Again, president Obama is two steps ahead of the rest. And how he quietly changed Washington

Two terrific items, proving for the 47284718473 time that there’s president Barack Obama, and then there’s basically all the rest.

First, this NYT story, revealing that PBO sensed all the way back in August that the ME is about to explode:

WASHINGTON — President Obama ordered his advisers last August to produce a secret report on unrest in the Arab world, which concluded that without sweeping political changes, countries from Bahrain to Yemen were ripe for popular revolt, administration officials said Wednesday.

Mr. Obama’s order, known as a Presidential Study Directive, identified likely flashpoints, most notably Egypt, and solicited proposals for how the administration could push for political change in countries with autocratic rulers who are also valuable allies of the United States, these officials said.

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Then there’s this TIME story marking the second anniversary of the recovering act. The verdict: Americans are stupid if they can’t see what a great president this guy is! Okay, that’s not really the verdict, but this is the kind of stories that must be pushed and published, and it’s time for the White House PR department to start flooding the air with such stories:

 President Obama is often mocked for failing to change Washington …. but behind the scenes of the Beltway perpetual-conflict machine, he has made quiet progress towards reforming Washington — not politically, but bureaucratically. The most important reform, launched two years ago today, was tucked inside his unpopular stimulus package, and inside his new budget, he’s trying to expand it.

The reform is a simple concept that certainly ought to be post-partisan: Harnessing the power of competition in the spending of taxpayer dollars …. Obama has tried to divert funds into competition-based, peer-reviewed, results-oriented grant programs that reward only the worthiest applications. The best-known is the Race to the Top education program, but the stimulus hatched similar competitions in energy, transportation, housing, health care and broadband. And Obama’s 2012 budget proposes new races to the top in everything from juvenile justice to workforce development to agricultural research.

The $4.35 billion Race to the Top program … shows how competition can create laboratories for change. By setting clear goals and guidelines … the program encouraged 41 states to change laws or policies before the feds even spent a nickel the impact of a program that amounts to less than 1% of the education budget will extend well beyond the twelve states that won grants.

At his Cabinet meeting today, Biden will present the good news of the Recovery Act, which helped avoid a depression, reduced the unemployment rate by 2%, cut taxes for 95% of Americans, bailed out every state to prevent mass layoffs, funded over 75,000 projects to upgrade roads, parks, sewers and just about everything else, and made unprecedented investments renewable energy, health information technology, broadband, the smart grid and much, much more — with no earmarks and virtually no fraud. But to Washington Republicans it’s the “failed stimulus.” That was their story in 2009, when they opposed it en masse, and after their sweeping victories in November, it’s hard to see why they would want to change it. Anyway, most Americans believe it.

// much more

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Recovery!

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -The index of manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia region jumped in February to its highest level since January 2004, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia reported Thursday. The Philly Fed business condition index rose to 35.9 in February from 19.3 in January. The increase was much stronger than expected. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected the index to tick higher to 20.8.

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141 thoughts on “Again, president Obama is two steps ahead of the rest. And how he quietly changed Washington

  1. He is indeed two steps ahead of everyone else. It is about time he is getting the press he deserves, although I see our progress everyday on the streets, in the stores, and among friends and co-workers.

  2. It’s up to us to blow the horn for him. He spends his valuable time actually doing what he says he’ll do, rather than talking about it after the fact. They thought the results would speak for themselves. They won’t make that mistake, going forward. And we can be part of his virtual army for change.

  3. I have not lost faith in this President. Keep up the fantastic work, sir, and I will do my part to get you re-elected…..

  4. Couldn’t agree more. They were sure that people will actually see what a great work this man is doing, but people are just too busy or too dumb to notice anything but smears and lies. We’ll have to work very hard to change the narrative, and if we won’t – no one will.

  5. Don’t have anything to add, but just a simple thank you for keeping us all informed on the great accomplishments of the Obama administration. I check out the site many times each day. It’s a much more pleasant group here.

  6. One thing that occurs to me more and more often these days is the need for us to shake off our mantle of defensiveness. Instead of just repudiating the ridiculous claims of the brainless opposition, we should trumpet the President’s success every way we can. The economy is moving forward – we need to advocate for the President’s plan to keep it moving in the right direction. We need to look at every part of his strategy, collect supporting evidence and spread the good news.
    Going into 2012, it will be more effective to highlight the success than deny the claims of failure. That doesn’t mean that we should not point out how the Republican strategy would hurt the economy and the people – we need to make that quite clear, but our emphasis should be on the positive aspects of the President’s vision.

