The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

How To Save Abortion Rights

Lots of crying amongst women about how their abortion rights are being sold down the line to get this lousy health care bill passed.

I’ll say publicly what I have said privately: start a serious Draft Clinton movement, start it now.  (Her denials of interest won’t matter).

Nothing will change unless Obama personally thinks his own reelection is on the line.  Sitting presidents don’t survive serious challenges from within their own party.


Obama flexes his muscle


Progressive Enablers


  1. In the longish run, I don’t think there’s any reason to bother–the whole shiteroo is going down–but short-term, sounds great! 🙂

  2. I’m with TaosJohn, basically. I’m sure there are people who will do that, and I’ll cheer them on, but I think the rest of us unterbussen just don’t have the spare resources to invest in Versailles if we’re going to save anything from the wreckage. I could be proved wrong, of course, but, step 1: “We admitted we were powerless over the legacy parties.”

  3. DWCG

    The problem is the people who would actually attract a movement large enough to enact some fear in Obummer, are so engrained in the system they’d never actually run.

  4. realworld

    It doesn’t need a dem challenger. I serious third party has a chance now of pulling enough votes to cost him the second term. The real question is: do we want to give the rethugs 2 to three SCOTUS appointments. That would be the biggest cost of sabotaging Obama.

  5. Lex

    Anyone know if what i hear is true: the EO being put forward is actually worse than Stupak-Pitts?

    I simply cannot believe that the Democratic Party is willing to go this far to pass such a pile of shit. Wait, yes i can.

    And while i’m mad as hell at Bart for this stunt in representation of me, i was hoping that everyone would stick to their guns and he’d bring the bill down…for all the wrong reasons, but no matter at this point.

    I’ll save my theory of what really happened in all of this for a post in the next day or so…

  6. madaha

    “crying amongst women” – yes, and where are the men? who stands with us? why are men so willing to turn away and call it “women’s problem” rather than a HUMAN concern, which it is? Seriously, your phrase nails it. Why the deafening silence?

  7. Lex


    We’re right here. I’m afraid to call my mother because what she instilled in me will be a recipe for the two of us feeding off each others’ anger. But this, to the best of my slight ability, will not go unnoticed or without response. And let’s face it, calling it only a matter of “abortion” is a slight of hand. As i read it, there’s a lot more here about how and where women will be able to get reproductive system medical care.

    Still, i find it unbelievable that the women in Congress will go along with this…and i wonder why.

  8. madaha

    awesome, spoke too soon, just feeling alone in my freaked out liberal womanhood right now, I guess you understand.

  9. Ian Welsh

    They’re being threatened, and they don’t have the guts. That’s not unique to women in Congress, essentially no “progressive” in Congress has the guts to stand up to the leadership. (Or, pace Mandos, they aren’t actually progressives, take your pick.)

  10. Linden

    Yes, I do want to give the Republicans two to three SCOTUS appointments. I have counted on the Democrats to protect abortion rights since I was a teenager. They have failed miserably. They can’t threaten me with the loss of Roe any longer — not after what they’ve done now.

  11. madaha, you might like my latest webcomic.

    Oh, and I’m a guy.

  12. You called? 🙂

    I, um, really don’t think that a Draft Clinton plan makes any sense. HRC has thrown in her lot with Obama, and the bulk of the elected federal party has voted for the bill, and it is done. Her denials of interest do matter: the Draft Clinton movement you propose would have all the credibility of PUMA, and it’s leaders would be PUMAs or well-known crypto-PUMAs.

    The most straightforward way to save abortion rights is the most straightforward way: unelect Democrats who are unduly influenced by the Catholic episcopate, primarily—along with the Protestant right, but they seem to be less organized. There’s a reason why he’s called Bishop Stupak at FDL.

    If you can’t unelect these now very obvious congressional Democrats AND replace them with pro-choice Democrats, then you then have to ask why. I suspect the most obvious answer is that their electorates are either ignorant of or comfortable with the religious-hierarchical influence.

    There’s no Constitutional reason why this should have happened this way.

