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This Year's Election - Mo's Journal
January 4th, 2008
03:48 pm

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This Year's Election
I'm equal parts excited and terrified. marag says she's a Yellow Dog Democrat. I'm not quite. I think I've voted for non-Democrats sometimes, although I can't think of any offhand and certainly haven't done so at the POTUS level. I very strongly feel that the Democrats need to retake the White House if anything is to improve in this country, so I'm more canine and banana-colored here and now than usual.

I will gladly vote for whomever is chosen the party's candidate. I'm not sure who I'm voting for in the primary but I'm leaning strongly towards Kucinich. His policies most closely match the direction I'd like to see the country move in. I don't feel it's a wasted vote - I think if he gets a strong, albeit clearly minority, turnout it's an important reminder to a Democratic Party that Bill Clinton pulled to the right that there really is a progressive wing and we vote.

I think to some extent we have an embarrassment of riches this year. We've got three strong possibilities: smart, capable, good experience, good speakers, good organization. I will be happy to vote for any of them in the general election. I do find Obama the most inspiring speaker of the three, but I don't think that's everything.

I really like the idea of a senator becoming POTUS (which, of course, applies to all three). I think it's the right kind of experience. Governors have executive experience but they don't really have the inside knowledge of how the federal government works, or the ties. My ideal candidate (not in terms of policies, just personal characteristics, skills, and history) is a Senator with 8-10 years experience, not from a political family, smart, knowledgeable and well-liked by his/her Senate colleagues. That's Edwards to a T. Still, I don't really think he's got a chance. I think it's likely Obama or Clinton and I just hope that whoever it is wins.

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[User Picture]
From:marag
Date:January 4th, 2008 10:21 pm (UTC)
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I should note that I'm a yellow dog Democrat not because I like the Democrats but because I really really really hate the Republican Party. Like, a lot.
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:36 am (UTC)
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Yeah, I'd go along with that. I'm a registered Democrat and I generally vote for Democratic candidates, although I usually don't vote on the Democratic line if there's a choice, because I like to support the existence of smaller parties (and in NYS they have to get a certain number of votes to be on the ballot next time round). But I feel like the Republican Party is soooo morally bankrupt and has so turned into the party of bigots and those who pander to bigots...
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From:davidfcooper
Date:January 4th, 2008 10:23 pm (UTC)
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I haven't decided either. I think Edwards has a far better shot at getting the nomination than Kucinich, but if Edwards is the nominee the odds that Bloomberg will run as a pro-business centrist (which would hurt The Democratic nominee more than the Republican) increase. I agree that Obama is the most inspiring speaker, but notwithstanding his speech last night I think that if Dr. King were alive he would probably endorse Edwards as the only candidate who is speaking truth to corporate power on economic issues.
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:38 am (UTC)
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I do find his message on corporate power inspiring. And he's definitely smart and competent. OTOH, he doesn't bring the excitement that either an Obama or a Clinton ticket would, I don't think. Of course as a white man he doesn't draw the fire of either of those...
(Deleted comment)
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:43 am (UTC)
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I think he's got a better shot at being somebody's running mate again than taking the nomination

But do you think he'd be willing? I kind of doubt it.

I shudder at the thought of getting Mitt Romney or Mike Huckabee

OMG me too! The only one in the Republican array who I think could even be a half-way decent POTUS is John McCain.
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From:brak666
Date:January 4th, 2008 11:11 pm (UTC)
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I like Ron Paul. Mostly because he seems to be in favor of fiscal responsibility and the government minding its own business. Though he'll never get the nomination. I could live with Huckabee, though I do wish he'd get himself a slightly larger worldview. On the Democrat side, I'd be ok with either Clinton or Obama (though at this point my preference is still for Clinton). I can't stand Edwards. He's like a liberal George W. Bush. He doesn't engage with the world as it is, he engages with the world as he imagines it to be. Eight years of that has been more than enough, thank you. I've hated Romney since he was in charge of the Salt Lake City Olympics. His time in Massachussetts did nothing to change my mind about him. He's another one I'll never vote for in a million years.