  7. Great comment at wsy in response the challenging news that polling indicates that the GOP is succeeding in their deficit messaging with swing voters:

    http://weeseeyou.com/2011/02/17/thursday-open-thread-70/#comment-149988645

    If you repeat lies enough, while being aided and abetted by the media at large, those lies will become truth.

    Only in America can the political party whose President inherited a SURPLUS, eventually runs up record-breaking deficits, and presiding over the lowest job growth in at least 40 years be able to demand to get the same deficit down that they ran up and cut numerous programs, and win the messaging war. While there rich buddies virtually stopped hiring people, the oil companies shot up atmospheric prices in a short time, defense companies made off like bandits for work not even accounted for and the last administration left a shitpile to scoop and the Darth vader and Rummy still running their damn mouths. This ish is bananas all day. IT IS RIDICULOUS.

    I mean do we have to make a freakin reality show and detail this ish for people…as it seems that is the only thing Americans will pay attention to.

    *******************************************

    I so utterly agree with an above comment which noted that it’s going to become imperative to spread President Obama’s positive vision for the economy. It is so much easier for the GOP to appeal to people’s baser instincts of selfishness and greed; that’s how they get away with this stuff. Tell people that they’re being taxed to death to support minorities/union workers/people who aren’t trying, and of course they’re going to approve of deep cuts in spending. It’s much harder to appeal to people’s better angels (which is why IMO the PL takes the shortcut of just trying to bash or shame President Obama into forcing liberal solutions upon the country, something which IMO he can’t really do).

  8. This should show every one our President Plays Chess while the rest Play Checkers trying to crown some king of politics. Where the President wins battles for our countries future for all of us. Just hang tough watch His moves for they are coming from angles the opposition does not see. He leads with along view of things.

  9. The saddest, and for that reason the most tragic, line in the Time story is “But to Washington Republicans it’s the “failed stimulus.” That was their story in 2009, when they opposed it en masse, and after their sweeping victories in November, it’s hard to see why they would want to change it. Anyway, most Americans believe it.”solicited proposals for how the administration could push for political change in countries with autocratic rulers who are also valuable allies of the United States, these officials said.”

    The key here, and what he tried to do in Egypt, except Mubarak was to much of an egomaniac to see it, is that he isn’t looking for how to overthrow the autocratic rulers who are our allies, but rather trying to figure out ways to push those rulers into reform so that the people don’t end up revolting because their needs are met, and the rulers can remain allies. This is the fine line that needs to be walked and Obama is the only one that seemed to be aware of it back in August.

    I have a hunch that even then he was reaching out to Mubarak and warning him, and has probably done so to toher learders as well.

    Lie enough and it pays off. And unfortuantely, studies show that the more invested someone is in a false belief, the less likely the truth is going to impact them or get themselves to change that believe.

    On the positive side is thatprobably only about 25-30% of the population is so invested in the lie that they will refuse to see the truth. The rest will be more openminded to reality as long as it isn;t presented to them as “You guys are really dumb to believe that crap, here is what is true.”

    Regarding the NYT article and Obama having ordered a study, the significant line is : “

  10. That was one of my few compalints with the adminsitration, that they trusted too much in the intelligence of the American people first of all, and secondly that they believed that the media would actually do its job and report the reality.

    It still believes in the intelligence of most of the American people (though now realizes that there is a percentage that don’t think but only believe what they hear and react) and the naivity regarding the media is definitely gone.

  11. That’s why your blog is so important, bwd. Besides our comments we need to be facebooking, twittering, e-mailing links and verbally sharing all positive info. with our friends, families and neighbors. Outreach cannot be stressed enough in the war against lies and the PL’s purity tantrums.

    Thank you so much, bwd, for your indefatigable work on behalf of our President who always has had to work against all odds.

  12. I should add in my 67 years. NJgrandma, congrats for being the wisest of this older but smarter group.

  13. And my 53. (Always been the “little sister!”)

    w00t, got President Obama in the Bay Area later today! I hope the weather calms down for him.

  14. Pamela, you are so right. I have starting putting info on facebook, and I email articles praising the president to my smaller circle of friends.

  15. BWD, It is great to have these positive reviews of our PBO. The screamers can get me down at times. This is our sanctuary.

  16. I added it up and so far with my 68 we have 633 years of experience saying this President is terrific.

  17. The DCCC has such a fantastic website. Anyone looking to send a letter to Boehner about his “so be it” remarks can do so here: http://dccc.org/pages/sobeit

    It was surprisingly satisfying to write a letter telling Boehner that he should be ashamed. Won’t reach him, but I really liked it, lol.