  13. I’d also like to remind everyone, once again, why we got here and what this has to do with the name of Clinton. In the 90s, after Bill Clinton was elected, even before 1994 had happened there was a lot of left disappointment in the outcome of the election of a (D) after 12 years of (R) presidency. There was an attitude of, well, “This is all we got?” It turns out, of course, that they should have been grateful. People forget their history, we’ve been here before and we will be here again.

    Asking the mainstream progressive to line up behind Hillary Clinton in some scheme to put pressure on Obama in some…improbable party-splitting scheme is such an odd idea, I don’t quite know where to categorize it. Actually, I kind of do…

  14. Ian Welsh

    Politicians denials are routine, until they change their mind. Hilary is ambitious. Her denials will not be taken seriously.

    But yes, you are in the camp that says “thank you master, I’m so grateful you don’t beat me as often as my previous master, and thank you for selling women’s rights away, not mine. Oh thank you, thank you master.”

  15. It’s curious how “PUMA” is widely taken as the worst association one could have, this side of NAMBLA.

    The PUMAs’ defining characteristic was opposing the coronation of neo-lib/neo-con Obama as a progressive savior, and the Democratic Party’s malign acceptance of misogyny.

    Certainly, not every PUMA or “crypto-PUMA” has wrapped her/himself in glory, but it seems that perfection is uniquely demanded of that loosely structured group.

  16. Ian, you had it right the first time, leave the United States. The only problem is that you can’t move away from the environmental damage that we will continue to do to the planet.

  17. PUMA is not in the same category as NAMBLA. PUMA is the category of things like Barnum and Bailey, or maybe birtherism. It’s about people who cling to ridiculous fantasies long after their expiry dates. It was and is a circus of the ludicrous. Certainly its obsession object didn’t think much of it. Quite evidently.

  18. Ian. *shakes head* I know you’re disappointed at this outcome, but calm down for a moment. Everyone would believe a Hillary denial. Who could possibly think that Hillary would be so dumb as to think she’d survive a challenge to Obama and obtain the presidency in 2012 or 2016 or 2020 for that matter? Even if she managed to unseat him for a Republican, everyone except people who’ve seriously drunk the PUMA juice, people at whom everyone laughs behind their hands, knows that the party would destroy her and execrate her name forever and ever.

    So everyone would believe that denial, and she’d be embarassed even to have to make it.

    You labour under a delusion that the American media AND public sees the world the way you do.

    They do not. Regardless of whether they like the bill.

  19. But yes, you are in the camp that says “thank you master, I’m so grateful you don’t beat me as often as my previous master, and thank you for selling women’s rights away, not mine. Oh thank you, thank you master.”

    Oh, Ian. Wake up and get some perspective. You spent a lot of time betting that Sheer Progressive Will could somehow produce a bill that disentrenches private interests from US health care. Then when that didn’t happen, you spent a lot of time praying that the ugly outcome of the US legislative process would die on the vine—nevertheless that benefits of that failure would hardly redound to progressive priorities, something you readily admitted.

    Now that it’s passed, you’re grasping for some way to unseat Obama and replace him with a Republican who would, as you said once, survive for one term while some newer, better progressive generation of Democrats would emerge, for next time. Or the time after that. Just keep spinning that wheel and praying, right?

    It doesn’t pain me at all to say that Lambert is right: better not to bet on the Democrats at all than bet on some strange series of contingencies where they will match your standards for rectitude, eventually.

  20. par4

    Fuck Hillary draft Liz Warren like Taibbi suggested. As for me it’s third party and the Hell with the consequences. I think it will have to get a lot worse before enough Americans get mad enough to force substantial change.

  21. b.

    Agreed. The Democrits need to be nadered mercilessly, with as many Naders as possible on as many levels as possible. There won’t be a Democrit equivalent to Goldwater, might as well spoil the party from the outside.

  22. madaha

    par4 – I’m with you there, absolutely.

    Vast left, yeah that was great. I do follow your work on correntwire. Good stuff!!!

  23. Politicians denials are routine, until they change their mind. Hilary is ambitious. Her denials will not be taken seriously.

    draft hillary!

    at this point, i’d even consider giving up asking her to support single payer and oppose corporate personhood.

