

  23. birgerjohansson says

    @24
    May Sterculius the Roman god of feces make all Republicans this incompetent.

  24. says

    What exactly do you want them to do? Do you want Biden to declare martial law, round up the 6 Justices and send them to Gitmo? All they can do at this point is make speeches, ask for donations, and start campaigning for the next election.

    Ah, the faux skeptical maneuver in full plumage. 1) “there is nothing that can be done!”
    2) offers some bad faith options that can easily be shot down
    3) concludes “see there is nothing that can be done.”

    Biden has fucktons of options, starting with getting tough with the 5th columnists in his own caucus. On other issues, he has a great deal of power, as well – for just one example, he controls massive amounts of federal spending to each state. He could threaten that. But he won’t because he’s weak and stupid. Regarding the Jan 6 hearings, all he has to do is suggest that certain people are maybe going to be charged with capital crimes like treason, so it’s probably best not to nominate them because they’re candidates the democrats can pull the carpet out from under, with no notice, at any time. Of course the gomers would riot – again; this time be prepared for them with the old whiff of grapeshot. Or perhaps start writing budgets that don’t allocate any federal money to Georgia, Texas, Alabama until they agree that, yes, secession is a bad idea. It would take a room full of smart people less than a day to come up with a whole menu of options for making red states miserable.

    I’m not saying those are good options, or that you’ll be happy with them, but I know how you pseudoskeptics play this move: there is nothing that you won’t find problems with, therefore you are able to do nothing while still feeling a vague sense of superiority because you’re the smart guy who points out all the problems. And now that it’s too late, you can wave your hands in the air and say “it’s too late!”
    Brilliant but obvious strategy.

    Biden has loads of options. He’s just not doing anything that involves playing hardball with an opponent that switched from mere hardball decades ago. In fact, he is doing things that he knows the republicans will defeat. Because that way he can wring his hands and say “I tried gimme more votes, more power!”

  25. drew says

    Not just a poem but a pointedly Israeli poem used to celebrate the West Bank settlements. Because that’s apparently where Pelosi looks for advice on human rights.

    This is what a Democrat is.

  26. birgerjohansson says

    This is British rail union leader Mick Lynch fencing off hostile questions from journalists with ease.
    Imagine if the Democratic party had a couple of people like this at the top.
    https://youtu.be/sSn3UcQPhcc

  27. consciousness razor says

    For fuck’s sake, this horseshit is not what I requested in #10. These people just cannot listen….

    As protesters can be heard in the back chanting outside SCOTUS, House Democrats sing “God Bless America.”

    At least these assholes seem to have some idea of what the fuck they’re doing.

  28. Tethys says

    General blame is not going to help anyone but the minority of Russian purchased fascists who are doing their damndest to overturn legal precedent and constitutional rights, while inventing second amendment rights.

    Blame the Asshole Senator from West Virginia for being the one vote that fucked up everything the Dems tried to do to codify women reproductive rights and peoples unquestioned autonomy over their own uterus as the law before SCOTUS could begin issuing bullshit. Wringing your hands over poetry and throwing shit at Pelosi has a huge stench of patriarchal bullshit to it.

  29. birgerjohansson says

    Speaking of assholes, and of abortions.
    Brazilian crook and Trump wannabe, president Bolsonaro, has condemned that an 11-year old girl who got pregnant after being raped has been granted an abortion.

  30. birgerjohansson says

    Speaking of the asshole of West Virginia, is there even any benefit for keeping him in the Democratic caucus, If the crook party gets a majority in the Senate?

  31. birgerjohansson says

    In tenth-century England, it was clearly the vikings that were guilty of looting, raping and sacking their way through England.
    But Eathelred II -aka Eathelred the unready- consistently failed to deal with the vikings in the only language they would understand.
    .
    For more than twenty years the Democratic leaders have been channeling Eathelred. And the number of people voting is dropping. This is NOT sustainable.

    Someone -I think it was David Frum- said the Republican politicians fear their voters, the Democrats despite theirs. Use the primaries as aggressively as the Republicans do. Throw out the Sinemas and the empty suits.

