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BBB: Splitsville :: Update 27 June 2006

Posted by marisacat in Big Box Blogs, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Israel/AIPAC, U.S. Senate.


First, quick link to a posting earlier today from Jedmunds at Pandagon that I liked.  Something righteously mournful before I step into the cow patties of BlogKnot.

hmmmmm.  Linking to Billmon again.  Earlier, I had tucked him at the end of a long, ever upped and whupped post.  But no.  It is a bit of a fork in the road.  The last grafs especially.

But in the end it doesn’t matter. The Lieberman Dems don’t hate and fear Kos and the Daily Kos “community” because they are too far to the left. They hate them because they represent an emerging power center within the Democratic Party that they don’t control — what’s more, one that is now much closer to the public mainstream on the central issue of our time (the Iraq War) than they are.

The overriding concern for the neolibs, I think, is not that Kos and the netroot activists will lead the party off to the far-left fringes, but rather that they are willing, even eager, to form alliances with conservative nationalists like Jim Webb (the Va. Senate candidate) who’ve been forced out of the GOP because of their opposition to the neocons and their insane schemes. From Marty Peretz’s point of view, this is very bad. Left unchecked, it could even pose a threat to the sacred alliance with Israel.

The relationship between the party and Israel and or AIPAC/JINSA is so deep in the DNA, as to be rock solid.  I just don’t see it.  And yes, the tough old pol that is Lieberman was going to lash out.  A given, an absolute given. 

One of the tied-in sites, ever part of the link game, has 71 posts up against Lieberman.  Count ’em.  Not a problem, this stuff is old as the hills.  Or maybe I was an absolute minority years ago when Hill made her ”explosive” comment on the Today Show.  Enh.  I thought of Mary Todd Lincoln and Dolly Madison, for starters.  Not new.

So – I am not casting purity scolds over those 71 posts.  But with the post from Billmon…   And if you look at the opening of just this one post (of the 71) from the ”Lakers”.  Note what they slam Joe Lieberman for.

I wish I could impute nefarious intent to the effort of traditional media types to make the blogosphere’s opposition Joe-nertia “all about the war,” but if I had to guess I’d say it was more due to abject laziness and a lack of native curiosity.  As I’ve written many, many times before, my rabid lambiness took root during the Alito cloture vote, when Lieberman sided with the Gang of 14 to put a sexist, elitist, fundamentalist Dobson-loving bigot like Strip Search Sammy on the Supreme Court.  I feared the country could not survive another one.  And when interviewed for the new Time Magazine article on the race, Markos noted that he himself had said “enough” after Lieberman dicked everyone around on Social Security. 

Nelson has been no different.  He was instrumental in forming the group, the Gang of 14, that did not save filibuster, but killed it (with help from Reid and Biden, who caved early on, in spring, on Owens, Janice Rodgers Brown and others).  He begged Dobson for a public thank you for his vote for Alito (Washpo, March 27) and it became clear he is in regular phone contact with Dobson.

 Pretty stark.  All I am saying is, Lieberman has a lot to work with.

Who decides who these sites support? The sites at issue being:  Dkos, FDL and MyDD, Swing State Project – at a minimum.  I mean behind Bowers and the list of 4 bloggers they cough out.

 Kos, Chris Bowers, Matt Stoller, and DavidNYC (1+ / 0-)

Recommended by:

ask for recommendations of candidates, but the decision is basically up to them (that’s probably why two of the candidates are from the Philly suburbs [Bowers’s influence], and four of the candidates are from the West (Kos’s influence)].

I wouldn’t be surprised if Paul Hodes, Kirsten Gillibrand, and/or Linda Stender get put on the page soon (DavidNYC and Matt Stoller’s influence).

Don’t take my bluntness and attitude personally-the best weapon for the Democrats is the unvarnished truth, and the truth usually hurts.

by DemocraticLuntz on Mon Jun 26, 2006 at 04:38:33 PM PDT

[ Parent ]

Sorry, I don’t think it is just the boyz. 