  24. Too late for Hillary (assuming for the sake of the argument there was ever a time). The Dems are rotten all the way through. That’s what the spectacle of Kucinich actually whipping for the bill on the House floor should show anyone with open eyes. When the blight gets this bad, the only thing to do is rip up the plants and make sure they don’t get in the compost. Or walk away.

    * * *
    What on earth can Mandos mean by “crypto-PUMAs”? Is that the kind of PUMA you need a magic decoder ring to understand?

  25. Hipparchia, your post on the NWP reminds me of Violet’s Justice Party. That I could vote for.

  26. Lex

    And what, exactly, are we referring to with the term PUMA? Is it limited to Clinton supporters from the primaries who were never happy with Obama’s nomination, or does it include everyone who doesn’t say “Napolean Obama The Party is always right!”?

    Just curious, because i’ve never liked or trusted the Clintons but party unity for the sake of unity, well, my ass…even if i’ve never been registered in either legacy party.

  27. K_L_Carten

    Nice idea, but let’s face it, this fucker is a one termer. Unemployment isn’t gonna go down by the time he runs for reelection. He has done everything to make damn sure it won’t. He will get a nice job making speeches and working at one of those investment banks he saved. He will have much more money then he does now. He could really give a rats ass about anyone else but Obama. We will have another fucker that will do the same until things explode. The dirty underclass gets kind of stabby when their kids are starving, so I guess we will see.

  28. What on earth can Mandos mean by “crypto-PUMAs”? Is that the kind of PUMA you need a magic decoder ring to understand?

    The very same. The kind of decoder one apparently used to find in cereal boxes, or so I’m told.

  29. ballgame

    I’d be all for an insurgent anti-corporate Dem challenging Obama if things start getting nasty over the next year or so, but … draft Hillary?!?? Wha?

    I don’t get it. Why would you pick one insider Dem to try to rattle another insider Dem? Short term it would only open up space for the Republicans; long term it does … well it doesn’t appear to me to do anything, frankly. It doesn’t educate your base about the virtues of social democracy, or prep your base for a more realistic run by social democratic candidate later.

    So … please explain. Speak slowly … don’t use any big words.

  30. That’s the interesting thing. Why would Ian even bother to propose a strategy to unseat Obama in 2012? Or even put pressure on him? I thought everyone* believed Obama was toast because of this bill.

    *Comparatively few people.

  31. Lori

    It’s funny how PUMAs who recongnized that Obama was a corrupt, Reaganite asshole from the get-go are regarded as not credible by the dingbats who supported the corrupt Reaganite asshole. Basically, the same demographic that elected George Bush, elected Obama. They aren’t very smart.

    The next vote i cast for president will be for Hillary Clinton – and there are a lot of people like me. The Democratic party can either do the right thing and nominate her, or they can lose for a long, long time.

  32. Moi

    Clinton? How about an actual liberal?

  33. Lori

    Clinton’s voting record is a lot closer to Boxer’s than to Feinstein. If you don’t know she’s a real honest to god liberal, then you aren’t sufficiently well-informed to comment. She’s the closest thing to FDR to run for president in my lifetime.

    I would suggest that if you supported Obama (and I have no idea if you did – that’s your business), then perhaps your judgment is sufficiently flawed that you don’t actually know what a liberal looks like.

    She’s a bonafide intellectual with published writings that have expanded the rights of children. She spent her time in Arkansas opening and running a legal aid clinic that focused on family matters, was appointed to the board of Legal Services where she was quickly appointed Chair. As Chair, she not only saved the program from Reagan era budget cuts but got him to expand the budget. She then rounded up funding to build medical facilities in rural areas to provide healthcare for the rural poor. She created a home schooling program for parents to help toddlers that couldn’t get into head Start.

    She spends her time expanding access to education, health care and legal aid for poor and middle class people. She continued to do those things are First Lady and as senator. Combined with a first rate voting record on union issues and reproductive rights issues, she’s about as liberal as you can get and win the presidency in this nation.

    Unlike Obama, she has actual accomplishments to her name that demonstrate what her values. Perhaps you should consider how heavily funded Obama was by Wall Street against her. If she was so conservative, all that money would have come to her. And Obama has certainly done their bidding now, hasn’t he?