  32. says

    We had two months of warning that this was coming. Instead of passing a law codifying abortion access, the Democratic-controlled Congress passed protection for the Supreme Court from protestors. And some of you dunces still think the Democrats are on your side.

  33. says

    It amazes me that the American left is still so full of extremist idealists who think it’s more important to stay true to their principles than to actually get something done. You can die an idealist in the concentration camp (together with hundreds and thousands of other “undesirables”)…or you can actually work to prevent concentration camps from getting build in the first place.

    See, we also have a far left-wing party here in Germany, called “Die Linke /The Left”. It’s right now in the process of self-destructing because they too put purity of principles over practicality and are so for the most part uneligible as coalition partners to other parties because they don’t flinch from any of their positions (with a few exceptions in local state governments). They are in fact so pure in their ideals that just a few days ago one of their politicians demanded for the German government to reveal the position of its submarines so they couldn’t possibly give the Ukrainians a heads-up regarding the Russian navy. Because that’d constitute interfering in an open conflict and that’s evil warmongering and they’re the self-designated anti-war party. Well, giving Putin such important classified information would also be a nice side-effect since that party is also chock-full of tankies who have been cheerleading the Russian invasion since it began as those people consider it most important that the US is somehow being balanced out by other superpowers even if that means death and destruction for millions of people. Them being so irrelvant by choice and backing vile, murderous invaders is why they bled heavily in the last few elections and they’re close to disappearing into the “other” category in elections.

    I see many parallels here. From self-destructive fanatical idealism to reflexively backing anti-US countries. That…that’s why you lose. That’s why evil triumphs…BECAUSE GOOD IS DUMB!

  34. Rob Grigjanis says

    The Vicar @36:

    Instead of passing a law codifying abortion access…

    Please remind me how they do that without 60 votes in the Senate.

  35. says

    [The two-party system is] an illusion of choice masking a lack of democracy.

    Actually, a multi-party system would give us more illusion of choice, without more actual choices. If neither party wins an absolute majority, then they’ll have to start making deals and alliances, and the voters won’t know what sort of coalitions will be formed until it’s too late. Case in point: the UK election of 2010.

    Also, in the US today, a multi-party system would most likely result in a progressive left divided among three or more parties, and a united plutocratic Christian Reich party with a solid and permanent plurality, if not a majority.

  36. says

    It amazes me that the American left is still so full of extremist idealists who think it’s more important to stay true to their principles than to actually get something done.

    Who, specifically, are these “extremist idealists” you’re referring to?

  37. says

    The Dems have held power multiple times since the 1970s. They also could have eliminated the filibuster once it became clear that the GOP is gunning for permanent minority rule, rather than just accepting wagging their fingers and blaming the voters.

    The Dems could have engaged in the working-class politics that got us the New Deal, instead of pretending they would, while campaigning and governing as timid, moderate Republicans.

    This goes specifically for the leadership of that party, who seem to be stuck in the late 1990s in their heads.

  38. says

    I don’t pretend to know how to solve the problems the US is facing. I do, however, know that Not Voting For The One Party That Has Remade Itself Into A Fascist Death Cult is an absolutely necessary precondition for getting anything on any progressive agenda done.

    Personally, I favor voting for actual progressives, myself. Given the two-party system we’re currently stuck with it would appear that the Democratic Party is the only one of those two parties that any actual progressive will, one, be willing to campaign under/with, and two, have a decent chance of winning under/with when they run. So I’m thinking that at present, the only candidates that should even be considered are Democrats. I also think it would be wise to scrutinize every Democrat before casting one’s vote, so that you can winnow out the actual progressives from the corporate-funded I-can’t-believe-they’re-not-Rockefeller-Republicans that currently seem to have control over the Democratic party.

    Of course, it goes without saying that in the event that a corporate Democrat ends up campaigning against a Fascist Death Cult candidate, even the corporate Democrat would be a preferable choice.

  39. StevoR says

    John Oliver did this powerful excellent just under twenty minute long clip following the leaked draft of the now confirmed abortion of the Forced Birther SCOTUS decision with a good conclusion on some of what needs to be done at the end here. NB. Swearing.

