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Percolator Progressive

01/30/2010
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Over the last year, I’ve joined the frustration of many on the “progressive” side of the Democrat Party. It would appear that we have let the “minority” define the issues, phrase the language and write the rules for the debate.

Two events have restored my idealism and faith that we can do it better.

First the State of the Union address. After it was over I quietly said to myself, “A Statesman will win out over a political rabble rouser every time.”

Second was the President’s visit to the Republican House Members. Like Daniel in the “lion’s den” he proceeded to show leadership, strength of character and resolve.

One could even argue that he was “Presidential”, so “Presidential” that even Fox News must have been weary, because they cut away from the President’s Q and A session, only CNN and MSNBC covered the complete event.

So Glenn Beck and “gang” can distort the “Progressive” label, praise the “Tea Baggers” and incite contempt for what they perceive is a “liberal mantra,” but I am renewed and refreshed.

I joking told a friend that I was a “Percolator Progressive, for a percolator expose ideas to a higher degree of temperature in debate and re-circulate already tested, debated and proven ideas to an end product.”

All of a sudden I have an urge for a cup of coffee, and didn’t the Founding Fathers drink coffee as a way to show independence from “tea” and Great Britain, how American can you be?

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Duh permalink
    01/30/2010 5:49 pm

    Were we even watching the same events? We couldn’t have been. From the President’s Q&A with Republicans:

    1. “There is not a single person in here who, had it not been for what was in the stimulus package, wouldn’t be going home to more teachers laid off, more firefighters laid off, more cops laid off…”

    Uh, huh. That is the very first thing state and local governments were going to do. Yep. Oh, and these fields are even the federal government’s responsibility because…?

    2. “So I would love to see more restraint within Congress. I’d like to work on the earmarks reforms…”

    I wonder if he was thinking to himself, “Gee, I sure hope they don’t remember the 9,287 earmarks I approved in just the omnibus spending bill alone from last year. Otherwise, this sounds silly.”

    3. “Look, the truth of the matter is that if you look at the health care process — just over the course of the year — overwhelmingly the majority of it actually was on C-SPAN…”

    My TV must be broken. Did anyone TiVo this overwhelming majority of coverage? Anyone??? Helloooo?????? C-SPAN actually requested that they be allowed to cover any future important negotiations and committee meetings precisely because they were excluded from the extant Senate and House versions which were not public.

    4. “In terms of lobbyists, I can stand here unequivocally and say that there has not been an administration who was tougher on making sure that lobbyists weren’t participating in the administration…

    From the Attorney General of the United States on down. Nothing to see here folks. Move long, move along.

    5. “Now, the reason that I’m not proposing the discretionary freeze take into effect this year…“

    …is because it is all smoke and mirrors. A spending freeze! It sounds great! But it isn’t across the board. It doesn’t apply to any new spending programs. The amount to be frozen — after already approving massive increases — becomes nothing but a rounding error compared to deficit increases. And we get to increase it again this year!!!! It sure sounds good though.

    I don’t even want to get into the State of the Union address because it would be too funny — if it weren’t so serious.

    I guess I just care more about content than delivery.

  2. 01/31/2010 11:57 am

    Your comment is a fine example of my lead statement, “It would appear that we have let the minority define the issues, phrase the language and write the rules for the debate.”

    “Cherry picking” doesn’t look for substance. Since my post didn’t concern itself with major issues, but the one of how I felt before and after the “State of the Union” and the, wish we didn’t invite the President, GOP Member Caucus, no need for me to debate points.

    Tho I could argue that being “Presidential” and “Statesman like” is substance with style.

    To quote a distant relative of mine, Judge Learned “Billings” Hand; “The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right; the spirit of liberty is the spirit which seeks to understand the mind of other men and women; the spirit of liberty is the spirit which weighs their interests alongside its own without bias; the spirit of liberty remembers that not even a sparrow falls to earth unheeded; the spirit of liberty is the spirit of Him who, near two thousand years ago, taught mankind that lesson it has never learned but never quite forgotten; that there may be a kingdom where the least shall be heard and considered side by side with the greatest.”

  3. Duh permalink
    02/13/2010 9:58 am

    I generally enjoy reading your posts — even when I disagree with them — but not this one. Why? I mention two reasons below. I only ask that you take this as constructive criticism.

    1. “Cherry picking”

    I have been accused of this a few times now. Of course I am “cherry picking.” It is impossible to NOT “cherry pick.” By choosing specific examples to support my arguments and demonstrate why I hold certain opinions I must, by necessity, “cherry pick.” So must you. So must everyone else. What are we to do? Say, “I disagree — reasons may be found in either the Library of Congress or the treasure of all accumulated human knowledge and wisdom?” Doesn’t make for very spirited debate. It also doesn’t answer the question. Just saying “cherry picking” is a way of dismissing an opposing argument because there is no real way to successfully argue against it.

    In the same vein you said, “‘Cherry picking’ doesn’t look for substance.” Actually, that is exactly what it does. These “cherries” are also known by another name — facts. Your somewhat frequent comments along the lines of “So Glenn Beck and ‘gang’ can distort the ‘Progressive’ label…” is a perfect illustration of why a little “cherry picking” is in order. Please back up such generalizations in your posts with a few specifics. Then the statement will either live or die on the merits and, in turn, it will support your argument (or not).

    2. “Tho I could argue that being “Presidential” and “Statesman like” is substance with style.”

    No, you couldn’t – at least not convincingly. Substance has nothing to do with style and vice versa. Arguing untenable positions convincingly doesn’t change the fact that those postitions remain untenable. A lie that is told with rhetorical flourish and in a presidential and statesman-like manner may make you feel all warm and fuzzy but it never changes the fact that a lie was told.

    I may be impressed when a magician saws a girl in half and I may walk away impressed with his skill at creating an illusion (as I am the President’s rhetorical skills) but it never occurs to me that what the magician did was ever real. You, on the other hand, are admitting to being impressed by the magician, believing that the illusion IS real because he made it seem so — even when shown otherwise.

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