  34. David Kowalski

    Lyndon Johnson sacrificed the Presidency for a generation but got civil rights passed. It was a knowing choice. Obama may have sacrificed the Presidency for a generation for this terrible bill. It ‘s a really bad bargain for which we will all suffer.

    Remember the post-Watergate bumperstickers: “Don’t blame me, I’mm from Massachussetts” . Well, “Don’t blame me, I voted Green” may become pretty popular.

  35. BDBlue

    I can’t decide whether anyone would believe Clinton’s denials or not – she is part of Obama’s team, but Versailles treats her like an evil cartoon character (if only she could grow a mustache to curl).

    But I think those objecting on the grounds of her centrism miss Ian’s point. It’s not that threatening to draft her would fix healthcare or most other policies, it’s that the threat of her would put pressure on Obama on women’s issues, particularly abortion rights.

    I don’t really have any ideas. I mean the entire point of Emily’s List, one of the Nation’s largest PACs, was to elect pro-choice Democratic women to help keep stuff like this from happening and yet all of the Emily’s List candidates voted for this healthcare abomination knowing it came with a huge hit to reproductive rights. What’s the point of sending them to Congress with reliable financial backing if they’re just going to cave on the one issue Emily’s List requires?

  36. Disenfranchised

    I’m sure this idea will be met with scorn, but I believe we should get together with Ron Paul’s coalition. Sure, Ron Paul has some screwy ideas, but so does Hillary Clinton: Paul doesn’t believe in permanent war, but Hillary does, as her anti-Iran rhetoric makes clear. Paul believes in the free market, but he also believes the corporations are on their own, with no bail-outs and breaks from the taxpayers. Hillary said that “lobbyists are people, too,” and said they would have a seat at the table.
    I think a left/right coalition is the best answer to the corporate Democratic party. It would absolutely put fear into the DLC.

  37. Clinton? How about an actual liberal?

    that would be best, but we don’t have any liberals who are both unwavering on women’s rights AND could win the presidency in 2012.

  38. heya, lambert! back during the early discussion at violet’s on whether the nascent party should be leftist women + other leftists or leftist women + other women, i voted for the latter. my faith in leftist dudes is not even the size of a mustard seed.

  39. And from The Department of Insult To Injury, career “progressive” Chris Bowers:

    I feel sad that [HCR] came at the cost of throwing reproductive rights under the bus. Any win that means hurting some of your friends is not a full win.

    Alrighty, then.

  40. saw

    Bwah-haha. Boo-hoo-hoo.
    No rights got thrown under any busses.
    So what will the whining women do?
    Vote for republickers who WOULD take their rights?
    I doubt it.

    Stupak got exactly what Kucinich got: squat.
    The executive order is meaningless.
    They both got the chance not to get squashed like bugs in November and they took it. Happily. Stupak’s kabuki poisoned his brand among his non-animal constituents and he needed to save face somehow. Obama gave him that.

    Time to move to Ron Paul.

  41. BDBlue

    Ron Paul, despite his libertarian claims, is anti-abortion. Apparently liberty isn’t for the wimmin. So I don’t think I’m going to rush into his arms because of abortion rights. He also has his fair share of issues with the black folks. Those are pretty big stumbling blocks for me. There are some screwy ideas I can live with and some that I can’t.

  42. “So what will the whining women do?”

    Stay classy, Democrats!

  43. TW Andrews

    On what evidence would Hillary be more progressive and less centrist than Obama has been?

  44. Lori


    On her entire fucking career and her voting record = all of which is to Obama’s left. Way to his left.

    Don’t mistake your ignorance of her liberal credentials for a lack of liberal credentials. Just because you drank the Obama-era Koolaid about how conservative Clinton is, doesn’t mean she’s conservative. it means you didn’t bother to educate yourself.

  45. Marks

    On the heels of Obama’s success in passing compressive healthcare reform, an objective that Clinton miserably failed to accomplish, I really can’t see her leveraging this into a primary challenge. What am I missing here?

  46. DWCG

    Lets be clear, Clinton is not ideologically radically different than Obama. Where they differ is in testicles, as in Obama has none and Hillary’s are bigger than Bill’s. But even that’s not really accurate. Obama-Rahma knows how to whip, just not for the right things.