    .***

    @36. The Vicar (via Freethoughtblogs) : “..And some of you dunces still think the Democrats are on your side.”

    Whilst other even worse dunces side with the fascist Forced Birther Repubs because they’d rather do that insteda of at elats starting with opposing them however weakly.

    Why and where (how?) do you think your tactics here will get you exactly Vicar?

  40. StevoR says

    @ ^ instead of at least ..

    I swear my computer switches the letters around on me, sigh.

  41. John Morales says

    [StevoR, you failed to include the URL in the hyperlink. That’s why.]

  42. says

    It was a shock when I read about Roe on my first break yesterday. I never thought I’d see the day. I just keep seeing the face of a friend and coworker from high school. Lets just call her M. M was all of 5′ nothing at 18. She had an abortion at 12. The father was a family member. I haven’t kept up with her as this was 25 years ago and people move on. But I can still picture her face. I think about it every time this happens. Women like her are what I fight for. What good is banning abortion if we aren’t doing the other things? Child care, health care, ond most of all grinding rapists into a pink smear on the pavement.

    I grew up rough. I’m pretty sure most of the SCOTUS and Congress did not. I’ve seen some of the worst America has to offer. They are removing body autonomy with no regard for consequences. They only care about the unborn, once you’re born, they throw you to the dogs. This isn’t about human lives, it’s about control and power.

  43. StevoR says

    Good post and point made by Abe Drayton over at Oceanoxia here :

    https://freethoughtblogs.com/oceanoxia/2022/06/24/i-see-the-bad-moon-risin/

    No more coathanger talk! Illicit abortions are no longer done with coathangers. That rhetoric was true and necessary when it was popularized, but now it is putting lives in danger. These days, if you want a DIY abortion, you take pills. Coathangers grab attention because of the extreme danger they present, but if someone is desperate we do not want them turning to that because they think they have no other options. The underground abortion “market” will probably follow similar channels to all other illicit drugs, which means any internal or external, physical attempt to end a pregnancy should absolutely not be the first thing anyone thinks of if they realize they need an abortion.

    Along with info on funds, networks and links there.

  44. says

    I’ve got two solutions:

    1) Bring back the talking filibuster (if a senator wants to delay a vote on a bill, they’ll have to hold the floor and speak and speak and speak), with a couple of extra rules. The speech must actually be on-topic; for example, if you’re filibustering against a gun law, you have to actually talk about the law, the gun-related issues that the bill seeks to address, the potential problems that the bill may cause, etc. You can’t filibuster against a gun law by reading different Bibles for days.
    More importantly: while you filibuster, you’ll get fact-checked. If you say something that is objectively and OVERWHELMINGLY demonstrable to be false, your filibuster ends and nobody in your party is allowed to filibuster that law anymore. You decide to filibuster a voting rights law by ranting about how the election was “stolen” and Trump won the election? Congratulations – your filibuster is over, none of your buddies can filibuster anymore, AND now we vote on the bill with “simple majority” (50% + one vote) rules.

    2) Increase the number of Supreme Court judges from 9 to 13. Republicans packed the courts with their own judges, favoring party affiliation over competence. (That idiot Barrett was completely unable to recite the 1st Amendment. Her ENTIRE JOB is to know what’s written in the Constitution to interpret it.) And it’s more than clear that these judges don’t care about the rule of law or legal precedent. The only way to deal with a packed court is to unpack it, and the easiest way in this case is to put more rational judges in the S.C.

  45. Akira MacKenzie says

    @ 40

    Who, specifically, are these “extremist idealists” you’re referring to?

    They’re insane radicals who want civil rights BEFORE they get permission from the people who are oppressing them.

  46. Akira MacKenzie says

    “The personal, as every one’s so fucking fond of saying, is political. So if some idiot politician, some power player, tries to execute policies that harm you or those you care about, TAKE IT PERSONALLY. Get angry. The Machinery of Justice will not serve you here—it is slow and cold, and it is theirs, hardware and soft. Only the little people suffer at the hands of Justice; the creatures of power slide out from under with a wink and a grin. If you want justice, you will have to claw it from them. Make it PERSONAL. Do as much damage as you can. GET YOUR MESSAGE ACROSS. That way you stand a far better chance of being taken seriously next time. Of being considered dangerous. And make no mistake about this: being taken seriously, being considered dangerous marks the difference, the ONLY difference in their eyes, between players and little people. Players they will make deals with. Little people they liquidate. And time and again they cream your liquidation, your displacement, your torture and brutal execution with the ultimate insult that it’s just business, it’s politics, it’s the way of the world, it’s a tough life and that IT’S NOTHING PERSONAL. Well, fuck them. Make it personal.”

    —Richard K. Morgan,
    Altered Carbon

  47. canadiansteve says

    From John Oliver’s segment:
    “Freedoms are hard won, and easily lost.”
    I think this is something that has been forgotten by many people growing up in affluent progressive places. So many people I see thinking rights are “natural” or “inherent.” There is no such thing as an inherent right, the only source of rights is human law. As many people are realizing now, these laws can be changed.
    The democratic party has many problems… way too old, way too devoted to corporate needs over individual, way too divided amongst priorities. Which is why it is doomed to dysfunction and voter apathy. The republicans have highly motivated voters over cultural issues that don’t require them to actually govern, so their voters don’t care if systems aren’t working, so long as they get their way in putting those other people in their place. It’s a deliberate strategy identified and developed by republican backers for personal gain, and made far more effective in this new era of disinformation, and the results of that strategy are just starting to pay dividends. Technologically backed gerrymandering to ensure minority rule has entrenched the control to ensure it can’t be undone by voting them out. After the 2024 election we’ll see if republican states even believe they have to follow the will of the voters. (There is no chance that this SCOTUS blocks state legislators picking EC electors.5-4 vote.) I suspect the 2024 election will demonstrate that the US is no longer a functioning democracy. The next couple of decades in the US are going to be interesting.
    Personally, I’m pessimistic. I think the US is heading for an extended period of unrest and disfunction. I wouldn’t be surprised to see it break into 3 or 4 countries over the impossibility of reforming the whole. We’re not immune here in Canada either. You’ll take us down with you.

  48. Akira MacKenzie says

    @ 53

    The republicans have highly motivated voters over cultural issues that don’t require them to actually govern, so their voters don’t care if systems aren’t working, so long as they get their way in putting those other people in their place.

    Too many people wring their hand and scratch their heads and clutch their copies of What’s Wrong With Kansas asking “Why do these people keep votIng against their best interests?”

  49. PaulBC says

    Republicans reap great political rewards by pursuing an agenda that is wildly and grotesquely unpopular. Democrats lose because their agenda is merely unpopular.

    (Glib but I’ll leave it at that.)

  50. Akira MacKenzie says

    WHOOPS Sorry. I hit “Post Comment” rather than “Preview:”

    @ 53

    The republicans have highly motivated voters over cultural issues that don’t require them to actually govern, so their voters don’t care if systems aren’t working, so long as they get their way in putting those other people in their place.

    Too many people wring their hand and scratch their heads and clutch their copies of What’s Wrong With Kansas asking “Why do these people keep voting against their best interests?”

    First of all, they would angrily demand to know why you think you know what’s best for them. They don’t want your national health care. They don’t need your social security. They aren’t moochers and weaklings who want or need help! They can take care of themselves and if anything your expensive taxes and regulations are getting in the way of their self-reliance. (At least that’s what Fox News tells them.)

    Secondly, these people are very likely to be right-wing Christians, raised in believing that their Gawd is an angry deity who punishes mankind for its sins with earthquakes, tornadoes, economic downturns, terrorist attacks, school shootings, and other calamities. That, and the world is going to end any second now and will punishing the “wicked” and reward the “faithful.” They don’t CARE about their material conditions because they think it’s more important to prepare for the supposedly perfect afterlife they’re going to get for hating gays, forcing Christianity on others, and banning abortion.

    That’s what you are dealing with.

  51. PaulBC says

    Akira MacKenzie@56

    Too many people wring their hand and scratch their heads and clutch their copies of What’s Wrong With Kansas asking “Why do these people keep voting against their best interests?”