 I have posted, I was among those who early on chafed against Joe Lieberman.  But when the boys began to (suddenly) marshall against Lieberman – even tho he is deserving of being primaried – I did not support their move — merely as a thread commenter!… but also I took time to send an email to a Dkos poster, local CT person who had long wanted a primary against Lieberman, well and good, but was being roped inside now to be part of the charge… and I did ask, what is up, there is a whiff, have a laugh, I got my head patted.

 And may I say, not only honored to be banned (banned a few places, I think), but relieved and delighted.  Thanks Boyos.

 See Bowers own diary at DKos on Netroots selections, several candidates are added to the “stable” and there is considerable push back in the thread as to the manner of selection…  My own guess one or two on the list have no idea the reactionary and unstable stable they have walked into.

And a choice quote made recently by one of the principals in the Bowers new consulting firm.  Frankly I have read the brief text at the site and I am unsure what it is, or is not.  Read the comment from “thereisnospoon” … who is David Atkins…   and if you know what it all means, tell me.

Elections are a question of making coalitions and getting votes without sacrificing principles.

The Democratic Party gets plenty of votes from Communists and pretty crazy authoritarian lefties whose viewpoints I find almost as repulsive as Joe’s.  That doesn’t mean I don’t advocate taking their votes…

My bigger question is, what is the agenda? 

I used to say that about Republicans.  Now I say it in earnest about whatever the game plan is that targets Joe, loves Ben (a strong conservative voice in congress), likes Military Mary, has no trouble with Pryor (another of the Gang of 14)… the list is long.  The consulting group(s) supposedly to elect candidates, run on the troubled Democratic ticket (no other way to put it), but are willing to trash the Democratic party in that very way.  That very particular way.

 It is the flip side of the innuendo now starting swirl about the so called grassroots, ground level (and Lamont did well at the convention, getting a third, no dispute – better than I had expected him to manage) opposition to Lieberman.

 If there is going to be a trope run that Kos is being targetted by the “Jewish Lobby” and tying the knot the way it was in the Billmon piece, which Kos front paged… well, I decline.  Again.

So, what is the agenda?

Because the boys are not necessarily gold, from Suellentrop, behind the TimesSelect wall, new today:

Hotline editor Chuck Todd dropped Warner from second to third place last week in his rankings (done jointly with Hotline associate editor Marc Ambinder) of the likely Democratic contenders.

And Todd’s rankings were published before the blogstorm over Armstrong’s past as a political astrologist. (Conservative blogger Dan Riehl uncovered how, for example, Armstrong once connected “the rise of the political version of religious fundamentalism with the astronomical exploration of the Kuiper Belt in 1992.”) The American Prospect’s Garance Franke-Ruta, writing at Tapped, suggests that both controversies call into question Warner’s judgment: “If Warner didn’t know, when he hired Armstrong, that this kind of stuff was in his background — the S.E.C. settlement, the political astrology — it’s a sign his PAC failed to do its own due diligence.”

And a bit more:

The American Prospect’s Matthew Yglesias has a different interpretation for the many changing and contradictory posts by Moulitsas about Armstrong’s clients, which go beyond the questions about Warner. (Russell Hughlock of the Buckeye State Blog notes that Moulitsas shifted his support in an Ohio primary, and that he declared war on the Democratic Leadership Council and then never followed up on it). Perhaps Moulitsas is merely erratic and intellectually incoherent! There “is something along the lines of ‘Markos’ affections for candidates seems [sic] idiosyncratic and not driven by a consistent ideological worldview’ that I heartily agree with and I think is a problem,” Yglesias writes.

It is entitled, Warner’s Falling Star.

UPDATE: 4:00 pm, PT

Blogometer has several entries related to Kos, Lieberman, Newsweek (oh those old ink guys… hard to beat them, sad to say)  the top one right now is: 

Where is the old Kos?

As a long time fan of sports talk radio (KNBR 68, THE Sports Leader), the Blogometer loved DailyKos‘ founder Markos Moulitsas the first time we read his over the top rhetoric and unapologetic anti-war stance. Markos is a bright and strategic thinker and the Blogometer truly wishes him well on his quest to help reshape the party. But as Markos becomes a polished operative he may be losing the impish truth-teller qualities that drove him to fame.