    I firmly believe Hillary would have done the work of her corporate masters, just like Obama, but I just don’t see her giving away the silverware, the kitchen sink and even the crumbs on the table to do it (i.e. reimportation of pharmaceuticals, Medicare drug negotiation, ERISA waiver, waiting until 2014, etc.)

    Perhaps its because she’s a smarter politician. Perhaps its because she’s an actual policy-wonk. Or perhaps its because she doesn’t have cult-like status and therefore would feel pressured to, you know, deliver something more than a pretty speech and baseless claims of “reform” and “change.”

    Whatever it is it definitely would have resulted in something better.

  47. DWCG

    Obama passed massive health care reform by pushing a clearly Republican bill that is built on a foundation of forced private insurance monopoly that the Democratic Party has been opposing since Richard Nixon first proposed it over 35 years ago. How this fact gets completely ignored is beyond my understanding. Sure change is easy if one side of the debate completely reverses a position that to date was protecting average Americans.

    After he privatizes Social Security, will we herald Obama as the 2nd coming for “doing something no other president Democratic or Republican has ever done before?”

    I’m finding every day that my respect for Obamabots is less than those idiots who backed W through the end.

  48. anonymous

    Thank you, Vastleft, for putting the anti-PUMA crowd in perspective. They remind me of nothing so much as the wingnuts who dismiss anyone who was against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, or against anything like torture and end of habeas and domestic spying that BushCheney (and now Obama) were for. We are not “serious” -mostly cuz we were right – but apparently not for the right reasons. *eye rollz*
    &4WIW, I have no love or illusions about Hillary. My support for her as the 2nd worst Dem (I overestimated Edwards) was mostly disgust for Obama who showed his true self almost from the his announcement, but no one would believe the obvious.
    The point of draft Hillary is to weaken Obama. Once he’s weak enough, who knows, maybe someone even better than Hillary could be emboldened to run too (Alan Grayson, PLEAZE run!).

  49. Ron Paul, despite his libertarian claims, is anti-abortion. Apparently liberty isn’t for the wimmin. So I don’t think I’m going to rush into his arms because of abortion rights. He also has his fair share of issues with the black folks. Those are pretty big stumbling blocks for me. There are some screwy ideas I can live with and some that I can’t.

    And that, folks, is the point. The strongest, most reliable bloc against this bill happens to be…anti-abortion! To the core! Failure of this bill would have strengthened them.

    Heads you lose, tails they win.

    “How to save abortion rights”? Pass a Freedom of Choice Act. Can’t pass a FOCA? Solve that problem first then!

  50. masslib

    I like this idea, even though it’s unrealistic. I do think it is funny that the people who most embraced Obama because the Clinton’s were quasi-Republicans have to wake up to the fact that Obama is not only to the Right of Hillary but to the Right of Bill. Hehehe.

  51. Susie

    It is true that ex-Clintonistas tend to be more critical of Obama than the Obamabots. Nothing wrong with that. Obviously it is helpful to have people around who aren’t spending all their time gazing glassy-eyed with adoration at the Dear Leader, defending his latest flagrant betrayal, and/or muttering in their beards about not letting the perfect be the enemy of the good, etc.

    “I mean the entire point of Emily’s List, one of the Nation’s largest PACs, was to elect pro-choice Democratic women to help keep stuff like this from happening and yet all of the Emily’s List candidates voted for this healthcare abomination knowing it came with a huge hit to reproductive rights.”

    Women’s groups have to go back to the drawing board, I’m afraid.

  52. DancingOpossum

    Like lambert, I’m done with both parties. I was a staunch Hillary supporter in the primary and still admire her, but our foreign policy is such a mind-bogglind disaster, and that’s the one area where I do not trust her–or any mainstream pol, from either party–so I can’t support her, either. We need a break, a radical break from the status quo. For my small part, I will proudly vote Green in the next presidential election–as I did in the last one.

    And anonymous, Grayson is just as awful as Kucinich, Weiner, Feingold, and all the other big-talking quick-caving “progressive heroes” who yack a good game and utterly fail to back it up with action. Or worse, crawl abjectly back for more and more abuse as Kucinich did.