I really liked Chris Dodd. It's a shame he never got any traction.
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:46 am (UTC)
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Are you bothered by Ron Paul's racism? I've found some of the things he's said just startlingly bigoted. Some examples at http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/5/15/124912/740.

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From:brak666
Date:January 5th, 2008 01:23 am (UTC)
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Are you bothered by Ron Paul's racism?

No more than I'm bothered by Obama's claim to be opposed to gay marriage on religious grounds while being a member of the UCC. Honestly, I've never been completely happy with anyone I've ever voted for. There's a lot I'm willing to overlook (and have overlooked) if I think a person will do a decent job. Or at least a better job than the other guy.
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 02:03 am (UTC)
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There's a lot I'm willing to overlook (and have overlooked) if I think a person will do a decent job. Or at least a better job than the other guy.


Fair enough. And I'm in total agreement with your icon!
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From:kuriadalmatia
Date:January 4th, 2008 11:16 pm (UTC)
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LOL -- It took me a good three minutes to figure out what POTUS meant, then remembered it from a Dan Brown novel. Heh.

Kucinich is perhaps the only good political product from my current state of residence Ohio. Like you, my political beliefs fall more in line with his than any other Dem. What he said makes sense on several key issues.

Up until last month, I had this whole "my vote will NOT be wasted!" philosophy, which had me deciding between Obama and Clinton. Then I remembered something a former employer had said about Perot's failed Presidential bid: if everyone who said they were going to vote for him did, he'd probably be President. I don't remember jack about Perot's policies, but the sentiment finally made sense. So now, I'm seriously considering Kucinich because my vote will make a difference. By the time the primaries hit Ohio, it will be March 4, past Super Tuesday and the front-runners will probably already have things locked up.

Interesting about Edwards is that he beat Clinton in Iowa, but NPR still asked about his feelings about a VP nod. He said he's in this to be Prez, which is what he's supposed to say. I think Minisoo mentions about Edwards as the probably VP choice of either Obama or Clinton. She's right, I don't think the US is ready for the Obama/Clinton or Clinton/Obama ticket. Edwards would be a decent choice.

The Republican ticket is now all over the place. Guiliani's Super Tuesday strategy may hurt him severely with all the love Huckabee (wasn't there a movie with that name?) and Romney have received. McCain is betting on Granite. I hope that they stay in disarray.

It's time for a change.
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:51 am (UTC)
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It's time for a change.


Amen to that.
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From:wneleh
Date:January 4th, 2008 11:35 pm (UTC)
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I'm no sort of Democrat - was a registered Republican until I was 24, and I've been unenrolled (i.e., independent) since moving to Massachusetts in 1990 because the state Democratic party is phenomenally stupid (they're the reason Romney's a viable candidate for POTUS IMNSHO).

Still, I always vote Democratic for POTUS, or when a local race is close. When local races aren't close, I vote Green or Workers or Libertarian (though Iraq has completely cured me of the allure of limited government.)

I am supporting Hillary Clinton. I've always felt an affinity for her, and I'm delighted that she's a serious candidate. Obama would also please me. The others - well, I'm not a Pacifist. And Edwards just seems kind of stupid, at least compared to Clinton and Obama - I really feel that his support comes from his White Male Southernness, and I'm tired of voting for White Men. I'll vote for him against any Republican, but - oh, I hope I don't have to!

- Helen
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:48 am (UTC)
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though Iraq has completely cured me of the allure of limited government.

Please explain.

What makes you think Edwards is stupid? I always think he sounds really smart. What am I missing?
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From:wneleh
Date:January 5th, 2008 01:25 am (UTC)
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As I understand it, Libertarians believe that people, left to their own devices, are kind and just. Most may be, but Iraq has convinced me that a certain % are just waiting to kill folkes who are threatening their view of How Things Should Be. (I don't think we'd behave any differently.)

RE: Edwards' brain - An example is his desire to withdraw troops from Iraq. Clinton has some concept of what this will take - what troops, from where, and when. Edwards, IIRC, when questioned hadn't really gotten that far.

A few months ago an Edwards campaign bus passed us on 90; painted across it was "Fighting for One America." I am just so, so sick of war, and using its language does nothing for me. And "One America" - huh??? What does that mean?