For example, Markos attributes his absence from a Time magazine piece on CT SEN to his refusal to play along with the reporter’s “anti-war frame.” Markos says he told Time he was targeting Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) due to his stance on Social Security.

No doubt Markos did not like Lieberman’s Social Security posturing, but Markos hated Lieberman long before that debate.

DailyKos’ popularity is built on the coherence of its anti-war stance, not Social Security or any other progressive issue. But Markos has bigger plans past Iraq and Pres. Bush.

He is working on a new book focussing on his “Libertarian Dem” philosophy and Ex-Navy sec. Jim Webb (D) is perhaps Markos’ ideal embodiment of his ideal Dem candidate. Markos’ realizes the MSM currently keeps him in an anti-war only cage and he is desperate to expand his portfolio. Markos’s will do much better getting his case across if he maintains the honesty that made him so powerful to begin with.

One way of looking at it, and certainly one way to try to send a message.  Give it a kiss and blow it on its way…

 But one thing is sure, a book by Kos about Webb — hmm so he is going to win?? tho either way, sounds like a remainder table book… duller than dead dish water.  Esp on some confused political philosophy that Kos made up…

 It also sounds like Kos found some rather odd symbol to latch onto.  White male, military (rose to be Sec of Navy) and let it be said, REPUBLICAN.  This just has an adolescent stench off it..

Another from Blogometer give Kos a pacifier, surely he has had enough attention.  I recall that Nico Melli from the old Dean campaign said during the great flail over Zephyr Teachout in early 2005, that Kos loves to be in the middle of great controversy.

If he wanted it, this is it.  I keep saying, be happy.

For the best rundown of the entire Kos/Armstrong/Hackett/Brown kerfuffle lefty BuckeyState Blog pens a lengthy history and concludes:

To date kos has failed to directly address the central issues.

Does Armstrong barter his services with clients to include the editorial influence of kos, if so is kos party to this ? Instead he has diverted attention from this question by attacking those asking these questions.

Kos at the end of the day I think has poor judgement and is naive – Hackett flip flop, the DLC attack that never came, Warner and Yearlykos- all leave many wondering. While Armstrong and kos have a symbiotic relationship, and some business ties (in the past, and with their recent book) I don’t believe there is any transfer of money for editorial influence – I think Jerome simply gets some of that for free, that at least is my impression. I personally don’t care how this story turns out, the netroots in the Ohio Senate race are now poisoned beyond recovery thanks to these bozo’s – I just hope I don’t have to witness them screw up any more races in the state I live.



1. Deepening Throat - 27 June 2006

What went on in Ohio… obviously didn’t stay in Ohio.

Russo surfaces to say “I told you so”

2. Deepening Throat - 27 June 2006

What went on in Ohio… obviously didn’t stay in Ohio.

Russo surfaces to say “I told you so”

3. GreenSooner - 27 June 2006

DailyKos’ popularity is built on the coherence of its anti-war stance

Built on the coherence of what?

Let it be said that dKos — as a community — is firmly opposed to the war as Bush is fighting it. That’s about the long and short of its unity on Iraq. Off the FP, there’s probably broad support for some sort of antiwar position…though if there’s any agreement about what should be done, it’s never clearly expressed, and the appearance of the actual antiwar movement (you know, marches on Washington, demands that the war be brought to an end…that kind of stuff) in dKos diaries always leads to a barfight. Discussions of what the Democrats ought to do — other than hearty cheers for whatever they happen to be doing at the moment — draws similar ire. I remember Armando running around early this year beating people up who disagreed with some FP post of his arguing that it was a good thing that the Democratic Party had no unified position on the war (sorry for the lack of a link; I have better things to do than search the dKos archives for Armando’s coprolites).

And among the FPers and other dKos Heathers, “antiwar” is a virtual cussword, as this infamous post by Kos himself suggests.