    It’s hard to face up to the knowledge that these people are con men and liars when they talk such a good game–hey, I supported Edwards before Hillary, and up until his latest cave I thought Kucinich was one of the good guys. Ha! Yes, they will let you down every time and it’s hard to take one more betrayal, but it’s the only way to start fresh. Acknowledge that each one of them is a lying, vicious, evil con man and turn your back on them without a moment’s regret.

  53. DancingOpossum

    “people who cling to ridiculous fantasies long after their expiry dates”

    Coming from an Obama supporter this is comedy gold.

  54. Coming from an Obama supporter this is comedy gold.

    Who said I was an Obama supporter? He’s a mediocre corrupt technocrat like all the rest of them.

    He was, however, elected.

  55. Moi


    Don’t think of this as a setback for Women’s rights groups.

    This of this as a fundraising opportunity. Rinse and repeat.

  56. Marsha

    What Lori said!

    And then what Lori said.

    And what Lori finally said.

    Dancing Opossum is pretty smart, too!

    In my humble opinion, Hillary Clinton was the smartest wonk to have run for POTUS is my (very long) lifetime. She is also a human being. And a leader. And a great women, too.

    I was proudly an original PUMA and as far as I am concerned, my former political party can go f*ck itself.

  57. jomaka

    It’s too late, Diana. There’s nothing left in you that I can live with. You’re one of Howard’s humanoids. If I stay with you, I’ll be destroyed.

  58. Teresa

    mandos, you are an idiot. PUMA is simply a group of people who were right all along about what a dud Obama is and pissed that the party stole their votes.
    Get over the fact that you have a penis already.

  59. Lori

    It’s fascinating how passionately people cling to the idea of Clinton, with her long life of liberal political accomplishments, as a conservative. It’s so delusional, so ignorant, that it’s hard to wrap my bring around. I guess there are people who would complain that Franklin and Eleanor weren’t liberal either. Weird.

  60. Marsha

    Keep it up, Lori!!!!

    Amen to that. And to Teresa’s description of why I was/am a Puma (in the very best sense of that phrase).

  61. mandos, you are an idiot.

    He’s so consistently wrong he should have a show on MSNBC

  62. Lex

    I don’t doubt that Madame Secretary is fairly liberal on domestic issues…though her association with the former president of NAFTA and welfare reform could lead to questions on that front (that’s not exactly her fault, i realize).

    My problem with her was on foreign policy. She’s a first-degree hawk. And her Senate votes in favor of wonderful, humane toys like clusterbombs and anti-personnel mines bother me. Sure, i knew that Obama probably wouldn’t be any better on foreign policy. I’ve never suffered from the delusion that i’d see a competent – non warmongering – foreign policy president in my lifetime.

    But for the record, i voted “none of the above” in my faux primary. Not because i wanted to vote for Obama, but because i really wanted to vote for “none of the above”. I never voted for Bill. Wrote in Frank Zappa in ’92 and voted World Workers Party in ’96 because it nominated two women.

  63. I’m with DancingOpossum on the Alan Grayson issue. He’s taken the money and run. If he ever manages to accomplish something that fixes health care, I’ll rethink that, along with my, shall we say, complete disregard for the Progressive Caucus.

    As for drafting Mrs. Clinton, I don’t see how that has a chance of succeeding. Maybe if things go really badly in 2010 for Democrats there might be a chance. Right now, I just don’t see enough of the established Democrats going along with it, and the rank and file progressives aren’t going to be a big force on her behalf, whether she deserves that support or not. She is more progressive than Obama, and yet you’ll have a hard time convincing many progressives of that, even now.

  64. Wow, y’all really love me now. It may surprise some people to know that I actually think HRC might well have been a better president than Obama had she actually won—and I’ve said this before. HOWEVER, she’s no FDR: she is a supporter—in perfect agreement with Obama—on the two biggest things that have led the American ship of state awry. Those are the Americanist foreign policy orthodoxy and the neoliberal trade orthodoxy. Does anybody have any evidence to the contrary? She is Secretary of State, she is almost the physical embodiment of these things.

    Almost everything else is merely an aftereffect or emanation of the imbalances caused by these two things. Yes, even this health care bill! That is why she is a conservative, and why a Clinton II presidency would not have ended up all that differently.

