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  • « The lawsuit that could change everything | Main | Is 'our moment' coming in the SOTU? »

    January 20, 2010

    Democratic Super-Baloney

    Posted by: Kevin

    Pelosi_reid0110 The Democratic Party promise since the 1990s: Give us all your money, all your votes, and we'll "fight 'til hell freezes over, then we'll fight on the ice" to deliver for the gay and lesbian community at the national level.

    Well, that was a lie.  Pure and simple. They had the power, and they didn't use it.

    And as the much vaunted Democratic supermajority comes to a bitter and self-destructive end, it's become fairly obvious to everyone now what a lie it was.  (I won't say I told you so.)

    Tens of millions of dollars in wasted donations and almost two decades of furiously slavish political loyalty to the national Democratic establishment yielded passage of a mostly symbolic hate crimes law that had gone moldy on the dais for more than a decade, and nothing else.  Indeed, we got more admonitions than action on all fronts, being told to wait even longer and not 'endanger' the prospects for totally unrelated legislation that ended up bombing anyway.  I mean - what are they going to tell us next, that they need 75 seats and a 100-seat majority in the House to pass ENDA?  Don't even think about repealing the military ban or the Defense of Marriage Act.  (Oh, and send a check, please.  'Your life depends on it,' etc. and so forth....)

    Indeed, allowing the Democratic leadership to shove aside reforms that go to the heart of being gay in America today, in favor of their disastrous legislative fiascos of the past three years, didn't get us anywhere.  Their bumbling cost them the Senate supermajority that our community invested so much in building as part of this deal they offered us almost a generation ago.  And now we get nothing.  Again.

    And even the way they lost the supermajority is like an anvil to the head.  It was Ted Kennedy's seat.  It was in Massachusetts, the first state to legalize gay marriage.  And it was at the hands of a Republican so conservative, so 'out-of-step' on paper with that state, that even I can't believe he won, or better, that the Dems lost.  Could this be any more violent a wake-up call for all for all of us, finally yielding to a shift in gay national strategy?  Will it be the moment we finally decide to end our toxic dependency on partisanship?  Or is this just going to be like Lindsay Lohan crashing her car and saying it was an innocent mistake and not the pound of cocaine up her nose?

    First, we need gay leaders with balls once and for all.  Or just gay leaders, period.  Joe Solomonese is chief among the fulsome, useless enablers of this failed bargain we've made, and frankly you should stop giving the Human Rights Campaign money until he resigns.  What in hell has he accomplished in Washington worthy of the salary he receives?  Getting Lady Gaga?  How can you even bear to look at his insipid email missives now after all this?  I certainly can't.

    And while I agree that activism and commitment at the local and state level is probably more important, we cannot completely ignore the national imperatives.  Don't just turn your head in disgust at what a joke HRC has become, or what a disaster the Democrats have been as a governing party.  Do something about it.  Register your opinion with them.  Stop giving money to gay groups that fail to lead, and to party organizations that fail to deliver.  Remove yourself from HRC's useless email lists (do you get anything other than requests for more money anymore?)  Demand new leadership.  Post comments on blogs, on Facebook, and in the few remaining gay newspapers around the country.    Talk to like-minded gay and lesbian friends (especially longtime donors).  Share ideas with each other and make a plan - any plan.  But for God's sake, don't just turn your heads.  Don't just sit there

    Wake up, people.  The period between now and the 2010 elections will be the greatest test of whether we get action, or we wait another decade or two for a bus that is not going to stop here again.  If we don't get anything back after all that we've invested, and all this community has done to deliver for them, explain to me why the Democratic Party should ever feel obliged to deliver for us in the future.  We'll have proven ourselves the cheapest date in the history of party politics.

    We are spinning our wheels until we push out the old and demand something new.  Something real.  Something courageous and honest at the front of this movement, who will live and die on results in the next 10 months.

    It's time for someone to start fighting on the quickly hardening ice, and it had better be you.

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    Comments

    1. Michael on Jan 20, 2010 9:28:23 AM:

      Thank you for so eloquently expressing what I've been feeling and thinking for the last year.

    1. Carlos on Jan 20, 2010 10:01:59 AM:

      It gauls me, no wait, in fact I hate to say this but Obama needs to learn some lessons from Bush Jnr in terms of keeping the party in line and insuring legislations are passed like he had the 'god given right' and overwhelming majority to do so.

      The incredible powerful emotional investment in hope has just gone swirling down the drain. I'll be surprised if Obama will be a two term president at this rate (and I so dearly want to be proved wrong). The urgency was never there and a vital opportunity is lost.