  18. Honestly, I’m done listen to them. I don’t go to their sites, i don’t read their columns, i don’t watch their shows, i don’t participate in their speculations, i don’t waste even a second on them. I have enough on my plate as it is. I’m completely focused at looking for real news, real facts, and trying to spread them to the best of my humble ability. I’m just going to play the game point by point, and hopefully by the end of it – the scoreboard will show that i won.

  19. Great, great article from E.J. Dionne:

    Deficit hawks and the games they play

    For 30 years, conservative ideologues have played moderate deficit hawks for suckers.

    You’d think this might endow those middle-of-the-road deficit-busters with a touch of humility. Fat chance. They stick with their self-righteous moralism, pretending to be bipartisan and beyond ideology. In fact, they make the problem they want to solve worse by continuing to empower the tax-cuts-in-every-season conservatives.

    It’s thus satisfying to see President Obama ignore the willfully naive who are wailing over deficits. He knows that new revenue will have to play a big role in deficit reduction. He also knows that House Republicans are pretending we can cut our way out of this mess and would demagogue any general tax increases.

    So he has proposed some serious spending cuts and some modest revenue increases to keep things stable as he embarks on a long struggle to move our dysfunctional budget politics to a better place. This annoys his deficit-obsessed critics, by which I mean just about everyone who says he should simply embrace the proposals of the Bowles-Simpson commission. Obama should smile, let them rage and go about his business.

    // more, and simply brilliant.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/16/AR2011021605464.html

  20. Carney just said that our President has been invited to stay at Buckingham Palace on his visit to Britain. now that it is a first.

  21. Looks like the Democrats in wisconsin state house WALKED OUT!! Govenor Walker can’t pass budget with a 2/3 quorum in sessions. 19 Democrats walked out and left the state, and now he has the nerve to call the STATE TROOPERS to bring them in. THIS BASTARD HAS GOT TO GO!!

    Plenty of folks are having buyers remorse. I am listening to Ed Shultz on the radio (I know, I know I am glutten for punishment) he said plenty of folks who are protesting voted for Walker and had no idea he would do this.

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/source-wis-dem-state-senators-walk-out-blocking-budget-quorum.php?ref=fpa

  22. I wonder if the troopers are unionized. If so, they may take their own sweet time about it. IIRC something like this happened in TX a few years ago.

  23. PRESIDENT OBAMA IS AN INTELLIGENT,DIPLOMATIC AND COMPASSIONATE VISIONARY…HE’LL ALWAYS BE SEVERAL STEPS AHEAD BECAUSE HE SEES THE FULL PICTURE! GOD LOVE HIM!

  24. Right; they had no idea because during the runup to the elections, content focused primarily on how much Dems suck and deserved to lose, rather than what the GOP would be bringing to the table policy-wise. And in this respect, the nascent lefty media was just as bad as the right wing and national media. I wonder if people like Schultz are ever going to engage in any sort of introspection or take any sort of responsibility for how badly informed this country has become.

  25. I really like Jay. He has a very mellow persona. He did seem more relaxed today. I noticed that he basically ignored a couple of stupid questions.

    I am thrilled that he is not just calling on just the front two rows. I so loathe the snarling Jake Tapper and Chip Reid. And Chuck Todd is just embarrassing. Dealing with the jackals is a real challenge, but I think Jay is up to the task.

  26. Sue,
    you warm my heart. I love how you shout your joy to the roof tops. Please keep that joy coming. Do not let evil steal your joy.🙂

  27. I’m not all that worried about what message swing voters are buying into right at the moment as there is nothing for them to vote on currently. What matters is the message people are hearing in 2012. That message will be about optimism and innovation and building a better future for our children. People will get weary of the deficit message after time. More and more people are finding jobs, the economy is improving, and as that happens the intense anger people were expressing will subside. Americans are optimists. We just are. It’s a quality no other country possesses to the degree we do. It’s in our DNA.

    Perhaps I’m being naïve, but I think the GOP seems to be overlooking one very critical thing: We’re pulling out of Iraq. The extreme anger that Americans had about that war (yes, the libertarians, too) won’t have any fuel.

    I don’t see anger continuing to be the driving force in this country. I was wrong about how long it would carry the day, that much is true. I can’t find a way to accept that this anger is sustainable into the next election cycle.

  28. What a great plan.

    My news consumption is similar to yours.

    Almost all of my news now comes from bloggers that I trust… Some liberal, some conservative. But all people that base their policy arguments in reality.

    I have no time for pathetic talking points. None. From either side of the political spectrum.