    It’s funny, though, that people are loudly declaiming how wrong I am all the time at precisely a moment when it turns out I was actually right. Anyway, the real test is Nov 2010 and Nov 2012. I admit I had grown a bit doubtful about *this* Nov, but now I am doubting that doubt.

    What makes PUMA and fellow-travellers ridiculous is not their love for Hillary, which is hardly worse than the Obama Fan Base. The list of what is wrong with them is pretty long, starting with a loudly chanted belief that adherence to procedure is undemocratic, and ending with a pathetic projection of their aspirations onto a Hillary who clearly doesn’t want to have anything to do with it. Somehow, saying this has something to do with penis.

    Unfortunately for Ian’s thesis in this post, it is not the case that the American population is anything like PUMA—otherwise the proposed strategy might actually work. In fact, “Versailles”/”The Village” is just a little more representative of the American population than many people here would care to admit.

  65. I am Mandos, destroyer of threads!

  66. b.

    The American Revolution 2.0: If all you can think of is a savior, everything will look like does.

  67. Disenfranchised

    I know Ron Paul is anti-abortion, but didn’t the “pro-choice” President just sign an anti-abortion Executive Order? I doubt Ron Paul would do that, citing the Constitutionality of EO’s.
    I did hear Ron Paul say about a year ago that although his personal belief is anti-abortion, he would never appoint a Supreme Court judge on the basis of his or her abortion views. I am not a Ron Paul supporter. I don’t get emails from him or anyone connected with him. I’m just saying that he appears to have the strongest coalition at this point, and I think it’s worth exploring in order to start a left/right coalition to fight the pro-corporate establishment right now.

  68. i don’t know if it is specifically clinton which would constitute the gravest threat. i do agree wholeheartedly with your premise.

    without a serious challenge, the drift of current will be toward complacency.

  69. apostropher

    Sure, Hillary Clinton is FDR. Or at least to the left of Obama. As long as you don’t look too closely at her defense of DOMA, or the Patriot Act, or support for building a wall on the Mexican Border, or the one being built through the Palestinian territories, or her support for the death penalty, or the Iraq War, or the opposition to single-payer health care, or proposals to outlaw flag burning, or supporting the Kyl-Lieberman “Attack Iran” bill, and I could go on but what’s the point? Y’all have clearly already projected your fantasies onto her, completely at odds with her voting record in the Senate.

    The idea that there’s any significant ideological space between HRC and Obama is absurd. They come from exactly the same centrist-technocratic, corporatist mindset. The identifiable differences amount to numbers of angels dancing on the heads of pins.

  70. DancingOpossum

    Thanks, Marsha!! Lke all PUMAs you rock…And Lori is an amazing font of information.

    “The list of what is wrong with them is pretty long, starting with a loudly chanted belief that adherence to procedure is undemocratic”

    Again, comedy gold. Like myiq2xu said, you really need your own MSNBC show.

    “I know Ron Paul is anti-abortion, but didn’t the “pro-choice” President just sign an anti-abortion Executive Order?”

    Indeed, Disenfranchised. I find myself in close agreement with Ron Paul’s foreign policy, much more than I do with any Dem. And right now that policy is rather urgent, given our endless wars, bloodthirsty imperialism, and support of fanatical genocidal regimes the world over. And maybe ending those things would fix a lot of our domestic problems, too.

  71. Ian Welsh

    Folks are missing the point. I consider HRC to be slightly to the left of Obama on domestic issues, but it doesn’t matter. The threat of a nomination fight is to make Obama realize there is a price for selling out women, a price that might be as high as his next term.

  72. Susie

    Clinton is somewhat more liberal than Obama on domestic issues, but it’s very hard under any circumstances no matter how propitious to imagine her challenging Obama in 2012. Apart from the inherent difficulties involved she seems to be a real team player. They’re joined at the hip on Af-Pak and other foreign policy issues. I don’t see a primary challenge happening and certainly not from HRC.

    “Right now, I just don’t see enough of the established Democrats going along with it, and the rank and file progressives aren’t going to be a big force on her behalf, whether she deserves that support or not.”

    I agree.

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