So any coherence of dKos’s antiwar stance is — like Brad Carson’s liberalism — much more a product of netroot projection than actual blogospheric reality. But Kos is perfectly honest about this. dKos is about supporting any and all Democrats, whatever they believe, so long as their name isn’t Emmanuel Goldstein…er…Joe Lieberman, that is.

4. GreenSooner - 27 June 2006

Revealing, too, is this line you quote from thereisnospoon (who regularly posts among the most revealing idiotic comments on dKos):

The Democratic Party gets plenty of votes from Communists and pretty crazy authoritarian lefties whose viewpoints I find almost as repulsive as Joe’s.

This is very interesting. What’s wrong with the left now? It’s that we’re “authoritarian.” But, honestly, when you think of the dominant figures on the far left (such as it is) there are actually relatively few authoritarians among them. Actual Communists, let alone Stalinists, are few and far between, as are more run-of-the-mill, post-Stalinist state socialists (Gus Hall doesn’t get a lot of posthumous traction these days). Instead, the most important voices on the far left tend toward anarchism (e.g. Chomsky), some sort of radical democracy (e.g. Monbiot), or other anti-authoritarian schemes (e.g. Hardt and Negri). Certainly my little Green Party ain’t authoritarian.

So why the charge of authoritarianism on the left (as laughable, in its own way, as Lee Siegel’s description of Kos himself as a blogofascist)?

Well the idea of the authoritarian left fits perfectly into the latest dKos FP buzzword: libertarian. What “fighting” was to 2005, and “populist” was to 2004, “libertarian” is now what Democrats have to be, according to Kos. And therefore, the enemy, in her various guises, must be authoritarianism, whether in the form of Bush’s wiretapping, or the entirely imaginary Cheka that thereisnospoon apparently thinks I want to set up.

5. NYCO - 27 June 2006

Look, you’ll go crazy trying to trace and describe what’s happening over there. I just can’t get over how HOLLOW the whole tempest is. There’s nothing INSIDE all that blather. It’s blogs and media all talking utter nonsense at each other. It’s become a colossal waste of time. There isn’t even any pretense now of it being some kind of citizen communication avenue, it is just about money. I mean, these people will all be “first up against the wall when the revolution comes,” so to speak, can they not see that? Do they really, truly believe the left will stay down forever?

It’s really too bad these toxically dishonest people wormed their way into the “new medium” of blogs. These guys are even dishonest to themselves. Blogs will continue to serve a useful purpose in the sub-blogospheres (like my local one), but in terms of national politics… they’re a dead medium now.
Then again, Washington politics has long been a dead medium; and the national bloggers like Kos are like flies on a rotting carcass who think they can not only feast on it, but reanimate it as well at the same time. Absurdity on several levels.

6. NYCO - 27 June 2006

Oh, and another thing… boy am I glad to live in a state where Kos and his fly swarm will never find any of the races interesting enough to “help” with. With friends like that, who needs enemies? (as the Ohio blogger found out)

7. marisacat - 27 June 2006

i also blame the party, the factions that moved in early. If Kos did not start out as a creature of various factions, he became so early on…

I mean… they swept in with the intensifying primary. DH and DemFCT and the ones that had been there.. Trapper … and MB was happy wappy to play along. Be a beard.

Oh yeah I don’t spare anyone.

I think they all were paid. Or paid in kind.

Be proud guys. And women assists too. Be proud.

LOL mY old joke, more than legs will be spread.

8. NYCO - 27 June 2006

Kos’ political imagination (and needless to say, knowledge) only goes as far as the most conventional of constructs… Congressional and White House politics. That’s all he knows. He seems to have very little grasp of the realities of the dozens and dozens of historical, social and governance currents that underlie today’s American life – the ones they don’t teach you about in civics class. I watched him completely misjudge the NY-29 (Barend/Kuhl) race in 2004 and that was it for me. God, he was clueless. He didn’t know what was going on in New York that year and didn’t want to know. He didn’t understand that the election was about Barend, not Kuhl. It didn’t fit the simplistic script he cooked up sitting at his computer 3000 miles away.