    The information is out there. We can choose to find it… Or not.

    This blog is a regular stop for me… Multiple times a day!

    Keep up the great work. It is very much appreciated.

    What a fascinating time that we live in.

  29. “CAIRO — Egypt’s new military rulers have launched their own Facebook page to better communicate with the youth who used the social networking site to organise protests that drove Hosni Mubarak from power.”

    http://tinyurl.com/6ab4wdc

    I don’t use Facebook. What happens next? Everyone Friends them?🙂

  30. Wisconsin Gov. Walker Ginned Up Budget Shortfall To Undercut Worker Rights

    Wisconsin’s new Republican governor has framed his assault on public worker’s collective bargaining rights as a needed measure of fiscal austerity during tough times.

    The reality is radically different. Unlike true austerity measures — service rollbacks, furloughs, and other temporary measures that cause pain but save money — rolling back worker’s bargaining rights by itself saves almost nothing on its own. But Walker’s doing it anyhow, to knock down a barrier and allow him to cut state employee benefits immediately.

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/wisconsin-gov-walker-ginned-up-budget-shortfall-to-undercut-worker-rights.php?ref=fpi

  31. So while the PL is whining, OFA people are working to help the unions in Wisconsin. My respect to those so-called progressives is getting to its lowest point.

  32. If I were a political cartoonist, I’d create one where the left hand pane showed President Obama in a surgery suite handling a scalpel. On the operating table a ‘budget’ shaped like the United States. In a bucket on the floor some excised pieces labeled with words like “Oil subsidies” “Military Spending”.

    In the right hand pane a picture of a crazed Boehner with a chain saw brutally hacking away at a defenseless ‘budget’ shaped like the U.S. with pieces flying labeled “Jobs Training $2B” and “Food Safety Inspection $57M” flying about.

    Would that I had the talent.

  33. That’s fantastic to hear. Unions were out in force canvassing with OFA in November so OFA’s Wisconsin groups likely have a ton of personal contacts, relationships, and experience streamlining efforts with union reps. Very glad to hear it!

  34. I only now realize that the only right way for government money to be allocated in such projects like stimulus plans or special programs (Race to the Top) is to have a bidding process.

    We find it completely normal that – for instance – in my (government agency) Dutch Weather Service we have companies bid for offering our next supercomputer or weather radar; it is an obvious extension to have this being done for all money spent by the government (except entitlements).

    This is certainly innovative !

  35. Wisconsin Governor gave tax cuts when first came into office. The state does not have a fiscal crisis, he has ginned up that issue to get rid of State Employees benefits and Union membership.
    Another creepy liar who doesn’t respect average hardworking Americans

  36. Lize, I’m in SF, too and it’s really raining right now! Wish he would make a public appearance again here someday. I saw him twice back in the earlier days of the primary campaign and that was magical.

  37. GN,
    I am doing Fine.
    Sorry it took me a while to respond.
    I was faxing information to wisconsin

  38. How does anyone take House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan seriously? I have been trying to figure this out for the longest time. Apparently, so has Steve Benen:

    WHEN THE VOICE OF REASON ISN’T AT ALL REASONABLE….

    Every day, the media establishment looks to House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) as a credible, responsible voice on fiscal issues. And every day, I marvel at the establishment’s inability to see Ryan for what he is.
    .
    What more will it take for the political establishment to recognize this guy as a crank?
    .
    To consider Ryan, who forces his aides to read Ayn Rand novels, “sensible” is to strip the word of any meaning. The guy, when he isn’t making up numbers, is presenting proposals so radical, it’s hard to imagine why he isn’t just laughed out of the room.

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2011_02/028049.php

  39. Repeating a comment; this is about the senator who I noted with dismay was quoted in an article accusing POTUS of “balancing the budget on the back” of the people helped by the LIHEAP program, without discussing the WH’s point that the cut is designed to minimize any impact to the actual customers. She went on Tavis Smiley’s show and did *MUCH* better than I expected. Credit where credit is due:

    The Tavis Smiley interview with NY Senator Gillibrand was a lot more balanced on her part than I feared when I read her LIHEAP quotes yesterday. Smiley kept wanting to get her to say that average people are going to be hurt by President Obama’s budget position, and she didn’t budge: she pointed out that the GOP budget is horrendous and POTUS is trying to head off more stringent cuts as well as make education and innovation investments. I’m still unhappy that she is not discussing the nuance wrt the LIHEAP cuts and the likelihood that customers won’t feel any impact, but credit where credit is due and she did a really good job overall (and I am not a fan of this person). My other senator, Schumer, did the right thing in that he stayed away from the press and worked with the WH for Democratic unity. But I’m beyond tickled that Smiley didn’t get a POTUS bitchfest along the lines of the trashtalking which emerges when he gets together with Brotha West and give a lot of credit to Gillibrand for that.

