The mainstream media typically pay a great deal of attention to the annual Conservative Political Action Conference. In the past few days, two prominent lefty bloggers have ventured to explain why.
In a post this past Saturday, the last day of CPAC 2014, Talking Points Memo editor and publisher Josh Marshall asserted that the top two reasons the conference gets a lot of media coverage are that its proximity to Washington makes it "an easy and cheap decision" for news outlets "to send at least one reporter and often many," and that:
As you probably know, the 2014 Conservative Political Action Conference will take place early next month just outside of Washington. The typical conservative thinks of CPAC as the major annual gathering of the activist right. On the other hand, Daily Kos featured writer Hunter views it as "a collection of people who have a pathologic inability to feel shame" over their copious political misjudgments and screw-ups.
In 1991, the Afrocentric rapper Sister Souljah released a single and video, "The Final Solution: Slavery's Back in Effect," which portrayed an America of the near future in which slavery for black persons had indeed been reinstituted.
But what if slavery -- for persons of all colors -- never went away in the U.S., and what if it's more or less inevitable under our economic system? Daily Kos blogger "Vyan" pondered such questions in a Thursday post, wondering whether slavery might be the "default setting" of a free-market economy and asserting that capitalism benefits "the powerful" and harms "nearly everyone else":
Some liberals don't find bigotry at the root of conservative Republican opposition to immigration reform, but many others do, and in that latter group, Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas is among the most persistent.
Kos was at it again in a post this past Wednesday, arguing that Tea Party GOPers in the House stand in the way of Republicans enhancing their appeal to politically important immigrant groups:
Even though MSNBC admits that one of its staffers shouldn't have tweeted that "the rightwing will hate" a Cheerios Super Bowl commercial about an interracial family, Daily Kos writer Hunter, who covers the conservative movement for the lefty blog, thinks the network showed weakness in not standing by the now-infamous tweet.
In a Monday post that mostly dealt with righties such as Allen West who objected to the multilingual rendition of "America the Beautiful" in Coca-Cola's Super Bowl spot, Hunter added:
On Tuesday, Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas noted a new Quinnipiac survey finding that only 35 percent of Americans believe that New Jersey governor Chris Christie would make a good president -- down from 49 percent in November -- and that Christie trails Hillary Clinton by eight points in a hypothetical presidential contest (he led her by one point in November and December Quinnipiac polls).
Moulitsas concluded from these numbers that "people care about" Bridgegate but not about the "fake" Benghazi scandal. He called the fourteen-point drop in Christie's would-make-a-good-POTUS rating "pretty much an epic collapse" and asserted that Bridgegate "is nowhere near its conclusion."
As NewsBusters reported Sunday, liberal cartoonist Ted Rall was recently banned from the progressive website Daily Kos for publishing a comic strip with Barack Obama in it that was deemed to be racist.
On Monday, Rall spoke with Newsmax TV’s Steve Malzberg about the incident, and warned that if Hillary Clinton gets the Democratic nomination for president in 2016, “sexism will be the new racism” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Romenesko reports on a radical-versus-radical squabble over a cartoon image of Obama. Leftist cartoonist Ted Rall was lectured by a Daily Kos administrator that “your depiction of Barack Obama as ape-like is intolerable” and insisted “blacks have been subject to racist depictions of themselves as monkeys and apes. No excuse is acceptable for replicating that history, no matter what your intent."' The cartoon was censored.
The caricature doesn't really look like Obama, certainly not the ape-like nose. Rall, who hasn’t been paid for his Daily Kos submissions, was furious at being accused of a racist cartoon:
The knock on the lefty blogosphere in its early years was that it made a lot of noise but accomplished very little. Since 2006 or so, however, the netroots' influence on the Democratic party has grown steadily, to the point that on Monday, Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas could crow that the Senate's weakening of filibuster rules via the so-called nuclear option was "perhaps [Daily Kos's] greatest activism victory in its decade-long existence."