All I can say is someone save us from the paid amateurs. They are running this country into the ground.

9. marisacat - 27 June 2006

hmmm.. well they are nose deep into NY 29 for Massa.

Another god damed Republican. A very early endorsem ent came from Gene Taylor… Democrat of MS, bloeved by the hard right xtians. He gets a really high rating frm the Fallwell group.


10. NYCO - 28 June 2006

Actually, Massa is probably good for NY-29. It’s not like the district isn’t one of the two reddest in upstate New York (which is purple, but that district is a distinct shade of mauve). It’s just that Kos probably likes to think that people there would vote for Massa because he’s a “Fighting Dem” (bleahhhh) rather than because Massa, like, has a good understanding of the upstate economy or something like that. If Massa wasn’t a “Fighting Dem” Kos wouldn’t give a shit about him OR about NY-29. It’s all about perpetuating Kos memes and the Kos brand. (Another reason why it’s so disingenuous to claim that he’s “just a political junkie” — a political junkie just likes to study electoral politics and play the game in a reality-based way, not press clunky slogans and half-baked ideology).

The sad thing is that Barend could have gotten elected if her campaign wasn’t so shifty and amateurish. She was good on the issues, but it just so happened that that year in New York, due to a series of other events, there was a huge and unfocused public outcry against any whiff of government corruption or shady politicking… and that trumped any outrage anyone might have had about personal morality. Kuhl used her campaign missteps to great advantage because of that (all while Kos was pathetically trying to flog the “B-b-but Kuhl is a drunkard!!” moral card). The eventual conclusion was predictable to anyone who actually paid attention to state politics beyond their Electoral College impact. Too bad. Everyone in that district lost.

11. Medley - 28 June 2006

“Kos’ political imagination (and needless to say, knowledge) only goes as far as the most conventional of constructs…”

Of the things that drive me crazy about the orange place, this is one of the biggies. This guy (and, accordingly, his followers) seem fundamentally anti-intellectual — unwilling to appreciate or learn from history and from others who’ve gone before, and unable to appreciate subtlety or context. You can see it both in terms of how they talk about the party structure and about social justice.. and also in terms of how they think about the “online community” building that they are ostensibly doing (about which plenty of smart people have learned plenty of smart things regarding what to do and what not to do depending on one’s goals… but god forbid Markos should investigate any of that literature – he’s just going to invent his own wheel.. )

It is an emotional and reactionary approach that too many of these Republicans-turned-“fighting Dems” (or whatever the catchphrase of the day is) seem to have. (I see similar stuff over at Raising Kaine.) It’s as though they feel betrayed by their BigDaddy Republican party (having finally recognized the deep rot there), but then just kick and scream loudly that the other major party needs to now placate their particular emotional needs.

More reflective sorts would react differently I think.

This is related to their knee-jerking about “special interest groups” (y’know, like women…). It’s as though they still retain the Republican-instilled disdain for civil rights and human rights, and have never bothered to sort out, first, why things are the way they are and what the long fights have been about.

It’s really quite something to observe.

12. NYCO - 28 June 2006

“seem fundamentally anti-intellectual…”

By Jove you’ve got it.

Unfortunately the scenario I see evolving is just what I feared months ago (and I’m sure others came to that conclusion long before me): the Democrats who get into power next will be Same As the Old Boss, except they will have their very own Horst Wessels in the blogosphere (figuratively speaking, of course) mobilizing against the left. Right now they pretty much leave the left alone. But once they have “won” the “big prize,” they’ll need something to do with their billy clubs.

Dunno about you, but I’m not waiting around and hoping it doesn’t happen.
It’s time to get off the blog train and start working on on-the-ground coalitions… the “new” blogging.

13. NYCO - 28 June 2006

BTW y’all know where to find me if you care to take this to a more private venue.

14. marisacat - 28 June 2006

I just read a comment (well several were … shall we say, stellar?) in Kos latest Lieberman is Gonna Fall! FP pieces… the comment is about how soon they will take on all Dinos.