    http://www.pbs.org/wnet/tavissmiley/archive/201102/20110216.html

  40. Oops, and apologies to Tien for “bitchfest” but hopefully this term is not read as so vulgar.

  41. We are living in a very special time of history in this country. The Trumka/Donohue collaboration continues:

    Labor’s Richard Trumka, Chamber’s Tom Donohue appear together to plead for infrastructure spending

    Two longtime adversaries appeared together at a Senate committee hearing Wednesday morning to deliver a message to Congress: invest more in America’s infrastructure.

    AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas J. Donohue were set to testify Wednesday before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. The appearance came weeks after the two leaders released a joint statement following President Obama’s State of the Union address praising the president’s call for greater infrastructure spending.

    Committee Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) tossed a coin to see who would speak first; Trumka, who had called heads, won. Both he and Donohue, who were sitting side-by-side at Wednesday’s hearing, made light of the fact that their joint appearance was a rare one.

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2011/02/richard-trumka-tom-donohue-mak.html

    *****************************************

    Unclenched fists. I’m not thrilled with the Chamber for reasons that I’m sure I don’t have to explain to anyone here, but this collaboration where labor and the Chamber work together to achieve a mutual goal of benefit to this country is striking.

  42. gn, sometimes people can surprise us. I have no doubt she was talked to by some powers that be. But at the same time, even Senators have an initial reaction without knowing details, and when details come out recognize the reality. But overall, I think there is some heavy leaning taking place from the WH. She has obviously changed her tune, and I think Conrad stepped back from a lot of his earlier comments.

    Another Plouffe touch if I am not mistaken.

  43. These are very exciting times. I hope in 2012 wisconsin,Ohio, Florida, Indiana and New hampshire will learn their lesson.

  44. I think the Chamber is aware of the bad publicity it received last year, and is trying to do some PR work. Specially with the reports (right or wrong) of foreign capital coming into play. They are trying to work to emphasize the US part of their name.

  45. Yup, I think that her initial response was flatfooted, yet with additional information she was able to detect what the WH is trying to do.

    I think that because of the challenging media climate in which a space like HuffPo can disseminate a narrative about POTUS hurting the poor and have that read by millions of people and spread throughout the media almost instantly, a lot of elected Dems get sucked into that vortex. The Congressional Black Caucus also released a hasty statement which was really unbalanced. My hope is for Dems, in the future, to ask the WH to explain themselves before providing remarks to the press, or to do as Kerry did immediately, which was to express his disagreement in a very tempered fashion with no stridency (because stridency is hard to walk back from).

    But whenever there is a purity swarm or sensation containing a narrative that POTUS doesn’t care about abc group or is a sellout or weak negotiator, there is almost *always* more to the story. Just as with the tax cut deal.

  46. In reality, that spending helps them very much as well. It’s a myth that there’s some free market apart from the government; the federal government has always spent a lot of money to create industries and prop up businesses. Which is why it was ridiculous for the Chamber to collaborate with the GOP and put these jokers back into power. While the GOP will certainly water down regulation, they are seeking a period of austerity which would hurt the entire country.

  47. The recovery act will provide fueling stationhere in chicago. they announced it last week. Im excited to see them. numerous road were repaired and they are still working I always see signs.

  48. Good! I remember how outraged the rw was when the Obamas visited the queen a couple years ago and our first Lady had the nerve to place her black arm around the queen’s waist! I guess they didn’t see the queen’s arm around our Michelle’s waist! Our first couple were a hit with the royals, and the rw couldn’t stand it. Now, our president has been invited BACK to Buckingham Palace. Take that, you ugly hate mongers and jealous nellies! Put this in your pipes and smoke it. PBO will have breakfast, lunch, and dinner with the royals should he choose to do so!

    Was GWB invited to stay at Buckingham Palace during any visit to Britain? Right-wing heads are going to explode!! This is a “refudiation” of what the rw has been saying about PBO and FL Michelle. Royalty recognizes royalty. I don’t mean this in the literal sense, but from the perspective of quality people recognize quality people. IMO, the president being invited to stay at BP on an official visit is the greatest example of American Exceptionalisn. Our PBO can go anywhere in the world and be accepted because of the international goodwill he has fostered. We no longer have to cringe and wonder what new faux paux our president may make, or who/what country he may alienate with his thoughtless actions/words.