You have to give the Kossacks over at the Daily Kos an A for effort. They try, oh how they try, to convince each other that Obamacare is a success despite all evidence to the contrary. The result of their effort is pure unadulterated comedy as you can see in the optimistic title of their thread, "Obamacare enrollments double in last three weeks." Of course the source of their optimism comes from the pretension that Medicaid enrollments count as ObamaCare enrollments and the looky loos who have yet to make an actual payment also count as part of the total. However, who are we to spoil their party so let us now watch the Kossacks try a bit too hard to bubble over with joy:
Enrollments have doubled since the end of October, from 106,000 to more than 200,000. That figure comes from the 14 states that have set up their own exchanges, and will be higher when the federal numbers are added in.
Daily Kos diarist "Risen Tree" took a moment to discuss capitalism and freedom, in a very Kosmonaut way. The article was titled "What Teabaggers Really Want."
"One of the Teabaggers' favorite buzzwords is 'freedom,' which they seem to generally define as having to follow as few regulations as possible. For all the noise they make about it, they seem to have grave difficulty defining its scope," the article began. "[L]et me explain to them what the logical conclusions of such insane ideas include."
For several decades, many on the left have tried to dodge the designation "liberal." They've called themselves "progressives" (sometimes "pragmatic progressives") or claimed to be non-ideological rather than accept the L-word, especially if they were running for office.
This past Wednesday, however, the Daily Kos blogger who calls himself "Crashing Vor" argued that the terminological tide is turning, and that it's "conservative" that's becoming not merely disreputable but, just maybe, synonymous with lunacy:
During the George W. Bush years, the folks at Daily Kos routinely trashed conservatives and Republicans, but each of those groups have contained a few members (e.g., William F. Buckley Jr. and Dwight Eisenhower) that some Kossacks found semi-respectable.
Then, early in 2009, came the Tea Party, for which mere affiliation put one beyond the pale. The DKos gang has been rhetorically pummeling tea-partiers ever since. This past week, for example, "ApostleOfCarlin" endorsed Rep. Alan Grayson's Tea Party-Ku Klux Klan analogy:
The Democrats' (partial) victory in the battle over the (partial) government shutdown and debt-ceiling increase was enough of a reason for Kossacks to do their happy dances and, more importantly, rub Republicans' faces in it.
"MichiJayJay" opined that for the GOP, losing wasn't punishment enough: "[N]ow that the teabaggers are down, we have to kick them, and kick them, and kick them and kick them. Into the goddamn dirt. Don't let anybody forget for a second what they wanted (and still want) to do."
Every so often but not nearly often enough, the opportunity to revel in guilt-free schadenfreude rolls around. This is one of those moments.
Over at Daily Kos, one of the most heavily-trafficked liberal websites and a revealing glimpse into the repugnant id that is the leftist mind, Daily Kos diarist "Tirge Caps" is belatedly learning that the Affordable Care Act is not the glorious legislative accomplishment that "progressives" have trumpeted over the last three years.
In his posts this past week on the shutdown/debt-ceiling uproar, Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas likened conservative Republicans to figures that included zombies, Charlie Sheen, and (of course) a terrorist. Let's plunge in.
On Monday, Moulitsas alleged that tea-partiers are lashing out in a crazed, mindless anti-Obama rage:
You'd need a truck scale to measure all the weighing-in the Daily Kos gang has done regarding the partial federal shutdown, so for reasons of brevity let's focus on shutdown-related musings from the boss Kossack, site founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas.
On Tuesday, day one of the shutdown, Moulitsas lectured congressional Republicans on legitimate and illegitimate means of halting Obamacare:
Liberals like to say that conservatives are behind the times...but 3,000 years behind? In a way, that's what the Daily Kos blogger who calls himself "waterstreet2013" asserted on Wednesday.
The starting point for "waterstreet2013" was a theory proposed in 1976 by psychologist Julian Jaynes, who argued that until about 1000 BC, people routinely experienced and acted on auditory hallucinations that they took to be commands from their dead ancestors, earthly rulers, or gods. The Kossack contends that today's conservatives are in a sense throwbacks to those pre-conscious humans (emphasis added):
Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas thinks conservatives live in a hermetically sealed bubble of Fox News and Breitbart commenters. On Thursday he mocked "reality-bending" Michael Walsh of National Review for suggesting the country would tilt away from Republican Tea Party-bashers like John McCain.