      Bipartisanship will not work at this rate. Apparety Americans want a forthright no nonsense leader and not someone who compromises. Sadly intellect does not help as we saw in the case of idiot Bush. Hold on tight for the steep bumpy downward spiral. We have seen your true colours Mr Obama and it will take a lot to pull the knife from our backs...

    1. Strict Scrutiny on Jan 20, 2010 12:18:50 PM:

      Yep, that about sums it up. Couldn't have said it better myself. Obama and the national democrats have proven themselves to be opportunistic and practically worthless when it comes to advancing LGBT rights. We're on our own.

      If you want to give money, give it to Ted Olson and David
      Boies.

    1. Lucrece on Jan 20, 2010 5:48:07 PM:

      The fighting on ice quips were brilliantly funny, Kevin!

      It was arrogance that lost the Dems their seat in MA. Coackley's campaign was so languid, presumptuous of victory just because she had a "D" beside her name and it was MA. She just sat back and expected to ride into the Senate seat without having to familiarize herself with the constituents.

      And Democrats are pretty much the same. If they don't get populist ala Republicans, and put their money where their mouth is when it comes to passing legislation like Republicans do, they will devolve into an obsolete party.

      I was looking at prop8trialtracker.com, thank god for its existence, but the very blogger following the trial has to sneak in some minuscule partisan rimming now and then; it gets me railing. I don't want to hear your goddamned praises about progressive causes (even if I'm mostly progressive in many issues). I want to go there to follow the trial, not to hear about your personal heroes or sycophancy about the AFER board.

      Same with Towleroad. Wonderful entertainment site, but when Cindy McCain does a photoshoot for the NOH8 campaign, the blog owner posts some petty, passive aggressive swipe with "Cindy McCain has her mouth taped shut for NOH8" as the title.

      I mean, what the fuck? We complain when the Republican party is so uniformly homophobic, but when a prominent figure publicly makes a statement in favor of equality, she gets snubbed?

      And yet they'll make excuses for Bill Clinton, or for how our current Legislature puts us in the backburner because there are more important issues, or because Haiti makes more important news (really, news that cater to the domestic sphere should prioritize foreign affair over trials poised to make it to the SCOTUS)?

      UGH. Let me go have some cookies n' cream ice cream in order to swallow down the bitter taste of indignation.

    1. Doctor Whom on Jan 20, 2010 8:48:58 PM:

      Democrats don't genuinely care about LGBT issues any more than Republicans genuinely care about smaller government. My experience in partisan politics has taught me that both parties are mystery cults; once you advance within them, you'll be taught that the party leaders don't actually believe their own campaign rhetoric.

    1. Double T on Jan 23, 2010 5:10:14 PM:

      Kevin,
      I don’t know where to start. You seem to take the shot gun approach, throw as much shit at the wall and see what sticks.

      President has only been in office for ONE YEAR, not twenty. The Democrats have not had a super majority for twenty years. And HRC does not have a monopoly on lobbying congress.

      Let’s address the President. I was shocked that he spoke at the HRC dinner. In the past I supported both HRC and Senator Obama, the folks at many HRC gatherings had some very nasty things to say about him as a candidate. I think some of them got their talking points straight from Palin’s website. So the fact that he is forgiving and has an open mind speaks volumes.
      President Obama has had a full plate the entire first year, but promises have been kept.

      And please DON’T TAKE MY WORD, you can independently verify these facts on sites like www.politifact.com.


      Official Promises made to the GLBT community.

      • Promise Kept - No. 290: Push for enactment of Matthew Shepard Act, which expands hate crime law to include sexual orientation and other factors
      • Promise in the works -No. 291: Expand the Employment Non-Discrimination Act to include sexual orientation and gender identity
      • Promise Broken -No. 292: Urge states to treat same-sex couples with full equality in their family and adoption laws
      • Promise Stalled - No. 293: Call for repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy
      • Promise Stalled - No. 294: Support repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)


      • Success – 79 major issues (incl GLBT)