    I agree that it’s a fallacy.

    American rightwingers vote for exactly what they want. They are increasingly getting it, and they do not seem at all displeased with the consequences even if I (and others posting here) are horrified. If I had any doubt about it before (I didn’t) I would only have to look at the reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic. It doesn’t bother them at all if people they know and love are dying because of “God’s will.” Just don’t force them to do anything about it.

    SCOTUS delivered two doozies this week: States are nearly powerless to pass laws stopping anyone from carrying a concealed weapon anywhere they want. States are fully empowered to punish women for attempting to end unwanted pregnancies. Both of these decisions will have real-world consequences and increase suffering and fatalities. But it would be wrong to imagine that anyone cheering it on is going to care. This is the world they want to see.

  52. consciousness razor says

    Too many people wring their hand and scratch their heads and clutch their copies of What’s Wrong With Kansas asking “Why do these people keep voting against their best interests?”

    It sounds like you’re telling the same basic story that Thomas Frank did in What’s the Matter with Kansas? So, are you one of these people? Or what’s the idea?

    Are you suggesting that we have to actually believe that they’re somehow correct to go along with the whole scheme of “economic” stuff like fiscal conservatism, low or zero taxes for the rich, etc., along with the “cultural” stuff coming from fundamentalist Christianity?

    That’s what you are dealing with.

    What made you think someone out there (maybe not Thomas Frank himself) was claiming that we weren’t dealing with that?

  53. Akira MacKenzie says

    What made you think someone out there (maybe not Thomas Frank himself) was claiming that we weren’t dealing with that?

    I hear it implied by every “leftist” who claims that culture war issues are a “distraction” created by the rich and that the lower classes are just easily duped Ruben’s who will become more left-leaning if we just improved their material condition. It won’t. Economic security won’t erase centuries of racial and sexual bigotry and generations of religious superstition which are what are really driving their politics.

    I hear it implied when I get chided for calling these scum “rednecks” or “Bible-fuckers” and point out that the 1% are but a tiny group of people when the real enemy that we must fight lives right next door. (How dare I besmirch the blessed proletariat!)

  54. consciousness razor says

    I hear it implied by every “leftist” who claims that culture war issues are a “distraction” created by the rich

    Not created by them, but often exploited by them. What am I supposed to say? I think it’s true that such issues are often used to deflect attention away from things that the government can legitimately do something about, onto things such as how individuals think or feel. To the extent that you can say they’re doing anything, it typically amounts to something very minimal or even symbolic. Large/powerful corporations play their disgusting part too, and they may as well be treated like the government at this point.

    Economic security won’t erase centuries of racial and sexual bigotry and generations of religious superstition which are what are really driving their politics.

    But the point is that it wasn’t always like that, in Kansas or places like it, which tended to be pretty supportive of 19th century Progressives and so on. It’s not like this stuff has been a permanent feature of their politics for “centuries.”

    Lots of things have changed, and “conservatism” in the US is one of them. Not much of it was really grassroots. Think of young earth creationism — normal people had to be fed that crap, because they weren’t just coming up with it themselves. If you had told them about trickle down (let’s say) before it became fashionable, they just would have told you that you were full of shit, because it so obviously is. Anyway, the weird blend of Reaganism and theocracy and so forth that we’re used to dealing with these days is a relatively new thing.

  55. logicalcat says

    @PZ

    There is no legislation that can be passed on this issue. That’s the problem. The Roe v Wade ruling was always indefensible and the only reason it was never struck down was because the supreme court has enough members who were okay with abortion. Now it no longer does. The initial ruling was arguing that the constitution grants an express right to privacy. So the republican argument for abortion during Roe v Wade was that the government should not interfere with the privacy of a citizen and their doctor. That’s how it got passed. Except there actually is no right to privacy in the constitution past 3rd amendment “search and seizure”. Worse off there’s no precedent. So Roe V Wade was always super weak. Democrats tried to pass legislation earlier this year to protect abortions, but they didn’t have the numbers.

    https://www.politico.com/news/2022/05/11/senate-doomed-vote-roe-abortion-rights-00031732

    The minute 2016 was lost this was a foregone conclusion. The best outcome would have been to prevent Trumps win. That didn’t happen. The right idea right now is definitely to make democrats more politically viable at the local and national level. If we did that earlier we could’ve saved abortions.

    Also im sorry I’m sick and tired of the whole “democrats are spineless” bullshit. You are projecting. Ive never seen a more spineless group of people than progressives. Bar none. Progressives were warned in 2016 this would happen, and they didn’t care. Choosing to believe in the anti-Clinton propaganda and spread it online. We got what we deserved and then make excuses for our own spinelessness like “Its all RGB fault.” like Ive seen some people here do. Ask yourself who are the ones trying to fix the problem. Cuz it aint progressives since they only exist on twitter. Its the democrats. Can they be spineless? Yes. But progressives are straight up useless AND spineless. Like I showed earlier they tried to pass legislation but lost because they don’t have the numbers. And they don’t have the numbers because progressives don’t fucking vote in the general election and they ESPECIALLY do not vote local.

    As a progressive myself I used to be spineless. Deflecting my lack of political will onto “the establishment”. Its stupid. I grew a spine when I decided to be a democrat full stop. And yet I still sometimes forget to vote for senate. Absentee ballot helps with reminding me of it tho so I’m doing my part. The vast majority of progressives are content on never getting anything done because its easy to criticize “da establishment” when you are not a part of it.

  56. logicalcat says

    @PZ

    Actually its unfair to say you yourself are projecting. Naw. Most progressives are definitely projecting about who is or not spineless. I don’t think you are doing that. Its still bullshit tho.

  57. PaulBC says

    logicalcat@61

    Except there actually is no right to privacy in the constitution past 3rd amendment “search and seizure”.

    Not to nitpick, but that’s the 4th amendment. The 3rd amendment is

    No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

    As much as people joke about it, I think it’s a very underrated amendment. It just doesn’t get challenged. If it wasn’t there, who knows? I can picture quartering soldiers proposed as a cost-saving measure or a method of enforcing “patriotism.”

    The 4th amendment is also a very good one, but it doesn’t seem to bug people as much when it is routinely undermined. “If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.” seems to be the order of the day.

  58. consciousness razor says

    logicalcat:

    The minute 2016 was lost this was a foregone conclusion.
    […]
    Progressives were warned in 2016 this would happen, and they didn’t care. Choosing to believe in the anti-Clinton propaganda and spread it online.

    Maybe you’ll think this is more of the same…. Clinton and Sanders were asked about abortion. Their answers weren’t the same.

    Bernie Sanders refused to support any specific abortion restrictions

    “Can you name a single circumstance at any point in a pregnancy in which you would be okay with abortion being illegal?” moderator Bret Baier asked Sanders during his time on stage.

    “It’s not a question of me being okay,” Sanders said. “I happen to believe that it is wrong for the government to be telling a woman what to do with her own body. I think, I believe, and I understand there are honest people. I mean, I have a lot of friends, some supporters, some disagree. They hold a different point of view, and I respect that. But that is my view.”

    Sanders pivoted to his frustration with Republicans who want to “get the government off our backs,” yet “somehow on this issue, they want to tell every woman in America what she should do with her body.”

    Baier followed up: “I guess the genesis of the question is that there are some Democrats who say after five months, with the exception of the life of the mother or the health of the baby, that perhaps that’s something to look at. You’re saying no.”

    Sanders’s answer suggested that he had no interest in haggling over restrictions and exceptions: “I am very strongly pro-choice. That is a decision to be made by the woman, her physician, and her family. That’s my view.”

    He didn’t offer a single fucking thing to play along with that bullshit question. Not in the mood, not playing their game. Just full fucking support, while also pointing out that Republicans are jackasses who should mind their own business. Exactly the right thing to do.

    Hillary Clinton got more specific, and more equivocal
    “Do you think a child should have any legal rights or protections before it’s born?” Baier asked Clinton. “Or do you think there should not be any restrictions on any abortions at any stage in a pregnancy?”