  49. It is amazing, isn’t it?! 120,000 low-income multi-family housing units weatherized. 20,000 homeless vets housed. Only 45 cases of fraud in the infrastructure programs. And it goes on and on, one success after another.

  50. I was waiting to get my care fixed people was around watching the news. President Obama name came up. Every hollered these people are not but haters. This old man said they can’t stand to see some one work for the people. I smiled and said to myself, this man is loved here and the media and pundits have it all wrong. When a segment about Wisconsin came some said that got what they voted for.

  51. So, it’s come down to a standoff. Walker will be forced to learn a very valuable lesson that he had no sense of as he was running for governor. Politics requires compromise, and neither he nor the republicans in the state legislature can afford to forget this and get anything done. Oh, well, those who were fooled by Walker are quickly learning that they voted for a pig in a poke. Also, imo, this illustrates an inherent weakness associated with the Citizens United SC decision. Corporations can pour money into advertising and get a person elected by misleading the voters, but the official has to face the people he/she governs when he/she does kwap like Walker is doing, and he won’t be able to depend upon these corporations to bail him out of his troubles. There’s nothing quite like real citizens getting actively involved in their government. I hope the people of Wisconsin keep the heat on his butt! He’ll either have to listen to them and modify his plans, step down, or have to put up with repeated unrest the entire 4 years of his term in office.

  52. AMEN BWD, DOUBLE AMEN! Me too and thank you for what you give us here so we can go out and spread the word.

  53. Great comment and I so agree. I see people every day, Dems, Repubs and Indys who are just getting weary of all the negativity. A guy told me the other day: “My life ain’t perfect but it’s a lot better than it was last year. I’m happy to have what I have. I think it will get better.”

    People are sick of doom, gloom and fear mongering. Many are seeing some progress and they want to focus on the positive and in believing “it will get better.”

  54. On it! Thanks,gn. I get great satisfaction from my faxes, emails and now, real hand written, with pen and ink, stamped letters. I do actually get responses and some are just hilarious, especially those that basically say “FU” but then ask me for money.

  55. I have gotten so much better about no tuning in. I have 5-6 sites that I read and comment on.

    You stated the truth when you said the final tally will show that you (we) won.

  56. No, instead they push out the people who are disturbed about the truly disturbed trolls.

  57. Not sure but I love it! Maybe they will have “followers” and they can also tweet and twitter.

    Sorry, I’m old and not up on all this but I do think it very wise of the military to do this and shows maybe their hearts are in the right place.

  58. thanks for your opinion Ladyhawke. I was a bit worried yesterday. She seemed very nervous and shy. I am sure it is pretty frightening to think about entering the viper’s pit. All those snakes out to strike and kill the prey.

  59. Do add my almost 80. Rarely post but always lurking and learning from you all. I’m excited as a kid to be here experiencing Obamatime!

  60. I’m so late to the party and I wish I could respond to each and everyone of you. Could I just say how much I love this site and how much I &heart; everyone who posts here?

  61. This same thing happened in Texas a few years ago. The democrats left the state and stayed hidden for quite a while. I think the problem had to do with redistricting.

    As I recall, in the end, when democrats were finally forced to come back, the redistricting went through anyway. I hope the same thing doesn’t happen this time with the union busting.

    Maybe the state workers, the teachers, the firefighters could just shut down the state, and Walker would be forced to capitulate?

    He doesn’t sound, so far, to be in a capitulating mood, though.

  62. I hope they revamp that site. Perhaps the techs are busy working on the White House site and have little time to work on OFA. There are so many things that can be done to improve the site like better monitoring and site management.

    If they don’t the organizing will be on other, smaller sites that don’t have the same security, but ironically may be harder to target than one big site.

    If you haven’t read Daily Kos, apparently some mega-astroturf group is trying to flood liberal sites so that they can’t really keep liberal traffic and get overwhelmed by the trolls. Ironically this may be the reason to create a lot of sites instead of one mega-site or a handful of mega sites. Smaller sites have more of a community feel and makes it harder to derail the whole thing. The number of people who post here are way too small not to notice some negative types suddenly appearing out of nowhere.

  63. I know we get crap for the “11 Dimensional Chess” references from the haters, but the guy really does know what he’s doing and he seriously thinks things through before he acts. It’s nice to have such a serious person in the WH who tries to get the best results possible for all Americans under the current political climate.