      • No. 6: Create an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to invest in peer-reviewed manufacturing processes
      • No. 15: Create a foreclosure prevention fund for homeowners
      • No. 16: Increase minority access to capital
      • No. 33: Establish a credit card bill of rights
      • No. 36: Expand loan programs for small businesses
      • No. 40: Extend and index the 2007 Alternative Minimum Tax patch
      • No. 50: Expand the Senior Corps volunteer program
      • No. 58: Expand eligibility for State Children's Health Insurance Fund (SCHIP)
      • No. 76: Expand funding to train primary care providers and public health practitioners
      • No. 77: Increase funding to expand community based prevention programs
      • No. 88: Sign the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
      • No. 110: Assure that the Veterans Administration budget is prepared as 'must-pass' legislation
      • No. 119: Appoint a special adviser to the president on violence against women
      • No. 125: Direct military leaders to end war in Iraq
      • No. 132: No permanent bases in Iraq
      • No. 134: Send two additional brigades to Afghanistan
      • No. 154: Strengthen and expand military exchange programs with other countries
      • No. 167: Make U.S. military aid to Pakistan conditional on anti-terror efforts
      • No. 174: Give a speech at a major Islamic forum in the first 100 days of his administration
      • No. 182: Allocate Homeland Security funding according to risk
      • No. 184: Create a real National Infrastructure Protection Plan
      • No. 200: Appoint a White House Coordinator for Nuclear Security
      • No. 208: Improve relations with Turkey, and its relations with Iraqi Kurds
      • No. 212: Launch an international Add Value to Agriculture Initiative (AVTA)
      • No. 215: Create a rapid response fund for emerging democracies
      • No. 222: Grant Americans unrestricted rights to visit family and send money to Cuba
      • No. 224: Restore funding for the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne/JAG) program
      • No. 225: Establish an Energy Partnership for the Americas
      • No. 239: Release presidential records
      • No. 241: Require new hires to sign a form affirming their hiring was not due to political affiliation or contributions.
      • No. 247: Recruit math and science degree graduates to the teaching profession
      • No. 266: Encourage water-conservation efforts in the West
      • No. 269: Increase funding for national parks and forests
      • No. 270: Increase funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund
      • No. 272: Encourage farmers to use more renewable energy and be more energy efficient
      • No. 277: Pursue a wildfire prevention and management plan
      • No. 278: Remove more brush, small trees and vegetation that fuel wildfires
      • No. 284: Expand access to places to hunt and fish
      • No. 290: Push for enactment of Matthew Shepard Act, which expands hate crime law to include sexual orientation and other factors
      • No. 300: Reform mandatory minimum sentences
      • No. 307: Create a White House Office on Urban Policy
      • No. 325: Create an artist corps for schools
      • No. 326: Champion the importance of arts education
      • No. 327: Support increased funding for the NEA
      • No. 332: Add another Space Shuttle flight
      • No. 334: Use the private sector to improve spaceflight
      • No. 336: Partner to enhance the potential of the International Space Station
      • No. 337: Use the International Space Station for fundamental biological and physical research
      • No. 338: Explore whether International Space Station can operate after 2016
      • No. 342: Work toward deploying a global climate change research and monitoring system
      • No. 345: Enhance earth mapping
      • No. 346: Appoint an assistant to the president for science and technology policy
      • No. 356: Establish special crime programs for the New Orleans area
      • No. 359: Rebuild schools in New Orleans
      • No. 371: Fund a major expansion of AmeriCorps
      • No. 380: Bolster the military's ability to speak different languages
      • No. 391: Appoint the nation's first Chief Technology Officer
      • No. 394: Provide grants to early-career researchers
      • No. 411: Work to overturn Ledbetter vs. Goodyear
      • No. 420: Create a national declassification center
      • No. 421: Appoint an American Indian policy adviser
      • No. 427: Ban lobbyist gifts to executive employees
      • No. 435: Create new criminal penalties for mortgage fraud
      • No. 452: Weatherize 1 million homes per year
      • No. 458: Invest in all types of alternative energy
      • No. 459: Enact tax credit for consumers for plug-in hybrid cars
      • No. 460: Ask people and businesses to conserve electricity
      • No. 475: Require states to provide incentives for utilities to reduce energy consumption
      • No. 480: Unprecedented expansion of funding for regional high-speed rail
      • No. 483: Invest in public transportation
      • No. 484: Equalize tax breaks for driving and public transit
      • No. 494: Share enviromental technology with other countries
      • No. 498: Provide grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes
      • No. 500: Increase funding for the Environmental Protection Agency
      • No. 502: Get his daughters a puppy
      • No. 503: Appoint at least one Republican to the cabinet
      • No. 506: Raise the small business investment expensing limit to $250,000 through the end of 2009
      • No. 507: Extend unemployment insurance benefits and temporarily suspend taxes on these benefits
      • No. 513: Reverse restrictions on stem cell research

    1. cheap ugg boots on Nov 21, 2010 10:55:12 PM:

      Yeah, I'm not holding my breath on this one. The president and the national democrats have made a lot of promises, but delivered on precious little. We'll see if anything changes this time.

    1. cheap uggs boots on Nov 29, 2010 3:50:16 AM:

      The incredible powerful emotional investment in hope has just gone swirling down the drain. I'll be surprised if Obama will be a two term president at this rate (and I so dearly want to be proved wrong). The urgency was never there and a vital opportunity is lost

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