    Clinton started by discussing the Supreme Court decision “that would shut down a lot of the options for women in Texas,” as well as “other legislatures that have taken similar steps to try to restrict a woman’s right to obtain an abortion.”

    The right to an abortion under Roe v. Wade is “not much of a right if it is totally limited and constrained,” Clinton said. “So I think we have to continue to stand up for a woman’s right to make these decisions, and to defend Planned Parenthood, which does an enormous amount of good work across our country.”

    Baier pressed. “Just to be clear, there’s no — without any exceptions?”

    “No — I have been on record in favor of a late pregnancy regulation that would have exceptions for the life and health of the mother,” Clinton said. “I object to the recent effort in Congress to pass a law saying after 20 weeks, you know, no such exceptions. Because although these are rare, Bret, they sometimes arise in the most complex, difficult medical situations.”

    Like “fetal malformities [sic]?” Baier asked.

    “And threats to the woman’s health,” Clinton said. “Under Roe v. Wade, it is appropriate to say, in these circumstances, so long as there’s an exception for the life and health of the mother.”

    What an absolute load of bullshit. Nobody who needs to get one after 20 weeks should face government harassment. Being in favor of such a regulation is just her usual brand of centrist noise, intended to make conservatives feel ever so slightly more comfortable, while we know the anti-choice/life side won’t budge an inch from it.

    “Well, sure, why not? Since you asked very politely, I’ve got a restriction for you right here, Bret….”

    Some rock solid support, that is. We could totally depend on that when the time comes, no doubt.

  59. klatu says

    What is there even to say? This is shit. You’ve all been screwed over, big time. Democracy is dead.

    So, instead of injecticng more of my garbage opinions into this entire clusterfuck, here’s some fun nintendo music:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8J7dNNPxU4w
    https://soundcloud.com/yoryibeats/potion
    That last track really slaps, in particular.

    Try to have some fun, you all. Have fun and fuck those gray old men! Fuck all of them to hell. Right where they belong.

  60. klatu says

    Or maybe the response to all of this has to be white people belly dancing:

    Fuck you. All of you who think democracts are gonna save you, after fifty years of well-intentioned failure. How deluded can you be? How deluded can you be for so long?
    If after all this time, you still put your hopes in the other right-wing party to not be quite as fascist as the blatant fascists, then maybe you should reconsider the exact premise upon which you vote. Fuck winning, if winning means losing, long term.

    Maybe voting is worthless, period.

    Go out. Go nuts. Fuck shit up. Go all ‘Rage against the machine’. Because as cringey as that band may seem, they kind of have a point. It’s the entire system that’s fucked. Everything is corrupt and bad. Where are the young people, fucking shit up, anyway? Did they just disappear? Or did we successfually grind them down into being ‘productive’?

    (And now I’ve ejaculated my opininon. I’m fine now, thanks.)

  61. Kagehi says

    #59

    I hear it implied by every “leftist” who claims that culture war issues are a “distraction”

    Even the f-ng Republicans get this, why the F don’t you. In the words of the ass hat Bannon, “There are really three parties in this country right now – Conservatives like me, the neo-liberals and others, who only serve corporations, and socialists. Our plan is to erase the power of everyone else and rule for the next 100 years.” Or more or less that. But, his point isn’t wrong, its not that “Democrats” are somehow spineless and weak, its that while the GOP has mostly consolidated itself around a 4th Reich vision, and the remaining members, who don’t exactly agree with that vision, are pro-corporate, and literally think that more money for rich people, and listening to the kinds of lunatics that want fewer jobs, and more homeless people, to offset inflation. The problem is that the Democrats have split themselves into two internal parties, one of which, and Biden is one of these assholes, also kiss the ass of corporations, and “work across the isle” only when it benefits their own power, and/or the corporations they are friendly to. That “branch” of the Democrats, like the GOP, seem to lie, all the time. How many lies did Biden tell, about what he would “do” when in office for “the people”, then immediately forgot the second he was in office. Things which he didn’t even TRY to do anything about? How many of those things, including corrupt cops, did most of the left suspect he wasn’t going to do shit about, since he helped write the legislation that helped make them more corrupt in the first place?