I've heard Obama interviewed at length, and I've never changed the station. And Clinton also seems to have thoughtful things to say. Even Biden and McCain make me think. But whenever I hear Edwards talk I feel like I'm listening to a string of soundbites.

None of this is really well-thought-out, of course. Living in MA, my primary vote will probably be meaningless, and there's no way I'd ever vote for any Republican in the race unless he was running against Satan, and even then it might depend on who Satan's running mate was. But the prospect of a Clinton presidency, or an Obama presidency, really excites me.

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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 01:45 am (UTC)
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As I understand it, Libertarians believe that people, left to their own devices, are kind and just. Most may be, but Iraq has convinced me that a certain % are just waiting to kill folkes who are threatening their view of How Things Should Be. (I don't think we'd behave any differently.)


Hmm, are you saying the War in Iraq comes from too little government in the US? Or too little in Iraq? I'm still not getting it. I would have said the war in Iraq is an example of too much government control. That said, I'm not a libertarian at all (although I find it a more appealing philosophy than other conservative ones). I see it as a philosophy of Every Man For Himself. I really believe that there ought to be a safety net, that government should provide the basics to all, that leveling the playing field is a good thing to do...

Mo way I'd ever vote for any Republican in the race unless he was running against Satan, and even then it might depend on who Satan's running mate was.

LOL!
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From:wneleh
Date:January 5th, 2008 02:02 am (UTC)
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Or too little in Iraq?

Collapse of government in Iraq, due to our invasion. There's nothing libertarian about Bush that I can see.

My understanding of lib. philosophy regarding social policies is over a quarter century old, but IIRC it was built on people, not government, extending aid.

Must run...

- Helen
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 02:06 am (UTC)
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Well I do think libertarians expect that people will give aid to who and what they think as individuals deserve aid. I really believe in government and that the proper function of government is providing a whole lot of things that are done better collectively and/or that individuals won't do.
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From:wneleh
Date:January 5th, 2008 08:08 am (UTC)
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I agree.

(Deleted comment)
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 12:55 pm (UTC)
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Don't slink off! I'm really enjoying all the different viewpoints.

With Edwards, I know a big deal was made of his not showing up for votes during the last presidential campaign, but I thought that was mostly from trying to run for VP while being in the Senate. Are you saying it was a long-standing issue?

As to McCain I disagree with a lot of his policies, but I think he's at least competent, which would be a great change from the current POTUS and is not true of a lot of the Republican field.

I have warm feelings for Joe Biden for his personal story but that's really neither here nor there, I keep reminding myself.
(Deleted comment)
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 10:07 pm (UTC)
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And he makes me laugh.

Yeah, not that relevant. Still smart and funny would be a nice change in a POTUS, and he is both.
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From:lilacsigil
Date:January 5th, 2008 03:45 am (UTC)
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"Yellow Dog Democrat" is an awesome term! I had to Wiki it, but I don't think we've got anything nearly as colourful in regular political discourse. (Of course, "conga line of suckholes" is always fun, but doesn't have such a long history behind it!)
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From:mofic
Date:January 5th, 2008 04:19 am (UTC)
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It is a great phrase, isn't it?

What does "conga line of suck holes" mean? It does not sound complimentary.

Oh, and have you see this? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xs3SfNANtig

My kids and I just about died laughing. Do you know the program it's taken from?
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From:lilacsigil
Date:January 5th, 2008 01:45 pm (UTC)
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The program is "The Chaser", a political comedy series on the ABC (our national broadcaster). They are famous for such stunts like this one! My personal favourite was dressing up twelve people as Osama Bin Laden, putting a plastic Canadian flag on their car and making it through all the security checkpoints for the APEC conference in Sydney, driving right up to the hotel where George Bush was staying. The next day, they went back, still dressed as Osama Bin Laden, in a car made out of a cardboard box, and *still* made it through the first layer of security!

"Conga line of suck holes" refers to the Liberal Party (=Republicans) and their associates lining up to kiss George Bush's ass at every available opportunity. It was said by Mark Latham in his brief but colourful term as Leader of the Opposition.
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