  64. Yes, the vast majority don’t want to live in a cloud of anger and fear and they are happy to see things beginning to improve. Things may not be back to normal but they are better than last year and that is a very good thing. That’s what so many of the PL are not getting. We don’t want any more of the doom and gloom. We want to hear about the progress that we can see and feel happening around us. We want to continue that and are tired of hearing that everything sucks and will always suck. That’s why their ratings are dropping all over the spectrum. It’s time to change their tune and start supporting something instead of being in perpetual opposition mode. That’s where blogs like this can make a big impact. People want to hear the positive. Americans are, for the most part, a very optimistic people. We may go through down periods but we don’t like it and we work to get out of those times as much as we can. Those who continue to spew negativity and impending doom are relegating themselves to irrelevance. It doesn’t match what people see, hear and most importantly, feel.

  65. I’ve completely stopped reading OFA blog entirely. I was headed in that direction anyway because this site is far superior to OFA.

  66. It is such a major story that a Republican governor pretty much invented a financial crisis in efforts of busting up a union. I wish that people like Schultz would dial it down a notch or twenty and tell the story straight, without playing Pretend President or muddying it up with stupid rants against POTUS for a situation which he didn’t create and did what he could to stop (campaigned heavily for Dems in 2010 to avoid GOP takeovers like this).

    But the point that this is a made-up crisis designed to bust up unions isn’t getting out there in a clarified manner.

  67. Ed’s a fool and he uses the excuse of being “passionate” as his license to act as a fool.

    The irony in all of this is that the President (again) is getting it from the likes of Schultz (who as you said could be really using this event to highlight the extreme callousness of the Republican Party) and from the Right (Boehner sent out a press release bashing the President and the DNC for helping the citizens of Wisconsin through OFA to organize a protest against the proposed legislation) See it here: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/144889-boehner-wades-into-wisconsin-labor-battle-backing-gop-governor

    So my question to Ed is which is it? He says the National Dems and the President are doing nothing and Boehner says their finger prints are all over it in WI.

    By all means WI has our support because Dems are always on the side of the people. That’s what we do and if Ed was a real Dem he would know that!

  68. Good luck with that!

    “State Sen. Jon Erpenbach said the group of 14 Democratic lawmakers are boycotting the vote. They said they want to force negotiations over the Republican-backed bill. Erpenbach told The Associated Press that he and his colleagues had left Wisconsin, but he wouldn’t say where.”

    “We’re not in Wisconsin. We decided this morning in a caucus and all 14 of us were unanimous in the decision, that in order to really focus down, this was the only option we had,” Erpenbach said.

    http://www.channel3000.com/politics/26900252/detail.html

  69. BWD,
    I hope you’ll be more careful to capitalize the “P” when you type “President Obama”–it may seem a small thing, but it’s a bit of respect the man and the office deserve. Especially in the environment where we find ourselves—the haters denigrating te office and the man at every turn–this is important.
    Thanks for all the good work you do.
    I look forward to some pics of President Obama’s visit to Oregon tomorrow!
    Joe

  70. Japa, the Chamber has more recent scandals to deal with, and I don’t think PR work will be effective in mitigating the damage to its already ‘questionable’ reputation. Interesting article…

    “An investigation by ThinkProgress has revealed that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce explored employing three “private security” firms to surreptitiously investigate the Chamber’s political foes (and even their families and children), and to wage an underhanded cyber-campaign against them.”

    //

    “The Chamber’s efforts to target opponents began after a ThinkProgress investigation last year raised questions about whether the business lobby was using money from foreign corporations to fund its political attack ads.”

    //

    “ThinkProgress acquired the emails after they were leaked by the pro-WikiLeaks hacktivist community “Anonymous,” which was responsible for taking down websites of oppressive regimes in Tunisia, Egypt, and those of American corporations that have censored WikiLeaks.”

    http://www.alternet.org/teaparty/149907/us_chamber_linked_to_shady_companies_in_effort_to_smear_political_opponents/

  71. “Some state troopers have already told union leaders that, in a sign of support for striking workers, they are refusing to track down or arrest any state legislators that they encounter.”

    “Capitol Police already have refused to kick out of the State Capitol the nearly 5,000 protestors that the Wisconsin Department of Administration has announced are there.”

    http://www.thinkprogress.org/

  72. Apologies. This was in response to gn’s question about the state patrols looking for the senators.

  73. It’s unreal. And this isn’t the first time that the PL and the right have collaborated in a noisy, sustained bashfest against this administration. Great insight about “passion” quickly turning into unapologetic foolishness.

  74. As a typo-prone blogger myself, I hadn’t even noticed the typo in the title. Thanks for your eagle-eye Joe and I second your thanks to bwd for this amazing work.

