Monday, February 4, 2008

“I'm Taking My Ball & Bat and Going Home”

photo from Miscreant Mind. Click for LARGE image.

“Do It My Way or Else”

“I won't vote for _____, and neither will (insert social, racial, special interest group or friends here.)”

An Open Letter to the Idiots of the
Democratic Party Circular Firing Squad.

There's been talk lately about how if Obama doesn't get the nomination, some of you will take your ball and your bat and go home. That some of you'll actively work against Clinton in November.

Those of you who are American citizens, that is certainly your right.

Just as it's my right to tell you what total and complete idiots you are. Crybabies. Cowards.

This isn't Little League. It's the Show.

Two campaigns are fighting to be President of the United States, and for all the power which goes with. Do you really think there isn't much either of them won't do to win? Really?

I'm not here to defend Bill Clinton, nor Hillary Clinton. I'm defending the Democratic Party.

If you feel you and people you know or whose blogs you read, want to walk away from the Democratic Party because it won't nominate your preferred candidate, well, with no respect at all, you're an idiot. The Republicans will eat your lunch. (They have since 1980 except when Clinton was president. Or didn't you notice? Oh... you loved him then. Sorry. It's that selective memory you fair-weather Democrats have. Infectious.)

The Republicans right now, are self-destructing over this precise issue. Two-thirds of them hate any given candidate. It is ripping their party apart. Ain't it great?

And now some of you want us to join them? They're pissing all over themselves, and you want us to whip it out and piss on ourselves also?

For years the Republicans have been saying how you dirty fucking liberal hippies hate yourselves. They may be on to something, because some of you simply refuse to win even as it is being handed to you on a silver platter with a big pink bow. Do you hate winning?

"Oh, the American people HATE Hillary. She could NEVER win. AND I WON'T HELP. In fact, I'll work to help defeat her. And get others to help me."

Yeah? Well fuck you too. And your buddies. With friends like you...

Sara wrote about this self-destruction by the Republicans in her Three-Ring Circus article which I felt was so important in terms of grasping the strategy of this cycle, for the first time ever, we pinned a post to the top of GNB and left it there. Twenty-four full hours.

They are, maybe, just maybe, some Republicans, who will be angry enough and thus stupid enough to stay home come November, because they don't like their candidate.

Wow, do I hope so.

Boy are we stupid if we do the same. That's a circular firing squad.

By the way, why is it that some people call Senator Clinton, "Hillary" and not "Clinton?" Does it make them feel better to reduce a U.S. Senator and a woman to her first name, while calling everyone else by their last name? Obama, Obama, Obama, McCain, McCain, McCain, Edwards, Edwards, Edwards, and Hillary!

Moving on...

If you don't know all the different things the Office of the President controls, I'm not going to take the time to educate you in full. But we don't elect a President just because of Supreme Court nominations, to control the military, veto appropriations bills, or to represent us to other countries. That's the glitz, the Paris Hilton of being President. Small cheese compared to every-day impacts the Presidency has on YOUR life through the Executive Branch. And I do mean, on your life, personally, no matter your ethnic group, your sexual preference, your economic class.

Let me pick a few examples, not at random.

Ronald Reagan is responsible for the death of easily 1 million gay men in the United States, simply for his refusal to allow the CDC to act. The CDC knew what needed to be done. Reagan, the fuck, didn't mention AIDS, refused to allow warning or action. It would have hurt him politically.

This is but one of hundreds of thousands of examples.

Oil prices, and thus, gasoline prices are almost at inflation-adjusted record highs under Bush 43, thanks to both peak-oil and the Iraq war. There have been times when digging into our strategic reserve could have lowered those costs significantly. In almost every case, that is precisely when Bush 43 decided to store more oil in the U.S. strategic reserve, thus decreasing supply, increasing demand, increasing rates. The exception, of course, when it was to his political advantage to do otherwise.

One could make what I think is a valid argument, that everything this administration has done at a political level -- including wars, ecological moves, economic strategy, and so on -- has been about increasing the stock prices and profitability of the major oil companies, as well as their long term competitiveness in world markets. All this has direct impact on food prices, plastic prices, the computer industry, airplane travel, interest rates and thus your retirement plans and home loan, and of course, gasoline and your utility bill. And it falls directly into the hands of the President and the people he appoints through a number of agencies.

Continuing. Literally there are hundreds of thousands of examples from hot buttons such as abortion to approval of drugs, to federal land policy for everything from grazing rights to timber use to national park funding and creation (or not), to designation of endangered species (or not), to declaration of emergencies, to spying on your telephone calls and internet sessions. Right now, the NSA almost certainly has copies of some of your phone calls and much of your internet traffic. All this happened by order of the President and his agents.

More specifically...