    No one voted for him because he was a best candidate. None of us are in the insane, pro-corporate, camp of lying freaks that, like certain other fakes I could mention in other movements, actually claim that the, “social issues and culture war stuff”, is somehow going to magically fix itself if we just get more people to be X, what ever the F X is. No, those people are the bullshit neo-liberals. And the whole premise behind neo-liberalism is the same insane and stupid one you see among certain kinds of atheists, “The issues and problems don’t matter. They are some sort of distraction. We just need there to be more of us, and magically all those problems will disappear on their own. Please ignore the fact that I am only saying this because I personally like, benefit from, and don’t have any intention of actually solving any of these problems.”

    And, terrifyingly, while, like everything, reality is a “bit” more complex than this, the reality is also that when they vote the current people in charge of the Democrats as a party, and who thus get to decide who we are even allowed to vote for (and don’t you dare claim that this isn’t true, then voters will often follow the lead of the candidates, when they f over one, in favor of throwing their own endorsement behind yet another corporate Dem/neo-liberal), always vote on things that help corporations, and often barely try to prevent the GOP from stacking even more crap into bills, when/if they get anything passed at all, while time, after time, after time, claiming that its, “Not the right time.”, or, “We will get to that later.”, or, “We can’t get enough votes, so we are not even going to bring it to a vote.”, and an endless list of excuses for why legislation that is both a) directed at helping actual people, and b) not padded, even by their own side, with things that undermine it, ever even gets “seen” in congress of the senate.

    I mean, seriously, are you honestly telling me that with the right wing talking about reorganizing the US government in their favor, and ruling for 100 years, while babbling about it being like 1932 (and the blatant allusion suggested by their buddy buddying with the white power movements, and others), and the dedicated effort that they have gone through, seemingly since Reagan showed them that they could start shoving religion back into government, and no one would notice, that the flipping Democrats, if they really, actually, intended to do something, couldn’t also have safes full of pre-written legislation, crafted to support the shit they claim to stand for, and a plan to sell them to the public, just waiting to be dropping on state, and federal legislator, the flipping literal second one of them became… say THE FLIPPING PRESIDENT.

    The GOP literally has done this. The Democrats, talk a lot about what they will do, what they might pass, how things should change, then, when it comes time to actually do something – they sit on their asses for months, trying to write what turns out to be tepid legislation, which is designed, seemingly, to try to, “not offend too many people by actually doing anything”, then its shot down, sometimes by the actual liberals in the party, because it doesn’t actually do anything, or its chock full of crap that will make things worse, and not always because, once the GOP gets their hands on it, it inevitably gets filled with crap that undermines everything its trying to accomplish, or which screws us over in some other way. Nope – sometimes this crap is already IN the proposed legislation, and the GOP only compounds the failure, by tacking on even worse things.

    Where the F is the bloody plan Democrats? What the F are you actually going to do, not whine about, or pretend you want to do, then never get around to.

  62. Kagehi says

    Ironically, I think we just got our answer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wIb7a9Aibu4&t=217s

    They will just use their failure to codify anything that is currently being attacked/erased by the new SCOTUS into a fundraising campaign…. And, yeah, kind of already knew this, given how much crap I get in email asking me for, “more money for X campaign, because we are about to lose.”, never mind that these donations are not at all going to be used, and everyone that knows anything about how such things are financed know this, for the “current campaign”, instead of shoved in a corner, for later use (a common practice with the BS, “Your donation will be matched – by money we already have, but won’t spend if we don’t get your donation, but will instead save for the next campaign“, BS.

    I am getting so tired of this crap. And even more tired of the insistence that, instead of actively working to change the party and/or replace it, we keep playing this BS game of, “Well.. I guess we have to elect this guy and hope they are actually going to do something, instead of just lying their asses off.” Like the woman in the video says (paraphrased), “You have had decades, as in as much as 50 years, to pass shit that protects these things, knowing that they where under threat, and attack, and made many promises to do so, and done NOTHING, and now you think you can ask me for more money because you failed?”

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