  75. I can not put my thoughts and feelings into such beautiful words as you do Majii. That,s why I mostly read and learn.. Thank God for this site.

  76. Just got this in my mail box

    http://www.democracyforamerica.com/activities/458?t=em1

    Virtual March on Madison WI. Great way to show solidarity for the unions.

    This is an excerpt from the email I received

    Republicans are starting to get scared by the reaction. Even Republican Paul Ryan from WI compared Gov. Walker to deposed Egyptian President Mubarak, when in an interview with Joe Scarborough on “Morning Joe” this morning he said:

    “It’s like Cairo moved to Madison.”

    They never expected American workers would stand united to defeat them, now they’re seeing it happen. If we keep the pressure up and keep growing the number of Americans standing together, we can win this and protect vital middle class jobs.

  77. What are pl talking about i just read how OFA have ratched up protest effort in Ohio and was already in Wisconsin. So what the heck is ED Schultz talking about.

  78. Gotta tell ya…I support the unions big time, but there’s no way I’m going to let Democracy for America capture my contact info.

  79. I feel the same way. Wisconsin OFA put their money where their respective mouths were and quietly went about the business of helping to organize the protests. Of course the PL is wanting to get in on this and hopefully their participation will be positive. But I personally want zero to do with that.

  80. Seems like these activities were being kept quiet for wise reasons. I personally don’t want the President to be the center of this story; this is about protesters in Wisconsin, some of them Walker voters, letting their leadership know that they do not have a mandate to use a manufactured financial crisis to bust up public employee unions. People like Schultz don’t think of the long term when they demand that POTUS stay front and center of every single freaking story.

  81. Hi Tien Le and gn – thank you for this input. I am a true newbie and always appreciate “heads up” about groups that are not worth supporting.
    Is this group strongly left and also against President Obama? After reading this I am considering unscubscribing from their mailing list.

  82. Democracy for America is the organizing outfit that wanted to get Howard Dean the nomination for President. I like and respect Dr. Dean, but he has been at odds with President Obama’s agenda at times. He’s a great speaker and the fifty state strategy truly worked, but OFA is the way to go as far as any true organizing in this country IMO. DFA is just another one of those Professional Left organizations whose time has come and gone. This latest thing is just a way to part people from money that could be more effectively spent by OFA and the DNC.

  83. So true BWD. Your site is the only one I read..the first thing in the morning and the last thing I read at night. I feel good and hopeful about this country with President Obama in charge. Before, at the HP and DK, I always felt anxious, angry, worried that this country was doomed. I even fantasized about moving to another country. Since the Egyptians brave protest and seeing the people in Wisconsin protest, I feel more encouraged. Thank you so much and I am glad and thankful for you.

  84. I think that’s why the President is always smiling….he has so much hope and sees so much promise in America’s future. He keeps moving forward whether the PL or Teapublicans want to come along or not.

  85. Do you know if there are any efforts underway to support the demonstrators who have been camping out overnight by providing food, coffee, tea, water, and blankets?

  86. Two healthcare reform headlines that are a study in contrast:

    Alaska governor refusing to enact federal health care law

    U.S. charges 111 in massive Medicare fraud crackdown

    The Democratic-run government is using the government to cut government waste, which is supposedly the message that conservatives wanted to send during the November midterms.

    And the Republican-run government is using government of the people, by the people and for the people, to prevent healthcare–an act that would seem to undermine the oft-repeated conservative claim that America has the best healthcare available in the world.

    If you’re not making affordable healthcare available to those who were not able to afford it prior to reform or have been denied it because they are a child or an adult with a pre-existing illness, how does that decision support your claim America has the best healthcare available in the world?

    Dear Alaskan governor, why are you in government, if you’re not going to help people do what they cannot do for themselves?

  87. Gov Walker sounds like a younger Mubarak doesn’t he. His Military has turned on him….how funny.

  88. I remember reading the Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. This young man was so enamoured with her. I thought it was a selfish foolish read.

  89. If OFA is involved (which means the local Dems are also involved), then you can count on them making sure everyone’s needs are being seen to. Nobody does it better.

  90. Not all Democrats have abandoned or turned on our POTUS. The Dems you mentioned in your reply have been stone-cold, unwavering supporters of Obama from the get-go, especially Senator Kerry. There maybe some good cop bad cop going on, but there has been no better support for the Obama Administration behind the scenes on Foreign Policy in Senator Kerry. (Google Sudan, Pakistan, Syria, etc).

    We need to stop painting all Democrats with a broadbrush. They are on the same side here.

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