I have had the skin of black children peel off in my hands from house fires in Oakland in the late 80s. These kids didn't need to die. Both the Bush 41 administration and the Reagan administration before it, refused to act on proposals I personally know were sent to the Department of Transportation which had jurisdiction over EMS, regarding coordination of EMS agencies. Failed to move on inter-agency coordination, radios, standards. Failed to move on getting smoke-detectors implemented throughout the US quickly enough. Failed to fund EMS systems for faster responses.

By the mid and late 80s, there were general solutions available which could have saved hundreds of thousands to millions of lives here in the U.S., which I personally know had made it to the Federal level. Nothing. People just kept right on dying. Only when the Clinton administration came to power, did any of these solutions even start to get implemented. Are we were we need to be? Nope. It just ain't sexy enough. And no single Senator has made it their pet project, so it's not really going anywhere. But EMS and emergency services made more progress under Clinton in 8 years, than under 12 years of Reagan/Bush. It's gone backwards under Bush 43, which is shocking, given the promises made by the Office of the President to the 9/11 Commission. But there you have it.

All these are Executive Level acts. Republican executives fail to deliver for the general good. Democratic executives take care of America.

I know what it's like to have teenagers and children literally fall apart in your hands, their skin peeling off their bodies like over-roasted chicken-skin, smelling like roast pork. These dying children don't even cry -- their lungs are roasted, coughing up soot, and the nerve endings under their skin are charred away.

In West Oakland, in my rig, that happened. On the watch of Republican presidents.

You can walk away, taking your ball and your bat if you want. I'm not walking away so long as I have a breath left in my body.

That's the difference between someone who has balls, and a coward.

Cowards take their balls and bat and go home, if they don't get their way, if the game gets hard or if they get offended. Democrats put their union with the team before everyone, even if they don't like all the players. Even if they don't like the team captain. Even if they're sick of the game or think it's hopeless.

Because the game is going to be played, no matter what. Unlike baseball, winning matters. A professional shows up to play, no matter who is on the team, fair weather or foul, because they're playing for the long-haul future of the franchise, for history, and how they feel about one player is so unimportant as to almost not matter.

Politics is a team sport. And the team which matters is the Democratic team, which currently is being taken over from the inside, by the netroots. With or without spoiled brat crybaby whining children who don't understand what it is to show up every day to play. Who threaten to take their friends, their ball and bat and go home if they don't get their way.

Cowards, quitters, idiots, crybabies, losers walk out on their team. Fair-weather friends. Who will no doubt be back when we win, begging for a piece of the action, complaining mightily how we haven't saved them a piece of power at the table.

The WGA is going to win their strike. Because they stuck together, all of them. Out of a union of about 12,000 writers, precisely one -- that's ONE writer -- went financial core during the entire strike. One. Every other writer hung together with their team. The WGA made side deals with some of the smaller producers to demonstrate their terms made sense. They kept the pickets strong. And they brought in SAG, the Screen Actors Guild, as the big threat, as in, "If you think we're crazy, walking out on you, you should see my big brother SAG. He's REALLY nuts. Come June, he's going to go all Taxi Driver on your ass, and this town will shut down for good." That's how you win strikes or elections. Everyone hangs together backed up with a credible threat.

Now some fools say they will leave and go their own way if x. It's not fine. It's stupid. It hurts the Party. And just so we're clear, the Democratic Party is going to win this fall, one way or another, with these people or without them. And afterwards, just as the WGA will never forget the scabs, I promise you, the netroots and the Party will never forget or trust any crybabies who walk out now with their balls and bats in hand, because they weren't willing to support whomever the Democratic Party democratically elects as their candidate.

I promise you if Hillary Clinton loses the nomination, she will support Barack Obama. And I promise you if Barack Obama loses, he will support Hillary Clinton. Guaranteed.

Anyone who doesn't support the nominee, should go start their own blog, I Hate Winning, where all the other whiners and complainers who have taken their balls and bats can go complain about how the world isn't devoting itself to doing what they want, how unfair life is, and how mean and nasty people are for pointing out what losers they are.

Meanwhile, the rest of us, will forget all about you ten minutes after you stop whining on GNB and other serious blogs, unless and until, you actively start working for the Republicans or for some third party. At which point you become the enemy and get attacked just like anyone else.

No one is fooling around here. All of the pros working for Clinton and Obama, the day after the nomination fight is over, 75%+ of them will be working for the other person, full out. Just like being traded to another team.

Either Clinton or Obama will win the Democratic nomination. If it's Obama, he is going to get massive support from everyone. If it's Clinton, she is going to get massive support from everyone. We are going to win the Presidency this fall. Too much is at stake to screw around.

And any Democrat who doesn't throw their full support behind the nominee, whoever he or she may be, is a fucking traitor to the Democratic Party, and can kiss my ass.