You hve to laugh. As they chortle for Webb… a DINO and a RINO.

Good Lord.


as for Massa, he is beloved by Clark. Clark people sweep into his diaries.

And I maintain Kos was never off the Clark bus.

15. raincat100 - 28 June 2006

I just came across http://rootsprimary.org/ via the HuffPo…Zack Exley has a piece there. Apparently, he and “a couple of friends” have just started this new site for the 2008 race and will add a blog. I’ve met Zack and I think he’s earnest about this, but I really don’t get why this will be useful.

16. aemd - 28 June 2006

Maybe OT, maybe DUH but WTF.

I see it as all about marketing, marketing of politics. Failed dotcon
wizards looking for the next big game.

Markos and crew are all about marketing. His pitch is that he wants
nothing more than a Democratic majority. He’ll push your brand,
society be damned.

It’s a hell of a sell to ANY Democrat in ANY race. A Democratic
candidate would be foolish to turn down the services of a group that
has no skin in the game other than winning.

You got the money, honey, they’ll make the time.

ESPN politics. Yeah, go team.

17. NYCee - 28 June 2006

It is sad – the abandonment of the issues on Kos. The same same sameness of diaries. People are afraid to post outside prescribed bounds, I fear. It got that way long ago.

I saw your diary, NYCO, where you asked what people were doing on the issues, not to elect someone. Who’d a thunk it’d be such a thankless and frustrating effort! So much confusion by so many, so many getting off at the wrong exit, over such a fundamentally simple question!

eg, “Im working to elect (fill in blank).”

NO!!! Buzz! Gong!

Rinse, repeat. Argh!

I, btw, dont do enough locally, but I did go raise some hell at our NYC Rent Guidelines Board yearly brouhaha btw tenants and goons (who keep approving raises in the already outrageous rents). And signed up to work on our abysmal rent/housing issues. There. Did I get it right?

I also do something which is pretty damn satisfying, progressively, in my job. A job I enjoy just on it’s own, just doing it, so it makes it easy.

I’ll work for Tasini too, in just a bit, although there I am veering off the road, arent I? 🙂

Please, allow me to buzz myself. You must be tired!

PS – I diaried on an issue, a pressing one, ESTATE TAX repeal/gutting, and got about zilch. I had gotten an email urging folks to tell senators to vote NO on Cloture on June 6th, an Action Day, to prevent them from moving toward its repeal/gutting. I didnt want to diary it, as I was pressed for time, otherwise engaged, but I finally did because it was so important and because there wasnt one damn diary up on it. Plenty of Coulter, et al. (Rage rage against the Rightwing Nuttery over and over and over … while they rob us blind, having accomplished the diversion!) Hardly a soul responded. I even had a poll asking if anyone would call, write, fax, as the email urged, or if they already had. Only about 8 answered and two of them said NO they hadnt and NO they di’int intend to take any action.

Guess that’ll larn me, eh?

18. NYCee - 28 June 2006

Oh, I meant to say I did the RGB protest thingie last night, not that that’s the only local thing Ive ever done in my whole entire life.

I aint all that good, but I aint THAT bad.

19. marisacat - 28 June 2006

NYCee…. not to worry, you try, all that anyone can do.

I think it may be time for me to post an interview from early 2005 with Chris Hedges of “War is a force…”, he speaks beautifully of the struggle just to stay human in tough political times…

One reason I take very seriously the scheisse hole that Kos and KosThugs and assorted Whacks built.

And intend to post against that sort of thing (see update to Frying Circuits, LOL the next posting) as long as I have a keyboard. ANd brains. I did not come online, get addicted to some bubbly hype and lose my brains as unnoticed effluvia during the night.

LOL. Take that thugs.

20. The world is weary... « Marisacat - 18 May 2007

[…] inevitably though, spring is somewhere.  I saw these fiori di montagne, mountain flowers in the Dolomites – and was reminded of an interview Chris Hedges gave in 2005.  I could not find my original essay using it, from LSF… but did find the interview and an old comment of mine from Marisacat. […]

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