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steve g
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"Let's create our own game-- one founded on the ideals of integrity, sustainability, cooperation and realizing the promise of self-government. It's not up to them-- we're the stewards of this democracy."
--Katie Hill


Even the worst Democrats in Congress have caught on to the fact that railing against Trump is profitable. A case can be made that it is Debbie Wasserman Schultz who is responsible, at least as much as Putin or Comey, for installing Trump in the White House. And now she sends e-mails several times a week begging for money by robotically denigrating Trump. Being anti-Trump doesn't mean a politician backs a progressive agenda. Wasserman Schultz, who opposes John Conyers' Medicare-For-All Act, for example, and is still the poster gal for DC corruption, can be anti-Trump 'til the cows come home but that doesn't mean anyone in their right mind should back her against progressive primary challenger Tim Canova.

As you've probably noticed, effective and sincere Resistance Leaders in Congress-- people like Ted Lieu, Elizabeth Warren and Pramila Jayapal-- aren't just sending out fundraising emails for themselves; they've been putting together the foundations for what congressional resistance to Trump and Trumpism looks like.
And every one of them has expressly acknowledged over and over that being against Trump isn't the be all and end all to the progressive agenda. It's become a key point Blue America talks about with the candidates we back.
Our newest endorsed candidate, Katie Hill, feels as strongly about it as we do. Her district-- a blue Southern California seat-- is held by knee-jerk, right-wing Republican Steve Knight, a proud TrumpCare supporter. The district went convincingly for Hillary last year-- 50.3-43.6%. But while Hillary was winning by over 6 points, the DCCC-imported candidate lost by close to 10 points. Another perfect example of an utterly clueless DCCC big-footing into a primary in a district they don't know anything about. They spent about $3.5 million on their Beverly Hills attorney candidate and lost 54.2% to 45.8%. Reactionary Blue Dog Cheri Bustos, vice chair of the DCCC recruitment committee, wants him to run again. I'm sure Paul Ryan, Steve Knight and Kevin McCarthy do as well. Blue America has just started raising money for Katie Hill today and we hope you'll help her with a contribution towards getting her message out to voters. She penned the following guest post for us that goes to the heart of why it's so important for progressives to win congressional seats like CA-25. "Our nation stands at a crossroads," she began. "Do we continue down the same self-destructive path we’ve been walking for decades? Or do we blaze a new trail into the future?"
Moving Away From The Politics Of Fear --by Katie Hill
Donald Trump is not the problem. He’s the symptom of a damaged political consciousness in America.
Opposition politics have become the new normal. In 2010, Mitch McConnell declared the sole ambition of the Republican Party for “President Obama to be a one-term president.” While Democrats resisted the urge to give in to these schoolyard tactics at first, in 2016 they gave in and centered their entire campaign strategy around personal attacks on Donald Trump, rather than policy.
They played the fear card-- to much less effect-- and it lost. Big time. Which is why now is the time for us to move away from the politics of fear and into an affirmative political vision moving forward.
But what is our vision? We have a great, grassroots resistance that has emerged, but right now, all we’re doing is reacting to Trump’s every move. He is setting the agenda, maintaining the initiative, and we’re screaming on the sidelines.
It’s understandable. Trump is a disaster. He’s doing things that would have been unimaginable in any other time. He is putting our country at risk, going against our every value with every unhinged twitter outburst. We, of course, must resist.
But that’s not enough. We must be more than the anti-Trump party or we fail. Period.
It’s time for us to start screaming this from the rooftops. We can fight Trump at the same time, but we can’t stop looking ahead-- because the fate of our party and, quite frankly, our country, depends on it.
I, like most Americans on either side of the aisle, believe that our country isn’t broken, but our political system is. The extreme polarization of politics and gerrymandering have turned voters off. Consequently, people who are supposed to be representing all of us only truly represent a tiny minority of those still voting. We need to restore faith and trust in our government and that means enacting meaningful campaign finance reform. Supporting a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizen’s United isn’t enough-- we need to elect people who are willing to regulate themselves as representatives and stand up to the people who hold the purse strings.
We must call this rigged system of crony capitalism what it is and do everything we can to address the ever-growing income inequality in America. Our economy gives big banks and big oil massive government subsidies while small businesses struggle to survive or fail. Our health care system bankrupts sick Americans so big pharma and insurance companies can make record profits. Our tax code allows Wall Street bankers and hedge funds, who just a decade ago destroyed the economy, to pay less than half the tax rate a middle-class family would pay. We need to put the system back to work for every American, not just a privileged few.
We need to tackle long-neglected social reforms, starting with healthcare. It’s not good enough to just save the ACA, we need to work tirelessly until we ensure that no American must choose between getting the health care they need and putting a roof over their heads. We must deal with the rising rates of mental health disorders and substance abuse, and ensure that we are providing effective, early intervention and treatment to people regardless of their ability to pay. We need massive criminal justice reform. We need to make sure that everyone-- no matter who they are or where they come from-- can afford college or trade school and not come out with a lifetime of debt. We need to address the housing affordability and homelessness crisis that is plaguing so many of our communities. The list goes on-- every one of these issues needs to be talked about, and we can’t afford to wait any longer.
We need to be pro-sustainability in every sense of the word. The future of labor goes hand in hand with a progressive, pro-environmental policy. Research shows the growing green economy creates more jobs per unit of energy than the fossil fuel industry. Perhaps one of the biggest perks of a renewable economy is these jobs cannot be shipped overseas. By installing and developing green infrastructure, we will create local and regional projects benefitting the communities nearby. Strengthening local projects and supporting green energy makes for a more sustainable planet, and a more sustainable economy.
Finally, it’s time we focused our energy and attention on the cooperative nature of life and governing in America. For far too long, politicians have tried to divide us with polarizing, partisan rhetoric. In the real world, we get things done as families, friends, neighbors and communities, without devolving into a mudslinging circus. Every single day, diverse Americans run businesses together, coach little league together, put on theater productions, run our school districts and cities, support each other, and keep our communities going. If we want to solve the countless problems facing our country right now, we must face them together.
It is time for a more affirmative political movement in our country. We’re not lacking the ideas, innovation or ingenuity; we’re lacking the political will.
Currently, the establishment is more vested in constant re-election campaigning and serving their corporate masters. That’s their game, but they can only play it if we allow them to. I hope you’ll join me on this journey because I know we can do this and we will make our government and our country better, together.
---
Thanks for always doing what you can to make this a better world,

--Howie, for the entire Blue America team




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Why many are willing to ignore Trump-Russia

By David Akadjian
Sunday May 21, 2017 · 10:20 AM EDT

What is our why?

In Shattered, the post-mortem on the last election, the authors talk about how Clinton never figured out why she was running. Her campaign lacked a rationale. It was more a list of policies.

One of her top aides described it like this: “I would have had a reason for running or I would not have run.”

Having a “why,” a strong reason that people can get behind, can make a huge difference. It’s the reason why grassroots politicians can sometimes beat their more established and more monied rivals. One politician told me that it’s a 6-to-1 multiplier in terms of fundraising. That is, establishment politicians have to raise more than six times the money to be competitive with a strong grassroots campaign.

Bernie Sanders had no organization and no support inside the political establishment. All he had was a strong “why”—one that he focused obsessively on, and one that everyone could easily articulate.

His why: “How do we create an economy that works for all of our people rather than a small number of billionaires?”

What struck me about Egberto’s piece was that he’s seeing the same thing:

Nothing in the Russia story will improve the personal economies of working-class Americans. It will not give them good health care. It will not rebuild infrastructure to provide jobs. It will not educate our children. So while working-class America continues to suffer from subpar wages, while they continue to see their health care costs rise, they hear a narrative that's anathema to their reality.
Here’s how you can set this up (even with rabid Trump supporters):

economy_01.jpg
In response to a post from a rabid Trump supporter with almost nothing but Trump friends.
People honestly care about Trump only so much as they think he’s going to change things for the better. It’s important to remember that what most people are really worried about are the everyday issues like jobs, their families, and health care.

All we have to do is acknowledge these concerns and have a better story about what we stand for, and why this will make things better.

While we need to get to the bottom of the Russia scandal, remember that people in America are still hurting—and what impacts their daily lives is what they’re most likely to care about.

David Akadjian is the author of The Little Book of Revolution: A Distributive Strategy for Democracy (now available as an ebook).


http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/5/21/1663613/-Why-many-are-willing-to-ignore-Trump-Russia#comment_66565456




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He is spot on in this Op-ed Republicans simply are not funny , though they do try hard. Read, and check out the example videos



Right wing growing desperate for a good comedian: Why money can't buy funny

By SemDem
Sunday May 21, 2017 · 9:38 AM EDT

In a Koch brothers' AFP article last year, they made the case to go after millennials in an area the right wing has consistently failed at: humor. Despite featuring conservative “comedians” in the article, the only thing funny about it was the title: “Making Freedom Cool.”

One of the people they hyped was Steve Crowder. You probably haven't heard of him, but he thinks he’s utterly hilarious—and apparently good looking according to how often he bares his chest. Hands off, ladies … he’s married—I think. I really haven't bothered to learn anything about him. All I know is that he is so painfully unfunny that despite trying to watch a recent video for this piece, I couldn’t finish it.


He may suck, but he does provide a useful illustration for an honest question:

Why are right-wing comedians such utter failures?

Right now, we are in the midst of a golden age of political satire. Not surprisingly, almost all of it is on the progressive side.

Stephen Colbert has redefined the terms of late night, Bill Maher is at the top of his game, and SNL’s biting skits have exploded in popularity. Samantha Bee has really taken off, and Trevor Noah—despite having a slow start after Jon—has now found his stride and has been consistently hitting the mark. Seth Meyers has been brutal in his takedowns, and Jimmy Kimmel’s video went viral after he openly mocked the GOP’s attempt to kill children with their heartless attempt to take away their healthcare.

John Oliver has been so successful that he’s galvanized millions of his viewers to take action on numerous occasions. Going beyond cable and networks, there are too many successful internet shows to mention. (I, like millions, enjoy watching Funny or Die and Between Two Ferns.) The one consistent thread, besides popularity, is that all of these shows are truly funny.

Conservatives desperately want in on this, but they also realize that being viciously mocked all the time is turning the younger generation against them. As a result, they have poured money into different experiments to reverse their fortunes. So far, all they’ve gotten is failure.

In 2015, a Texas tycoon funded a show called The Flipside, which was hailed as the conservative answer to The Daily Show. Haven’t heard of it? I’m not surprised. Here’s an opening monologue from the “star," Michael Loftus, on the topical subject of Hurricane Katrina. In 2015:


More at the link , if you can stomach the lack of funny here :


http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/5/21/1664423/-Rightwing-Growing-Desperate-for-a-Good-Comedian-Why-Money-Can-t-Buy-Funny


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