“Conservatives love to quote the 'public', the 'country', the 'American people' without ever pointing to a single poll because, as we all know, they're on the wrong side of virtually every issue,” Kos proclaimed, ignoring how polls have showed the approval of Obamacare has been underwater for years.
Sports analogies are a lot more illuminating when those who make them understand how the relevant sports are played. The Kossack known as "Helpless" failed that test on Friday.
"Helpless" asserted that Democrats are far more ethical than Republicans, as demonstrated by the Dems' enthusiasm for registering voters contrasted with the GOP's alleged eagerness to suppress votes from heavily Democratic minority groups. In so doing, however, he offered an analogy that suggests he's never watched a hotly contested NBA or college game (emphasis added):
Egberto Willies at the Daily Kos is one of those reliable radicals that’s really upset with war in Syria, lamenting this is “something the John Kerry of 1971 would never advocate for” and “The only winners are the military industrial complex and a corporatocracy dependent on cheap oil.”
Then it took a weird turn. “America must go to war alright,” Egberto declared, but with the war profiteers, and gun sellers, and the financial sector on Wall Street:
Daily Kos bloggers like to trash Fox News, even if some seem not to have ever watched the channel. (It's always amusing when one of them writes about Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity as if they were interchangeable. Uhhhh, no.)
Others, however, do at least a bit of content analysis. DKos featured writer "Hunter," for example, has long been especially contemptuous of FNC's morning program Fox & Friends. This past Tuesday, "Hunter" lauded John McCain for supposedly schooling Brian Kilmeade on the equivalence of "Allahu Akbar" and "Thank God." "Hunter" mused, "I wonder how far Sen. John McCain will get explaining Muslim culture to the fenceposts of the Fox News team."
Almost all of today's conservatives believe that their predecessors in the 1950s and '60s should not have opposed the civil-rights movement. Plenty of liberals counter that the right's wrongness on racial matters is by no means a thing of the past. This week, three Daily Kos writers advanced that idea.
Laura Clawson asserted on Monday that "for a hundred years after the Civil War, white people gave themselves the most extreme form of affirmative action by law and at gunpoint. Then for 50 years, they've insisted that any real steps to undo that damage were unfair."
It would be so refreshing if liberals simply came out and admitted their ardor for censoring conservative opinion. Instead, they hide behind transparent ploys such as pressuring companies that advertise with conservatives in media. Either way, their goal is to silence dissent, which they otherwise revere when bleated from them.
Latest example -- the easily irritated kultural kommissars at Daily Kos, along with compatriots from a left-wing pressure group called Credo Action, running an online petition calling on Rush Limbaugh's advertisers to pull their ads from his radio show.
Several Daily Kosmonauts were furious with CNN anchor Don Lemon for joining Bill O’Reilly in suggesting black kids could straighten up and hike up their saggy pants. “Vyan” even suggested that Don and Bill want all black kids to be “Steve Urkel” from the Nineties sitcom “Family Matters.”
He hit Lemon because “He jumped right in the middle of cage match between O'Reilly and anyone serious about Civil Rights. Now he's O'Reilly's Special Look-I'm-Really-Really-Not-A-Bigot Black Friend. Don's even getting Love Tweets From Geraldo. Yes, it's that bad. The Dark Side is growing strong with this one.”
The left often alleges that conservatives don't merely dislike government but deliberately undermine it for political or financial gain (and sometimes both). Daily Kos blogger Mark Sumner chimed in to that effect this past Sunday.
Sumner writes that conventional wisdom blames "rising incivility" and "simple intransigence" for Washington's failure to accomplish much of anything, but that in reality the central issue is "sabotage. 2013 Republicans are the 1919 Black Sox of politics, and the fix is in." This deliberate destabilization, Sumner argues, started more than three decades ago: