A little history, I wrote an open letter to Jane Hamsher on Sunday 12/27 and posted it to my blog, the original is here. I tweeted the post and was promptly retweeted by some friends and fellow posters to the #hcr and #p2 hashtags.
Apparently the post struck a chord for it was retweeded multiple times and recommended by a few people beyond my typical reach. This morning Jane Hamsher responded not to me but rather to Katrina Vanden Huevel the editor of the Nation criticizing her for pushing it and thereby validating my position to the point of requiring a response, that post is here.
I posted a comment on FDL in response to Ms. Hamsher’s post:
Ms. Hamsher responded to my comment:
So per Ms. Hamsher’s request I will start here:
“It is manifestly untrue that the bill is the handiwork of Congress, for which the President bears no responsibility.” Jane Hamsher
It is manifestly true that the bill in the house was the product of three committees and the bill in the Senate was the product of two committees, but even if it weren’t, even if every last word was typed by nine fingered Rahm while the president dictated it would still have had to come out of a committee, it still would have had to achieve cloture to reach the floor of the Senate, it still would have had to achieve cloture to close debate and come to a vote, so ultimately the legislation that you get is what you can get through the Senate, the current Senate, the one that claims Lieberman, Nelson, Lincoln and Landrieu as members.
What exactly would have been gained in Barack Obama fighting tooth and nail for something that Joe Lieberman had publically stated that he would not give? Do you think that a strong stance by the president would have shamed Joe into compliance? Do you really think that the man who stood next to Sarah Palin under a banner reading “Country First” is possible to shame?
Is there anything to be gained politically or otherwise by publically stating that in this particular instance the president of the United States can get his lunch money taken from him by Joe Lieberman?
Why do you suppose that since the Supreme Court ruled for Roe in 1973 abortion rights have consistently been chipped away? Why do you suppose Stupak or Nelson has a say in the health care debate? Why do you think women are thrown under the bus to achieve the possibility of passing any type of health care reform? It is because the right is disciplined in their approach, they are relentless in their pursuit of victory one tiny chink at a time until they get what they want. If the Republican Party had any ideas AT ALL they would kick our ass from here to infinity (and beyond). Thank God that they are completely bereft of substance because they play politics so much better than we do it is truly pathetic.
Gallup recently posted on the political climate going into the 2010 elections as “not favorable” and summed up by saying:
Since 2006, not much has changed for the better in terms of Americans’ satisfaction with the way things are going in the country, perceptions of the economy, or approval of the job Congress is doing. What has changed is that Democrats are now in control of both houses of Congress and the presidency after voter dissatisfaction led to steep Republican losses in 2006 and 2008. If national conditions do not improve considerably between now and next November, Democrats appear vulnerable to suffering heavy seat losses of their own. Two factors that are likely to be crucial in determining voter preferences for Congress in 2010 will be President Obama’s job approval rating, and whether Democrats’ advantage in party support continues to shrink.
The fact of the matter is that Republicans in congress are mining the basement of approval ratings, Democrats in congress are not doing much better. The president has roughly a 50% approval rating and is probably your best shot at getting more progressives elected, and if not progressive, liberal and if not liberal, moderate and if not moderate conservative democrats which would still be better than the most liberal of Republicans and certainly better than those who would appeal to the teaparty crowd.
You don’t win this thing in a single administration, you don’t win it in a decade, you don’t even get to win it in a generation. The perfection of our union has been a work in progress for 233 years you make your contribution to the next generation and don’t set back their progress.
I don’t begrudge your ability to bitch slap the president from here to next Tuesday. My opinion is that its current form it serves no purpose. If you win, you lose.
Look, you assumed that my post was a “very slick PR letter”. Even a cursory reading of my blog that I started back in July of this year would make that assumption roughly analogous to believing the conspiracy to defraud the American people about Barack Obama’s birth certificate started back with the birth announcements in the local Hawaiian papers. If that assumption was wrong than maybe, just maybe you have gotten off on a tangent that might not be the place you intended.
This is my belief. I never said that you could not speak, I expressed my opinion that you were doing yourself no favors. I wrote the letter in complete sincerity, my response is no less so.